Saturday, August 22, 2009

Rock/Pop Tidbits

This is a rerun of a popular daily feature here at
CollectingVinylRecords Blog, a feature I call Rock/Pop Tidbits; interesting facts about rock and pop music and artists, some humorous, some informative and some just silly. Long time readers will recognize some of these, but I have written up some new ones, so now you can win at trivial pursuit! Feel free to leave comments or add more of your own:

For many years it was thought that the very first song ever recorded was "Mary Had A Little Lamb", as spoken by Thomas Edison while testing an early phonograph in 1877. In March, 2008, the Association for Recorded Sound Collections announced the discovery of a recording of "Au Clair de la Lune", found by audio historians in the archives of the French Academy of Sciences in Paris . The recording was made by Parisian inventor Edouard-Leon Scott de Martinville and recorded on a "phonautograph", a device that engraved sound waves onto a sheet of paper blackened by the smoke of an oil lamp. The recording took place on April 9th, 1860...17 years before Thomas Edison invented his phonograph.

The Four Seasons' Frankie Valli was arrested by Columbus, Ohio Police in September 1965, after his manager forgot to pay his hotel bill.

Although he sang the lead vocal for "Sugar Sugar", a song that sold over 13 million copies and was named Billboard magazine's Record of The Year, Ron Dante did not earn any royalties for the hit. Just happy to be recording at all in 1969, he did the session for the musicians' union scale wage.

In November, 2007, Neil Diamond finally revealed a secret that he had held onto for decades. The inspiration for his 1969 hit "Sweet Caroline" was President Kennedy's daughter.

They say you don't have to be a rocket scientist to write a hit song, but Michael Kennedy was working for the McDonnell Douglas Astronautics Company when he co-wrote The DeFranco Family's "Heartbeat - It's A Love Beat". He later gave up music and went on to work on the International Space Station.

Jay And The Americans first learned the song "Cara Mia" in 1962 because it contained the only four chords they knew. When they finally recorded it in 1965, the tune rose to #4 on the Billboard chart.

After seeing Marvin Gaye's large collection of pornography, writer David Ritz suggested that Gaye needed some "sexual healing". The two later collaborated on some lyrics which went into the hit song, but Ritz was not given any writing credit. After Gaye died, Ritz successfully sued.

The Allman Brothers' only Billboard Top 10 hit, "Ramblin' Man" was the last song recorded by bassist Berry Oakley before his death in 1972.

The soundtrack for the movie Saturday Night Fever was composed and performed primarily by The Bee Gees and has gone platinum fifteen times over. Despite this success, The Bee Gees' Robin Gibb says he has never seen the film all the way through.

When "Monster Mash" first started to get air-play in 1962, Bobby "Boris" Pickett was working part time as a cab driver. The song has since become an annual favorite, reaching the Billboard Top 10 in '62 and '73, earning three gold records and selling an estimated four million copies. Bobby has said that royalties from the record have "paid the rent for 43 years". Not bad for a song that took a half hour to write and another half hour to record and was intended to be a bit of fun to be shared only among family and friends.

The Who's album "Tommy" spent over two years on the US chart, but in their home country, the UK, it lasted only nine weeks.

Even More Uses For Your Cell Phone

This new application is being pushed for those who think a phone is some sort of magical do-it-all gadget. Me? If I need a picture of something, I use a camera. Well, for those of you who use these cell phones for more than just talking, texting, getting directions, surfing online, playing vidoes games, watching we have this little feature. Honestly, getting the latest sales numbers off of eBay is not the way to value a record. To each his own, but I don't think this has any real-time application or is of value to anyone who is buying vinyl- the best way to ascertain the real value? Jerry Osborne's Cyberguides, a real-time updated version of his Rockin Records Price Guide.

ceeFrenzy is a dedicated iPhone/iPod touch version of the website, developed jointly by Collectors Frenzy and Say Goodnight Software.

