February 27, 2014

The Styrous Viewfinder ~ 50,000 pageviews












          WOW!!!





The Viewfinder hit 50,000 pageviews today. It's an impressive number and I'm not sure if this is great but to me it seems like it should be an important milestone. Anyway, I never dreamed it would happen.

Thanks to all who have viewed my articles. 




Styrous® ~ Thursday, February 27, 2014











101 Reel-to-Reel Tapes 48: David Clayton-Thomas










reel-to-reel tape label detail
detail photo by Styrous®


I have hundreds of reel-to-reel, pre-recorded tapes in addition to my 20,000 Vinyl LP collection I'm selling (see link below). Interested? Contact me by email please, not by a comment.

~ ~ ~

 
 reel-to-reel tape album cover
cover photo by Ivan Nagy
photo of album cover by Styrous®




Hernando's Hideaway

So, right to the point. My favorite song on this album is Hernandos Hideaway; don't expect to hear the standard version you've heard before. This is a delightful romp down the street with a bouncy, jazz-funky, rocky rendition backed up by a bunch a horns, plenty of guitars and, of course, the unmistakable voice of Clayton-Thomas that is just plain FUN! All the traditional elements of the song are present; just spiced up a little with a subtle samba beat.  It's brassy, loud, bold and a whole lotta fun.

His rendition of Midnight Train To Georgia has nothing to do with this album but I just had to mention as it is one of my favorite versions of this song. Links to both songs on YouTube below.




David Clayton-Thomas
 reel-to-reel tape album cover back
photos by Ivan Nagy
photo of album cover back by Styrous®




David Clayton-Thomas was born David Henry Thomsett on September 13, 1941, in Kingston upon Thames, Surrey, England. When he was fourteen, he left home, sleeping in parked cars and abandoned buildings, stealing food and clothing to survive. He was arrested several times for vagrancy, petty theft and street brawls and spent his teen years bouncing in and out of various jails and reformatories.

During 1966,  Clayton-Thomas survived by playing “basket houses” - performers were given a few minutes of stage time and then passed the basket. Folk singer Judy Collins heard David one night at a club uptown and told her friend, drummer Bobby Colomby and Steve Katz about him. Al Kooper, singer for Blood, Sweat & Tears, had just left the group; Colomby and Katz were looking for a replacement.





David Clayton-Thomas
 reel-to-reel tape album cover back detail
photos by Ivan Nagy
detail photo by Styrous®




Clayton-Thomas is a Grammy Award-winning Canadian musician, singer and songwriter, best known as the lead vocalist for the American band Blood, Sweat & Tears. He has been inducted into the Canadian Music Hall of Fame and in 2007 his jazz/rock composition Spinning Wheel was enshrined in the Canadian Songwriter's Hall Of Fame. In 2010 He received his star on Canada's Walk Of Fame.





David Clayton-Thomas
 reel-to-reel tape album cover back detail
detail photo by Styrous®





Apparently, it was not a happy situation and some of the members had many issues that hindered the health of the group. Links to interviews with David Clayton-Thomas below.




David Clayton-Thomas
 reel-to-reel tape label detail
detail photo by Styrous®
Track list:

Side 1:
  1. Harmony Junction (3:13) (Clayton-Thomas/Smith)

  2. Workin’ on the Railroad (2:34) (Trad. Adapt. Clayton-Thomas)

  3. Alimony (3:25) (Tommy Tucker)

  4. Harbour Lady (3:25) (Martin – Meskell)

  5. When Something Is Wrong With My Baby (4:26) (Isaac Hayes – David Porter)

Side 2:
  1. Hernandos Hideaway (3:49) (Alder – Ross)

  2. Sweet Fantasty (3:22) (Hoyt Axton)

  3. Small Family (2:37) (Clayton-Thomas – Smith)
  4. Can’t Buy Me Love (2:33) (Lennon – McCartney)

  5. Professor Longhair (2:47) (Clayton-Thomas – Smith)
Personnel:


Credits:

Producer – Gabriel Mekler
Engineer – Steve Waldman
Engineer [Assistant] – John Arrias
Arranged By – David Clayton-Thomas
Horns Arranged By Trevor Lawrence
Strings Arranged By Gabriel Mekler


