Monday, January 23, 2012

Vinyl Record News & Music Notes

Vinyl records make the world go around again

AFP - In the brave new world of MP3 players, compact discs are dying, cassettes are Stone Age, and old-fashioned vinyl records... they're back!

It might seem that nothing short of a wind-up gramophone could be more out of place today than the nostalgia-laden, crackly-sounding 33 and 45 RPM disc.

Yet in his Brooklyn, New York, factory, 40-year-old Thomas Bernich churns them out by the tens of thousands, feeding a vinyl revival that has record decks -- and cash tills -- spinning.

"It's my baby," Bernich said in his spartan office at Brooklynphono. "It's growing."

The small plant in a blue collar neighborhood hums with the sound of machines and spaghetti-like rows of pipes delivering ground-up vinyl to presses where the material reemerges as shiny albums etched with near-invisible, music-filled spirals.

Bernich started on a shoestring 10 years ago. Now he has four full-time employees and two part-time, manufacturing a quarter of a million discs a year, with plans to double capacity.

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In an historic alliance, the renowned reissue label Sundazed Music has partnered with Experience Hendrix, L.L.C. to release a series of new 7" picture-sleeve vinyl singles featuring unique and hard-to-find vintage performances by Jimi Hendrix.

The ongoing series launches in April with an initial release that combines a pair of historically significant recordings from two different Hendrix 1967 BBC sessions. One is a raucous reading of Bob Dylan's "Can You Please Crawl Out Your Window?”. Hendrix recorded his version on October 17 for BBC Radio's Rhythm and Blues show. Dylan’s original version, one of history’s most notable and enduring musical enigmas, wasn’t released on a legitimate album for more than 10 years after its first issue. This Jimi Hendrix Experience version was a highlight of the BBC Sessions double album issued by Experience Hendrix/Sony Legacy in October 2010.

“Can You Please Crawl Out Your Window?” is paired with a fascinating, newly discovered take of the Hendrix original "Burning Of The Midnight Lamp," as performed on August 24,1967 on BBC Television's Top of the Pops, just a week after the song's original studio version had been released as a single in Britain on Track Records. In keeping with strict Musician Union regulations, Jimi was to sing live atop the song's instrumental backing track. The Top Of The Pops presenter announced the Experience, but then ‘The House That Jack Built’ by the Alan Price Set began to play. A few seconds in, Jimi, ever polite, offered an apology, “I'm sorry man but I don't know the words...” As panic no doubt ensued within the studio's control room, the program's flustered presenter apologized and implored Jimi to try it once again.

Both sides feature the classic original Jimi Hendrix Experience lineup of Hendrix on guitar and vocals, Noel Redding on bass and Mitch Mitchell on drums, and capture the band just as it was beginning to emerge as a major force on both sides of the Atlantic.

As with every release in the series, it will feature a color picture sleeve incorporating rare vintage Hendrix photos that capture the legendary artist's distinctive persona and pioneering spirit.

Janie Hendrix, President and CEO of Experience Hendrix L.L.C. commented: "When the Jimi Hendrix Experience first burst into the world’s collective consciousness, it was through vinyl 45 rpm singles.  Our vinyl single release program with Sundazed honors that brilliant history and, even expands on it in a very real way. It is traditional yet innovative, as Jimi certainly was."

Bob Irwin, President and CEO of Sundazed Music, Inc. commented: "We are thrilled and highly honored to be partnering with Experience Hendrix on this wonderful series. I’m positively elated that my most favorite musician of all time will now be a part of Sundazed."

In a recording career that spanned only three and a half years prior to his tragic death in 1970 at the age of 27, Jimi Hendrix revolutionized the role of the electric guitar, and radically altered the face of contemporary music. He became rock's first guitar superstar, with an effortless charisma that matched his visionary talent and intense performing style. His overwhelming influence continues to live on in virtually every electric guitarist who has followed him, yet none have ever equaled Hendrix's talent and imagination.

