Yes, that is Spock in the headphones. The year was 1979. These are some of my LPs, themed compilations, and the like.


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Thursday, August 29, 2013

Those Thrilling Days of Yesteryear

Some of my younger friends may not be familiar with this time in history.  It was a different time  ...

When the end of a TV show came, you read the credits on a full-size screen while in the background played music specifically arranged for you to listen to during the showing of these end credits.  Although most of the time a local or network announcer would do a voiceover on top of the music.

There were big places full of flashing lights called video arcades, where the big, freestanding machines were about the size of a fridge, and it took one quarter to play them.  I saw guys whose hands had blisters from the knob at the end of the  Pac-Man joystick.

There was an amalgamation of countries collectively called "the Russkies" or "the Reds" and they wanted to bomb us off the planet.  Or, as in the 1984 film Red Dawn,  they wanted to invade & take us over.

And perhaps most amazingly, there was cable TV -- more channels than you could ever imagine -- perhaps thirty channels!  One of them was called "MTV," and -- get this -- they played music videos!

As my friend Thomas said, "These fragments I have shored against my ruins."

These songs remind me of the GOOD PARTS of those bygone days:

01.   MTV Theme “Man on the Moon” - Jonathan Elias; John Petersen (0:55)
02.   I Think I'm in Love - Eddie Money (3:10)
03.   We Belong - Pat Benatar (3:43)
04.   Addicted to Love - Robert Palmer (4:06)
05.   Sledgehammer - Peter Gabriel (4:51)
06.   Once in a Lifetime - Talking Heads (4:10)
07.   The Homecoming Queen's Got a Gun - Julie Brown (4:42)
08.   Message of Love - The Pretenders (3:27)
09.   Turning Japanese - The Vapors (3:48)
10.   Theme from “The Greatest American Hero” - Joey Scarbury (3:16)
11.   Roll Over Beethoven (album version) - Electric Light Orchestra (8:11)
12.   Hold Me - Fleetwood Mac (3:47)
13.   Shakin’ - Eddie Money (3:11)
14.   The Warrior - Patty Smyth and Scandal (3:59)
15.   Words - Missing Persons (4:31)
16.   Shadows of the Night - Pat Benatar (3:40)
17.   Mickey - Toni Basil (3:39)
18.   Mexican Radio - Wall of Voodoo (4:12)
19.   Walk Like an Egyptian - The Bangles (3:25)
20.   Shock the Monkey - Peter Gabriel (3:57)

And you may now dive into the time capsule.

Monday, August 26, 2013

We're Goin' Galactic, Baby!

Here we have a record from the umpteenth golden age of sci-fi cover recordings -- 1980, that it.

The cover is somewhat similar in style to the work of Chesley Bonestell for 2001: A Space Odyssey.  The artist signature looks like "Sam Galantree."

Anyway, here are the high-falutin' tracks:
01 - The Empire Strikes Back (Main Theme)
02 - Imperial March (Darth Vader
03 - Yoda
04 - Close Encounters (Main Theme)
05 - Star Wars
06 - 2001 (Main Theme)
07 - Cantina Band Theme (Star Wars)
08 - Star Trek (TV Theme)
09 - Superman (The Movie)
The execution is what you might expect if you gathered a bunch of session musicians and asked them to play music composed for a bigger ensemble.  You close-mike everything and lay on the drums and cymbals.

Anyway, it was a fun thrift-store find and it's fun to imagine your eyebrows seesawing as you listen. 

Have fun!

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Enchantingly Diabolical!

This guy named Francois Duchable decided he would perform Liszt's piano transcription of Berlioz's Symphonie Fantastique, adding in a few of his own flourishes.

The LP had a different cover from this, but I went with this illo.

The five tracks are, of course (in that heathen Frenchie talk):
1. I. Reveries - Passions
2. II. Un Bal 
3. III. Scene Aux Champs 
4. IV. Marche Au Supplice 
5. V. Songe D'une Nuit Du Sabbat 

So we've got Berlioz, PLUS Liszt, plus a maniac pianic (that's a new word) and the Dies Irae tumbling downstairs like an out-of-control bowling ball.

I like it!

See you Monday.

Monday, August 19, 2013

Shimmering Dawn Music

This is very meditative and brooding and I recommend listening in a darkened room or, somehow, outside before sunrise.

The tracks are:
1 Natural Light 7:04
2 Play Of Light 4:02 
3 Harp And Soul 4:09 
4 Firelight 3:33 
5 Shared Visions 4:07 
6 Butterfly And The Lotus 4:25 
7 Flowing With The Changes 4:30 
8 Serenity 3:31 
9 The Light In Your Eye 7:57

And now you can space out for a while too!

UPDATED LINK as of November 25, 2013:

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Big Top Sounds

Not jus recorded outdoors, but recorded OUT OF DOORS.  I guess when you're under a tent, you don't have doors, so you are out of them.

Hey! did you hear about the fire at the circus?

The heat was INTENSE!!!

(Get it? intense/in tents?)

Anyway, this record was recorded at that Gay 90s Village place.  Here are the songs:

01 - Parade of the Wooden Soldiers
02 - Pony Boy
03 - Put Your Arms Around Me, Honey
04 - Pride of the Marines
05 - Tennessee Waltz
06 - Red Wing
07 - Washington Post
08 - Colonel Bogie
09 - Much to My Surprise
10 - Over the Waves
11 - The Eagle and the Lion
12 - When Again I Hold You
13 - The Thunderer
14 - The Battle of the Bird

I was amused and a little thrilled to recognize the melody of track 6, "Little Wing," from The Wizard of Oz.  You hear it at the beginning as Dorothy runs down the farm road and into the farmyard to tell everybody about the horrid Miss Gulch.

