Friday, January 4, 2013

The Return Of Singles Going Steady 10-Dust On The Grooves

Busy Busy Busy.

That seems to be the motto here at Crabb Top Ten Music Emporium.  Top ten songs of 2012 continue to come in, this time from the folks at Underground Radio.

With The Townedgers taking over the time poverty, I don't forsee any big bargain hunts outside of what Half Priced Books has on hand but they been picked clean during the 20 percent off sale.  The other night, I started on another venture of scanning forgotten 45s and putting them into a blog and thinking of calling it Guess the 45.  I'm sure nobody would have ever guessed The Cabin Crew on the last offering.

 (photo missing, deleted from facebook, imagine that)

This year, I have decided to take a closer look at the forgotten songs of the past rather than trying to buy the new latest and greatest craze for new music.  What good is it when you buy a new album, play it once and then file it away or donate it back to Goodwill?  So I spent part of yesterday going through some of the vinyl that I left behind at my parents house and came up with some forgotten chestnuts of the past for the ongoing Singles Going Steady series.  One thing I noticed that I always had a bit of variation of 45s, thanks to the boxset 45 we used to get at K Mart, where you buy 10 for 2 dollars or something to that effect.  Most of them didn't get played much, they were used for frisbee tossing, if it was Led Zeppelin,  Tommy James or Ray Charles we didn't give a flying foo but nevertheless they did shape up a strange listening habit here of being everything to the influence of my music tastes.  It's a shame with my variation of this type that I didn't get my own Sirius Radio Show but then again, I'm not Little Steven either.  So it goes.

A lot of these records came from the Box of Records that used to be the way to hear different types of music out there.  Most of the higher priced Northern Soul 45s came from the cut outs, which explains the BB shot or drill holes on the label or in some cases, where the careless driller would drill a hole on the exit groove when he missed the label.  Course that would have been a dream job for me, drill a hole in a 45 that was a chart failure or simply got too many copies pressed.  Back in the late 60s Woolworth's seem to have many copies of Aaron Neville Tell It Like It Is that nobody wanted.  Even back then, there were plenty to choose from.  For the most part, most of my 45s came from a time when I was a child not even 10 years old but having a collection that was the best in town.  Some weren't taken care of very well and it shows.  If anybody has a decent copy of Amanda Humphrey's Call On Me/Power Of Love  (USA Records 840 1966) let me know.  I'm sure we can work out a trade or compensation.

I have no idea how my dad got Call On Me, it may have been a radio promotion and they were going around gas stations and dropping some of them off.  It's a very tough Chicago soul groove and a nice call and response from the horn as Humphrey's voice fades out at the end.  Some 45's acquired at that time was a Motown Supremes song to which I can't remember, The Gentry's Every Day I Have To Cry and Sam The Sham Red Hot.  More about Amanda Humphrey's discography here:

You Tube remains a treasure trove for the forgotten and even surprises me for what is out there.  Case in point number 2, Jamey Ryan Sunshine Blue (Show Biz 235)  A corny country song but the words are so simple anybody can sing them.  I don't know much about her but my dad loved this song much he used to sing along to this.  Another song that the grooves got wore down to the nub.

Jamey also recorded another followup, When I Want Some Hurt Again (Show Biz 239) which was a nice Patsy Cline twang to it but like Sunshine Blue, did nothing on the charts.  In fact there's a link between Jamey and Patsy since Charlie married Jamey after Patsy Cline perished in that infamous plane crash.  Ryan never did achieved the fame and fortune that Cline ever did.

Jamey Ryan-Discography (Incomplete)

Woman's Prison/Among The First To Know  Columbia 44451   1968
Growin Pains/You're Looking For A Plaything  Columbia 44469   1968
Willie & Laura Mae Jones/Sweet Wine Bitter Tears   Show Biz 228  1968
Holy Cow/All A Woman Asks  Show Biz 232  1969
Sunshine Blue/Baby I Tried  Show Biz 235  1969
When I Want Some Hurt Again/Written On Your Heart  Show Biz 239  1969
Wildcat/Like Mother, Like Daughter  Show Biz 501 1970
Memories To Spare/  Show Biz 504  1970
A Taste Of Money/  Show Biz 505 1971
Keep On Loving Me/You Just Moved A Mountain  Atlantic Country CY 4001  1973

3.  I've Been Loving You Too Long-Billy Vera (Atlantic 2555) 1968

This poor record didn't get much love in my collection, I think it was used for frisbee throwing a few times.  Tough little record, didn't break and still plays fairly good, better than the Cabin Crew or Ray Charles 45s from the last blog.  Vera is better known for At This Moment which made the top 50 on Alfa in 1981 and later top ten when Rhino reissued it on a best of called By Request which was mostly the Alfa album itself. Vera goes way back to being one of the original blue eyed soul singers of the late 60s, scoring a regional hit with Judy Clay.  Working with Chip Taylor (writer of Wild Thing for The Troggs) Vera does a pretty good remake of the Otis Wedding classic.  B side Are You Coming To My Party was written by Vera and Taylor.  Even though Vera is considered a one hit wonder with At This Moment, he's very well known for penning liner notes to many a blues album and reissues of the 1990s.  Billy Vera really does know his R and B.