Chocolate Watch Band Vinyl Release

No Way Out LP

LP | $18.98
LP 5306

No Way Out, the thrilling debut album by the Chocolate Watch Band, immediately finds that cosmic sweet-spot of perfect garage-rock traction: where the rubber meets the road and the train keeps a-rollin.'

Nobody ever did Mick Jagger any better (even Mick, himself) than the Watch Band's frighteningly superb frontman Dave Aguilar. "Are You Gonna Be There (At The Love-In)" and "Let's Talk About Girls" are on everyone's list of Top 20 garage rock anthems of all time. And that's just the tip of the vermillion iceberg for this essential longplayer. "Come On," an early Stones single, gets the perfect Watch Band overhaul, "Hot Dusty Roads" ventures down back alleys that Buffalo Springfield never dreamed about and "No Way Out" dances rings around the outskirts of your nearest Human Be-In.

A San Jose, Calif. band whose reputation has grown exponentially over the decades, the Chocolate Watch Band are now revered as one of the Seven Wonders of the World of garage rock. Spotlighting the classic lineup—the inflammatory vocals of Dave Aguilar and the roof-rattling guitars of Mark Loomis and Sean Tolby, fronting the rock-solid bass of Bill Flores and the letter-perfect drums of Gary Andrijasevich—the Watch Band's first two albums have it all. Stones swagger snake-hips its way through cosmic significance with just a dusting of eye-opening psychedelic legerdemain to make your neck snap backwards in pure joy.

Also available on CD

1. Let’s Talk About Girls
2. Midnight Hour
3. Come On
4. Dark Side of the Mushroom
5. Hot Dusty Road
6. Are You Gonna Be There (At the Love-In)
7. Gone and Passes By
8. No Way Out
9. Expo 2000
10. Gossamer Wings



EXUMER: 'Fire & Damnation' Cover Artwork Unveiled; Trailer Available

A trailer for "Fire & Damnation", the first album in 24 years from German thrash metal veterans EXUMER, can be seen below. Due in April via Metal Blade Records, the 10-track CD, which was recorded with renowned producer Waldemar Sorychta (GRIP INC., THERION, SODOM, MOONSPELL), "combines a punishing production with aggressive songwriting," according to a press release. "EXUMER manages to capture the intensity and feel of the 1980s thrash metal gems and yet sound up to date on their latest output."

Read more at our friends at Blabbermouth


David Lynch Releases Collectors Edition of 'Crazy Clown Time'

Lynch has teamed up with the legendary Vaughan Oliver to release a Super Deluxe Collectors Edition of “Crazy Clown Time”, which is limited to 1000 copies worldwide and released today. Housed in a red “leatherette” book with silver spine, this lavish package includes the album on CD, two heavyweight vinyl LP’s and a 24 page art and lyrics book, cased in a rigid black Suedelle slipcase. In Oliver’s own words:

“The design of the Super Deluxe was inspired by the original photograph of the hand with red die that David sent for use on the front cover. Red, black and silvery grey in colour it also has a low culture feel about it which I developed in a tactile way with special materials. I was aiming for a sexy, kitsch quality with the black suede slipcase and red foil-blocked type. The book that slides out enhances this concept with a red leatherette finish and silver clothed spine whilst adding an “art book” touch with the “tipped in” image of the red die set into a debossed square centred on the book cover. The overall effect exhudes, sex, sleaze and “roulette wheel” ambience. Central to the content is a lavish 12”x12” booklet which allows David’s “forensic” photographs to dominate over a very simple, reserved approach to the lyrics layout”.

1. Pinky’s Dream
2. Good Day Today
3. So Glad
4. Noah’s Ark
5. Football Game
6. I Know
7. Strange and Unproductive Thinking
8. The Night Bell With Lightning
9. Stone’s Gone Up
10. These Are My Friends
11. Speed Roadster
12. Movin’ On
13. She Rise Up


OVERKILL: New Album Title, Cover Artwork Unveiled

New Jersey thrash metal veterans OVERKILL will release their new album, "The Electric Age", in North America on March 27 via eOne Music. The CD will be made available in Europe on March 30 through Nuclear Blast Records.

