Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Paul Daniels

An oddity this being a magician doing tricks on a record. A bit like a ventriloquist doing a radio show! They seemed to get away with it though for some reason. Just a small segment uploaded here as the whole thing is pretty tedious.

Wikipedia says -

"Daniels was born at 51 North Street in South Bank, Middlesbrough, the son of Handel Newton Daniels and Nancy Lloyd. Handel (known as Hugh) was a cinema projectionist at the Hippodrome Theatre and a former worker at Imperial Chemical Industries (ICI) Wilton.
During World War II, Daniels was evacuated to the Helmsley area. After Sir William Turners Grammar School on Coatham Road in Coatham, Redcar (now the Redcar & Cleveland College Connections Campus on Corporation Road) and his first job as a junior clerk in the treasurer's office of Eston council, Daniels served as a conscript in the 1st Battalion, The Green Howards, during his National Service and was posted to the British garrison in Hong Kong, before training as an accountant in the Civil Service. Even at this early age he had thinning hair which he claimed to be an act of 'magic'. Daniels later sported a wig for much of his television career. After working as a junior clerk and then as an auditor in local government Daniels joined his parents in the grocery business they were running at the time.[citation needed] He later set up his own shop – at one point a mobile shop – but eventually gave this up in favour of his growing career as a magician.
[edit]Showbusiness career
Daniels' interest in magic began at the age of 11 when, during a holiday, he read a book called How To Entertain At Parties. He has stated that: "From that moment, I can safely say that all I ever wanted to do in life was to become a professional magician". He began performing magic as a hobby, occasionally entertaining at parties and youth clubs and later doing shows for fellow servicemen during his national service. After returning to civilian life he continued to develop his magic by performing in clubs in the evenings while working at his grocery business during the day. At one point he worked with his first wife Jackie under the name of 'The Eldanis', an anagram of Daniels. It was while working the clubs that he developed what would become his long running catchphrase, "You'll like this...not a lot, but you'll like it." He has stated that he first came up with the line at a club in Bradford as a way to deal with a heckler.
A major turning point in Daniels' career came in 1969 when he was offered a summer season at Newquay. He decided to sell his grocery business and try magic as a full time career. He made his television debut on the long-running talent show Opportunity Knocks in 1970, and came second. Television producer Johnnie Hamp saw Daniels in that show and later gave him a regular spot on a show compèred by Bernard Manning The Wheeltappers and Shunters Social Club for Granada Television."

Paul Daniels - Side Two(extract)

The Bumper Fun Album

" The Best from BBC TV and Radio Children's Programmes" it says on the sleeve and includes samples from Listen With Mother, Play School, The Flumps, etc. and featuring the voices of Brian Cant, Rolf Harris,Lionel Morton, Gorden Snell etc. On the BBC Records label from 1979.

Wikipedia says of Brian Cant -

"Born in Ipswich, he currently lives in Buckinghamshire and is married to writer and director Cherry Britton, sister of TV presenter Fern Britton and actor Jasper Britton. They have three children, daughter Rose, and twins Christabel and Peter. He has two sons from his first marriage, Nicholas and Richard, who is also an actor. He is the son-in-law of the British actor Tony Britton and brother-in-law of the television chef Phil Vickery.
In 1999 he was diagnosed with Parkinson's Disease, referring to this in an interview with BBC Breakfast which was shown on 24 November 2010.

Cant is particularly well known for his work on many BBC children's programmes from the 1960s to the 1980s, including Play School, Play Away, Trumpton, Chigley, Camberwick Green and Bric-A-Brac. He was performing in drama-based BBC TV Schools Programmes about the Romans when he heard that auditions were being held for a new children's pre-school programme which was to be shown on the new BBC 2 channel. At his audition he was asked by programme editor Joy Whitby to get in a cardboard box and pretend to 'row out to sea'. He pretended to fish from his 'boat' and caught a wellington boot full of custard. He was cast as a presenter and first appeared on the third week in May 1964, and stayed with the programme for twenty-one years, becoming to many viewers 'Mr Play School'.
During the 1990s Cant starred as 'Brian' the farmer in the children's puppetry television programme Dappledown Farm, as well as providing the voice for one of the characters, Harry the Heron.
Cant is the storyteller of the UK version of Jay Jay the Jet Plane, and the narrator for the popular Canadian children's show Bruno.
Aside from his work on children's television, Cant is also an established actor. In the 1960s he appeared in two Doctor Who stories, in 1965 as "Kert Gantry" in The Daleks' Master Plan[3] and in 1968 as "Tensa" in The Dominators. He was one of the guest presenters used in the 1982 series of the game show It's a Knockout after Eddie Waring retired.
In 1998 Cant parodied his previous contributions as a narrator in 'The Organ Gang', a weekly segment in Lee and Herring's This Morning With Richard Not Judy, a BBC TV Sunday afternoon comedy show."

Tracks are as follows =

1. Party Time - Toni Arthur , Lionel Morton and Jonathan Cohen
2. Underneath The Spreading Chestnut Tree/ Standing on One Leg - Brian Cant
3. London's Burning/ The Sun Has Got His Hat On - Louise Hall-Taylor, James Earl Adair and Children's Choir of Christchurch, East Sheen.
4.Simon Says - Gorden Snell
5. Turkey In The Straw/ Papillon - Rolf Harris & Long Stratton V.C. Middle School, Norwich.
6. Trip To The Moon - The Flumps
7. Tomorrow - Katherine Stowell and members of the Girl Guides Association.

Bumper Fun Album - Side Two

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Monster Mix

Trying out the Sound Cloud Mix thingy for the first time. An old monster/weird stuff comp. from 1994 featuring Viv Stanshall, John Otway, Annette, Penguin Cafe Orchestra etc. Let me know what you think and I'll upload some more maybe.

Monday, February 27, 2012

Charlie Gillett - Hamid Zagzoule

I've had requests for more Charlie Gillett shows so here's one from December 1988 on Capital Radio featuring Hamid Zagzoule who was a guest several times and always choose interesting tracks to play. Here the hour ( condensed to 45 minutes without traffic reports and adverts etc.) is filled with some wonderful highlights of the year including Baba Maal, Les Quatre Etoiles, and James Carr to name but a few.

