Posts Tagged ‘Sly Stone’

Thumbs Up, Thumbs Down

19 July 2010

When I was in high school, I had a regular column
in the sports section of the school newspaper (The
Sentinel
) called ‘Thumbs Up/Thumbs Down’. It was
easy to write and people liked it, so I recreate it here
for you now, as a quick guide of some of my likes
and dislikes in the world of music…


THUMBS UP: Disco (^)

THUMBS DOWN: Prog


THUMBS UP: The Flying Burrito Brothers

THUMBS DOWN: The Eagles (^)


THUMBS UP: The Beatles (^)

THUMBS DOWN: Oasis


THUMBS UP: PJ Harvey

THUMBS DOWN: Joanna Newsom (^)


THUMBS UP: Iggy Pop (^)

THUMBS DOWN: G.G. Allin


THUMBS UP: Off The Wall

THUMBS DOWN: Thriller (^)


THUMBS UP: Jungle Brothers

THUMBS DOWN: NWA (^)


THUMBS UP: Gregg Allman (^)

THUMBS DOWN: Cher (^)


THUMBS UP: The Fillmore (^)

THUMBS DOWN: Slim’s


THUMBS UP: Bluegrass In The Park

THUMBS DOWN: Ticketmaster (^)


THUMBS UP: The Doors

THUMBS DOWN: Jim Morrison, poet (^)


THUMBS UP: ‘Fire On The Mountain’

THUMBS DOWN: ‘Dark Star’


THUMBS UP: Blue Note (^)

THUMBS DOWN: Free Jazz


THUMBS UP: Cold Fact (^)

THUMBS DOWN: Coldplay


THUMBS UP: Keith Richards (^)

THUMBS DOWN: Toby Keith


THUMBS UP: Canned Heat

THUMBS DOWN: Canned ham (^)


THUMBS UP: Lester Bangs (^)

THUMBS DOWN: Richard Meltzer


THUMBS UP: Willie Nelson in concert

THUMBS DOWN: Shuggie Otis in concert (^)


THUMBS UP: LPs (^)

THUMBS DOWN: CDs


THUMBS UP: Rick Rubin

THUMBS DOWN: Phil Spector (^)


THUMBS UP: Nigel Tufnel (^)

THUMBS DOWN: David Coverdale


THUMBS UP: Joy Division (^)

THUMBS DOWN: Throbbing Gristle


THUMBS UP: Saxophone

THUMBS DOWN: Bagpipes (^)


THUMBS UP: Ice Cube, rapper (^)

THUMBS DOWN: Ice Cube, actor


THUMBS UP: Johnny Rotten

THUMBS DOWN: Sid Vicious (^)


THUMBS UP: Freedom Rock (^)

THUMBS DOWN: Jam bands


THUMBS UP: Willy Wonka (^)

THUMBS DOWN: Christopher Cross


THUMBS UP: Roky Erickson’s comeback

THUMBS DOWN: Sly Stone’s comeback (^)


THUMBS UP: The Rat Pack (^)

THUMBS DOWN: The Brat Pack


THUMBS UP: Jimi Hendrix

THUMBS DOWN: Jimmy Buffett (^)


THUMBS UP: Dave Davies (^)

THUMBS DOWN: Dave Matthews


THUMBS UP: Beastie Boys (^)

THUMBS DOWN: Eminem


THUMBS UP: Al Green

THUMBS DOWN: Weird Al (^)


THUMBS UP: Pearl Jam’s first 3 albums (^)

THUMBS DOWN: Pearl Jam’s last 3 albums


THUMBS UP: AC/DC (^)

THUMBS DOWN: R.E.M.


THUMBS UP: New wave Bono

THUMBS DOWN: Statesman Bono (^)

Doubleshot Tuesday: I Wanna Get Funky/Big Bad Bo

8 June 2010

[Today: The blues get funky...]


