Monday, May 30, 2011

Erotic Percussion

Me personally?  I find ALL percussion to be erotic, but i am a slut so it's to be expected.  This is pretty self explanatory.  There is no artist listed, just 10 tracks of various percussion, done in a supposedly exotic way. 

I love it!  Perfect background music for a Memorial Day BBQ, cocktail party, or bar mitzvah.  After all the boy is turning 13, whats a little erotic percussion between 13 year old Jewish boys?
This was another find from the Sacramento Flea Market of last summer, and was also from the dollar building I mentioned in my Tabu post.

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Burlesque Uncensored

I think I have made it perfectly clear that i am obsessed with Burlesque.  Not the film (and I use the term film very loosely) starring Cher and that slutty looking girl, but the old timey act of bumping and grinding in front of an audience.  Or in vulgar parlance's...stripping.  I have visited the subject a few times in the is very blog, one a month or so ago with LIVE BURLESQUE LIVE and in my mega post about strip tease artist Gypsy Rose Lee
The cool thing about Burlesque Uncensored is that it appears to be an actual live recording of a Burlesque show rather than a studio produced burlesque show (as in Live Burlesque Live).  Although the producers have gone to a great deal of time and effort to come up with this Closed by the Order of the County Sheriff business.  Here on the cover and again on the back with the actual letter from the sheriff closing the show down.  I do love that it's referred as a bare face documentary and I love the cheeky mid-century artwork.  What is it about a broad with no nose who still has nostrils that really Laverns my Shirley (if you know what I mean).
I got this on the street in Williamsburg for a buck, A BUCK!  What luck I had.  Although I hit my favorite Williamsburg shops on Thursday and came home almost empty handed save a few Disney records for a buck.  What can I say, sometimes the universe smiles on you, and sometimes you live in Joplin.
Here is the whole performance on one track, it's kind of fun to listen to, it's also a rough recording, but I did laugh out loud a couple times.  Catskills jokes still get me, hence my love for Joan Rivers.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Tabu

Get out of town!  I think I'm in love, in love with Tabu.  What amazing cover art, it draws you right in with it's brash colors and slutty looking models.  These two both look seconds away from ravishing one another and who can blame them?  A stunning red head poised in her prime (who appears to be naked) and a hot ethnic fellow with a drum, I'll drink to that. 
I got this beauty last summer when I was in Sacramento visiting my Aunt Chardelle.  It was this huge flea market the name of which escapes me right now but I bet my dear Vintage Spinster remembers and could post it in the comments:-)  It was everything a flea market should be complete with an entire building in the middle filled from top to bottom with dollar records, it was a diggers paradise.  In fact it was kind of over whelming, I remember sitting on the floor surrounded by piles and piles of records not knowing which way to turn next.  Once I had 20 I just left even though I could have easily walked out with a 100.  I was traveling 3000 miles to get home and had already accumulated about 80 LP's so 20 was my limit.

Tabu is perfect lounge/exotica led by bandleader Ralph Font.  It's nothing as amazing as say Esquivel or Martin Denny but his latin rhythms and lush band do it for me in a highball kind of way.

For my new friends at Primitiva Hi-Fi on facebook I thought I'd include a special treat, just click HERE.  And as always if you haven't clicked to follow me on blogger or on facebook please do.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