"The Electric Age" was recorded and mixed at Gain Studios in New Jersey, owned and operated by OVERKILL bassist D.D. Verni.

Read more at Blabbermouth


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Top 10 Albums – January 23, 2012

Here are the Top 10 Albums sold at Shop Radio Cast for the week of January 17 – January 23, 2012:

1. V/A – Fat Music For Fat People LP
2. Blink 182 – Neighborhoods LP (Blue/White)
3. The Black Keys – The Moan / Have Love Will Travel 7″
4. The Horrible Crowes – Elsie LP
5. The Methadones – Not Economically Viable LP
6. Fun. – Aim and Ignite 2XLP
7. Fun. – Some Nights LP
8. Brand New – Your Favorite Weapon LP
9. Silverstein – Short Songs For Short People 10″
10. Hit The Lights – Invicta LP


Neil Young Bashes Music Quality

Neil Young has lashed out at the sound quality of 21st century recorded music, recently revealing that listening to it makes him "angry."

He told MTV News: "I'm finding that I have a little bit of trouble with the quality of the sound of music today. I don't like it. It just makes me angry. Not the quality of the music, but we're in the 21st century and we have the worst sound that we've ever had. It's worse than a 78 [rpm record]. Where are our geniuses? What happened?"

Young went on to say that he believed people had changed their listening habits to cope with the worsening quality of recorded music, adding: "I like to point that out to artists. That's why people listen to music differently today. It's all about the bottom and the beat driving everything, and that's because in the resolution of the music, there's nothing else you can really hear. The warmth and the depth at the high end is gone."

Young made sure to say that though he hated the way modern music was recorded, he did not hate the new bands who made it, and talked up Mumford and Sons and My Morning Jacket as two of his favorite new bands. He said: "Mumford and Sons and My Morning Jacket are great bands. I love them both and I know them well. I feel good about saying that."


and in music history for today janaury 23rd:

In 1943, Duke Ellington & His Orchestra played for a black-tie audience at New York City's Carnegie Hall for the first time. A recording of the concert was released on CD in 1977 as "The Carnegie Hall Concerts: January 1943," highlighted by Ellington's monumental suite "Black, Brown and Beige," in the only full-length version ever recorded by his orchestra.

Born on this day in 1950, Danny Federici, organ and keyboard player for Bruce Springsteen's E Street Band. Died of cancer on April 17th 2008 at the age of 58. Federici had worked with Springsteen for over 40 years, including early bands Steel Mill and Child.

In 1956, rock 'n' roll fans in Cleveland, Ohio who were under 18 were banned from dancing in public unless accompanied by an adult after Ohio Police started enforcing a law dating back to 1931.

Also in 1956, James Brown and the Famous Flames sign a recording contract with King Records. As a signing bonus, they receive $200. Their first effort, "Please, Please, Please", would become a million
seller later in the year, but their next nine releases failed to live up to the success of their debut.

In 1957, the movie 'Don't Knock the Rock' premiers.

In 1959, Buddy Holly kicked off the twenty-four date Winter Dance Party at the Million Dollar Ballroom in Milwaukee, backed by Tommy Allsup on guitar, Waylon Jennings on bass and Carl Bunch on drums.

In 1962, at Columbia Records' East 30th Street studios in New York City, Tony Bennett recorded his signature song, "I Left My Heart In San Francisco." CBS released it as the b-side of "Once Upon A Time." The A-side received no attention, and DJs began flipping the record over and playing "San Francisco." It became a hit on the pop singles chart in 1962 and spent close to a year on various other charts, achieving gold record status. It then won the top prize of Grammy Award for Record of the Year, as well as for Best Male Solo Vocal Performance. In 2001 it was ranked 23rd on an RIAA/NEA list of the most historically significant Songs of the 20th Century.