1974 was unofficially the year the blues got funky. That was the year that three blues legends – Albert King, Bo Diddley and John Lee Hooker – released funked up records that bore little resemblance to the albums that made them famous. Those albums, King’s I Wanna Get Funky, Diddley’s Big Bad Bo, and Hooker’s Free Beer And Chicken have since been politely ignored by a teeming mass of music critics. “Another very solid, early-’70s outing” is the entire 2.5 star review that Allmusic.com saw fit to put together for I Wanna Get Funky, and that kind of amiable indifference is almost more damning than fiery rebukes and clever putdowns.

The critical reaction to these albums is along the lines of a crowd at a wedding watching grandpa do the Electric Slide – nobody’s going to come right out and say that he’s making a fool of himself, even if that’s what everyone is thinking. The real problem with these albums, in part, was that the bluesmen of the 50s and 60s were held up as pillars of pure musical wisdom from another era – for them to dabble in funk was akin to Jesus coming back as a punk rocker. Bo Diddley simply lacked credibility as a funkateer at that time, even if it wasn’t a big stretch from his core sound. Funk was much more stratified in 1974 than it’s commonly viewed now – artists like James Brown, George Clinton, Bootsy Collins and Sly Stone had serious funk cred, while others (both black and white) paled in comparison.

But one funny thing about music genres is how the intense distinctions fussed over at the time of their inception eventually flattens out. Think about the once-important line in the sand between the first and second wave of UK punk rockers – given a few years they were all just punks. A friend once described the intricate levels of metal music in the 80s, and what it meant if you liked Skid Row or Dio or listened to Motley Crue’s Dr. Feelgood. I’m not kidding when I say that it sounded exactly like a bunch of old ladies, nit-picking about social mores over their canasta. And of course, for most people, all those bands are now just 80s hair metal bands.

That flattening of perception over time works to the favor of funk albums released by former bluesmen. “I wanna get funky” is probably the perfect mindset to approach these in, because it leaves the bluesman’s baggage behind, while setting a reasonable expectation of what a funk album can achieve. These records won’t make you toss your Parliament or Ohio Players in the waste bin, but they might make you throw your hands in the air and do the Electric Slide…

Listen: I Wanna Get Funky [Albert King]

Listen: Bite You [Bo Diddley]

Listen: Hit Or Miss [Bo Diddley]

Listen: Make It Funky [John Lee Hooker]

Masterpiece: Head Hunters

28 August 2009

[Today: Herbie Hancock goes head hunting...]

Herbie Hancock | Headhunters

Until the mid-90’s, Head Hunters held the distinction of being the best-selling Jazz album of all-time. It’s since been surpassed by Dave Brubeck’s Take Five, which is just as well, because this album has about as much to do with Jazz as George Clinton’s Mothership. Sure, Herbie Hancock is a long-time Jazz pianist, and he learned at the knee of the great Miles Davis, but with this 1973 album he was chasing the sound of Sly Stone (as was Miles around this time) rather than more traditional Jazz muses.

The album opens with the 15+ minutes of slithering funk that is ‘Chameleon’. Not so much “fusion” as straight up funk, this epic track is a platform that provides Hancock ample room to go off on electric pianos, synthesizers, and a clavinet. Bennie Maupin – the only holdover from Hancock’s previous band – provides some exquisite horn honking here as well. Meanwhile ‘Watermelon Man’ is a stylistic recreation of Hancock’s 1962 composition, ‘Sly’ is a funky nod to the album’s inspiration, and ‘Vein Melter’ is perhaps the second greatest this-is-what-it-feels-like ode to heroin (right behind the Velvet Underground’s ‘Heroin’).

Three of the four tunes on Head Hunters clock in at more than nine minutes, and they’re all high-octane, instrumental funk jams. This album provided a preview of the extended funk loops that would drive the birth of Hip-Hop later in the decade (‘Chameleon’ has been sampled by artists such as Nas, Digital Underground and Massive Attack), and the ecstasy-fueled electronica of the 90’s. In his liner notes to the CD reissue of the album, Hancock writes “I had this mental image of me playing in Sly’s band and playing something funky.” This is definitely something funky.