"Hamid, who hails from Casablanca, is a producer and DJ living in London. He was a regular guest at the legendary Mambo Inn in Brixton, with occasional appearances at the Jazz Café, The South Bank Centre, the Barbican, Dingwals, Mwalimu Express, the Belmondo Club and once at the Albert Hall!Hamid has collaborated with Charlie Gillett on a number of radio broadcasts, notably the production of the ‘Saturday Night’ show on BBC Radio’s London Live station (previously GLR). He is a regular reviewer on Lucy Duran’s World Roots show on BBC Radio 3.For the past five years, Hamid has designed and programmed all the interval music between live acts at the Womad Festival, Rivermead, Reading, UK.Hamid has compiled CDs including ‘Cairo 2 Casablanca (Ptumayo)’, ‘The Couscous Beat’ (North Africa and beyond), ‘The Mediterranean Café’ (the authentic sounds of the Mediterranean), ‘Cairo Road’ (showcasing the stars of Arab classical music) and ‘Afrique Dynamique’ (the best in African Dance music) - all on the Nascente label. His latest CD ‘Tea in Marrakech’ (the funkiest sounds from the Kasbah) is out on Earthworks/Sterns.Hamid is currently part of the posse of resident DJs spinning the grooviest hits from the Med, North Africa and the Middle East in Cafe Oran Club at the Cargo in London.Biography provided by Hamid Zagzoule, 2001"

Read more about Charlie GillettHERE.

Charlie Gillett - Hamid Zagzou

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Della Reece

What first strikes you about this album on the Jubilee label (1960's) is the incredible weight! I first thought there must be two LP's in the sleeve and surprised to find just the one. This thing was made to last! A nice potted history of the blues with Della waxing lyrical about some of its origins in between tracks. Pleasant enough orchestra conducted by Sy Oliver accompanying throughout , verging on the MOR side of the blues.

Wikipedia says -

"Reese was born Delloreese Patricia Early in the historic Black Bottom neighborhood of Detroit, Michigan to African American steelworker Richard Thaddeus Early and Nellie Mitchelle, a Native American (Cherokee) cook. Delloreese's mother also had several older children, before her birth, all of whom did not live with her, hence, she lived as an only child. At only six years old, Reese began singing in church. From this experience, she became an avid gospel singer. As a young lady of the 1940s, on the weekends, she and her mother would go to the movies, independently, to watch the likes of Joan Crawford, Bette Davis and Lena Horne portray glamorous lives on screen. Afterwards, Reese would act out the scenes from every single film. In 1944, she began her career directing the young people's choir, after she had nurtured acting plus her obvious musical talent. She was often chosen, on radio, as a regular singer. At the age of thirteen, she was hired to sing with Mahalia Jackson's gospel group. Delloreese entered Detroit's popular Cass Technical High School (where she attended the same year with an unknown star, Edna Rae Gillooly, later known as Ellen Burstyn). At Cass Tech, she was a brilliant, no-nonsense student. She also continued with her touring with Jackson. With higher grades, she was the first in her family to graduate from high school in 1947, at only 15. Afterwards, she formed her own gospel group, the Meditation Singers. However, due in part to the death of her mother, and her father's serious illness, Reese had to interrupt her schooling at Wayne State University to help support her family. Faithful to the memory of her mother, Deloreese also moved out of her father's house, due to her feuding with her father, who had a new girlfriend. She then took on odd jobs, such as truck driver, dental receptionist, and even elevator operator, after 1949.
Performing in clubs, Early soon realized that she had no choice but to shorten her name from "Delloreese Early" to "Della Reese", knowing that her birth name was too long for a club marquee."

Tracks are -

1. The Story Of The Blues
2. Good Morning Blues
3. Empty Bed Blues
4. Squeeze Me
5. You've Been A Good Old Wagon
6. Sent For You Yesterday

Della Reece - Side One

Roger Saint- Pierre

I must admit I was intrigued by the blurry sleeve photo of the drummer playing his bongos and hoped the LP on the Ocora label (1984) would be a pleasant surprise but alas its just another tedious and pretentious drum solo done up to look like some kind of " poemes " and a "histiore" of drumming which it certainly isn't. Also its all in French so unable to figure out what the intention is - if any! I feel sorry for the audience but they seem surprisingly appreciative of this bongo bashing so maybe I'm in a minority.
Here it is anyway for all you bongo lovers out there!

"Flying in from his native Argentina and relocating himself to France in order to escape his native country's totalitarian regime, Martin Saint-Pierre settled down and released his first LP. In his hands, percussion becomes the departing point for a new means of expression that leans more to a contemporary creation instead of being a barely audible echo of a distant ancestral past. With his bendir – a Berber instrument out of the Atlas Mountains– Saint-Pierre leaps off straight away in an open space that qualifies itself as a “sonic sculpture”. Playing with contrasting effects, he emanates out a string of basic rhythms with frolic hand movements. He creates a wide sonic palette and upon listening attentively to it, it is at times hard to comprehend that such a recording was possible with nothing but the bendir. At times hurtful and at other occasions caressingly sweet, the tonal palette is wide and ranges from clear sounding notes to rumbling thunderous sounds and explosive eruptions. In all, he evokes an organic drift impregnated with a midnight ambience, punctuated by strange bits of percussive flares, but spending most drifting through deep dark cavernous expanses of sound and breathing out amazingly deep and physical sounds that are comprised out of a slow burning series of huge low end reverberations. The resonating sonics are given ample time to invade your listening space and hi-jack the ether. Scintillescent high end sparkles bobble up at the rear end of your acoustical wave frequency's periphery, super percussive skitter wraps around delicate melodic tom fills, occasionally sounding like a super slow abstract free jazz spread way out across the soundfield, with some serious stereo panning to underscore the total outcome. It all blends into an amorphous maelstrom swerving from one speaker to the other, oozing out dizzying dreamy soundscapes of percussive melodic clatter and strange rhythmic textural. drones that subtlety transform into high-end infected free jazz splatter."

Tracks are as follows -

1. Premiere partie
2. Extraits de poemes de Nicholas Guillen "Le cancion de Bongo" et "Bailando con los negros" de Pablo Neruda.

Roger Saint-Pierre - Side One

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Wagadu Gu

A 12" single on the Rokel label from 1977 that I was convinced I had uploaded before but seems to have vanished from the archives. A song by Prince Nico Mbarga.

Wikipedia says -

"Although he only recorded one significant hit, "Sweet Mother," in 1976, which sold more than 13 million copies (and which is recognised as one of Africa's greatest songs), Mbarga played an important role in the evolution of African popular music. With his soulful vocals set to the light melodies of his acoustic guitar, Mbarga created a unique hybrid of Igbo and Congolese guitar playing and uplifting highlife rhythms. He formed his own group, Rocafil Jazz, to perform regularly at the Naza Hotel in the eastern Nigerian city of Onitsha.
After releasing a disappointing single in 1973, Mbarga and Rocafil Jazz had their first success with their second single, I No Go Marry My Papa, which became a regional hit. The band's inability to break past their local following resulted in their recording contract being dropped by EMI, a decision that proved ill-fortuned when the band signed with Rogers All Stars, a Nigerian recording company based in Onitsha, and recorded "Sweet Mother".
Sung in Pidgin English, "Sweet Mother" became one of the top sellers in the history of Nigerian music. In the six years that Mbarga and Rocafil Jazz remained with Rogers All Stars, 1975 to 1981, they recorded nine albums.