Collectors Frenzy is a record price guide for collectors and dealers to get a general idea of how much an LP is worth. The price of LPs are constantly fluctuating due to supply and demand, so as buyers and sellers it can be difficult to determine whether you are over paying or under selling your records. Collectors Frenzy is a record price guide to help you obtain fair market value for your LPs.

How does Collectors Frenzy work? It gathers completed auction data off of E-Bay on a regular basis giving you the most accurate and up to date prices on LPs.

To retrieve this data simply type in an artist name, album title, etc into the search bar. To sort the data simply click on one of the search type buttons and select the method of sorting you prefer (ascending or descending).

For more info:

1st new Kiss album in 11 years? It's a Wal-Mart special

The Associated Press

NEW YORK - Wal-Mart is being embraced with a Kiss.

The veteran heavy metal group, Kiss, is joining a growing list of classic acts putting out new music through the world's largest retailer.

"Sonic Boom" is due to be released only at Wal-Mart and Sam's Club stores on Oct. 6. The three-disc package will include a CD of the band's first new music in 11 years, re-recorded versions of famous Kiss hits and a live DVD.

Paul Stanley - one of the quartet's two original members, along with Gene Simmons - said the band chose to release the album at Wal-Mart because the store allowed them to make it memorable.

"They offered us an opportunity to do something that's very much in line with what we used to do with our classic albums, and that's to give people more than just an album of music," Stanley said. "We've always believed in trying to make an album a special event."

read the rest here:

Wal Mart & KISS

This Date In Music History - August 22


Bob Flanagan - Four Freshmen (1926)
Fred Milano - Belmonts (1939)
Joe Chambers - Chambers Brothers (1942)
Kathy Lennon - Lennon Sisters (1942)
Ron Dante - studio voice of the Archies, Detergents & Cuff Links (1945)
Gary Withem - Gary Puckett & the Union Gap (1946)
Donna Godchaux - Grateful Dead (1947)
Theresa Davis - Emotions (1950)
Frank Marino - Mahogany Rush (1954)
Vernon Reid - ex-Living Clour (1958)
Ian Mitchell - Bay City Rollers (1958)
Jay & Michael Aston - Gene Loves Jezabel (1961)
Debbi Peterson - Bangles (1961)
Roland Orzabel - Tears For Fears (1961)
Gary Lee Connor - Screaming Trees (1962)
James Debarge - Debarge (1963)
Tori Amos (1963)
Paul Doucette, Matchbox 20 (1972)
Howie D - Backstreet Boys (1973)
Dale Hawkins ("Susie-Q") is 71
David Marks of the Beach Boys ("Little Deuce Coupe") turns 61

They Are Missed:

Orchestra leader David Rose died in 1990 (age 80). He had the 1962 US No.1 single 'The Stripper'. He also wrote music for the television series Little House on the Prairie and Bonanza.

Bluesman John Lee Hooker, whose boogie rhythms provided a link with rock 'n' roll, was born in Clarksdale, Mississippi in 1917. Hooker died on June 21, 2001.

The Knacks' original drummer, Bruce Gary, died in 2006 at age 55 in Tarzana, CA, after a battle with non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma. He played on the band's chart-topping ‘79 hit "My Sharona" and stayed with the group until their breakup in ‘81. Outside of the Knack, Gary worked as a session drummer.

Layne Staley - Alice in Chains (August 22, 1967 – April 5, 2002) In his last interview, which was given in early 2002 months before his death, Staley admitted, "I know I'm near death, I did crack and heroin for years. I never wanted to end my life this way." How sad.


In 1906, the Victor Talking Machine Company received a patent for its Victrola phonograph. The Victrola was the first phonograph designed to be a fine piece of furniture, as well as a means for reproducing music. The mahogany cabinet hid the flared horn, the turntable and the tone arm from sight. Despite the then unheard of price of $200, Victor could not keep up with orders for the Victrola.