REDRUM

This is one of my Holy Grail records for sure, the problem is I found it years ago even before I was seriously collecting so the real impact of finding this grail was lost on me at the time.  This album had been a ghost to me and my friend David and was surely the catalyst that began my vinyl obsession.  You see my dear friend David Ballantyne and I have had an obsession with this book and movie for many years, and we were both convinced that this soundtrack didn't even exist.  Which thanks to the wonders of the internet i found out that the soundtrack was released and then pulled because of licensing issues.  Initially Kubrick hired Wendy Carlos and Rachel Elkind to do the whole score but as was Kubrick's fashion he ended up using only 2 of their original compositions and replacing others using classical music.  If you have the dough there is a CD called Re-discovering Lost Scores:  Volume 2. which contains much of the Carlos and Elkind score for a cool 130 bucks.  I am curious, but I am not that curious.  However Kubrick did use Wendy and Rachel's highly creepy main titles sequence which does emphatically set the tone for the film to come.
I found the Shining Soundtrack at the Academy Annex (one of my favorite NYC shops) when it was located on 10th street and 4th Ave about 4 years ago.  It was up on the wall and I gasped audibly when I saw it.  I was sure it was going to be a hundred plus dollars so I immediately gave up the idea that it was going to come home with me.  To my shock and aw it was only 20 bucks which at the time was the most I had ever paid for a record and to this day its still the second highest price I have paid for something as i am a true digger at heart.  But come on!!!   There was no leaving this behind.  This album is as close to mint condition as it comes and though this wasn't my first LP ever it was the one that got me interested in collecting.
Musically speaking this is a demented thing to listen to; that being said this year while I was trekking home during one of the huge blizzard's that pounded NYC this winter dropping over 4      feet of snow in one night I decided to let The Shining score my way home and it was truly amazing stuff.  The track above is one of the most bone chilling selections from the score, and probably my favorite use of music in the film, called Utrenja by Krzysztof Penderecki, the actual classical piece is about 10 minutes long, Kubrick's music editor Gordon Stainforth is the one who distilled it to this excerpt. 
I guess you are either a fan of the movie or a fan of the book.  I definitely fall into the movie category.  Though I like the book I find a lot of it to be just too silly to be scary, like topiary animals coming to life and attacking people, I have only been scared of one bush in my life...George W.
There is a lot of analytical debate online amongst movie buffs and film historians surrounding The Shining.  What it all means, what the final image signifies, why Kubrick took so many liberties when scripting the film, how they got Nancy Regan to play the dead old lady in room 237?  But when all is said and done Stanley made a horror film that is truly a slow boil.  It creeps into you and haunts you much like the Overlook Hotel, and this film is entirely dependent on the music to build suspense.  The score is really the driving force in Kubrick's version of horror.
 


The art for this album is exquisite, the font, the yellow, the creepy pixilated face that I guess is supposed to be Danny.  Or is it one of the ghosts?  Or could it be the physical manifestation of the shining itself!  Naw it's probably just Danny.  
Of the billions of records we own this is one of the only ones we have up and out for display,  I love the ghostly glow that lamp is giving off, in fact our house is a kind of homage to the overlook, even the hooker we keep frozen in our hedge maze is just another way we pay tribute to this brilliant film.  So love it, or hate it, this is some creepy music and a rare find.  It's fun pulling off the wall now and again and going on a cleaning spree, after all "all work and no play make jack a dull boy"

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Black Coral

At first glance the best thing about Black Coral has to be the fact there is no coral involved, instead the props department found a nice twig with some moss in place of say some Black Coral.  It's also curious that they actually made the model pose underwater?  Usually the covers of lounge music like this are photographed in what is essentially a b-movie style set.  Like I expect her to be in a blue room with paper fish swimming by in an old fashioned diving helmet giving the camera a coy but slutty nod.
As is often the fashion when one becomes a record collector one stumbles upon amazing music simply because one couldn't pass up the cover art.  It's hard to pass certain things up, especially when they tend to be 99 cents.  Black Coral was actually a package deal, 4 records for 10 bucks at Yarmouth Boatworks and Antiques Market  between Hyannis and Yarmouth during our weekend excersion to Boston and Cape Cod with the lovely Vintage Spinster.  Turns out we have a good eye as it's currently selling on ebay for 50 bucks.

(TRACK 4: HAWAIIAN WAR CHANT) 
I was expecting lounge music ala'  Martin Denny or Lenny Dee but was pleasantly delighted to find out that The Rene Paulo Trio is actually a jazz combo.  I have been really getting into jazz music over the last 4 years and I always think that i don't have many jazz albums in my collection but after a quick count I am approaching around 500 or so jazz LP's and this is a great new addition.  There wasn't a whole lot of information about the Rene Paulo Trio online so i just did a scan of the back of the LP rather than a crappy summary of my own.  My favorite line is "The one time Julliard student of music is ably assisted by 350 pound Ed Shonk on Bass"  Thanks for throwing his weight around.
There are lots of albums out there celebrating the music of our 50th state most of which sound as you would expect them to, tropical, and Hawaiian.  That's why the jazz approach to traditional Hawaiian music is so effing awesome.