Temporarily relocating to England in 1982, Mbarga became known for his flamboyant, 1970s glam rock-inspired performances. While he continued to appear with Rocafil Jazz, Mbarga also performed with London-based highlife band the Ivory Coasters and Cameroonian vocalist Louisiana Tilda. Despite launching his own Polydor-distributed record label, upon returning to Nigeria, Mbarga and the original members of Rocafil Jazz separated after several Cameroon-born members were deported. Although he later formed the New Rocafil Jazz Band, Mbarga failed to match his early success. Leaving music, he turned his attention to managing the two hotels that he owned, Hotel Calbar and the Sweet Mother Hotel.

Prince Nico Mbarga was killed in a motorcycle accident on June 24, 1997, leaving behind "Sweet Mother" as the most popular song amongst Nigerians. Sweet Mother is sometimes called Africa's anthem and has been voted Africa's favourite song by BBC readers and listeners."

Wagadu Gu - Aki Special

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Roger Pierre and Jean Marc Thibault

10" Lp on the London label from the 50's I would guess. I was hoping for some novelty songs sung in French but mostly comedy sketches with some sound effects. Makes more sense to people who are French or know a little of the language! Nice cover illustration though by who knows?

Wikipedia says -

"Roger Pierre (30 August 1923; Paris, France – 23 January 2010) was a French comedic actor.
He often appeared in comedies with Jean-Marc Thibault.
Pierre died in his native Paris, aged 86, from cancer.

Roger Pierre and Jean-Marc Thibault were one of France's most popular comedy acts. Working regularly throughout the 1950s, 60s, and 70s. Pierre's first film was 1957's Beautiful Mind. He appeared in such comedies as Mary Mary, Who Is This Woman?, The Legatee, The Night of Barbizon and Fire's Mother Madam. He also co-hosted the television programme Incredible But True."

Roger Pierre & Jean-Marc Thibault - Side One

Friday, February 17, 2012

Jesse Fuller

I thought this was another i had featured here before but can't find any sign of it inn the archives - very strange. Anyway, a great Lp by one man band Jesse and recorded in one take by the sound of it. Actually reading the sleeve notes I see it was recorded live at a club called Good Time Jazz in 1962/3.

Wikipedia says -

"Jesse Fuller (March 12, 1896 — January 29, 1976) was an American one-man band musician, best known for his song "San Francisco Bay Blues".

Fuller was born in Jonesboro, Georgia, near Atlanta. He was sent by his mother to live with foster parents when he was a young child, in a rural setting where he was badly mistreated. Growing up, he worked a multitude of jobs: grazing cows for ten cents a day, working in a barrel factory, a broom factory, a rock quarry, on a railroad and a streetcar company, shining shoes, and even peddling hand-carved wooden snakes.
He came west and in the 1920s worked briefly as a film extra in The Thief of Bagdad and East of Suez. Eventually he settled in Oakland, California, across the bay from San Francisco, where he worked for the Southern Pacific railroad. During World War II, he worked as a shipyard welder, but when the war ended he found it increasingly difficult to find work. Around the early 1950s, Fuller's thoughts turned toward the possibility of making a living playing music."

Tracks are as follows -

1. John Henry
2. I Got A Mind To Ramble
3. Crazy About A Woman
4. Where Could I Go But To The Lord
5. Stealin' Back My Old Time Used To Be
6. Brownskin Girl I've Got My Eye On You

Jesse Fuller - Side Two

Baba Brooks

OK this is the last ska single from the dusty old box for a while you'll probably be glad to know! I've enjoyed going through them again. Lastly a rocking instrumental by Baba Brooks. Lesser known C.Duffus and C. Brown on the flip side.

Wikipedia says -

"Oswald "Baba" Brooks aka Baba Leslie (born c.1935) was a trumpet player who played jazz in the 1950s with the Eric Dean orchestra and recorded during the 1960s original Jamaican ska era for producers Duke Reid, Sonia Pottinger and her husband Lindon, King Edwards, and Prince Buster.

Brooks was born in Kingston, Jamaica c.1935.He played trumpet on recording sessions from the late 1950s onwards, often uncredited, and formed his own band in the early 1960s, having a hit in 1962 with "Independence Ska", which celebrated Jamaica's break from colonialism.[1] he also performed on several sessions with The Skatalites. He had further hits in 1964 with "Bus Strike" and "Musical Workshop". The band followed this in 1965 with "Guns Fever", recorded at Studio One. Brooks and his band continued to play on recording sessions until the early 1970s."

Baba Brooks - Shank I Sheck

S. Duffus/C. Brown - No Body Know

Laurel Aitken

More ska on the Dice label from 1966.

Wikipedia says -

"Born in Cuba of mixed Cuban and Jamaican descent, Aitken and his family settled in Jamaica in 1938. After an early career working for the Jamaican Tourist Board singing mento songs for visitors arriving at Kingston Harbour, he became a popular nightclub entertainer. His first recordings in the late 1950s were mento tunes such as "Nebuchnezer", "Sweet Chariot" (aka the gospel classic "Swing Low, Sweet Chariot") and "Baba Kill Me Goat". Progressing to a pre-ska shuffle, Aitken's 1958 single "Little Sheila"/"Boogie in My Bones" was one of the first records produced by Chris Blackwell, who founded his Island Records label that year, and the first Jamaican popular music record to be released in the United Kingdom. Other rock and roll singles from this period include "Low Down Dirty Girl", "Drinkin' Whisky" and "More Whisky", produced by Duke Reid.
Aitken moved to Brixton, London in 1960 and recorded for the Blue Beat label, releasing fifteen singles before returning to Jamaica in 1963. He recorded for Duke Reid, with backing from The Skatalites on tracks such as "Zion" and "Weary Wanderer", before returning to the UK, where he began working with Pama Records. He recorded hits such as "Fire in Mi Wire" and "Landlord and Tenants", which led to a wider recognition outside of Jamaica and the UK. This cemented his position as one of ska's leading artists and earned him the nicknames The Godfather of Ska, and later Boss Skinhead. He gained a loyal following not only among the West Indian community, but also among mods, skinheads and other ska fans. He had hit records in the United Kingdom and other countries in the 1950s through to the 1970s on labels such as Blue Beat, Pama, Trojan, Rio, Dr. Bird, Nu-Beat, Ska-Beat,Hot Lead and Dice. Some of his singles featured B-sides credited to his brother, guitarist Bobby Aitken. Aitken also recorded a few talk-over/deejay tracks under the guise of 'King Horror', such as "Loch Ness Monster", "Dracula, Prince of Darkness", and "The Hole". Aitken settled in Leicester with his wife in 1970. His output slowed in the 1970s and during this period he worked as an entertainer in nightclubs and restaurants in the area including the popular 'Costa Brava Restaurant' in Leicester under his real name Lorenzo. In 1980, with ska enjoying a resurgence in the wake of the 2 Tone movement, Aitken had his only success in the UK Singles Chart with "Rudi Got Married" (#60)released on I-Spy Records (the label created and managed by Secret Affair. Aitken's career took in mento/calypso, R&B, ska, rock steady, and reggae, and in the 1990s he even turned his talents to dancehall. He performed occasional concerts almost until his death from a heart attack in 2005. After a long campaign, a blue plaque in his honour was put up at his Leicester home in 2007."

