Sunday, December 24, 2017

Grant Advertising International Band of Bangkok

Artist: Grant Advertising International Band of Bangkok
LP: 7" single
Song: "Medly"
1. The Sound of Thailand
2. "Sawutdee Ka"
3. "We Three Kings"
4. Magic Beams
5. Our Thailand
6. Thai "Jingle Bells"
7. Grant Farewell
[ listen ]

Here's a 1965 Christmas oddity from Thailand I picked up at Beats & Bohos last Thursday night before meeting my friends for a Christmas noir theatrical production at the Greenlake Theater. This record was evidently once presented as a gift to a Dr. S. H. Work. We're having a very white Christmas here in Seattle, which means I'm stranded at home making butterscotch apple crisp that I'm not going to have to share with anyone. Merry Christmas!

Tuesday, December 12, 2017

Loretta Young

Artist: Loretta Young
LP: The Littlest Angel and Lullaby of Christmas
Song: "The Littlest Angel"
[ listen ]

Speaking of old-timey Christmases, here's one from the dusty, snow-crusted aisles of Christmas past. Though I enjoy the lilting voice of Oscar-winning actress Loretta Young (there are things to admire about Gregory Peck too, of course), I have to admit this record puts me straight to sleep—with visions of sugarplums and everything. I recently watched Loretta Young in a decent film noir from 1949 called THE ACCUSED and she's also great in COME TO THE STABLE and THE FARMER'S DAUGHTER, for which she got her Oscar. It's too bad she isn't better remembered nowadays. You can read all about here here.

[ Loretta Young: January 6, 1913 — August 12, 2000 ]

Sunday, December 10, 2017

The Three Suns

Artist: The Three Suns
LP: The Sounds of Christmas
Song: "Jingle Bells"
[ listen ]
Song: "Hark! The Herald Angels Sing"
[ listen ]
Song: "Santa Claus Is Comin' to Town"
[ listen ]

Not only does this 1957 Christmas album from The Three Suns have a terrific old-timey cover and contain lovely old-timey instrumental holiday music that fills the soul with cheer or whatever, but the liner notes contain a rundown on the history of a host of popular carols, both secular and spiritual alike! According to Wikipedia, The Three Suns was First Lady Mamie Eisenhower's favorite band.

[ The Three Suns ]

Saturday, December 9, 2017

Jerry Wallace

Artist: Jerry Wallace
LP: Comin' Home to You
Song: "Comin' Home to You"
[ listen ]

I went to the thrift store on my way home from work on Friday to look for a white elephant gift for my office holiday party next week. I was excited to find a vintage Sears "Cooky" Press & Cake Decorator set with all the pieces intact!

I just hope nobody's mad if this is what they end up with for their gift. If they are, I guess I'll steal it away from them and decorate my own cookies and cake. I also found this Jerry Wallace LP for .99¢ in the dusty thrift store bins. He evidently started out sorta' rockabilly in the 1950s, but mellowed out by the 1960s and '70s when he scored a number of country hits. It's always exciting to discover a new artist and a new hairdo idea at the same time...and at such a bargain price!

[ Jerry Wallace: December 15, 1928 — May 5, 2008 ]

Sunday, December 3, 2017

Christmas Becomes Electric feat. Dusty Wakeman

Artist: Christmas Becomes Electric feat. Dusty Wakeman
LP: Christmas Becomes Electric
Song: "The First Noel"
[ listen ]
Song: "God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen"
[ listen ]

I always tend to overeat during the holidays and usually end up gaining a few extra pounds. That's why I was delighted to find this 1984 Christmas record that works so well with my current aerobics routine, which is also from 1984. I am now able to bask in the holiday spirit and lose weight at the same time! 

Producer and co-arranger Dusty Wakeman was evidently so preoccupied with magically touching these holiday classics that he forgot to name his band. I've decided to call them Christmas Becomes Electric and declare this album their self-titled debut release. It's basically the soundtrack you'd end up with if you crossed this film with this one.

[ Producer and Texan Dusty Wakeman ]

Thursday, November 30, 2017

June Valli

Artist: June Valli
LP: 7" single
Song: "Looking At the World"
[ listen ]

But if you're looking at the world through a teardrop while wearing rose-colored glasses, do they cancel each other out? You can read about June Valli here.

[ June Valli: June 30, 1928 — March 12, 1993 ]

Sunday, November 26, 2017

Mardi Gras

Artist: Mardi Gras
LP: 7" single
Song: "Too Busy Thinking 'Bout My Baby"
[ listen ]

I've been pretty busy thinking 'bout my baby too! If I had to pick just one song to dance to for the rest of my life (I mean one song for whenever I felt like dancing from now on—not that I would be continually dancing until I finally dropped dead from fatigue), this might be it! Based in New York, Mardi Gras were ignored in their native USA, but they were a big hit all over Europe. That's how they good they are!