(TRACK 2 MAUI GIRL)
Rene Paulo's piano stylings remind me of two of my favorite jazz artists Vince Guaraldi and Dave Brubeck so I am definitely going to be on the lookout for more of his material. Give me a Click


(TRACK 5 THE HUKILAU SONG)

Monday, May 9, 2011

Put a Bird on it

Birds are so annoying, especially loud birds.  Thank goodness there was a popular trend in the 50's and 60's where you could train your canary to sing like a song bird.
I was hoping the actual songs would include birds chirping along, alas these are just classical standards.
Glad they cleared this up, I knew those filthy birds weren't all Canaries.
I would personally love to hear my canary sing Danny Boy.  Speaking of, my very own Danny boy picked this amazingly weird album while on vacation in Minnesota from Hymie's Vintage Records the very man responsible for my new favorite holiday Record Store Day.  If you are in The Twin Cities you must stop into Hymie's and check it out, I am told it's an amazing place
We decided to decorate using empty canary cages in out bedroom, I have been practicing my song bird whistling so I can stick my head inside the cage and serenade Dan as he sleeps.
We went with empty cages since our curtains are covered in creepy little birdies.  Funny story, on one of our first dates Dan and i were having dinner at the World Wide Plaza (home of Blockheads Burritos) whilst walking through the square Dan scream at the top of his lungs drawing the attention of everyone there.  When I looked down I saw I had stepped on a live pigeon.  I picked up my foot and it scooted away unscathed but every eye in the whole place had turned towards us so I said "It's ok I just stepped an a pigeon" and as if on cue everyone resumed their meals.  Filthy dirty birdies.

Saturday, May 7, 2011

Ronald Reagan Wants to Give You Aids

He was a dreadful actor and an even worse President.  He and his wife Nancy single handedly helped the AIDS virus spread by doing and saying nothing as 100's and 1000's of people were contracting the virus and dieing.  From January 20th 1981 to January 20th 1989 the American people had to endure this turd lemon who lost his mind half way through his Presidency.  Thanks goodness that before politics, and before AIDS Reagan did what all handsome people with no talent do, he acted.  Here is a diddy of an album, unfortunately it's not Ronnie singing himself, these are merely his favorite songs...Award Winning songs...from Hollywood.
Brought to us by the people at General Electric and even more specifically GE electric ranges, they are all the rage.
I am so glad they gave Reagan a platform to speak about GE products, I can think of no one more knowledgeable on this subject than actor and host of the The General Electric Theater Ronald Reagan!  Well perhaps Alec Baldwin... but I digress.
I have nothing nice to say about him as a person, and I thought his wife was dead, but I fucking love this art.  I fucking love that people used to sit home and say, "Honey, grab that Ronald Reagan Recommends album lets play it during dinner".  A simpler time... thats for damn sure.

Friday, May 6, 2011

Buddy Hackett is My Favorite Chinese Waiter

There is nothing on this planet that i love more that an old timey racist LP.  Accept maybe old movies where white people play Asians like Mrs. Meers in Thoroughly Modern Mille played by Beatrice Lillie.                     
or Mickey Rooney in Breakfast at Tiffany's
These films happened before the civil rights movement so we forgive their ignorance and revel in the sheer amazingness of these performances and kind of wish we could get away with this now.  So the creators of Miss Saigon have no excuse for casting Jonathan Pryce as an Asian brothel owner in the 1990's.
Do I think it's offensive to cast a white man as an Asian, no I don't.  Do I think they could have just as easily found an Asian (notice how I haven't said Oriental once) actor, obviously.  But back to Buddy Hackett as an Oriental Waiter, I couldn't resist.
Notice the restraint the artist had.  He easily could have gone for a more Asian slant to the eye, but the bun and the paisley print Miss Meers coat are perfect.  As is the dainty way he wields that cleaver.  I put the whole album as one track, kudos if you can sit through the whole thing.  I could not.
Buddy Hackett is probably best known for 2 roles.  First as the Shipoopi guy in The Music Man.