CVR Blog 45rpm Singles Spotlight:

In 1964, the Temptations released "The Way You Do the Things You Do."  Falsetto Eddie Kendricks sings lead on the record, composed by Robinson and Rogers while on the road with The Miracles as part of the Motortown Revue tour. Its plethora of pick-up lines ("You got a smile so bright/you know you coulda been a candle/I'm holding you so tight/You know you coulda been a handle") began as a light-hearted joke between Robinson and Rogers to pass time on the long bus rides. Realizing they had something they could work with, the Miracles kept the lyrics in mind and prepared the song for the Temptations, who by this time had only one single that had ever made it onto a Billboard chart (1962's "Dream Come True" made it to #22 on the R&B singles chart) and six flopped singles. This version of the song actually appears on two of their early 60's albums; 1964's Meet The Temptations, and 1965's The Temptations Sing Smokey.

The recording was done on January 8, 1964, a mere two weeks after founding Temptation Elbridge Bryant had been fired, and Jimmy Ruffin's younger brother David Ruffin had taken Bryant's place. While Ruffin would sing lead on stage he would remain a background singer on the singles for most of 1964, but after Smokey Robinson heard him sing lead during the Temptations' Motortown Revue performance, Ruffin was assigned to sing lead on what would become the Temptations' first number-one hit, "My Girl".

The Temptations learned about the success of "The Way You Do the Things You Do" after returning home to Detroit, Michigan and hearing nonchalantly from a Motown executive that "oh, you guys got a hit."

After reading the number 76 ("with a bullet") listing in Billboard magazine, Temptations members Otis Williams and David Ruffin immediately began crying with joy. During this period the group's baritone Paul Williams was still considered the main lead singer; but due to the success of this single, Kendricks would be given the lead on the next two following singles.

In 1965, North America finally caught on to Petula Clark when her hit "Downtown" made her the first British female to have a number one hit on this side of the Atlantic in the Rock era. She would go on to rack up many more smashes, including "I Know a Place", "My Love", "I Couldn't Live Without Your Love", "This is My Song" and "Don't Sleep in the Subway". Clark had already been very successful in the UK, chalking up hits since 1954.

In 1969, in Memphis, between 4:00 and 7:00 a.m., Elvis Presley recorded eight takes of "Suspicious Minds," with future Grateful Dead vocalist Donna Jean Godchaux singing backup. Producer Felton Jarvis decided on a premature fade-out and fade back in near the end of the track to reflect the way Elvis performed the song in his live Las Vegas stage act. It became Presley's 17th and last #1 single in the US.  Rolling Stone later ranked it #91 on their list of the 500 Greatest Songs of All Time

In 1969, at the Apple Studios in London, the Beatles, with Billy Preston playing a Fender Rhodes electric piano, recorded ten takes of "Get Back." None were used for the released single. On January 27 they recorded 14 more takes of the song, eventually selecting Take 11 which was then spliced together with the best take of the coda ending recorded on January 28. A footnote: The stereo single version of "Get Back" was the first Beatles recording to feature Ringo Starr's drum kit in true stereo.

In 1971, Steel Mill played their final show when they appeared at the Upstage Club, Asbury Park, New Jersey. Singer Bruce Springsteen formed new bands during the rest of the year known under such names as the Bruce Springsteen Jam, Dr. Zoom and the Sonic Boom, and finally the Bruce Springsteen Band.

In 1971, George Harrison became the first solo Beatle to have a #1 when "My Sweet Lord" went to the top of the UK single charts. The song from his 'All Things Must Pass' album stayed at #1 for five weeks. The track returned to the top of the UK charts in 2002, following his death.

In 1971, as a follow-up to their US number 3 hit "Candida", Tony Orlando and Dawn topped the charts with "Knock Three Times". It was the trio's second straight million seller, but it would take two more years and a series of minor chart makers before they would return to the top with "Tie A Yellow Ribbon Round The Ole Oak Tree".

In 1973, after reading a note that says 'an accord has been reached for peace in Vietnam', Neil Young announces to a Madison Square Garden crowd, "Peace has come."

In 1975, Supertramp kick off a 13 date British tour to promote their third album "Crime Of The Century". The LP will spawn the single "Dreamer", which will reach #13 in the UK and #15 in the US.

In 1977, during her concert in Tampa, singer Patti Smith danced off the stage and fell 15 feet into a concrete orchestra pit, breaking several neck vertebrae.