Listen: Chameleon

Listen: Vein Melter

1969: The Year In Music

7 May 2009

The scholar seeks, the artist finds.” – André Gide

*****

On January 30, 1969, the four members of The Beatles climbed the stairs to the roof of the Apple Records Building and staged an impromptu, five-song concert that brought their Saville Row neighborhood to a standstill before police intervened and shut them down. It was their last public appearance as a band, and the footage of them playing on that roof is a potent marker of the end of an era. Looking shaggy, tired and wise beyond their years, The Beatles seem about 15 years older than the group that arrived in America in 1964. The music business of the sixties was a meat grinder that took a toll on even – and especially – its most successful acts. With only short term gains in mind, the business squeezed musicians with never-ending album requests and put them through rigorous touring schedules that often made no geographical sense. It’s little wonder that most of rock’s biggest names were burning out or fading away as the 1960s became the 1970s.

1969 saw Jim Morrison arrested during a concert in Miami, FL for allegedly exposing his family jewels to the audience. It was the beginning of the end for The Doors, who saw their touring schedule evaporate in the ensuing controversy. The group would release one more album, the fine L.A. Woman, but they were never the same cultural force after Morrison’s stunt, and he would be dead before the end of the following year.

Consider that Jimi Hendrix and Janis Joplin would both also be dead by the conclusion of 1970, and ’69 becomes not just the final year of the 60s, but the end of the line for much of rock’s royalty. Many, including Brian Wilson, John Phillips, Fleetwood Mac’s Peter Green, and Love’s Arthur Lee, simply burned out through a frantic combination of artistic pressure and drug abuse, and were never a factor in the 70s. And an uncountable number of essential sixties bands lost their way and went adrift in the next decade, including The Byrds, The Kinks, Jefferson Airplane, Moby Grape, and CSN. Even stalwarts like Bob Dylan, Eric Clapton, and Sly Stone seemed to withdraw into themselves, and were more miss than hit during the 70s.

But if 1969 was the last stand for many musical icons, it also provided a preview of the sounds that would come to dominate 70s radio. Led Zeppelin released not one, but two hard rock albums full of stadium-sized anthems. The Stooges’ debut was Punk a half-decade too soon, while The Flying Burrito Brothers and The Band charted new terrain called Country-Rock. And although he went unrecognized during his lifetime, Nick Drake was creating the kind of low-key, confessional folk that would make virtually every singer/songwriter not named Nick Drake rich during the 70s.

1969 had beginnings and endings. It had Woodstock and Altamont. It had happy hippies and Charles Manson. It had highs and lows. But mostly it had really, really good highs. Here are 20 (or so) of the best…

The Beatles | Abbey Road
#1 | The Beatles | Abbey Road | The Beatles’ last album just might be their very best. From the hard and heavy opener ‘Come Together’ to their most beautiful ballad ‘Something’ to the song suite that concludes side two, this album holds together in a way that belies the circumstances under which it was made. The Beatles all had one foot out the door, but the return of producer George Martin (who wisely sat out the debacle that was the Let It Be sessions) ensured that Abbey Road would be more polished that its messy predecessor. It turned out to be a fitting finale for the Fab Four.

Listen: Come Together

Miles Davis | Bitches Brew
Miles Davis | In A Silent Way
#2 | Miles Davis | Bitches Brew/In A Silent Way | And on the 7th day, Miles created fusion. But don’t hold it against him – Bitches Brew stands head and shoulders above anything else in that weak sub-genre. It is, like its cover, not of this world, and both beautiful and strange. Take a trip to the surface of Mars, the bottom of the ocean, and the Amazon Rainforest at midnight, all courtesy of Miles’ horn and John McLaughlin’s fluid guitar. In A Silent Way is fusion’s quiet storm – much lower key than its colorful counterpart, but no less intense.

Listen: Miles Runs The Voodoo Down [from Bitches Brew]

The Rolling Stones | Let It Bleed
#3 | The Rolling Stones | Let It Bleed | Coming on the heels of Beggars Banquet, this represents one of the Stones most stripped down and bluesy moments on record. Their first album released after the death of founding member Brian Jones features tough yet accessible songs like the title track, opener ‘Gimme Shelter’, and the epic ‘You Can’t Always Get What You Want’, in addition to Keith Richards’ first time as lead vocalist, on ‘You Got The Silver’. This was an emphatic statement that the Stones had graduated beyond of the blues and into their own sound. And though they’d revisit the formula time and again, the results never sounded as organic or genuine as Let It Bleed.