Laurel Aitken - Jamaica

Laurel Aitken - I Don't Want No More

Bob Andy/Etheopians

More ska/rock steady on the Rio label from 1967.

Bob Andy's official website says -

"Bob Andy (born Keith Anderson) emerged as a solo star in 1966 with the smash hit "I've Got to Go Back Home", a song which has become a much-loved anthem for Jamaicans. He had served his singing and songwriting apprenticeship with the legendary vocal group THE PARAGONS, which he founded with Tyrone (Don) Evans and Howard Barrett, later joined by John Holt. The Paragons had several hits for producer Coxsone Dodd including the Number One "Love At Last", penned by Bob.
As one of STUDIO ONE's leading lights, Bob worked closely with Jackie Mittoo on many of the label's seminal sounds. Besides writing songs for himself which have become reggae standards - "Feeling Soul", "My Time", "Going Home", and "Too Experienced", to name just a few - Bob contributed hits for many of the other artists there.
In 1970, international recognition came when Bob and Marcia Griffiths recorded Nina Simone's "Young, Gifted and Black", which sold 1/2 million in the UK and Europe, and still receives frequent airplay today. BOB & MARCIA became household names, appearing on Top of the Pops and touring extensively. They had another UK Top Ten single and two albums for Trojan Records.

During the early 70s Bob continued his solo recordings; "You Don't Know" and "Life" are two songs from this time which hold a special place in the hearts of his British fans. After the duo split in 1974, Marcia became one of Bob Marley's I-Threes, and Bob's singles "Fire Burning" and "Check It Out" struck a responsive chord with Jamaicans in the new social consciousness of the Manley era."

Learn more about Bob Andy HERE.

Bob Andy - Stay In My Lonely Arms

The Ethiopians - Dun Dead A'Ready

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Lloyd Robinson

Another ska single from 1963. Not much known of this particular artist but I did find this small snippet of info -

Reggae singer Lloyd Robinson recorded a number of songs for Studio One starting in 1963. He later went on to cut sides for many Jamaican producers including Duke Reid, Lloyd Daley, Sir JJ and more. Robinson was a member of the late '60s rock-steady group the Tartans with Cedric Myton (who would later start the Congos), sang duets with Glen Brown and was half of the duo Lloyd and Devon, which had a hit for Derrick Morgan's Hop label, "Red Bum Ball." ~ Joslyn Layne, All Music Guide

Lloyd Robinson - I Need Your Love

Lloyd Robinson - You Told Me

Alton Ellis

A rock steady single on the New Beat label from 1971. La La Means I Love You was originally a hit for The Delphonics in 1968. Todd Rungren did a passable version on his Wizard- A True Star album in the 70's or perhaps the early 80's? I think I prefer the original though this has a certain charm.

Wikipedia says -

"Ellis was born in 1938 and grew up in Kingston's Trench Town district. Born into a musical family, he learned to play piano at a young age. He attended Ebeneezer and Boys' Town schools, where he excelled in both music and sport. He initially sought fame as a dancer, competing on Vere Johns' Opportunity Hour. After winning a couple of competitions, he switched to singing, starting his career in 1959 as part of the duo Alton & Eddy with Eddy Perkins. Ellis and Perkins recorded for Coxsone Dodd at Studio One, initially in the R&B style, having a massive hit with "Muriel" (from Dodd's first commercially-oriented recording session at Federal studios), a song Ellis had written whilst working as a labourer on a building site and recording follow-ups with "My Heaven", "Lullabye Angel", "I Know It All", "I'm Never Gonna Cry" and "Yours". The duo also recorded a few tracks for Vincent Chin's Randy's label, but came to an end when after winning a major talent contest, Perkins moved to the United States. Ellis remained in Kingston, working as a printer and after losing his job, he restarted his music career, initially forming a new duo with John Holt. When Holt joined The Paragons, Ellis formed a new group, The Flames. Ellis continued to work for Dodd and also recorded for his arch-rival, Duke Reid on his Treasure Isle label. By the mid 1960s, ska was moving on and the beat was slowing down to rocksteady and becoming associated with the violent rude boy subculture in Jamaican dancehalls. Many artists made records referring to the rude boys, including Ellis, although his records were consistently anti-rudie, including "Don't Trouble People", "Dance Crasher", and "Cry Tough", in contrast to artists such as Bob Marley, whom Ellis blamed for glorifiying the rudies. Recording with The Flames (the varying line-up of which included his brother Leslie Ellis, David "Baby G" Gordon and Winston Jarrett), Ellis scored big with the hits "Girl I've Got a Date", "Cry Tough" and "Rock Steady", which was the first song to refer to the name of the newer genre. As rocksteady dominated the Jamaican airwaves for the next two years, Ellis continued to score hits for Treasure Isle, working with artists such as Lloyd Charmers, Phyllis Dillon and The Heptones. His Mr Soul of Jamaica album is regarded as one of the definitive rocksteady albums."

Alton Ellis - La La (Means I Love You)

Alton Ellis - Give Me Your Love

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Roland Alphoso

Excellent instrumental ska track by Roland Alphonso on this single that also features Andy & Joey. Made in 1965.

Wikipedia says -

"Alphonso came to Jamaica at the age of two with his Jamaican mother, and started to learn saxophone at the Stony Hill Industrial School.
In 1948 he left school to join Eric Deans' orchestra and soon passed through other bands in the hotel circuit and first recorded as a member of Stanley Motta's group in 1952, going on to record frequently as a session musician. In 1956 he first recorded for Clement "Coxsone" Dodd, although these early recordings were lost before they were mastered. In 1959 he joined the band of Cluett Johnson named Clue J & His Blues Blasters and backed many of Dodd's recording sessions in a typical Jamaican R&B style. He also acted as arranger at many of Dodd's recording sessions. By 1960, he was recording for many other producers such as Duke Reid, Lloyd "The Matador" Daley and King Edwards, as well as continuing to work for Dodd, contributing alto, tenor, and baritone saxophones, and flute to recordings. During this period he played in many different bands, such as The Alley Cats, The City Slickers, and Aubrey Adams & The Dew Droppers. In 1963, after few months spent in Nassau, Bahamas, he took part in the creation of The Studio One Orchestra, the first session band at Dodd's newly-opened recording studio. This band soon adopted the name of The Skatalites.
When the Skatalites disbanded by August 1965, Alphonso formed the Soul Brothers (with Johnny "Dizzy" Moore, and Jackie Mittoo) to become The Soul Vendors in 1967. In the late 1960s and early 1970s, Alphonso led the Ruinaires, the resident band at the Ruins restaurant/nightclub, this coming to an end when he suffered a stroke at the age of 41. He recovered quickly from this setback, and relocated to the United States in late 1972, soon returning to performing and recording. He released the first album under his name in 1973 on the Studio One record label.
During the 1970s, 80s, and 90s, he kept on playing on numerous records coming out from Jamaican studios, especially for Bunny Lee, and he toured with many bands. In the late 1970s and early 1980s, he played with the band Jah Malla, performing regularly on the live circuit around New York.
He was awarded Officer of the Order of Distinction by the Jamaican government in 1977, and started to tour more often in the U.S. He took part in the reformation of the Skatalites in 1983, with whom he toured and recorded constantly until he suffered a burst blood vessel in his head during a show at the Key Club in Hollywood on 2 November 1998. He died on 20 November 1998 at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles, after suffering a second burst blood vessel, and spending four days in a coma."