And as Scuttle the seagull in The Little Mermaid.

Buddy Hackett is a lot of things, but to me he is just another Chinese waiter.

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Herrmann, Bernard

I am a huge fan of Bernard Herrmann, the man responsible for some of the worlds most famous film scores.  From Citizen Kane (his first film) to Taxi Driver, he shaped the sound of the cinema from the 40's through the 70's.  But his most famous and popular scores are from his collaborations with Alfred Hitchcock.

I have been on the lookout for anything by Herrmann, especially any of the Soundtracks from his Hitchcock films, but even more especially Vertigo and Psycho.  The only version of Vertigo I had ever seen on LP was this one, and it was 75 bucks.
I hate the art for this.  Why is "Thing" from The Addams Family groping out from the darkness while a circle of Judith Light heads with windblown hair spin around?
Then there is the 1958 Mercury release, which was the one that came out at the same time as the film, again still not crazy about the art but at least it's Kim and Jim and not a member of the cast of Who's the Boss.
So I am happy that the Vertigo soundtrack I got has such bitchin' artwork.  It's the one that comes closest to the poster I think most of us associate with Vertigo.

I picked up my Vertigo album at A1 Records (my new favorite NYC record store) for 15 bucks.  It says it's a Sound/Stage recording and after some poking around on the information super highway I found no info about this label.  I know the LP was released the same year as the film (1958) but other than that I have nothing.  So if anyone out there knows more i am curious to find out.  I am also happy to report that the Sound/Stage version on ebay is selling for 135 bucks.  So I am happy no matter what.
The Sound/Stage Vertigo Soundtrack was conducted by Muir Mathiseson???  If that means anything to anyone.  Anyways I got seriously off topic here the point is this might be the greatest film score of all time.  Herrmann sets the tone of the whole film in the Prelude, the music in a sense sounds as if its spinning and whirling about in what i suppose is true musical Vertigo.

"A notable feature of the Vertigo score is the ominous two-note falling motif that opens the suite — it is a direct musical imitation of the two notes sounded by the fog horns located at either side of the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco (as heard from the San Francisco side of the bridge). This motif has direct relevance to the film, since the horns can be clearly heard sounding in just this manner at Fort Point, the spot where the character played by Kim Novak jumps into the bay."  (Thanks Wikipedia).

It's beautiful and romantic and tragic, and sinister and...and...I am stoned and ran out of cool adjectives but it's perfect. It's also stunning, and lush....mmm adjectives.
I want to call Vertigo Bernard Herrmann's masterpiece, but Psycho....I mean Psycho is iconic, as soon as you hear those strings you know shit is gonna go down.  Ranked number 4 on AFI's top 25 film scores Psycho was Hitchcock and Herrmann at their best.
Notice if you will that Herrmann used only strings in the orchestra, forgoing the usual full rich sound of a 30 piece band.  There is something about having just strings that gives Psycho extra tension, and adds another layer of paranoia and terror.  They melody goes from sharp jagged cuts of sound into long beautiful but anguished musical movement, its truly stunning. 

Even in this track titled "The City" there is a sinister edge, the music is always a reminder that the most mundane situations in the film are only leading to tragedy.  And no blog post about Bernard Herrmann, Hitchcock, Psycho, or Showering would be complete without mentioning the most famous scene from any horror film, the shower scene from Psycho. 

I mean who amoung us has wanted to stab Janet Leigh in the shower?  Skip to the 1:32 second point.  This LP is the 1975 British Unicorn release of the Psycho Soundtrack I got it at The Academy Annex in Brooklyn where they had the actual 1960 soundtrack up on the wall for 85 bucks.  This one is fine for now and then i can keep hunting for the other one, and the Unicorn LP was only 10 bucks:-)
So keep your eyes peeled for any other Bernard Herrmann/Hitchcock film soundtracks for me and don't forget to click "like" and or follow us by clicking follow.