Monday, April 21, 2014

Doug Clark and the Hot Nuts

Artist: Doug Clark and the Hot Nuts
LP: Nuts to You
Song: "Ding-a-Ling"
[ listen ]
Song: "A Soldier"
[ listen ]

I'm back home in Seattle after my Southern road trip and record-hunting excursion! Originally I'd planned to kick off my trip by hanging out in New Orleans for a few days, but I found it impossible to secure an available motel room there! I soon discovered that these guys were to blame: 

Well I didn't really want to hang out with the WrestleMania fellows and their fans anyway, so after flying into the New Orleans airport, I hightailed it out of town and headed northwest toward Baton Rouge. After a delicious breakfast at Louie's Cafe, I headed over to the first record store on my list, a little white house stuffed with vinyl known as Lagniappe Records (pronounced "LAN-yap"...not "lag-knee-YAP-pee," as I'd been saying...and then "WRECK-urds.") A small store with an excellent selection and decent prices, Lagniappe also features live shows and super friendly owners. The LPs are basically all mixed together in alphabetical order rather than being segregated by genre, thereby enabling browsers to find all sorts of exciting things they hadn't even realized they were looking for. I found lots of great stuff here, but this debut 1961 LP from the Chapel Hill, North Carolina frat party band Doug Clark and the Hot Nuts is right there at the top. It's nasty! You can read a little about Doug and his Nuts on Wikipedia here, and you can go here to visit the group's website. Album notes and photos from the back of the LP are included below.

[ Doug Clark and the Hot Nuts ]

[ Lagniappe Records — Baton Rouge, Louisiana ]

Thursday, April 3, 2014

Doris Day

Artist: Doris Day
LP: Tea For Two [10" EP]
Song: "Oh Me! Oh My!"
[ listen ]
Song: "I Want to Be Happy"
[ listen ]

Today is Doris Day's 90th birthday! I'm celebrating by watching LOVE ME OR LEAVE ME while consuming a lemon mini triple layer cake from Fred Meyer that looks like a miniature version of one of Doris Day's hats from the late 1950s. As for Doris, she says she's never been big on celebrating her own birthday. She'll be spending this one in Carmel, California hosting a doggie fashion show featuring local rescues in need of a good home. Though she retired from show biz in 1973, Doris Day still gets film scripts and offers for work. "All I ever wanted in my life was to get married, have kids, keep house and cook, and even though I did all these things, I still ended up in Hollywood. It was a great trip. I've had an amazing life and wonderful times. And I'm happy!" You can read more about what Doris is up to as she enters her 90s in her interview with Closer magazine here. Notes from the back of the soundtrack to her 1950 film TEA FOR TWO are included below. The film co-stars Gordon MacRae, Gene Nelson, Eve Arden, Billy De Wolfe, and S.Z. Sakall.

[ Happy Birthday, Doris Day! ]

Monday, March 31, 2014

Koncz Zsuzsa

Artist: Koncz Zsuzsa
LP: Jelbeszéd
Song: "Hé, Mama"
[ listen ]

I was on my way to grab some breakfast after hitting the gym this past Saturday morning, but some brilliant entrepreneur stuck a record store smack dab in the middle of the block between Ballard Health Club and Vera's Restaurant. I ended up lingering there much longer than planned, of course, and was mighty hungry indeed when I came upon this 1973 LP from Hungarian superstar Koncz Zsuzsa. (There are also several neat-looking Hungarian-language comedy LPs in the bins, which will likely be a tough sell for most Seattle shoppers.) You can read all about Ms. Zsuzsa in English here, and if you can read Hungarian and would like to know more, you can go here—though I suppose anyone who reads Hungarian probably already knows more about Koncz Zsuzsa than Wikipedia could ever tell

 [ Koncz Zsuzsa in 2012 ]

Sunday, March 30, 2014

Witch Queen

Artist: Witch Queen
LP: Witch Queen
Song: "Witch Queen"
[ listen ]