In 1977, Carole King's landmark LP, 'Tapestry' became the longest-running album of all time on the Billboard chart, as it reached its 302nd week on the list.

In 1978, Chicago's guitarist, 32 year old Terry Kath, accidentally shot and killed himself while playing with a gun at a party, telling others around him that the gun was unloaded. His spot in the band would be filled by Donny Dacus, who previously played guitar with Stephen Stills.

Also in 1978, singer Vic Ames of the Ames Brothers vocal group died in an auto accident at the age of 51.

In 1986, Buddy Holly was posthumously inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame at it's inaugural ceremony. Other first inductees included Elvis Presley, Chuck Berry, James Brown, Sam Cooke, Jerry Lee Lewis, The Everly Brothers, Little Richard and Fats Domino.

In 1988, Michael Jackson went to #1 on the US singles chart with "The Way You Make Me Feel."

In 1988, Tiffany started a two-week run at #1 on the US album chart with 'Tiffany.'

Also in 1988, Nirvana recorded a 10-song demo with Seattle producer Jack Endino. Sub Pop records boss Jonathan Poneman hears the tape and offers to put out a Nirvana single.

In 1989, James Brown was sentenced in Georgia to six years in jail in connection with a police chase through two states last September 24th. He would be granted parole three years later.

In 1990, Allen Collins guitarist from Lynyrd Skynyrd died of pneumonia after being ill for several months. Collins who was one of the founding members also co-wrote most of the band's songs (including Free Bird), with late front man Ronnie Van Zant. He survived a plane crash in 1977 that killed two other band members. Collins was behind the wheel in a car accident in 1986 that killed his girlfriend and left him paralyzed from the waist down. He later pleaded no contest to vehicular manslaughter as well as driving under the influence of alcohol.

In 1991, John Sebastian, owner and general manager of KLSK FM in Albuquerque, New Mexico, played Led Zeppelins 'Stairway To Heaven' for twenty-four solid hours to inaugurate a format change to Classic Rock. Police showed up with guns drawn: once after a listener reported that the DJ had apparently suffered a heart attack, and later because of suspicion that, this being eight days into the Gulf War, the radio station had been taken hostage by terrorists dispatched by Zeppelin freak Saddam Hussein.

In 1995, William Horton of the Philadelphia vocal group, The Silhouettes, died at the age of 65. The group topped the Billboard chart in 1958 with "Get A Job".

In 1996, White Zombie was not allowed to play a Johnson City, TN show after the city council rejected the show saying they were devil worshipers.

In 1997, 63 year old Richard Berry, who wrote The Kingsmen's "Louie Louie", died from an aneurysm while sleeping at his home in South Central Los Angeles.

In 1998, Johnny Funches, who wrote and sang lead on The Dells' 1956 million seller, "Oh What A Night", passed away at the age of 62.

In 2000, Santana started a three week run at #1 on the US album chart with 'Supernatural', the album spent a total of nine weeks at #1 during this year.

In 2001, an English coroner criticised the rap singer Eminem's lyrics as depressing during an inquest into the death of a schoolboy who threw himself in front of a train. The 17-year old boy had printed out the lyrics to Eminem's track 'Rock Bottom' before his death.

In 2005, one of the biggest charity concerts since Live Aid raised $2 million for victims of the tsunami disaster in Asia. The concert held at The Millennium Stadium, Cardiff featured Eric Clapton, Manic Street Preachers, Keane, Charlotte Church, Snow Patrol, Embrace, Feeder, Craig David and Liberty X, who appeared before 60,000 fans at the sold-out concert.

In 2002, EMI announced that it would pay Mariah Carey $28 million to end their association which was planned to last for several albums estimated at $100 million.

In 2011, former Beatles drummer Richard Starkey filed an application with the United States Patent and Trademark Office to register the name "Ringo".

birthdays today include (among others): Nick Harmer (Death Cab for Cutie) (37), Anita Pointer (Pointer Sisters) (64), Bill Cunningham (Box Tops) (62) and Robin Zander (Cheap Trick) (60)

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