Saturday, November 25, 2017

Slacker With a Scone

Slacker With a Scone is a breakfast order option at The Dish, my favorite neighborhood diner. It also aptly describes my dating options on Scuff, my favorite neighborhood dating app. 

side one:
01. English Summer - Eurythmics
02. Adamo ed Eva - Isadora
03. Damn That Valley - U.S. Girls
04. Young Lover - St. Vincent
05. Kiss Me Bwana - Cheetah
06. The Lonely One - Kitty Kallen
07. Belinda - Eurythmics
08. Coeur Du Musicien - Les Lionceaux Des Cayes
09. The World Is Looking For You - Aldous Harding
10. Prelude: Op. 17, No. 1 - Alexander Scriabin (piano: Andrei Diev)
11. Ebb Tide - Lew Davies and His Orchestra
12. Így Szólt Hozzám a Dédapám - Skorpio
13. The Word 'Hurricane' - Air
14. Dragon Down - His Name Is Alive
[ listen ]

side two:
01. Nine Hundred Miles - Nina & Frederik
02. 1, 2, 3, Beep, Beep - Colin Newman
03. That Feeling - Diana
04. She's Invisible Now - Eurythmics
05. Wait In the Car - The Breeders
06. Jimmie Mambo - The Confidential Club Orchestra feat. Jonathan Kemp
07. The Days of Pearly Spencer - The Grass Roots
08. Who I Want You to Love - Bleachers
09. Amelia - Cocteau Twins
10. 10:37 - Beach House
11. When Your Lover Has Gone - Della Reese
12. So In Love - Orchestral Manoeuvres In the Dark
13. Sing-Sing - Eurythmics
14. Give It Up - The Big Pink
[ listen ]

Friday, November 24, 2017

The Savage Rose

Artist: The Savage Rose
LP: Your Daily Gift
Song: "Lightly Come, Lightly Go (Song For an Unborn Child - Sarah's Song)"
[ listen ]

Here's another beautiful thing I picked up at the Kirkland record store last weekend, before everyone died. I had never heard of The Savage Rose before, but they've evidently been releasing LPs since 1968 ("Your Daily Gift" is their fourth, from 1970) and they continue to be rather popular in their native Denmark. 

I'm fascinated by the blond, bespectacled and bed-headed identical twin brothers, Thomas and Anders Koppel, that are part The Savage Rose. Singer Annisette Hansen married Thomas and became Annisette Koppel. How did she choose Thomas over Anders? Did she ever get them mixed up? Is that Thomas she stands with, slightly apart from the rest of the group, in the open field in the photo below? And then in the large gatefold photo, we find the Koppel twins huddled together, separated from Annisette by a large, dry-looking tree. The twins look wistfully on as Annisette coyly plays footsies with another blond hunk in the band. Could that be guitarist Nils Tuxen, who replaced Flemming Ostermann after the release of the group's first album? 

Visit Wikipedia here and here and here and here and all will be revealed. 

As I gaze at Anders and Thomas, I can't help but think of the handsome identical twin brothers who work at my local neighborhood Fred Meyer. Swarthy and friendly, they wear the company uniform and sport matching mustaches. They always seem to be working the same shift, doing the same work. Yesterday they were stacking oranges. Once, a few months ago, I entered an aisle containing boxed rice and found the twins standing on footstools across from each other on opposite sides of the aisle. They were conversing good-naturedly as they added more product to the shelves. I had the sudden urge to film a music video right then and there!   

[ The Savage Rose ]

Wednesday, November 22, 2017

David Cassidy [1950-2017]

Artist: David Cassidy
LP: Rock Me Baby
Song: "Song For a Rainy Day"
[ listen ]

Why does it always seem like so many people up and die during the holiday season? Was sad to read that Partridge Family heartthrob David Cassidy passed away yesterday—right before Thanksgiving! Looks like Kim Carnes provides some of the backing vocals on this, David's second solo LP, from 1972. You can read about David Cassidy here, go here to see one of the Annie Leibovitz photos from Rolling Stone that David hoped would help get rid of his squeaky-clean, teeny-bopper image, and go here to find David's obituary in The New York Times.

David Cassidy
[ April 12, 1950 — November 21, 2017 ]
We will miss you, David.

Tuesday, November 21, 2017

Mel Tillis [1932-2017]

Artist: Mel Tillis
LP: Detroit City
Song: "Games People Play"
[ listen ]

Della Reese and Charles Manson weren't the only ones who died on November 19th, of course. In fact, county singer Mel Tillis died that same day too. To be honest, I'm not a huge (or even a small) Mel Tillis fan. I picked up this 1973 compilation LP mainly because I thought the cover was cool. But I'm sure Mel Tillis is someone's Doris Day out there, and to those people I'd like to say I'm sorry for your loss. (And to Mr. Tillis' friends and family too, of course.) But it really is a pretty neat album cover, you gotta' admit. You can find Mel's obituary here.

Mel Tillis
[ August 8, 1932 — November 19, 2017 ]
Someone will miss you, Mel.

Monday, November 20, 2017

Della Reese [1931-2017]

Artist: Della Reese
LP: Della By Starlight
Song: "These Foolish Things"
[ listen ]

Della Reese has turned out all the lights in the world. She has hung a cloud over the moon. Her obituary is here. I wonder if she and Charles Manson bumped into each other in line at the pearly gates.

Della Reese
[ July 6, 1931 — November 19, 2017 ]
We will miss you, Della.