Released in 1973 on RCA records

EPP1 0173-C  -  7½ ips
 

 reel-to-reel tape album label
photo by Styrous®



Internet links:

101 Reel-to-Reel Tapes 47: Blood, Sweat & Tears


Music:
Hernandos Hideaway on YouTube
Midnight Train To Georgia on YouTube  

Interviews:
McCleans ~ by Kate Fillion on Monday, August 30, 2010
Toronto Star ~ by Richard Ouzounian Theatre Critic, Published on Sat Feb 06 2010





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Styrous® ~ Thursday, February 27, 2014

February 26, 2014

101 Reel-to-Reel Tapes 47: Blood, Sweat & Tears

Cover art: Timothy Quay, Bob Cato
Design: John Berg
Photography: Harrie George
detail photo by Styrous®


I have hundreds of reel-to-reel, pre-recorded tapes in addition to my 20,000 Vinyl LP collection I'm selling (see link below). Interested? Contact me by email please, not by a comment.



Cover art: Timothy Quay, Bob Cato
Design: John Berg 
Photography: Harrie George 
photo of album cover by Styrous®


Originally formed in 1967 in New York City, Blood, Sweat & Tears is most known for the fusing of rock, blues, pop music, horn arrangements and jazz improvisation into a hybrid that came to be known as "jazz-rock". 

Al Kooper, the group's initial bandleader, named the band "Blood, Sweat & Tears" after Johnny Cash's 1963 album Blood, Sweat and Tears. Kooper's fame as a contributor to various historic sessions of Bob Dylan, Jimi Hendrix, and others was a catalyst for the prominent debut of Blood, Sweat & Tears in the musical counterculture of the mid-sixties. Kooper was forced out of the group in April 1968 and became a record producer for the Columbia label, but not before arranging some songs that would be on the second BS&T album.

The group replaced Kooper with David Clayton-Thomas, a Canadian singer, born in Surrey, England. Reportedly, folk singer Judy Collins had seen him perform at a New York City club and was so taken and moved by his performance that she told her friends Bobby Colomby and Steve Katz about him (knowing that they were looking for a new lead singer to front the band). With her prodding, they came to see him perform and were so impressed that Clayton-Thomas was offered the role of lead singer in a re-constituted Blood Sweat & Tears. 

The band went on a United States Department of State-sponsored tour of Eastern Europe in May/June 1970 but any voluntary association with the government was highly unpopular at the time and the band was ridiculed for it. In retrospect, it is now known that the State Department requested the tour in exchange for more amicability on the issuance of a visa to Clayton-Thomas.



Cover art: Timothy Quay, Bob Cato
Design: John Berg 
Photography: Harrie George 
photo of album cover by Styrous®



BS&T's first album with David sold an amazing ten million copies and launched three gold singles, You've Made Me So Very Happy, And When I Die and Spinning Wheel. The album won an unprecedented five Grammy awards, including album of the year and best performance by a male vocalist. David's rendition of Billie Holiday's God Bless The Child became a classic. Five successive gold albums and three more gold singles, Hi De Ho, Lucrative MacEvil and Go Down Gamblin' followed, and by 1972 BS&T's was at the very top of the music industry.

Blood, Sweat and Tears was a daring, innovative, fiery fusion of jazz and rock, blues and the classics. The band defied all boundaries, performing with consummate artistry in front of a symphony one night and thousands of rock fans the next. BS&T played the Metropolitan Opera, the Fillmore West and East, the Newport jazz Festival, and Caesar's Palace, all in the same year. It was the first contemporary band to break through the iron curtain with the historic 1970 tour of Eastern Europe, and headline at Woodstock, Madison Square Garden, Carnegie Hall and the Hollywood Bowl.
 
BS&T was a strange hybrid. The Julliard graduates, with their classical training, felt the band should aspire to loftier musical goals, and Bartok and Satie became a part of the repertoire. The Berkeley grads were jazz purists, and long improvised solos became a part of the show. Others were pure rockers whose experience included The Blues Project and Frank Zappa's Mother's of Invention.



 
Blood, Sweat & Tears
reel-to-reel tape rear cover detail
Cover art: Timothy Quay, Bob Cato
Design: John Berg 
Photography: Harrie George 
detail photo by Styrous®



The group recorded songs by rock/folk songwriters such as Laura Nyro, James Taylor, The Band, the Rolling Stones, Billie Holiday and Erik Satie. Music from Thelonious Monk and Sergei Prokofiev was assimilated into their arrangements.