Listen: You Got The Silver

Led Zeppelin | Led Zeppelin
Led Zeppelin | Led Zeppelin II
#4 | Led Zeppelin | Led Zeppelin/Led Zeppelin II | Amazing but true: these albums were heavily panned upon release in the U.S. (this fact remains a point of embarrassment for Rolling Stone magazine, who led the naysayers). Right off the bat on ‘Good Times Bad Times’ it’s apparent that Zeppelin was onto a winning formula. Featuring Robert Plant’s soaring vocals, Jimmy Page’s quicksilver guitar lines and one of the rock’s greatest rhythm sections, Led Zeppelin was the first shot fired broadside on the psychedelic sloppiness that was often 60’s rock. II continues the greatness: ‘Whole Lotta Love’ is a fever dream that foreshadows epic tracks like ‘Stairway To Heaven’ and ‘Kashmir’. A knockout one-two punch from one of the heaviest and most highly influential bands of all time.

Listen: Good Times Bad Times

The Flying Burrito Brothers | The Gilded Palace Of Sin
#5 | The Flying Burrito Brothers | The Gilded Palace Of Sin | It was no accident that Gram Parsons contributed the only two original tracks to the Byrds’ country-rock classic, Sweetheart Of The Rodeo. Parsons was a bona fide trailblazer at a time when “Country” was a dirty word to many music fans. After just the one album with the Byrds, he left (and took Chris Hillman with him) to form The Flying Burrito Brothers. Taking the Sweetheart sound even deeper into country, the Burritos’ debut is full of twang and terrific tunes like ‘Sin City’, ‘Dark End Of The Street’ and ‘Wheels’. For better or worse, the musical sound that dominated 70’s radio (in the unfortunate form of The Eagles) was born here.

Listen: Sin City

The Band | The Band
#6 | The Band | The Band | The Band changed the face of popular music in a way that very few artists ever have. Both their debut, Music From Big Pink, and this self-titled follow up are as out of time as this black and white cover photo, and caused many musicians to ditch psychedelic extravagance. The songs, including ‘Up On Cripple Creek’ and ‘Whispering Pines’ are pastoral and feel like they’ve been around forever. More than any other group of its era (and after this, a lot were trying), this band from Canada perfectly channeled the sound of America before it was settled, when there was still much at stake – land, lives and gold to be won or lost – and men charged forth to grab their share, with an unquenchable thirst on their lips, and a song in their hearts.

Listen: Rag Mama Rag

The Velvet Underground | The Velvet Underground
#7 | The Velvet Underground | The Velvet Underground | The Velvet Underground’s self-titled third album saw bassist Doug Yule replacing avant-garde cellist John Cale, and the mood throughout is somber, thoughtful and as spare as anything they committed to tape. Tracks like ‘Pale Blue Eyes’, ‘Candy Says’ and ‘I’m Set Free’ convey an emotional honesty that was 180 degrees from the group’s normal combination of feedback and emotional detachment. However, Lou Reed’s journalist eye is as sharp as ever, and the scenes and characters drawn here possess a quiet dignity that makes this album the place to start for the VUninitiated.

Listen: Pale Blue Eyes (Closet Mix) [from Peel Slowly And See]

Fleetwood Mac | Then Play On
#8 | Fleetwood Mac | Then Play On | Then Play On is the highpoint of the original, Peter Green-led incarnation of this group. Green and Danny Kirwan trade guitar licks throughout, and the whole thing runs together brilliantly in spite of bold stylistic leaps. The only thing this has remotely in common with the Rumours-era Mac is the rhythm section of Mick Fleetwood and John McVie. Until you’ve heard this album, you haven’t heard the real Fleetwood Mac.