Elvis began work on his first movie, "Love Me Tender" in 1956. In the drama that was set during and just after the Civil War, Elvis played Clint Reno, the youngest of four brothers. The original title for the movie was The Reno Brothers, but was changed to take advantage of the ‘Love Me Tender’ song recorded for the film.

The Five Satins made their debut on the R&B charts in 1956 with a song they recorded in a New Haven, CT church basement, "In the Still of the Night."

In 1962, the first TV appearance of The Beatles was recorded by Manchester based Granada TV, who filmed a lunchtime session at The Cavern Club Liverpool, (it was shown on October 17, 1962).

Martha & The Vandellas' "Dancing In The Streets" was released in 1964.

Liberty Records reported that the album "The Chipmunks Sing the Beatles" was selling 25,000 copies a day in 1964. Yeah, right.

The Supremes reached the top of the pop music charts in 1964 with their hit "Where Did Our Love Go?"

The Beach Boys met the Beatles backstage at a Beatles concert in Portland, OR in 1965.

In 1966, New York City teenagers Carol Hopkins and Susan Richmond climbed out onto the ledge on the second floor of a city hotel and threatened to jump unless they could get to meet the Beatles. Police talked then down and they're sent to Roosevelt Hospital to get their heads examined.

Also in 1966 - Jerry Lee Lewis was signed to play Iago in "Catch My Soul," a rock version of Shakespeare's "Othello."

Cynthia Powell Lennon sued John Lennon for divorce in 1968 on the grounds of adultery. She came back from a vacation and found Yoko Ono living in the Lennon's London home. Ooops.

Ringo Starr quit the Beatles during the White Album sessions in 1968, when the constant bickering and tension became too much for him. The news of Ringo's departure was kept secret, and he rejoined the sessions on September 3. After Ringo walked out, the remaining Beatles recorded "Back In the USSR," with Paul on drums and John playing bass.

The Beatles got together at John Lennon’s Tittenhurst Park home in England for their final ever photo session in 1969.

Bread went to #1 on the US singles chart in 1970 with "Make It With You," the group's only #1 hit (#5 in the UK).

Elton John signed with MCA Records in 1970.

Creedence Clearwater Revival's Cosmo's Factory LP hits #1 in 1970, a position it held for 9 weeks.

Derek and the Dominoes began work on their first and only studio album in 1970, "Layla and Other Assorted Love Songs."

Sex Pistol Sid Vicious made his last live stage appearance in 1978 when he appeared with Rat Scabies from The Damned, former Sex Pistol Glen Matlock and Nancy Spungen at London's Electric Ballroom. In the audience: Elvis Costello, Blondie, Joan Jett , The Slits and Captain Sensible.

Led Zeppelin released what turned out to be their last album together, "In Through the Out Door" in 1979.

Foreigner’s “4” is the top album in the US in 1981. The set featured “Urgent,” with the Jr. Walker sax solo, “Jukebox Hero” and the mega-ballad, “Waiting For A Girl Like You.” The album had a ten week run at #1.

Suzanne Vega's "Luka" peaked at #3 on the pop chart in 1987.

Madonna went to #1 on the US singles chart in 1987 with "Who's That Girl," her sixth US #1 and also a #1 in the UK.

Bruce Springsteen hopped on stage with Levon Helm during Helm's show at the Stone Pony in Asbury Park, NJ in 1987. They played "Up on Cripple Creek" and Little Richard's "Lucille."

In 1998, Mark David Chapman said that he did not want any of the money that would be made from the sale of the signed "Double Fantasy" album that John Lennon signed for him the same day he was killed. Chapman was currently serving sentence for the December 8, 1980 murder. Like the asshole deserves any - last report the record is still for sale for $525,000.

In 2003, Kjell Henning Bjoernestad, a Norwegian Elvis Presley impersonator, set a world record by singing the rock 'n' roll legend's hits non-stop for over 26 hours. The previous record was set by British Elvis fan Gary Jay who sang for 25 hours 33 minutes and 30 seconds. What's sad is that there was a previous record for him to break.....