In great contrast to the mostly frenetic tone of the album, Variations on a Theme By Erik Satie (1st Movement) is a languid, relaxing, and lovely tune recorded on October 9, 1968. It serves as both the introduction and finale to this, the second album, released December 11, 1968 on Columbia records. Titled "Variations on a Theme by Erik Satie" (1st and 2nd Movements), it was adapted from Satie's Trois Gymnopédies and arranged by Dick Halligan, who played the flute.

Blues – Part II has a very long organ intro (4:30) by Dick Halligan. It goes into a jazzy instrumental with drums and percussion by Bobby Colomby and alto saxophone by Fred Lipsius that is right up there with the best of them. Eventually, about 9 minutes into the piece, David Clayton-Thomas enters with a slow, blusey feeling ballad reminisent of Janice Joplin.

The commercial and critical acclaim enjoyed by the band in 1969 culminated in an appearance at the Woodstock Festival, in which the band enjoyed headliner status. The Woodstock Movie camera crew caught the band's opening number, More and More, as they took to the stage but the band's manager at the time, Bennett Glotzer, ordered the movie crew to turn off the cameras and leave the stage since the band had not agreed or been paid to be filmed.



photo by Styrous®




The album, Blood, Sweat & Tears, hit the top of the charts, winning Album of the Year at the Grammy Awards over The Beatles' Abbey Road, among other nominees. Blood, Sweat & Tears spawned three major hit singles: a cover of Berry Gordy and Brenda Holloway's You've Made Me So Very Happy, Clayton-Thomas' Spinning Wheel, and a version of Laura Nyro's And When I Die. All three singles reached #2 on Billboard magazine's Hot 100 chart. 
Three of the songs charted on the Billboard 100.

Year Single Chart Peak
1969 And When I Die Adult Contemporary 4
1969 And When I Die The Billboard Hot 100 2
1969 Spinning Wheel Adult Contemporary 1
1969 Spinning Wheel R&B Singles 45
1969 Spinning Wheel The Billboard Hot 100 2
1969 You've Made Me So Very Happy R&B Singles 46
1969 You've Made Me So Very Happy The Billboard Hot 100 2





detail photo by Styrous®
Track list:

Side 1

  1. "Variations on a Theme By Erik Satie" (1st and 2nd Movements) – 2:35
  2. "Smiling Phases" (Steve Winwood, Jim Capaldi, Chris Wood) – 5:11
    • Recorded October 15, 1968
  3. "Sometimes in Winter" (Steve Katz) – 3:09
    • Recorded October 8, 1968
  4. "More and More" (Vee Pee Smith, Don Juan) – 3:04
    • Recorded October 15, 1968
  5. "And When I Die" (Laura Nyro) – 4:06
    • Recorded October 22, 1968
  6. "God Bless the Child" (Billie Holiday, Arthur Herzog Jr.) – 5:55
    • Recorded October 7, 1968

Side 2

  1. "Spinning Wheel" (David Clayton-Thomas) – 4:08
    • Recorded October 9, 1968
  2. "You've Made Me So Very Happy" (Berry Gordy Jr., Brenda Holloway, Patrice Holloway, Frank Wilson) – 4:19
    • Recorded October 16, 1968
  3. "Blues – Part II" (Blood, Sweat & Tears) – 11:44
  4. "Variations on a Theme By Erik Satie" (1st Movement) – 1:49
    • Recorded October 9, 1968
    • The footsteps and door slam heard at the end of the track are those of model Lucy Angle

Personnel:
Credits:


Web links:

101 Reel-to-Reel Tapes 48: David Clayton-Thomas 



Music links:
Blood, Sweat & Tears (full album) on YouTube 
Variations on a Theme By Erik Satie (1st Movement) on YouTube
And When I Die on YouTube
Sometimes in Winter on YouTube
More and More on YouTube
Blues – Part II on YouTube
  on YouTube



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Styrous® ~ Tuesday, February 25, 2014

February 23, 2014

45 RPMs 3: Adam & the Ants ~ Ant Music EP





photo by Barbara
photo detail by Styrous®





This is an extention of my 20,000 Vinyl LPs series. I have a collection of over 20,000 LP albums I am selling; each blog entry of the series is about an album from my collection. For more info, send an email to me, not a comment, please.