Listen: Oh Well

Johnny Cash | At San Quentin
#9 | Johnny Cash | At San Quentin | At San Quentin opens with a din then a roar that tells you this isn’t the typical live tour of hits. Menace and catharsis jump from the grooves in equal measure, and when Cash sings “San Quentin, you’ve been living hell to me” you almost expect a full-scale riot to break out. Much like the previous year’s At Folsom Prison, it’s clear that he’s feeding off his audience and giving them one of the performances of his lifetime. Like The Man In Black himself, this as an album that will never go out of style, and should provide the same unhinged and intense rush a hundred years from now.

Listen: Wanted Man

Nick Drake |  Fives Leaves Left
#10 | Nick Drake | Five Leaves Left | Woefully underappreciated in his short lifetime, Nick Drake made some of the most beautiful and sparse music ever created. Five Leaves Left was the first of three albums he released during his 27 years, and it perfectly balances his dark poetic vision with top-notch production and just-subtle-enough backing. ‘Time Has Told Me’, ‘Way To Blue’ and ‘Cello Song’ are but a few of the highlights on this gorgeous and understated gem.

Listen: Cello Song

Bob Dylan | Nashville Skyline
#11 | Bob Dylan | Nashville Skyline | In July of 1966, Dylan was in a motorcycle accident severe enough to be rumored fatal. During his lengthy recuperation in Woodstock, NY, he recorded songs with The Band that would become The Basement Tapes. The loose, almost drunken sound of those recordings led Dylan to 1968’s John Wesley Harding, which in turn led to the more country-fied Nashville Skyline. Many thought this was the first poor album he made because it eschewed political rhetoric, but it’s serene throughout, and finds him in his most honest, actually-trying-to-sing voice. It’s his most laid back album by a country mile.

Listen: Girl From The North Country (with Johnny Cash)

Neil Young | Everybody Knows This Is Nowhere
Neil Young | Neil Young
#12 | Neil Young | Everybody Knows This Is Nowhere/Neil Young | Neil Young’s self-titled solo debut appeared in early ’69, and it could in no way have prepared its listeners for what he had cooking with a barely-competent garage band that would become Crazy Horse. On Everybody Knows This Is Nowhere, released several months later, they unleashed classics like ‘Cinnamon Girl’ ‘Down By The River’ and ‘Cowgirl In The Sand’ – all three reportedly written while Young had a 105° fever. It also introduced the sound (sometimes that of a train struggling to stay on the tracks) that Neil would go back to time and again throughout his brilliant, mercurial, and influential career.

Listen: The Loner [from Neil Young]

The Stooges | The Stooges
#13 | The Stooges | The Stooges | One of the few bands that clearly would have been more at home at Altamont than Woodstock, The Stooges were way out of step with the flower-power, peace & love generation. Featuring standout tracks ‘1969’ ‘I Wanna Be Your Dog’ and ‘No Fun’, their self-titled debut was unlike anything that had come before it. The Velvet Underground’s uber-avant gardist John Cale was an odd choice as producer, and the 10-minutes-plus ‘We Will Fall’ bears his imprint while fulfilling its title by falling very flat indeed. But in spite of that misfire, this was a proper introduction to the blowtorch personality of Iggy Pop and the raw sound that would come to be known as punk.

Listen: 1969

Frank Zappa | Hot Rats
#14 | Frank Zappa | Hot Rats | Pinning down Frank Zappa’s music in words is about as easy as putting a weasel in a headlock, but here goes: Hot Rats is deliciously weird, white-boy fusion-funk, and features an amazing vocal guest spot (the only vocals on the entire album) from Captain Beefheart as the title character in ‘Willie The Pimp’. Zappa worked hard throughout his career to make the idea of ‘most listenable album’ a relative term, but this is where he most closely touched the earth. So what if the spot where he happened to touch down was a big top tent in Poughkeepsie full of freaks, clowns and pimps?

Listen: Willie The Pimp

Alexander 'Skip' Spence | Oar
#15 | Skip Spence | Oar | America’s answer to Syd Barrett held his mind together just long enough to make this amazing and totally ignored album. Barely-there songs like ‘Lawrence Of Euphoria’ and ‘Book Of Moses’ make Oar a love-it-or-hate-it affair of the highest order, but repeated listens reveal a stark poetic masterpiece that could only have come from a mind receding swiftly into darkness.