Roland Alphonso - Nimble Foot

Andy & Joey - Love Is Stronger

Monday, February 13, 2012

Lloyd Clarke - Reco's All Stars

More ska on the Blue Beat label from 1962. I couldn't find anything about Lloyd Clarke but Reco's All Stars must be Rico Rodrigues ho now plays with Jools Holland's Big Band.

Wikipedia says of Rico -

Rico Rodriguez MBE (born Emmanuel Rodriguez; 17 October 1934[1]), also known as Reco or El Reco, is a ska and reggae trombonist. He has recorded with many producers, including Karl Pitterson, Prince Buster, and Lloyd 'Matador' Daley. He is known as one of the first and most distinguished Ska artists
Contents [hide]
1 Career
2 Discography
3 Bibliography
4 See also
5 References
6 External links

"Rodriguez was born in Kingston, Jamaica, and was taught to play the trombone by his slightly older schoolmate Don Drummond at the Alpha Boys School. In the 1950s, he became a Rastafarian and became closely musically related to rasta drummer, Count Ossie. In 1961, he moved to the UK and started to play in reggae bands there. In 1976, he recorded the album, Man from Wareika under contract with Island Records.In the late 1970s, with the arrival of the 2 Tone genre, he played with ska revival bands such as The Specials. One of his most notable performances was on The Specials' song, "A Message to You, Rudy".
Rodriguez also helmed his own outfit, Rico and the Rudies, to yield the albums Blow Your Horn and Brixton Cat.
In 1995, Island Records released the album Roots to the Bone, an updated version of Rodriguez's earlier work, Man from Wareika.
He was awarded an MBE (Member of the Order of the British Empire) at Buckingham Palace on 12 July 2007, for services to music."

Lloyd Clarke - You're A Cheat

Lloyd Clarke - Fools Day

Norma Frazer

A single on the Ska Beat label from 1965. Not much info on her website but a short biog. says-

"It all started for me at Studio One, the record label that was like the Motown label in America. It was owned by Coxson Dodd, the master mind behind us all. He signed me n the early 1960s, and i had the pleasure of working with so many wonderful performers and musicians who were also signed with him includng Bob & Rita Marley; Peter Tosh; Bunny Wailer; Slim Smith; Delroy Wilson; joe Higgs; Ken Boothe; and the Skatalites. I really liked Bob Marley because he was rather earthy,religious, and so very talented...we used to discuss our life as kids, our love for music, and the difficulties we faced trying to get our records out on a timely basis...not to mention getting paid for them."

Read more about Norma HERE.

Norma Frazer - Heartaches

Norma Frazer - Everybody Loves A Lover

Bobby Kingdom

Another ska single on the Blue Beat laebl from 1961. Bobby Kingdom also known as Bobby Muir but further info. very slim on this artist. If you know any more do enlighten us!

Wikipedia says -

"Blue Beat Records was a label of Emile E. Shalit's Melodisc Records company. Melodisc specialised in Calypso and Mento music, and was formed in London, England in 1947, with strong ties to the West Indies. Shalit founded Blue Beat in 1960 as a label which focused on U.S inspired Jamaican Blues and R&B recordings which would later evolve into ska- after the positive response in the UK to (the then UK-based) Laurel Aitken's Melodisc release of "Lonseome Lover". He placed Sigimund "Siggy" Jackson in charge of the label, with Jackson choosing the name Blue Beat, which according to Siggy was an adaptation of "It sounds like blues and it's got a great beat" - or Blues Beat, at the time apparently a generic term for Jamaican blues music. The first release on the label was Aitken's "Boogie Rock", which was licenced from Clement "Coxsone" Dodd's Downbeat label. The distinctive blue label and silver logo first appeared with the label's third release, Higgs & Wilson's "Manny Oh". The label reached licencing agreements with the majority of the major Jamaican producers as well as releasing many home produced productions from Siggy Jackson featuring English based artists such as The Marvels. Even some Prince Buster hits like "Wash-Wash" were recorded in London, and included well known UK musicians such as Georgie Fame. The Blue Beat label released around 400 singles and over a dozen albums between 1960 and 1967, with Prince Buster becoming the label's biggest star with songs such as "Al Capone". Jackson established a Blue Beat night at The Marquee in London, and fashion accessories featuring the label's logo also became popular. Many Blue Beat recordings were played alongside soul music in dance clubs such as the Twisted Wheel in Manchester. As well as appealing greatly to the West Indian community the music also became associated with the mod youth culture of the 1960s and later in the decade it became retrospectively popular amongst a later evolution of the mod sub-culture who followed reggae music and associated with the West Indian 'rude boys' who became known as skinheads - originally a multi-racial youth culture based around music and fashion. In the late 60's and early 70's Blue Beat records became highly collectible and much sought after rarities among these youths who regarded records like Buster's Al Capone as classics."

Bobby Kingdom - That's My Girl

Bobby Kingdom - Honey Please

Sunday, February 12, 2012

The Blue Tail Fly

A "kiddie record" this time with very gaudy "politically incorrect" cover found in a charity shop a few years back. Plays at 78rpm but only 7" across.

Kiddie Rekord King says -

"The end of the 1940's saw a proliferation of companies producing seemingly countless series of kiddie records. Some of the larger producers started releasing the more popular records e.g. Christmas carols, fairy tales, bestsellers) as parallel issues in both 78 and 45rpm formats in the early 1950's. The cover artwork was usually identical in both. Eventually after 78s were phased out entirely, the 45's continued to be released into the 1980's until they were phased out in favor of CD's and cassettes.

One of the most famous children's series from this era was launched in 1948. Golden Records, a part Simon & Schuster, publisher of the famous "Little Golden Books", started issuing small (6"), almost indestructible yellow plastic records. This series was an immediate hit with both parents and kids. They were available at almost any grocery market for 25 cents. Most of the first issues were musical story renditions of Little Golden Books. The child could read the book and follow along with the record. The series continued well into the 1960's, and to this day remains as probably the largest of all kiddie record sets. Sadly, Arthur Shimkin, the founder of Golden Records, visionary and personal friend, passed away on December 4, 2006.