~ ~ ~

In 1980, I found the album, Kings of the Wild Frontier, by Adam & The Ants. It was an incredible revelation to me as some of the songs on it were like nothing I'd ever heard before and I loved it. The album introduced the 'new' Burundi Beat drum sound; it was the latest thing in New Wave and from that first album on I searched for albums of any kind from the group (when I liked a group it was my SOP). Later that year or the next, I found the album, Dirk Wears White Sox. I must do an article on Kings at some point.



Antmusic EP front cover
photo by Barbara
photo of front cover by Styrous®


Antmusic is an extended 45 RPM by Adam & The Ants released in 1980 on Do It Records, an independent record label in London.  However, the song, Ant Music, does not apear on it.

Originally, The Ants were signed to Decca Records but unable to satisfactorily market the band, Decca let them go in early 1979 but were picked up by CBS Records. It was during the hiatus between lables that they recorded albums for Do It which released their debut album Dirk Wears White Sox in November of 1979.

After closing in 1983, the rights to the entire back catalogue of Do It Records were bought out by CBS, Adam Ant's then-current label, to secure permanent control of the Ants' recording history with Do It. The back catalogue is now owned by Sony Music Entertainment who bought out CBS in 1987.




Antmusic EP back cover
photos by Philip Grey
photo of back cover by Styrous®






As usual, there is a favorite song on any album I like. Cartrouble was it. It was punk at its best; slightly dissonant but not distorted, a great song to dance to.

Friends is a jivey, bouncy, syncopated tune; kind of cute in a punkish sort of way. Nice guitar work. It is the only actual cut from the album I could find on YouTube (link below).





Antmusic EP back cover detail
photos by Philip Grey
detail photos by Styrous®






Antmusic EP back cover detail
detail photo by Styrous®










Antmusic EP, side 1
photo by Styrous®




Antmusic EP, side 2
photo by Styrous®







Antmusic EP, labels
photos by Styrous®




Adam Ant is still going strong; last year he performed on Saturday, November, 2, and Sunday, November 3, 2013, at the Adam & the Ants, Ant Liberation Front Celebration & Convention in London, United Kingdom.

He will perform this year at the Eventim Hammersmith Apollo in London on April 19th, 2014.
Adam Ant                                           .
Hammersmith concert poster                              .
Track list: 

Side 1:

1 - Kick - 1:34
2 - Physical - 3:58
3 - Cartrouble Part 1 - 3:05

Side 2:


1 - Cartrouble Part 2 - 3:31
2 - Friends - 2:38


Notes:

A1: Previously Unreleased Version
A2: Previously released in limited edition only
A3: Remixed
B1: Remixed
B2: Previously Unreleased Version

Made in U.K.
A1, A2 & B2: © Ant Music Ltd.
A3 & B1: © EMI Music Ltd.
℗ Do It Records Ltd.


Personnel:
Some of the members went on to form the group, Bow Wow Wow.

Credits:

Label: Do It Records ‎– DUNIT 20
Format: Vinyl, 12", EP, 45 RPM
Country: UK
Released: 1982
Genre: Rock
Style: New Wave

Kick on YouTube
Kick (live version) on YouTube
Physical (live version) on YouTube
Cartrouble Parts 1 & 2 on YouTube
Friends on YouTube

Adam Ant website
Adam Ant ticktets
Adam Ant on Facebook
Adam Ant on Twitter




The entire collection is for sale. Interested? Contact Styrous®



Thanks for the great tunes, guys!



Styrous®, Sunday, February 23, 2014


~


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February 20, 2014

101 Reel-to-Reel Tapes 46: Joe Cocker ~ Mad Dogs & Englishmen

reel-to-reel tape album cover photo by Jim McCrary
detail photo by Styrous©


I have hundreds of reel-to-reel, pre-recorded tapes in addition to my 20,000 Vinyl LP collection I'm selling (see link below). Interested? Contact me by email please, not by a comment.