Listen: Little Hands

Santana | Santana
#16 | Santana | Santana | It’s probably something of a back-handed compliment to say that Santana’s debut is still the finest, freshest and most fully-realized of all the albums that Carlos put his name to – but there you have it. Tracks such as ‘Evil Ways’, ‘Jingo’, ‘Persuasion’ and ‘Soul Sacrifice’ (not to mention the psychedelic cover art) captured both the free-spirited fun and barely lurking dark side of the ‘60’s counterculture. It’s so good that it practically plays like (heck, most of it was) their greatest hits album.

Listen: Jingo

Taj Mahal | Giant Step/De 'Ole Folks At Home
#17 | Taj Mahal | Giant Step/De’ Ole Folks At Home

Fairport Convention | Unhalfbricking
Fairport Convention | Liege & Lief
#18 | Fairport Convention | Unhalfbricking/Liege & Leif

Both Taj Mahal and Fairport Convention were working under the same premise in ‘69: Take a traditional form of music, play it faithfully but with electricity (in both wattage and enthusiasm) and see if a new generation will swallow it. In Taj’s case it was the blues, Fairport were peddling English folk, but both were playing at such a high and imaginative level that it hardly mattered if their inspirations were centuries old.

The original double-album release of Giant Step/De Ole Folks At Home featured electrified blues on the first album (Giant Step) and traditional blues on the second (De Ole Folks), and the whole thing is excellent. Fairport pulled nearly the same trick over two albums. Unhalfbricking came first, and playfully stretched the boundaries of folk by refracting it through the prism of three separate Bob Dylan covers. Liege & Leif is more traditional, but no less fun. Both albums feature the extraordinary talents of singer Sandy Denny (most famously known in America as the female lead singer on Led Zep’s ‘Battle Of Evermore’) and guitarist Richard Thompson. Three albums for the ages.

Listen: Take A Giant Step [Taj Mahal]

Listen: Autopsy [Fairport Convention, from Unhalfbricking]

Sly & The Family Stone | Stand!
#19 | Sly & The Family Stone | Stand! | Stand! is the perfect midway point between the hippie-dippy, up with people songs of the early Sly albums, and the junked-out, bummer trips of later efforts. The smash hit ‘Everyday People’, the title track, and ‘You Can Make It If You Try’ acknowledge a multitude of world problems without ever losing their hopeful, upbeat outlook. But ‘Don’t Call Me Nigger Whitey’ nods to the direction the group was headed. Their next album, 1971’s There’s A Riot Going On, was bleak and ominous, and sounded almost nothing like the band that continually camped on the charts during the latter part of the 60’s. Yet another reason to enjoy this last shot of funk-infused sunshine.

Listen: You Can Make It If You Try

The Byrds | Dr. Byrds & Mr. Hyde
The Byrds | Ballad Of Easy Rider
#20 | The Byrds | Dr. Byrds & Mr. Hyde/Ballad Of Easy Rider | The back cover of Dr. Byrds and Mr. Hyde features a photo montage of the band transforming from spacemen into cowboys, and that pretty neatly sums up the sound found therein. Ballad Of Easy Rider is a tougher set, and features trippy, free-form liner notes courtesy of Peter Fonda. Neither of these albums is on the level of Notorious Byrd Brothers, Sweetheart Of The Rodeo, or Untitled, but they prove that even on average days, The Byrds were still a pretty formidable band.