I've been neglecting the blog lately since I've been so busy getting ready for my upcoming trip to the South. One of the things I've been doing in preparation (besides watching season 3 of "American Horror Story") is listening to (and dancing to) "Witch Queen" by Witch Queen, from their "Witch Queen" LP. I'm hoping I'll have a chance to perform it if there's a karaoke lounge at the Voodoo Museum in New Orleans. Also, I'll be passing through the little Northern Alabama town of Muscle Shoals, so I rented the recent documentary about all the wonderful music that's been recorded at the studios there over the years by people like Wilson Pickett, The Rolling Stones, Aretha Franklin, Percy Sledge, Etta James and more! I highly recommend it. Coincidentally, as I was getting ready to post "Witch Queen" today, I noticed that the album was partly recorded in Muscle Shoals! Several of the Muscle Shoals studio musicians are credited on the back of the LP. (I guess it's not actually much of a coincidence since, according to the movie, around 85% of all records released in the entire world between 1968 and 1980 were recorded there). Still, it was cool to see the names of some of the guys featured in the documentary right here on the back of this record. You can read more about Muscle Shoals here, more about "Muscle Shoals" here, and go here to visit the website of the Voodoo Museum.

Featured on "Witch Queen" and in "Muscle Shoals"—the movie:
David Hood, bass (far left) 
Jimmy Johnson, guitar (far right) 
Roger Hawkins, drums (green shirt)

Monday, February 17, 2014

Duran Duran

Artist: Duran Duran
LP: 7" single
Song: "Meet El Presidente"
[ listen ]

Happy Presidents' Day! Duran Duran was sorta like "The Golden Girls" of '80s new wave, especially when there were five guys in the band. There was the rebellious one in black leather; the swarthy and brooding quiet one; the glamourpuss; the gregarious show-off; and the pretty-boy pinup with the  jawline of gold. All my friends in high school had their favorite member of Duran Duran, and I did too! Who was yours?

Sunday, February 9, 2014

Claude Dubois

Artist: Claude Dubois
LP: Touchez Dubois
Song: "Urphée"
[ listen ]

Here's a lovely little French-Canadian something from 1973 for a cold and snowy winter morning in Seattle. You can read about the life and career of Monsieur Dubois in English here, and if you prefer to read about him in French, go here.

[ Claude Dubois with pregnant woman — 1973 ]

[ Claude Dubois with pregnant woman — 2007 ]

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Carlos Lico

Artist: Carlos Lico
LP: 7" single
Song: "Pobre Millonario"
[ listen ]

Today at work my colleagues were saying what a shame it was that Denver Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning has a salary of $18,000,000 a year, while Russell Wilson, quarterback for the Seattle Seahawks (aka-The Super Bowl Champions of the Year), only earns an annual salary of $800,000. ¡Pobre Millonario! You can read about Mexican crooner Carlos Lico in español here and here. Unfortunately, I wasn't able to find any information about Lico's annual salary.

[ Carlos Lico: January 2, 1933 — November 7, 2009 ]

Sunday, February 2, 2014

Wij Houden Van Oranje

Artist: Wij Houden Van Oranje
LP: De Allergrootste Voetbalkrakers
Song: "Olé, We Are the Champions"
[ listen ]

In case you live on Mars or one of the other planets besides Earth and so you haven't yet heard...Philip Seymour Hoffman died today from drugs. Not only that, but the Seattle Seahawks are Superbowl champions! (In case you live in the USA or one of the other countries besides Holland, "Wij Houden Van Oranje" translated to English means "We Just Won the Fucking Superbowl.") I never thought I'd be posting sports logos and statistics on my blog (did I mention that the Seahawks beat the Broncos 43 to 8?), but these guys have earned it. The Seahawks have the entire city going nuts, they've made everyone in the state happy and friendly (and drunk), and I have to admit it's all pretty gosh darn contagious. Well done, guys!