~ ~ ~

 
reel-to-reel tape album cover photo by Jim McCrary
photo of album cover by Styrous©



Mad Dogs & Englishmen is a live album by Joe Cocker which featured a fusion of rock and soul. In 1969, an American tour had been booked so Cocker had to quickly form a band in order to fulfill his contractual obligations. It was a large group of more than 30 musicians, including pianist and bandleader Leon Russell, three drummers, and backing vocals by Rita Coolidge and Claudia Lennear. The band was christened Mad Dogs and Englishmen by Denny Cordell after the 1931 Noël Coward song of the same name. The music evolved into a bluesy type of rock, often compared to that of the Rolling Stones.

During the ensuing Mad Dogs and Englishmen tour (later described by drummer Jim Keltner as "a big, wild party"), Cocker toured 48 cities, recorded a live album, and received very positive reviews from Time and Life for his performances. However, the pace of the tour was exhausting. Russell and Cocker had personal problems and Cocker became depressed and began drinking excessively as the tour wound down in May 1970.



reel-to-reel tape album cover back
photo by Styrous©



Cocker enjoyed several chart entries in the US with Cry Me a River and Feelin' Alright by Dave Mason. His cover of the hit song, The Letter, by the Box Tops  appeared on the live album and film, Mad Dogs and Englishmen, and became his first US Top Ten hit. After spending several months in Los Angeles, Cocker returned home to Sheffield where his family became increasingly concerned with his deteriorating physical and mental health.



reel-to-reel tape album cover back detail
detail photo by Styrous©



In October 1972, when Cocker toured Australia, he and six members of his entourage were arrested in Adelaide by police for possession of marijuana. The next day in Melbourne, assault charges were laid after a brawl at the Commodore Chateau Hotel, and Cocker was given 48 hours to leave the country by the Australian Federal Police. This caused huge public outcry in Australia, as Cocker was a high-profile overseas artist and had a strong support base, especially with the baby boomers who were coming of age and able to vote for the first time. It sparked hefty debate about the use and legalisation of marijuana in Australia and gained Cocker the nickname of "the Mad Dog".


album cover back detail
detail photo by Styrous©




photo by Styrous©



Cocker is the recipient of several awards, including a 1983 Grammy Award for his song "Up Where We Belong", a duet which he performed with Jennifer Warnes. In 1993 he was nominated for the Brit Award for Best British Male, and in 2007 he received an OBE at Buckingham Palace for services to music. To celebrate receiving his award in mid-December, 2007, Cocker played two concerts in London and in his home town of Sheffield. He was ranked #97 on Rolling Stone's 100 greatest singers list.



reel-to-reel tape label detail
detail photo by Styrous©


 Track listing:

Side 1: 
  1. "Introduction" – 0:44
  2. "Honky Tonk Women" (Mick Jagger, Keith Richards) – 3:47
  3. "Introduction" – 0:17
  4. "Sticks and Stones" (Titus Turner, Henry Glover) – 2:37
  5. "Cry Me a River" (Arthur Hamilton) – 4:00
  6. "Bird on the Wire" (Leonard Cohen) – 6:37
  7. "Feelin' Alright" (Dave Mason) – 5:47
  8. "Superstar" (Leon Russell, Bonnie Bramlett) – 5:02 (lead vocal by Rita Coolidge)
  9. "Introduction" – 0:16
  10. "Let's Go Get Stoned" (Valerie Simpson, Nick Ashford, Joseph Armstead) – 7:30
Side 2:
  1. "Blue Medley" – 12:46
    1. a. "I'll Drown in My Own Tears" (Henry Glover)
    2. b. "When Something Is Wrong with My Baby" (Isaac Hayes, David Porter)
    3. c. "I've Been Loving You Too Long" (Otis Redding, Jerry Butler)
  2. "Introduction" – 0:21
  3. "Girl from the North Country" (Bob Dylan) – 2:32
  4. "Give Peace a Chance" (Leon Russell, Bonnie Bramlett) – 4:14
  5. "Introduction" – 0:41
  6. "She Came in Through the Bathroom Window" (John Lennon, Paul McCartney) – 3:01
  7. "Space Captain" (Matthew Moore) – 5:15
  8. "The Letter" (Wayne Carson Thompson) – 4:46
  9. "Delta Lady" (Leon Russell) – 5:40

Personnel:

A&M - OR-6002

Recorded 27-28 March, 1970 at Fillmore East, New York City


 
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Styrous® ~ Thursday, February 20, 2014