Anyway, broaden your horizons and travel back to a time when music like this was exotic and strange because traveling entertainment shows only came around a time or two a year.


See you Monday.

Monday, August 12, 2013

Renaissance Festival Music

Here's another fascinating collection of Renaissance or medieval-type music.  This is from Decca, around 1963. 

Flemish Dances and Venetian Music, these are the tracks:

Tielman Susato: Suite of Dances 1. I. Basse danse "La mourisque"
II. Branle and "Fagot"
2. III. Two Rondes
IV. Basse danse and Reprise
V. Allemaingne and Recoupe
3. VI. Pavane "Mille regretz"
VII. Pavane "La bataille"

4. Lodovico Viadana: Canzon "La Padovana" (a 8)
5. Andrea Gabrieli: Ricercar del Duodecimo Tuono (a 4)
6. Giovanni Battista Grillo: Canzon (a 4)
7. Giovanni Gabrieli: Canzon terza (a 4)
8. Florentio Maschera: Canzon "La Fontana" (a 4)
9. Giovanni Gabrieli: Canzon quarta (a 4)
10. Canzon Septimi Toni (a 8)

And here is the music.

Once again, what makes this music intriguing is that it sounds familiar enough to western music in form, yet is different enough to have an exotic tinge or tickle to the ear and mind.  Hope you like it!

Talk to you later!

Thursday, August 8, 2013

Psst ... "Mister Ragtime" Is an Alias!

Joe "Fingers" Carr was really a great piano player named Lou Busch.  You can also read about him here.
He died in 1979, before some of us youngsters had even heard of him.  But he produced some rollicking music!
On this 1955 record:
1) Sunflower Rag
2) The Old Piano Roll Blues
3) Entertainer's Rag
4) St. Louis Blues
5) Black and White Rag
6) Twelfth Street Rag
7) Spaghetti Rag
8) Alexander's Ragtime Band
9) Temptation Rag
10) Jelly Roll Blues
11) Maple Leaf Rag
12) Tiger Rag
So get out there and rag!
See you Monday.

Monday, August 5, 2013

The Now Sound Orchestra!

On April 8, 1980, I bought this LP.  Star Trek: Main Theme from the Motion Picture -- by the optimistically named "Now Sound Orchestra."  Of course, that was just a name pasted onto a group of studio musicians, I suppose.

Anyway, this LP was my "gateway" or "crossover" to the addiction of cover collecting.  Not the visual type of cover, but "cover versions" of favorite TV or movie themes.
This is the receipt of my purchase:

The $.40 cent item was probably a greeting card.  The $2.97 item is the record.

These are the tracks:

01. Theme from STAR TREK - The Motion Picture (4:05)
02. STAR TREK TV Theme (3:08)
03. Theme from STAR WARS - Part 1 (2:53)
04. Theme from 2001 - A SPACE ODYSSEY - Part 1 (3:58)
05. Theme from CLOSE ENCOUNTERS - Part 1 (3:25)
06. A STAR BEYOND TIME - Ilia's Theme (4:12)
07. Theme from STAR WARS - Part II (4:21)
08. Theme from CLOSE ENCOUNTERS - Part II (7:59)
09. Theme from 2001 - A SPACE ODYSSEY - Part II (4:09)

And here is the link.

And a big howdy to el Topo!

Thursday, August 1, 2013

A Smattering of Strauss

Can you EVER have too many versions of the "Sunrise" section (that's the beginning) of Richard Strauss's Also Sprach Zarathustra?  I thought not.

My second or so LP ever bought when my folks bought me a "real" stereo at Christmastime, 1968 was the OST of 2001: A Space Odyssey.  I played that sucker into scratchy oblivion.

It wasn't until a decade or two later, and the advent of the VCR, that I got to watch and re-watch the film.

Then another seeming eon or two until the proliferation of CDs and the internet.  And lo and behold, the version of "Also Sprach" 's opening, that I now knew by heart, that I heard in the movie itself, was NOT the version featured on the soundtrack album!  The album  Music Inspired by 2001, which was also labeled "Volume two," also repeated the performance from the first LP and not one present in the film.

As a sagacious grownup, I figure that the difference probably had to do with licensing fees or some other legal bothers.

Now, the Rhino Records 1996 CD release of the soundtrack was wonderful enough to include both the film version and the performance heard on the original OST album.  Yay!

In the meanwhile ... passing much time in thrift stores led me to the discovery of the "cover version" of a piece of music, especially themes from movies or TV.  So as I grazed, I came across other versions of the Richard Strauss music popularized in 2001.

And so, insane completest that I am, here we have a compilation of some of them!

1)  As heard in the film
2)  From the Telarc album “Time Warp”
3)  By the Now Sound Orchestra (1)
4)  From the Columbia album “Selections from 2001”
5)  From the Stage & Screen album “Space Movies”
6)  By the Doctor Exx Band
7)  By the Now Sound Orchestra (2)
8)  From the Laserlight album “Science Fiction Movie Themes”
9)  By the Wonderland Space Shuttle
10)  By Neil Norman
11)  From the soundtrack album “2010: The Year We Make Contact”
12) By the Ventures
13) From the soundtrack album “2001: A Space Odyssey” (but not heard in the film)

You can find it here.
UPDATED LINK as of November 25, 2013: