Elvis Costello – Kojak Variety (1995)

FrontCover1Declan Patrick MacManus, OBE (born 25 August 1954), known professionally as Elvis Costello, is an English singer-songwriter.

He has won multiple awards in his career, including Grammy Awards in 1999 and 2020, and has twice been nominated for the Brit Award for Best British Male Artist.

In 2003, he was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. In 2004, Rolling Stone ranked Costello number 80 on its list of the 100 Greatest Artists of All Time.

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Kojak Variety is a 1995 album by Elvis Costello, composed of cover songs written by others. Rhino Records reissued an expanded, double-CD in 2004 containing a bonus disc.

Costello said in the liner notes this was a “record of some of my favourite songs performed with some of my favourite musicians.”[13] but that he didn’t want to record songs that were too familiar. Costello had searched independent record shops: Potter’s Music in Richmond, Probe in Liverpool, Rock On in Camden Town, and many American thrift stores and pawn shops to discover albums that he previously had only known from singles or compilations. Costello said he made his best discoveries in what he called “the greatest record collecting store in the world”, Village Music in Mill Valley, California.

The first song recorded for the album was “Running Out of Fools”, while the last was a new rendering of “Days” by The Kinks, which he had previously recorded for the album soundtrack album Until the End of the World, for the Wim Wenders’ film of the same name. The title Kojak Variety refers to the name of a variety store in Barbados near where the album was recorded; Costello was amused by the seemingly random name of the enterprise, and in a similar spirit, decided to apply the name to his album.[14]

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With Almost Blue, Elvis Costello wanted to be a honky tonker. With Kojak Variety, he’s a crooner, picking forgotten tunes by both minor and major artists (anyone from Screamin’ Jay Hawkins to Bob Dylan). From his song selections to the pseudo-avant-rock/R&B band, Costello doesn’t make any obvious moves. Yet that doesn’t mean that the record is difficult — it just shows the depths of Costello’s affection for music and record collecting (which is also clear from his loving, detailed liner notes). Costello and his band (featuring guitarists James Burton and Marc Ribot, drummer Jim Keltner and Attraction Pete Thomas) play with gusto, tearing through the songs with the vigor of a bar band on a Friday night. Some of the rockers sound slightly forced, although there’s no denying the power of Costello’s passionate vocals, even if he stretches his range a little too much (Little Richard’s “Bama Lama Bama Loo”). What matters here are the performances, and the majority of Kojak Variety is filled with fine interpretations. Kojak Variety does what any good covers album should do — it makes you want to seek out the originals. (by Stephen Thomas Erlewine)

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This album is as good as any of Costello’s best. Sure, it’s a cover album. But, it doesn’t cover any songs you’re likely to have ever heard before. And that’s what elevates it from you run of the mill, dialed in cover collection. Costello has a passion for these tunes. He had been touring with this band and this album was their last opportunity to play together. You can tell that they’re truly enjoying the collaboration—there’s an energy and enthusiasm here. This is a hard driving, nostalgic rock & roll/R&B album featuring musicians who are at the top of their game. It’s a joy to listen to, and over the years, I’ve found myself returning to it again and again. The All Music two star rating doesn’t give this set the attention it deserves. (Jeremy Feldman)

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Personnel:
James Burton (guitar)
Elvis Costello (vocals, harmonica)
Jim Keltner (drums)
Larry Knechtel (keyboards)
Marc Ribot (banjo, guitar, horn)
Jerry Scheff (bass)
Pete Thomas (drums)

Booklet03A

Tracklist:
01. Strange (Hawkins) 2.42
02. Hidden Charms (Dixon) 3.33
03. Remove This Doubt (B.Holland/Dozier/E.Holland, Jr.) 3.54
04. I Threw It All Away (Dylan) 3.26
05. Leave My Kitten Alone (John/Turner) 3.13
06. Everybody’s Crying Mercy (Allison) 4.08
07. I’ve Been Wrong Before (Newman) 3.03
08. Bama Lama Bama Loo (Penniman) 2.47
09. Must You Throw Dirt In My Face? (Anderson) Louvin Brothers 3.51
10. Pouring Water On A Drowning Man (Baker/McCormick) James Carr 3.40
11. The Very Thought Of You (Noble) Nat King Cole 3.43
12. Payday (Winchester) Jesse Winchester 3.00
13. Please Stay (Bacharach/Hilliard) 4.50
14. Running Out Of Fools (Ahlert/Rogers) 3.04
15. Days (Davies) The Kinks 4.56

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More from Elvis Costello:
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The official website:
Website

Ricky Nelson – Hello Mary Lou + Travelin‘ Man (1961)

USFrontCover1Eric Hilliard Nelson (May 8, 1940 – December 31, 1985), known professionally as Ricky Nelson, was an American musician, songwriter and actor. From age eight he starred alongside his family in the radio and television series The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet. In 1957, he began a long and successful career as a popular recording artist. The expression “teen idol” was first coined to describe Nelson, and his fame as both a recording artist and television star also led to a motion picture role co-starring alongside John Wayne, Dean Martin and Angie Dickinson in Howard Hawks’s western feature film Rio Bravo (1959). He placed 53 songs on the Billboard Hot 100, and its predecessors, between 1957 and 1973, including “Poor Little Fool” in 1958, which was the first number one song on Billboard magazine’s then-newly created Hot 100 chart. He recorded 19 additional top ten hits and was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame on January 21, 1987. In 1996 Nelson was ranked No. 49 on TV Guide’s 50 Greatest TV Stars of All Time.

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Nelson began his entertainment career in 1949, playing himself in the radio sitcom series, The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet. In 1952, he appeared in his first feature film, Here Come the Nelsons. In 1957, he recorded his first single (“Im Walkin’ b/w “A Teenagers Romance”, Verve 10047X4S), debuted as a singer on the television version of the sitcom, and released the No. 1 album titled Ricky. In 1958, Nelson released his first #1 single, “Poor Little Fool”, and in 1959 received a Golden Globe nomination for “Most Promising Male Newcomer” after starring in Rio Bravo. A few films followed, and when the television series was cancelled in 1966, Nelson made occasional appearances as a guest star on various television programs. In his twenties, he moved away from the pop music of his youth, and began to perform in a more country rock style. After recording several albums with mostly session musicians, most of which flopped, he formed the Stone Canyon Band in 1969 and experienced a career resurgence, buoyed by the live album In Concert at the Troubadour, 1969 and had a surprise hit with 1972’s “Garden Party”, which peaked at number six on the Billboard Hot 100. His comeback was short-lived, however, as his record label was bought out and folded, and his followup albums were not well promoted by his new label. He continued to perform live and take small television roles through the 1970s, though his label dropped him by the end of the decade. He released two more albums, with unimpressive results, before his death in a plane crash on New Year’s Eve, 1985.

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Nelson was married once, to Sharon Kristin Harmon, from 1963 until their divorce in 1982. They had four children: actress Tracy Nelson, twin sons and musicians Gunnar and Matthew, and actor Sam.

Nelson died in a plane crash on New Year’s Eve 1985, flying from Guntersville, Alabama, to Dallas, Texas, for a concert. The plane he was on, a Douglas DC-3, had a history of mechanical problems. All seven passengers, including Blair, died. Only the two pilots survived.

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Nelson’s funeral took place at the Church of the Hills, Forest Lawn Hollywood Hills Cemetery, on January 6, 1986, and he was privately buried in the Forest Lawn, Hollywood Hills Cemetery, in Los Angeles. His estate was bequeathed to his children, and he did not provide for ex-wife Kris Nelson. (wikipedia)

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And here´s one of his greatest hits … a worldwide hit …

… enjoy this little trip in the early Sixties.

Alternate frontcovers:
AlternateFrontCovers

Personnel:
Ricky Nelson (vocals)
+
a bunch of unknown studio musicians

The German edition:
German Edition

Tracklist:
01. Hello Mary Lou (Pitney) 2.31
02. Travelin‘ Man (Fuller) 2.30

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Elvis Presley – Pure Gold (1975)

FrontCover1Elvis Aaron Presley (January 8, 1935 – August 16, 1977) was an American singer and actor. Dubbed the “King of Rock and Roll”, he is regarded as one of the most significant cultural icons of the 20th century. His energized interpretations of songs and sexually provocative performance style, combined with a singularly potent mix of influences across color lines during a transformative era in race relations, led him to both great success and initial controversy.

Presley was born in Tupelo, Mississippi, and relocated to Memphis, Tennessee, with his family when he was 13 years old. His music career began there in 1954, recording at Sun Records with producer Sam Phillips, who wanted to bring the sound of African-American music to a wider audience. Presley, on rhythm acoustic guitar, and accompanied by lead guitarist Scotty Moore and bassist Bill Black, was a pioneer of rockabilly, an uptempo, backbeat-driven fusion of country music and rhythm and blues.

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In 1955, drummer D. J. Fontana joined to complete the lineup of Presley’s classic quartet and RCA Victor acquired his contract in a deal arranged by Colonel Tom Parker, who would manage him for more than two decades. Presley’s first RCA Victor single, “Heartbreak Hotel”, was released in January 1956 and became a number-one hit in the United States. Within a year, RCA would sell ten million Presley singles. With a series of successful network television appearances and chart-topping records, Presley became the leading figure of the newly popular sound of rock and roll.

In November 1956, Presley made his film debut in Love Me Tender. Drafted into military service in 1958, Presley relaunched his recording career two years later with some of his most commercially successful work. He held few concerts, however, and guided by Parker, proceeded to devote much of the 1960s to making Hollywood films and soundtrack albums, most of them critically derided. In 1968, following a seven-year break from live performances, he returned to the stage in the acclaimed television comeback special Elvis, which led to an extended Las Vegas concert residency and a string of highly profitable tours.

Presley meets U.S. President Richard Nixon in the White House Oval Office,
December 21, 1970
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In 1973, Presley gave the first concert by a solo artist to be broadcast around the world, Aloha from Hawaii. Years of prescription drug abuse and unhealthy eating habits severely compromised his health, and he died suddenly in 1977 at his Graceland estate at the age of 42.

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Having sold over 500 million records worldwide, Presley is recognized as the best-selling solo music artist of all time by Guinness World Records. He was commercially successful in many genres, including pop, country, R&B, adult contemporary, and gospel. Presley won three Grammy Awards, received the Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award at age 36, and has been inducted into multiple music halls of fame. He holds several records, including the most RIAA certified gold and platinum albums, the most albums charted on the Billboard 200, the most number-one albums by a solo artist on the UK Albums Chart, and the most number-one singles by any act on the UK Singles Chart. In 2018, Presley was posthumously awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom by Donald Trump. (wikipedia)

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Pure Gold is a compilation album by American singer and musician Elvis Presley, issued in 1975 by RCA Records with catalog number ANL1-0971(e) as part of the RCA budget Pure Gold series of albums. At the time of this release, Presley was at the final stage of his career; he was focused more on the country music market, where he had a string of chart-topping records in recent years. This short and rather haphazard collection focused more on his earlier Rock and Roll material than later hits. Although considered a mediocre compilation at best, Pure Gold became an extremely popular seller in the wake of Elvis’ unexpected death in August, 1977.

“Fever”, “It’s Impossible”, and “In The Ghetto” are heard in true stereo; “Kentucky Rain” utilized the mono single version, with mild rechanneled or “fake stereo” effect. The other six tracks on the album are original 1950s monophonic recordings with “stereo effect reprocessed from monophonic”, or “fake stereo”. When RCA reissued the album on compact disc in 1992, the “fake stereo” tracks were restored to their original mono sound. The album was certified Gold on September 12, 1977, Platinum on March 20, 1988 and 2x Platinum on March 27, 1992 by the RIAA.

The front cover photo features Elvis from his Aloha from Hawaii concert in January, 1973. The original back cover featured a list of other albums available in the RCA Pure Gold series. The album was reissued in the early 1980s with the catalog number AYL1-3732(e) as part of the RCA budget ‘Best Buy’ series. (wikipedia)

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The precise motivation behind the release of Pure Gold is difficult to fathom, based on its content: ten songs spanning 16 years of Elvis Presley’s recorded history, from “I Got a Woman” in January 1956 through “It’s Impossible,” cut in February 1972. What’s more, three of the songs are title tracks to films: “Love Me Tender,” “Jailhouse Rock,” and “Loving You.” As the extensive notes by Patrick Snyder fail to give any particular motivation for choosing these ten songs, let’s just go with what’s here — the songs, which do represent a decent cross section of some of his most familiar material from a few prime moments in his career. The mature, more finely nuanced Elvis of “Kentucky Rain,” “It’s Impossible,” and “In the Ghetto” makes an interesting contrast with the younger, more threatening Elvis of “Jailhouse Rock,” etc. One marvels at how underrated he was by his critics, and also how much more he had to offer than just a few years of rock & roll excitement. As a crude statement of the man’s range and talent, Pure Gold is just fine — but there are a dozen other collections that do the job better. (by Bruce Eder)

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Personnel:
Elvis Presley (vocals)
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many, many studio musicians

Booklet02A

Tracklist:
01.Kentucky Rain (Rabbitt/Heard) (1969) 3.25
02. Fever (from Elvis Is Back!) (Cooley/Blackwell) (1960) 3.34
03. It’s Impossible (from Elvis) (Manzanero/Wayne) (1972) 2.52
04. Jailhouse Rock (from Jailhouse Rock) (Leiber/Stoller) (1957) 2.28
05. Don’t Be Cruel (Blackwell/Presley) (1956) 2.05
06. I Got A Woman (from Elvis Presley) (Charles/Richard) (1956) 2.26
07. All Shook Up (Blackwell/Presley) (1957) 1.59
08. Loving You (from Loving You) (Leiber/Stoller) (1957) 2.14
09. In The Ghetto (from From Elvis in Memphis) (Davis) (1969) 2.49
10. Love Me Tender (from Love Me Tender) (Matson/Presley) (1956) 2.42

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More from Elvis Presley:
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Daddy Cool – Daddy’s Coolest – The 20 Greatest Hits Of Daddy Cool (1982)

FrontCover1Daddy Cool is an Australian rock band formed in Melbourne, Victoria in 1970 with the original line-up of Wayne Duncan (bass, vocals), Ross Hannaford (lead guitar, bass, vocals), Ross Wilson (lead vocals, rhythm guitar, harmonica) and Gary Young (drums, vocals) . Their debut single “Eagle Rock” was released in May 1971 and stayed at number 1 on the Australian singles chart for ten weeks. Their debut July 1971 LP Daddy Who? Daddy Cool also reached number 1 and became the first Australian album to sell more than 100,000 copies. The group’s name came from the 1957 song “Daddy Cool” by US rock group The Rays. Daddy Cool included their version of this song on Daddy Who? Daddy Cool.

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Daddy Cool’s music was originally largely 1950s Doo-wop style cover versions and originals mostly written by Wilson. On stage they provided a danceable sound which was accessible and fun. Their second album, Sex, Dope, Rock’n’Roll: Teenage Heaven from January 1972, also reached the Top Ten. Breaking up in August 1972, Daddy Cool briefly reformed during 1974–1975 before disbanding again, they reformed with the band’s original line-up in 2005. Their iconic status was confirmed when they were inducted into the Australian Recording Industry Association (ARIA) Hall of Fame on 16 August 2006. At the Music Victoria Awards of 2014, Daddy Cool was also inducted into the Music Victoria Hall of Fame.

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Daddy’s Coolest (also known as Daddy’s Coolest: Volume 1 or Daddy’s Coolest: The 20 Greatest Hits of Daddy Cool) is the sixth compilation album by Australian rock band Daddy Cool, released in 1982. The album peaked at number 5 on the Australian Kent Music Report and at number 29 on the Recorded Music NZ albums charts. It includes tracks from Daddy Cool’s two studio albums Daddy Who? Daddy Cool and Sex, Dope, Rock’n’Roll: Teenage Heaven. The album was re-released in 1992, which reached number 35 on the ARIA Charts. (wikipedia)

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Just about the time that Sha Na Na was starting to attract attention from the U.S. press as an oldies revival band, half a world away in Australia, Daddy Cool was going in a similar direction on a very different path.

The were highly theatrical and animated, but not in the broad, burlesque manner of Sha Na Na. Daddy Cool was closer to a real-life Ruben & the Jets, with touches of unique, down-under British looniness (weird headgear and propeller beanies) and a highly animated presentation that shook up the Australian concert scene. (by Bruce Eder)

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Personnel:
Ross Hannaford (lead guitar, bass, vocals)
Wayne Duncan (bass, vocals)
Ross Wilson (vocals, guitar, harmonica)
Gary Young (drums, vocals)

Booklet1

Tracklist:
01. Eagle Rock (Wilson) 4-09
02. Daddy Cool (Sla/Crewe) 2.31
03. Come Back Again (Wilson) 3.31
04. Lollypop (Ross/Dixon) 1.41
05. Hi Honey Ho (Wilson) 3.36
06. Sixty Minute Man (Ward/Marks) 2.23
07. Bom Bom (Wilson/Hannaford) 2.34
08. At The Rockhouse (Wilson) 3.44
09. Rock ‘N’ Roll Lady (Young) 2.52
10. I’ll Never Smile Again (Lowe) 4.19
11. Good Golly, Miss Molly (Blackwell/Marascalco) 2.15
12. You Never Can Tell (Berry) 2.22
13. One Night (Bartholomew/King/Steiman) 2.42
14. Teenage Blues (Wilson) 3.38
15. Boogie Man (Wilson) 3.17
16. Cherry Pie (Bihari/Phillips) 3.19
17. Just As Long As We’re Together (Wilson) 2.31
18. Please, Please America (Wilson/Hannaford) 3.10
19. Baby Let Me Bang Your Box (McRae/Wyche) 3.24
20. Daddy Rocks Off (Wilson) 4.34

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The official website:
Website

Various Artists – Honeymoon In Vegas (OST) (1992)

FrontCover1Honeymoon in Vegas is a 1992 American romantic comedy film directed by Andrew Bergman and starring James Caan, Nicolas Cage, and Sarah Jessica Parker.

Private Detective (“Private eye”) Jack Singer (Nicolas Cage) swore to his mother on her deathbed that he would never marry. His girlfriend, Betsy (Sarah Jessica Parker) wants to get married and start a family, and he proposes a quick Las Vegas marriage. They check into the Bally’s Casino Resort.

Before the wedding, however, a wealthy professional gambler, Tommy Korman (James Caan), notices Betsy has a striking resemblance to his beloved late wife, Donna. He arranges a crooked poker game (with Jerry Tarkanian as one of the other players) that prompts Jack to borrow $65,000 after being dealt a straight flush (7-8-9-10-Jack of clubs), only to lose to the gambler’s higher straight flush (8-9-10-Jack-Queen of hearts); Tommy offers to erase the debt in exchange for spending the weekend with Betsy.

Honeymoon01

After Tommy agrees to no sex, the desperate couple consent. Jack discovers that Tommy has taken Betsy to his vacation home in Kauai. The gambler asks his taxi driver friend, Mahi Mahi (Pat Morita) to keep Jack as far as possible from him and Betsy. Jack discovers this, steals the taxi. He sees Betsy outside the Kauai Club where he is attacked by Tommy and arrested. Jack’s dentist friend, Sally Molars (John Capodice), bails Jack out of jail. Mahi Mahi meets Jack outside and admits that Tommy left for Las Vegas with Betsy and has convinced her to marry him. Mahi races Jack to the airport. Betsy decides she cannot go through with the wedding and escapes from Tommy.

MoviePoster

Meanwhile, after changing many planes and finding himself stuck in San Jose, Jack tries frantically to find a flight to Las Vegas. He joins a group about to depart for Las Vegas but discovers mid-flight that they are the Utah chapter of the “Flying Elvises” – a skydiving team of Elvis impersonators. Jack realizes he has to skydive from 3,000 feet to get to Betsy. Jack overcomes his fear. He lands and spots Betsy, ruining Tommy’s plans.

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Jack and Betsy are married in a small Las Vegas chapel with the Flying Elvises as guests. Jack is wearing a white illuminated jumpsuit and Betsy in a stolen showgirl outfit. (wikipedia)

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And here´s the soundtrack from the movie:

Country singers rule this soundtrack of Elvis Presley covers, which is every bit as flawed, frivolous and fun as the film from whence it came. While Billy Joel parodies “All Shook Up” and “Heartbreak Hotel,” John Mellencamp labors to avoid parodying “Jailhouse Rock,” and U2’s Bono transforms “Can’t Help Falling in Love” into an obsessive parable about hero worship, folks like Ricky Van Shelton and Trisha Yearwood just sit back and sing the things, which at least makes them pleasant after more than one plaing.

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Dwight Yoakam’s power-chord-country version of “Suspicious Minds” and Travis Tritt’s “Burning Love” rank with their best remakes. Breaking the trend are pop crooner Bryan Ferry, who sings a seductive British soul version of “Are You Lonesome Tonight?” and the usually trustworthy Vince Gill, whose Pat Boone-style rendition of Arthur Crudup’s classic blues “That’s All Right” cleans up the grammar. (by Brian Mansfield)

And if you are interested in rarities from musicians like Billy Joel, Bono, Jeff Beck, Willie Nelson. Bryan Ferry, Amy Grant or John Mellencamp …

… you should listen and enjoy !

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Tracklist:
01. Billy Joel: All Shook Up (Blackwell/Presley) 2.10
02. Ricky van Shelton: Wear My Ring Around Your Neck (Carroll/Russell) 2.14
03. Amy Grant: Love Me Tender (Matson/Presley) 3.52
04. Travis Tritt: Burning Love (Linde) 3.35
05. Billy Joel: Heartbreak Hotel (Axton/Durden/Elvis Presley) 3.22
06. Bryan Ferry:  Are You Lonesome Tonight? (Handman/Turk) 5.00
07. Dwight Yoakam: Suspicious Minds (James) 3.52
08. Trisha Yearwood: (You’re The) Devil In Disguise (Baum/Kaye) 2.38
09. Jeff Beck &Jed Leiber: Hound Dog (Leiber/Stoller) 2.13
10. Vince Gill: That’s All Right (Crudup) 2.44
11. John Mellencamp: Jailhouse Rock (Leiber/Stoller) 3.36
12. Willie Nelson: Blue Hawaii (Rainger/Robin) 2.37
13. Bono: Can’t Help Falling in Love (Creatore/Peretti/Weiss) 2.04

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Chuck Berry – Christmas With Chuck Berry (2017)

FrontCover1Charles Edward Anderson Berry (October 18, 1926 – March 18, 2017) was an American singer, songwriter and guitarist who pioneered rock and roll. Nicknamed the “Father of Rock and Roll”, he refined and developed rhythm and blues into the major elements that made rock and roll distinctive with songs such as “Maybellene” (1955), “Roll Over Beethoven” (1956), “Rock and Roll Music” (1957) and “Johnny B. Goode” (1958). Writing lyrics that focused on teen life and consumerism, and developing a music style that included guitar solos and showmanship, Berry was a major influence on subsequent rock music.

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Born into a middle-class African-American family in St. Louis, Berry had an interest in music from an early age and gave his first public performance at Sumner High School. While still a high school student he was convicted of armed robbery and was sent to a reformatory, where he was held from 1944 to 1947. After his release, Berry settled into married life and worked at an automobile assembly plant. By early 1953, influenced by the guitar riffs and showmanship techniques of the blues musician T-Bone Walker, Berry began performing with the Johnnie Johnson Trio.[3] His break came when he traveled to Chicago in May 1955 and met Muddy Waters, who suggested he contact Leonard Chess, of Chess Records. With Chess, he recorded “Maybellene”—Berry’s adaptation of the country song “Ida Red”—which sold over a million copies, reaching number one on Billboard magazine’s rhythm and blues chart.

Chuck Berry Portrait

By the end of the 1950s, Berry was an established star, with several hit records and film appearances and a lucrative touring career. He had also established his own St. Louis nightclub, Berry’s Club Bandstand. He was sentenced to three years in prison in January 1962 for offenses under the Mann Act—he had transported a 14-year-old girl across state lines. After his release in 1963, Berry had several more successful songs, including “No Particular Place to Go”, “You Never Can Tell”, and “Nadine”. However, these did not achieve the same success or lasting impact of his 1950s songs, and by the 1970s he was more in demand as a nostalgic performer, playing his past material with local backup bands of variable quality. In 1972 he reached a new level of achievement when a rendition of “My Ding-a-Ling” became his only record to top the charts. His insistence on being paid in cash led in 1979 to a four-month jail sentence and community service, for tax evasion.

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Berry was among the first musicians to be inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame on its opening in 1986; he was cited for having “laid the groundwork for not only a rock and roll sound but a rock and roll stance.” Berry is included in several of Rolling Stone magazine’s “greatest of all time” lists; he was ranked fifth on its 2004 and 2011 lists of the 100 Greatest Artists of All Time.[9] The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame’s 500 Songs That Shaped Rock and Roll includes three of Berry’s: “Johnny B. Goode”, “Maybellene”, and “Rock and Roll Music”.[10] Berry’s “Johnny B. Goode” is the only rock-and-roll song included on the Voyager Golden Record. (wikipedia)

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And here are 4 fine Christmas by Chuck Berry, most of them in a sentimental mood … bluesy…

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Personnel:
Chuck Berry (guitar, vocals)
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a bunch of unknown studio musicians

Alternate frontcover:
AlternateFrontCover

Tracklist:
01. Run Rudolph Run (Single Version) (Marks/Brodel/Berry) 2.43
02. Christmas (unknown) 3.26
03. Merry Christmas Baby (Single Version) (Baxter/Moore) 3:12
04. Spending Christmas (Berry) 2:09

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Out of all the reindeers, you know you’re the mastermind
Run, run Rudolph, Randalph ain’t too far behind
Run, run Rudolph, Santa’s got to make it to town
Santa make him hurry, tell him he can take the freeway down
Run, run Rudolph cause I’m reeling like a merry-go-round

Said Santa to a boy “Child, what have you been longing for?”
“All I want for Christmas is a Rock and Roll electric guitar”
And then away went Rudolph whizzing like a shooting star

Run, run Rudolph, Santa has to make it to town
Santa make him hurry, tell him he can take the freeway down
Run, run Rudolph, reeling like a merry-go-round

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Run, run Rudolph, Santa’s got to make it to town
Santa make him hurry, tell him he can take the freeway down
Run, run Rudolph, I’m reeling like a merry-go-round

Said Santa to a girl “Child, what would please you most to get?”
“A little baby doll that can cry, sleep, drink and wet”
And then away went Rudolph, whizzing like a Saber jet

More from Chuck Berry:
More

Chuck Berry02

Wanda Jackson – Wanda Live! At Third Man Records (2011)

FrontCover1Wanda Lavonne Jackson (born October 20, 1937) is a retired American singer, songwriter, pianist and guitarist who had success in the mid-1950s and 1960s as one of the first popular female rockabilly singers, and a pioneering rock-and-roll artist. She is known to many as the “Queen of Rockabilly” or the “First Lady of Rockabilly”.

Jackson mixed country music with fast-moving rockabilly, often recording them on opposite sides of a record. As rockabilly declined in popularity in the 1960s, she moved to a successful career in mainstream country music with a string of hits between 1961 and 1973, including “Right or Wrong”, “Tears Will Be the Chaser for Your Wine”, “A Woman Lives for Love” and “Fancy Satin Pillows”.

She had a resurgence in popularity in the 1980s among rockabilly revivalists in Europe and younger Americana fans. In 2009, she was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in the category Early Influence.

On March 27, 2019, Jackson announced her official retirement from performing. (wikipedia)

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And here´s a very special concert …

In the early 1980s, Jackson was invited to Europe to play rockabilly and country festivals and to record. More recently, American country artists Pam Tillis, Jann Browne, and Rosie Flores have acknowledged Jackson as a major influence. Jackson embarked on a major U.S. tour with Flores in 1995. Jackson returned to the studio in 2010 to begin work on a new album. “The Party Ain’t Over” arrived in early 2011 and while in her seventies she was still touring in 2012. (voicesofoklahoma.com)

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The Party Ain’t Over was the thirtieth studio album by American singer Wanda Jackson and a collaborative album with Jack White, the lead vocalist of The White Stripes.

To promote this album … their recorded this live-album … what a mixture: Jack White and the Queen Of Rock N Roll …

Enjoy this very special collaboration …

Oh yes … Rock N Roll ist still live and well !

And I add a very long and interesting interview with Wanda Jackson.

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Personnel:
Justin Carpenter (trombone)
Dominic Davis (bass)
Rich Gilbert (pedal steel-guitar)
Joe Gillis (keyboards)
Wanda Jackson (vocals)
Olivia Jean (guitar)
Leif Shires (trumpet)
Craig Swift (saxophone)
Jack White (lead guitar)
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background vocals:
Ashley Monroe, Ruby Amanfu

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Tracklist:
01. Raunchy (Instrumental) (Justis/Manker) 1.54
02. Riot In Cell Block #9 (Leiber/Stoller) 4.23
03. I’m Busted (Howard) 3.28
04. You Know That I’m No Good (Winehouse) 6.34
05. Like A Baby (Stone) 3.32
06. Right Or Wrong (Jackson) 4.25
07. Fujiyama Mama (Burrows) 4.24
08. Funnel Of Love (McCoy/Westbury) 3.14
09. Blue Yodel #6 (Rodgers) 4.24
10. Let’s Have A Party (Robinson) 4.11
11. Shakin’ All Over (Kidd/Robinson) 3.43

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Chuck Berry – Is On Top (1959)

LPFrontCover1Charles Edward Anderson Berry (October 18, 1926 – March 18, 2017) was an American singer and songwriter, and one of the pioneers of rock and roll music. Nicknamed the “Father of Rock and Roll”, Berry refined and developed rhythm and blues into the major elements that made rock and roll distinctive with songs such as “Maybellene” (1955), “Roll Over Beethoven” (1956), “Rock and Roll Music” (1957) and “Johnny B. Goode” (1958). Writing lyrics that focused on teen life and consumerism, and developing a music style that included guitar solos and showmanship, Berry was a major influence on subsequent rock music.

Born into a middle-class African-American family in St. Louis, Missouri, Berry had an interest in music from an early age and gave his first public performance at Sumner High School. While still a high school student he was convicted of armed robbery and was sent to a reformatory, where he was held from 1944 to 1947. After his release, Berry settled into married life and worked at an automobile assembly plant. By early 1953, influenced by the guitar riffs and showmanship techniques of the blues musician T-Bone Walker, Berry began performing with the Johnnie Johnson Trio. His break came when he traveled to Chicago in May 1955 and met Muddy Waters, who suggested he contact Leonard Chess, of Chess Records. With Chess, he recorded “Maybellene”—Berry’s adaptation of the country song “Ida Red”—which sold over a million copies, reaching number one on Billboard magazine’s rhythm and blues chart.

Chuck Berry01By the end of the 1950s, Berry was an established star, with several hit records and film appearances and a lucrative touring career. He had also established his own St. Louis nightclub, Berry’s Club Bandstand. He was sentenced to three years in prison in January 1962 for offenses under the Mann Act—he had transported a 14-year-old girl across state lines. After his release in 1963, Berry had several more hits, including “No Particular Place to Go”, “You Never Can Tell”, and “Nadine”. But these did not achieve the same success, or lasting impact, of his 1950s songs, and by the 1970s he was more in demand as a nostalgic performer, playing his past hits with local backup bands of variable quality. In 1972 he reached a new level of achievement when a rendition of “My Ding-a-Ling” became his only record to top the charts. His insistence on being paid in cash led in 1979 to a four-month jail sentence and community service, for tax evasion.