RCA Victor's youth series that began in 1944 became known as the famous "Little Nipper" series in 1950. Many of the popular Disney stories, which were made into movies, as well as the more popular TV shows of the day (e.g. Howdy Doody, Tom Corbett Space Cadet) appeared in this series and today are among the more valuable and popular of all kiddie 78s.

A few companies became known as strictly "children's record" producers. In addition to those mentioned in the previous paragraphs, many readers will remember: Peter Pan, Cricket, Columbia Playtime, Record Guild of America, Voco, Young People's Records/Children's Record Guild (a division of the Book of the Month Club), Mercury Childcraft and Playcraft, Red Raven (picture discs). Then there are those small companies that produced few kiddie records, let alone any others. Unfamiliar as the following are, they, nevertheless, contributed to the plethora of products: Pied Piper, Rocking Horse, Pilotone, Melodee, Toono, Belda, DeLuxe, Winant, Allegro, Magic Tone, Karousel, Twinkle, Color Tunes, Musicraft, Little John, Little Pal, Merry-Go-Sound, Mayfair, Musette, Caravan. This is a small sampling of some of the lesser-known labels of the post WW2 era. In addition, an entire section of my book will focus on educational, instructional, and religious series of children's records. Most of these are not avidly collected, but are, nevertheless, part of the legacy of kiddie 78s.

Besides standard records, a large number of picture-discs came out, including several that could be cut out of the back of cereal boxes. With a picture disc the whole record is a graphic image or photograph. The grooves are either cut right into the picture, or on a clear laminate of plastic that is affixed to the picture disc. One places the needle right on the record's picture. As a rule, picture discs are more valuable than standard records. "

Kenneth Lynn - Blue Tail Fly

Chorus - O'Susanna/ Camptown Races

Theo Beckford

Another very early ska single on Blue Beat from 1961. Greatly influenced by Fats Domino and New Orleans R&B.

Wikipedia says -

"Beckford was born in 1935 in Trench Town, Kingston, Jamaica, the second of three sons. He learned to play piano at the Boys' Town home for indigent boys in west Kingston, initially inspired by Rosco Gordon and Fats Domino, and on leaving bought a piano and began working with producer Stanley Motta, backing local calypsonians. His piano playing helped to define the sound and feel of ska music, as distinct from Jamaican rhythm & blues in the late 1950s. He had a huge hit in 1959 with "Easy Snappin'", recorded in 1956 and played at dances by producer Coxsone Dodd before he released it three years later on his Worldisc label. The single was a number one in Jamaica and stayed on the chart for eighteen months, also selling well in the United Kingdom, and the emphasis on the off-beat was widely imitated.The song is considered a forerunner of ska. Although Beckford was credited as the writer, he received no royalties from the song. A second hit followed with "Jack & Jill Shuffle", and a few more singles were recorded for Dodd before Beckford formed his own King Pioneer label in the early 1960s."

Theo Beckford - That's Me

Theo Beckford - Georgie And The Old Shoe

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Derek Morgan/Owen Gray

A curious single having two different solo singers on either side of the disc fronting the Prince Buster'a backing band."Headache" is a very odd sounding ska tune with gutteral growlings by an unknown. Recorded in 1965.I imagine the "A" side would be by Owen Gray and seems to refer to another popular singer of the time, Millie Small.

Wikipedia says of Derek Morgan -

In 1957 Morgan entered the Vere Johns Opportunity Hour, a talent show held at the Palace Theatre in Kingston. He won with rousing impressions of Little Richard, and shortly after that, was recruited to perform around the island with the popular Jamaican comedy team, Bim and Bam. In 1959 Morgan entered the recording studio for the first time. Duke Reid, the acclaimed sound system boss, was looking for talent to record for his Treasure Isle record label. Morgan cut two popular shuffle-boogie sides "Lover Boy", a.k.a. "S-Corner Rock", and "Oh My". Soon after, Morgan cut the bolero tinged boogie, "Fat Man", which also became a hit. He also found time to record for Coxsone Dodd.
In 1960 Morgan became the only artist ever to fill the places from one to seven on the Jamaican pop chart simultaneously." Among those hits were "Don't Call Me Daddy", "In My Heart", "Be Still", and "Meekly Wait and Murmur Not". But it was the following year that Morgan released the biggest hit of his career, the Leslie Kong production of "You Don't Know", later retitled "Housewives’ Choice" by a local DJ. The song featured a bouncing ska riddim, along with a duet by Morgan and Millicent "Patsy" Todd.
"Housewives’ Choice" began the legendary rivalry between Morgan and Prince Buster, who accused Morgan of stealing his ideas. Buster quickly released "Blackhead Chiney Man", chiding Morgan with the sarcastic put-down, "I did not know your parents were from Hong Kong" – a swipe at Kong. Morgan returned with the classic "Blazing Fire", in which he warns Buster to "Live and let others live, and your days will be much longer. You said it. Now it’s the Blazing Fire". Buster shot back with, "Watch It Blackhead", which Morgan countered with "No Raise No Praise" and "Still Insist". Followers of the two artists often clashed, and eventually the government had to step in with a staged photo shoot depicting the rivals as friends."

Wikipedia says of Owen Gray -

"Gray won his first talent contest at the age of nine, and by the age of twelve he was already appearing in public, playing drums, guitar, and keyboards. He attended the Alpha Boys School and turned professional aged 19. Gray was a dynamic performer on stage, who could be gritty or suave as the song dictated. He was the first singer (of many) to praise a sound system on record, with his "On the Beach" celebrating Clement Dodd's Sir Coxsone Downbeat system in 1959, one of the first releases on Dodd's Studio One label. He was one of the first artists to be produced by Chris Blackwell, in 1960, and his "Patricia" single was the first record ever released by Island Records. His first single, "Please Let Me Go", reached the top of the charts in Jamaica, and featured a guitar solo from Ernest Ranglin (Ranglin's first recording session). The single also sold well in the United Kingdom, as did subsequent releases, prompting Gray to emigrate there in 1962. He toured Europe in 1964, and by 1966 he was well known as a soul singer as well as for his ska songs. In the rocksteady era, he recorded for producer Sir Clancy Collins. His popularity continued throughout the 1960s, working with producers such as Clement Dodd, Prince Buster, Arthur "Duke" Reid, Leslie Kong, and Clancy Eccles, including work as a duo with Millie Small, with songs ranging from ska to ballads. He continued to record regularly, having a big hit in 1968 with "Cupid". His 1970 track "Apollo 12" found favour with the early skinheads, and in 1972 he returned to Island Records, recording reggae versions of The Rolling Stones' "Tumblin' Dice" and John Lennon's "Jealous Guy", although they met with little success. During this period, he regularly had releases on Pama and sister label, Camel Records, and one single on Hot Lead Records. He had greater success in Jamaica, however, with "Hail the Man", a tribute to Emperor Haile Selassie, which was popular with the increasing Rastafari following. Gray spent a short time living in New Orleans before returning to Jamaica where he turned his hand to roots reggae, working with producer Bunny Lee, and achieving considerable success. In the 1980s relocated to Miami. He has continued to release new material regularly, often concentrating on ballads and Gospel music."

Derek Morgan - Headache

Owen Gray - Millie Girl

Friday, February 10, 2012

Hortense & Delroy

Single on the Rio label from the 60's. I'm guessing this is Hortense Ellis and Delroy Wilson dueting together. Hortense seemed to duet with quite a few reggae artists during this time. Nice Soul Bros. instrumental on the B side.

Wikipedia says of Hortense -

"Her father worked on the railways while her mother ran a fruit stall. She was 18 years old when she appeared on the Vere Johns Opportunity Hour, then Jamaica's foremost outlet for young undiscovered talent. Her version of Frankie Lymon's "I'm Not Saying No At All" so impressed both audience and panel that she was invited back the following week. Ellis went on to enter many more competitions and showcases and she reached six semi-finals and four finals. In 1964 she was awarded a silver cup as Jamaica's Best Female Vocalist and went on to repeat this feat five years later.
During the 1960s, Ellis toured Jamaica with Byron Lee and The Dragonaires and had begun recording with some of the island's top producers such as Ken Lack ("I Shall Sing", "Hell And Sorrow" and "Brown Girl In The Ring"), Coxsone Dodd ("Twelve Minutes To Go"), "Ill Come Softly") and Duke Reid.
Alton Ellis was also recording with Dodd at this time and the family connection was exploited by Dodd who produced "female" adaptions of some of Alton's hits (for Hortense to record) including "Why Do Birds" and "I'm Just A Guy". Dodd also paired Alton and Hortense in a run of duets such as "I'm In Love" and "Easy Squeeze".
The siblings toured Canada in 1970 but the following year, Ellis was back in Jamaica where she married Mikey "Junior" Saunders with whom she had five children in quick succession. Although her live performances suffered as a result, she remained busy in the studio. Recording under the name Mahalia Saunders for producer Lee "Scratch" Perry, she recorded several sides including "Right On The Tip Of My Tongue" and "Piece Of My Heart".
Ellis' success came in the late 1970s with a song recorded for Gussie Clarke. "Unexpected Places" was a big hit in Jamaica and also in Britain where it appeared on the Hawkeye label.
For producer Bunny "Striker" Lee, Ellis became Queen Tiney for her "Down Town Ting" - an "answer" record to Althea and Donna's big hit "Uptown Top Ranking", which had itself been based on the rhythm of Alton's big hit "I'm Still In Love With You".
Around this time, Ellis recut many of her Coxsone/Studio One sides with Soul Syndicate, The Aggrovators and the up and coming team of Sly Dunbar and Robbie Shakespeare. The rise of the Lovers Rock genre in the late seventies and early eighties led to Ellis cutting cover version of several popular soul classics including "Down the Aisle" (Patti Labelle) and "Young Hearts Run Free" (Candi Staton). Following her divorce from Mikey Saunders, Ellis spent much of the eighties living in New York and Miami. On returning to Jamaica in 1989, she began suffering health problems, but managed to carry on with occasional local live performances. She recovered sufficiently to make a private visit to New York in the summer of 1999, and then to Miami the following year, where ill health finally caught up with her.
Despite a worsening condition and the pleadings of her daughter, Sandra Saunders, to seek immediate treatment there in Miami, Ellis insisted on returning to her beloved Jamaica where she was hospitalised almost immediately, seriously ill and in considerable pain.
Hortense Ellis died in her sleep in a Kingston hospital on 18 October 2000 from a stomach infection."

Hortense & Delroy - We're Gonna Make It

The Soul Bros. - Ska Shuffle

Lord Funny (Re-UP)

A 7" single on the Antillana label from 1970 found down Brick lane market many years ago. I have a ton of these old ska, blue beat, rock steady, calypso singles that I used to collect back in the 70's and 80's. Sorting through them the other day I realised that I hadn't really listened to many of them or if I did it was just one side. Some are so scratched and warped they don't bear a second playing. I tried to find out about Lord Funny and the internet doesn't help much this time. I found a discography of "Funny" and it seems he still records under the this name and dropped the "Lord" title. Maybe he thought it sounded more up to date or snappier? I prefer Lord Funny. The B side is great too all about the dangers of not brushing your teeth!

Find out more about calypso by going HERE.

Lord Funny - Sock It To Me

Lord Funny - I Brush

Wednesday, February 08, 2012

Sangam (Re-UP)

Probably from Brick Lane market, this EP on the EMI/HMV label out of Pakistan was released in 1964. It has a couple of great songs on it especially the amusing "I Love You" which is just the words "I Love You" sung in several languages with what sounds like a Greek bazouki backing!

Heres a review of the film from the Channel 4 site-
Director/actor Raj Kapoor reworks the popular love triangle theme in this lavish production, one of the first Hindi films to be shot in foreign European locations. Nearly all Kapoor's films were romances and big box-office hits; he himself was a huge star in China, Russia and the Middle East. The appeal of his films is largely due to their excellent music by Shankar-Jaikishan. Sangam is stirring entertainment using the essential elements of Hindi cinema: melodrama, star charisma and music."

Sangam - Main Ka Karoon/I love You

Sangam - O Mere Sanam/O Mehbooba

The Kingstonians

A single on the Doctor Bird label from 1968. I can't find out anything about the Kingstonians on the internet. They seem to have been around all through the 60's and 70's in various forms. Nice rock steady/ska beat - typical of the era.

The Kingstonians - Put Down Your Fire

The Kingstonians - Girls Like Dirt

Tuesday, February 07, 2012

Greetings From Denmark

A curiosity in the form of a postcard from Denmark which has an audio track printed onto it which plays at 78 rpm. Not sure where I found this but uncovered going through some old boxes of junk this morning. I had to balance some coins on it during play so that the card didn't swivel on the turntable.

Greetings From Denmark - Postcard

General Prince Adekunle

More JuJu music from Nigeria. Typical meandering jangly guitars and drums with slightly off key vocals. On Ibukun Orisun Iye label from the 1975.

Wikipedia says -

"Jùjú music, first developed by Tunde King in the 1930s, formed the basis of Prince Adekunle's music. Highlife musicians like Bobby Benson and Tunde Nightingale introduced jazz concepts and new instruments. Ebenezer Obey and Sunny Ade brought in amplified guitars and synthesizers. All these formed the basis for Adekunle's innovative and forceful new style of juju music. Afrobeat, pioneered in the late 1960s by Fela Kuti and others, was another major influence on Prince Adekunle and his band the Western State Brothers, later the Supersonic Sounds. With a cool but driving, sophisticated style, Prince Adekunle is considered one of the great artistes of Jùjú music.