Listen: Nashville West [from Dr. Byrds & Mr. Hyde]

*****

15 more that are worth a listen…

MC5 | Kick Out The Jams
Crosby Stills & Nash | CSN
The Allman Brothers Band | The Allman Brothers Band
The Live Adventures Of Al Kooper & Mike Bloomfield
The Meters | The Meters
Isaac Hayes | Hot Buttered Soul
Terry Reid | Terry Reid
Dusty Springfield | Dusty In Memphis
John McLaughlin | Extrapolation
Tim Buckley | Happy/Sad
Donovan | Barbajagal
Os Mutantes | Mutantes
PJ Proby | Three Week Hero
Elvis Presley | From Elvis In Memphis
Pink Floyd | More

*****

Not In My Jukebox You Don’t…

The Who | Tommy
Grateful Dead | Live/Dead
Grand Funk Railroad | Grand Funk
The Doors | The Soft Parade
Iron Butterfly | Ball
Jefferson Airplane | Volunteers
King Crimson | In The Court Of King Crimson The Crimson King
The Moody Blues | To Our Children’s Children
Pink Floyd | Ummagumma

A Day At The Flea IV

1 June 2008

The P and I hit our local monthly flea market today, and I came away with a great haul. The day started with P spotting a guy with a pile of records in the very back of the market (we start at the back and work our way forward). As I approached his booth, I got the sense that there were excellent records to be had. For one thing, he had them in stacks on the ground, not in boxes, and all the records I could see were worthwhile – Bob Marley, Duke Ellington, Miles Davis – and not your average dollar bin junk.

Sure enough, homey had a treasure trove of 70’s funk/soul/R&B. When I asked him how much for the records (always a breathless moment) he said “it depends on the album”. Now, normally I would just get up and walk away – I like to have some idea of what I’m going to be paying before I start wading through piles of dusty albums. But I had to hang in there on this. Finally he said “One dollar to five dollars each.” OK, that’s better, and a lot of what I was seeing was worth that. So me and another guy are plowing through all these records, and at first I’m racing through because I’m paranoid that he’s siphoning off all the good stuff. But then I start talking to him, and I realize he’s only buying ONE album, so I start trying to convince him on some of the stuff – Marvin Gaye, Donny Hathaway, Fats Waller. But he buys his one album (a fine Sam Cooke) and walks away.

The second booth I bought from was run by a woman who appeared to be selling her personal collection of 50 or so records from the 60’s. All in excellent shape, but a bit steep at $5 apiece, so I picked a few winners – Yardbirds, Young Rascals, Moby Grape, and Kinks and went on my merry way.

The last booth I bought from was my regular guy, Mickey, who’s always there. He sells albums 4 for $10, and he’s always got an interesting selection. He recently purchased a huge collection of country albums, so in the last few flea markets, I’ve managed to fill in a few holes in my country vinyl: Ernest Tubb, Louvin Brothers, Stanley Brothers, Flatt & Scruggs, Bill Monroe, and many others. And because P wrote yesterday about T. Texas Tyler’s influence on the late U. Utah Phillips, I had to pick up the TTT album I saw today. Because we couldn’t find this particular album listed anywhere on the Internet, I want to note that the album is called T. Texas Tyler Sings ‘Deck Of Cards’ and it’s on the Sound Record Co. label, date unlisted.

Without further comment, here are some highlights from today’s haul:

*****

And the rest…

The Staples Singers * Be Altitude: Respect Yourself
Joe Williams * A Man Ain’t Supposed To Cry
Arrested Development * 3 Years, 5 Months, and 2 Days In The Life Of…
Johnny Cash * I Walk The Line
The Young Rascals * Groovin’
The Yardbirds * Over Under Sideways Down
The Stanley Brothers & The Clinch Mountain Boys * The Columbia Sessions, 1949-1950
Hank Williams * 40 Greatest Hits
Hank Williams * 24 Greatest Hits, Vol. 2
Hawkshaw Hawkins * The Great Hawkshaw Hawkins
Stanley Brothers * Good Old Camp Meeting Songs
Soundtrack * That Darn Cat
Moby Grape * Moby Grape^
Miles Davis * Bitches Brew
Curtis Mayfield * Curtis/Live!
Sly & The Family Stone * There’s A Riot Goin’ On^
Frank Sinatra * Francis Albert Sinatra & Antonio Carlos Jobim
Johnny Cash * Now There Was A Song!

^ = bought as replacement for scratched copy in our collection
† = bought as potential gifts/giveaways for those who butter me up


Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 104 other followers