4.   Ten Commandments-Prince Buster  (Phillips 40427) 1967

A frustrating bit of music here, Buster was highly regarded in Jamaica with his blend of rocksteady ska, Ten Commandments goes all the way back to 1963 on The Buster label in Jamaica (Blue Beat in the UK) before he decided to either re record it or simply leased it to Phillips in 1967.  B side Don't Make Me To Cry was also recorded at a earlier time (Atlantic 2231-1964).  Nevertheless, one of the earliest Jamaica recordings to make it to the US.  My copy has seen better days.  Prince Buster would do a answer record with Princess Buster on the failed followup single Ten Commandments From Woman To Man which was issued on RCA Victor in 1967.  (RCA 47-9114) Link to that song here:

5.  Wipe Out-The Challengers (GNP Crescendo X376) 1966

The Safaris had the big monster hit, but this version really isn't that bad, the drumming is a bit more mainstream.  My mom bought this for me at some Webster City grocery store back around 1969.

6. How You Gonna Get Respect (When you haven't cut your process yet)  Hank Ballard (King 45-6196) 1968

Co written with James Brown in an attempt to update his sound, this really didn't do much on the chart but you got the funky rhythms that Brown was famous for back then.  James Brown would continue to work with him throughout the 1970s as well.

7.  Give Away None Of My Love-Otis Redding  (Atco 6766)  1970

In my collection, none are more prized than finding anything by Otis Redding, which goes all the way back to the live version of Shake which was the B side to You Don't Miss Your Water.  Of course Otis' life was cut short by a plane crash en route to Madison in 1967 but Otis left a whole bunch of recordings left in the can to which Booker T and The MGs would add their instruments afterwards.  By the time Tell The Truth came out in 1970, Atlantic pretty much scraped the bottom the barrel but still Otis had enough good music to justify.  Even though the band is recording Otis's demos, you can't tell that by the more interesting horn charts that start this song off.  Never heard this on the radio.  Found the 45 for a quarter up at Rock N Bach in the early 80s when they were based on the old F Ave SW site.

8.  Melinda Rose-Deputy Dawg Band (Dawg-Gone DG-002)  1981  They were from Mason City Iowa, backed up Del Shannon when he played here in 1980 and recorded three singles, this one being the best known.  B side was SOL was got plenty of jukebox airplay.  Inducted into the Iowa Rock and Roll Hall Of Fame in 2009.  Another quarter record found at Rock N Bach.

9.  The Biggest Parakeets In Town-Jud Strunk  (Melodyland ME 6015F) 1975  In some ways he reminds me of Jim Stafford in terms of being a comedian and a folk musician although his biggest hit was the sappy Daisy A Day for MGM/Polydor.  A couple years later found him on Barry Gordy's country label Melodyland with this tongue in cheek number which KCRG played a few times on the AM side of things.  Last minor hit was Pamela Brown (MCA?) Later died of a heart attack while taking off a runway at a Maine airport (1981).  The record I have came from a jukebox that was sold at the old Wells Store on 6th St back in the late 70s.

10.  Ginger Bread-Frankie Avalon (Chancellor 1021)  1958  The various taste in my music pretty much came from my Mom even though today she disavows any of the music her and her sister used to buy at the old Lincoln record stores before I was even born, I know for a fact that she had at one time had Just Ask Your Heart (Chancellor 1040-black label)  and A Boy Without A Girl (Chancellor 1036 pink label) both in her collection.  This well worn copy was purchased for 5 cents at the Waterloo Goodwill years ago but it's not the first Frankie Avalon record that I ever knew about, that honor goes to Dede Dinah (Chancellor 1011)  I think my mom liked those teen idols of the 50s (Paul Anka, Bobby Rydell, Avalon etc). Or maybe Grandma Ambrose approved these teen idols over Elvis or Gene Vincent since there was very few Elvis records and no Gene Vincent.  Anyway I do know for a fact this record came from Goodwill since the price sticker was ripped off, taking most of the label with it.

BONUS RECORD: One Beer-Chuck Murphy (Coral 61014)  That rare record to which rockabilly and dixieland jazz makes that perfect marriage.  Originally found as a scratched up 10 cent record at a church sale, I found a much better copy on EBAY for 3 dollars.  Quite a bargain I must say. 

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