Afrobeat also influenced Adekunle's protege Sir Shina Peters who created a unique high-speed "Afro juju" sound. Sir Shina Peters recalls that when he was young, he was befriended by Prince Adekunle. An agent said he should be called Prince Adekunle’s son as a publicity stunt, and that was how he became known as Shina Omo Adekunle. Although the adoption was not real, people accepted it and in a way it became real. Shina Peters and Segun Adewale, who became two of the biggest stars of the 1980s, both started their careers performing in the mid-1970s with Prince Adekunle.
Jùjú music star and Soko Dance exponent, Dayo Kujore, was another musician who owed much to Prince Adekunle, playing lead guitar on some of his classics such as "Aditu ede" and "Eda n reti eleya".
In May 2004, he was among other musicians who met to discuss ways to reverse the current decline of jùjú music, while opposing the proposal by King Sunny Ade to form a jùjú Musician's Union."

Tracks are as follows -

1. Omo Niyi Omo Nide
2. A Ki Nromo Ra Loja
3. Ma Se'Ka Iwo Ore
4. Esan Nbo Wa

General Prince Adekunle - Side Two

Monday, February 06, 2012

Peggy Lee

I thought I had uploaded some tracks from this a few years back but no sign of it in the old posts. So here is Side Two from a great LP on the Ace Of Hearts label from the 50's I would guess. Lots of old standard show tunes done in a lazy jazz tinged way only Peggy could sing them. No idea who's playing on this but some great musicianship throughout.

Wikipedia says -

"Lee was born Norma Deloris Egstrom in Jamestown, North Dakota, the seventh of eight children of Marvin Olof Egstrom, a station agent for the Midland Continental Railroad. Her mother, Selma Amelia (Anderson), died when Lee was four years old. Her father was Swedish American and her mother was Norwegian American.
Lee first sang professionally over KOVC radio in Valley City, North Dakota. She later had her own series on a radio show sponsored by a local restaurant that paid her a "salary" in food. Both during and after her high school years, Lee sang for paltry sums on local radio stations. Radio personality Ken Kennedy, of WDAY in Fargo, North Dakota (the most widely heard station in North Dakota), changed her name from Norma to Peggy Lee. Thereafter, Lee left home and traveled to Los Angeles at the age of 17.
She returned to North Dakota for a tonsillectomy, and later made her way to Chicago for a gig at The Buttery Room, a nightclub in the Ambassador Hotel East. There, she was noticed by bandleader Benny Goodman. According to Lee, "Benny's then-fiancée, Lady Alice Duckworth, came into The Buttery, and she was very impressed. So the next evening she brought Benny in, because they were looking for a replacement for Helen Forrest. And although I didn't know, I was it. He was looking at me strangely, I thought, but it was just his preoccupied way of looking. I thought that he didn't like me at first, but it just was that he was preoccupied with what he was hearing." She joined his band in 1941 and stayed for two years."

Tracks are as follows -

1. A Woman Alone With The Blues
2. I Didn't Know What Time It Was
3. When The World Was Young
4. Love Me Or Leave Me
5. You're My Thrill
6. There's A Small Hotel

Peggy Lee - Side Two

Joe "Fingers" Carr

"While heavily influenced by Art Tatum, this performer was hardly considered a heavyweight pianist during his career. Born Louis F. Bush, or Busch depending on the source, the keyboard maestro who would also make heavy use of the stage name of Joe "Fingers" Carr managed to make it into Leonard Feather's Encyclopedia of Jazz, but with the following disclaimer: "A novelty performer rather than a jazz artist." The novelty itself was a kind of heavily sexed-up ragtime piano style that caught on in the very dawn of the hi-fi era. The invention was in sharp contrast to lounge music and would most likely have the opposite effect than a seduction if played in a bachelor pad. Carr began driving his piano this way while working as an A&R man for Capitol. In a brainstorm based on a sharp analysis of current trends, he decided to sign himself up as the mysterious "Fingers."

Discover more about Joe "Fingers" Carr HERE.

Tracks are as follows -

1. Entry Of The Gladiators
2. The March Of The Siamese Children
3. Parade Of The Wooden Soldiers
4. Under The Double Eagle
5. Speed King March
6. American Patrol

Joe "Fingers" Carr - Side Two

Wednesday, February 01, 2012

Steel Drum Jamboree

I thought this was another I had uploaded before but seems not. Steel drums don't record very well for some reason - they never have that magical sound you hear when you see them live. This recording is no exception - they sounds like they are playing inside a dungeon!

Wikipedia says -

"French planters and their slaves emigrated to Trinidad during the French Revolution (1789) from Martinique, including a number of West Africans, and French creoles from Saint Vincent, Grenada, Saint Lucia and Dominica, establishing a local community before Trinidad and Tobago were taken from Spain by the British. Carnival had arrived with the French, and the slaves, who could not take part in Carnival, formed their own, parallel celebration called canboulay.
Stick fighting and African percussion music were banned in 1880, in response to the Canboulay Riots. They were replaced by bamboo sticks beaten together, which were themselves banned in turn. In 1937 they reappeared, transformed as an orchestra of frying pans, dustbin lids and oil drums. These steelpans are now a major part of the Trinidadian music scene and are a popular section of the Canboulay music contests. In 1941, the United States Navy arrived on Trinidad, and the panmen, who were associated with lawlessness and violence, helped to popularize steel pan music among soldiers, which began its international popularization.
The first instruments developed in the evolution of steelpan were Tamboo-Bamboos, tunable sticks made of bamboo wood. These were hit onto the ground and with other sticks in order to produce sound. Tamboo-Bamboo bands also included percussion of a (gin) bottle and spoon. By the mid-1930s, bits of metal percussion were being used in the tamboo bamboo bands, the first probably being either the automobile brake hub "iron" or the biscuit drum "boom". The former replaced the gin bottle-and-spoon, and the latter the "bass" bamboo that was pounded on the ground. By the late 1930s their occasional all-steel bands were seen at Carnival and by 1940 it had become the preferred Carnival accompaniment of young underprivileged men. The 55-gallon oil drum was used to make steelpans from around 1947. The Trinidad All Steel Percussion Orchestra (TASPO), formed to attend the Festival of Britain in 1951, was the first steelband whose instruments were all made from oil drums. Members of TASPO included Ellie Mannette and Winston "Spree" Simon. Hugh Borde also led the National Steel Band of Trinidad & Tobago at the Commonwealth Arts Festival in England, as well as the Esso Tripoli Steel Band, who played at the World’s Fair in Montreal, Canada, and later toured with Liberace and were also featured on an album with him."

Tracks are -

1. Antigua Steel band
2. Happy Wanderer
3. Steel Band In "F"
4. Hold 'Em Joe
5. Ugly Woman

Steel Drum Jamboree - Side One