Berry was among the first musicians to be inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame on its opening in 1986; he was cited for having “laid the groundwork for not only a rock and roll sound but a rock and roll stance.” Berry is included in several of Rolling Stone magazine’s “greatest of all time” lists; he was ranked fifth on its 2004 and 2011 lists of the 100 Greatest Artists of All Time. The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame’s 500 Songs That Shaped Rock and Roll includes three of Berry’s: “Johnny B. Goode”, “Maybellene”, and “Rock and Roll Music”. Berry’s “Johnny B. Goode” is the only rock-and-roll song included on the Voyager Golden Record.

Chuck Berry Is on Top is the third studio album by rock and roll pioneer Chuck Berry, released in July 1959 on Chess Records, catalogue LP 1435. With the exception of one track, “Blues for Hawaiians,” all selections had been previously released on 45 rpm singles, several of which were double-sided and charted twice. (wikipedia)

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If you had to sweat all of Chuck Berry’s early albums on Chess (and some, but not all, of his subsequent greatest-hits packages), this would be the one to own. The song lineup is exemplary, cobbling together classics like “Maybellene,” “Carol,” “Sweet Little Rock & Roller,” “Little Queenie,” “Roll Over Beethoven,” “Around and Around,” “Johnny B. Goode,” and “Almost Grown.” With the addition of the Latin-flavored “Hey Pedro,” the steel guitar workout “Blues for Hawaiians,” “Anthony Boy,” and “Jo Jo Gunne,” this serves as almost a mini-greatest-hits package in and of itself. While this may be merely a collection of singles and album ballast (as were most rock & roll LPs of the 1950s and early ’60s), it ends up being the most perfectly realized of Chuck Berry’s career. (by Cub Koda)

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Personnel:
Fred Below (drums)
Chuck Berry (vocals, guitar)
Bo Diddley (guitar)
Willie Dixon (bass)
Jerome Green (maracas)
Ebbie Hardy (drums)
Johnnie Johnson (piano)
Lafayette Leake (piano)
George Smith (bass)
Jaspar Thomas (drums)
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The Moonglows (background vocals)

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Tracklist:
01. Almost Grown 2.23
02. Carol 2.49
03. Maybellene 2.23
04. Sweet Little Rock & Roller 2.23
05. Anthony Boy 1.54
06. Johnny B. Goode 2.42
07. Little Queenie 2.44
08. Jo Jo Gunne 2.48
09. Roll Over Beethoven 2.25
10. Around And Around 2.42
11. Hey Pedro 1.57
12. Blues For Hawaiians 3.25

All songs written by Chuck Berry

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Bill Haley & The Comets – Haley’s Chicks (1959)

AceOfHeartsFrontCover11Bill Haley & His Comets were an American rock and roll band, founded in 1952 and continued until Haley’s death in 1981. The band was also known as Bill Haley and the Comets and Bill Haley’s Comets (and variations thereof). From late 1954 to late 1956, the group placed nine singles in the Top 20, one of those a number one and three more in the Top Ten. The single “Rock Around the Clock” became the biggest selling rock and roll single in the history of the genre.

Bandleader Bill Haley had previously been a country music performer; after recording a country and western-styled version of Jackie Brenston and his Delta Cats “Rocket 88”, a rhythm and blues song, he changed musical direction to a new sound which came to be called rock and roll.

Although several members of the Comets became famous, Bill Haley remained the star. With his spit curl and the band’s matching plaid dinner jackets and energetic stage behavior, many fans consider them to be as revolutionary in their time as the Beatles were a decade later.

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Following Haley’s death, no fewer than seven different groups have existed under the Comets name, all claiming (with varying degrees of authority) to be the continuation of Haley’s group. As of the end of 2014, four such groups were still performing in the United States and internationally.

Bill Haley’s Chicks was the eighth album of rock and roll recordings by Bill Haley & His Comets for Decca Records, Decca 8821. Released in January 1959 and produced by Milt Gabler, the album was the third “theme” album Haley recorded for Decca, following Rockin’ the Oldies (rock and roll versions of standards) and Rockin’ Around the World (rock and roll versions of folk songs). This album is built on the theme of women’s names, with each song being about a different girl. Included on the album is “Skinny Minnie”, which was a major hit for the band in 1958, reaching no.22 on Billboard and no.25 on Cashbox, along with a mixture of originals and cover versions of standards and jazz songs. “Lean Jean”, a song musically and thematically almost identical to “Skinny Minnie”, also charted in 1958, reaching no. 52 on Cashbox. The song “B.B. Betty”, co-written by Bill Haley and released as a Decca 45 single, featured a solo vocal by Haley’s steel guitar player, Billy Williamson. (by wikipedia)

Oh yes, this is Rock N Roll and Rock N Roll only … … the beginning of Rock music, many, many decades ago …

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Personnel:
Franny Beecher (lead guitar)
Johnny Grande (piano)
Bill Haley (vocals, guitar)
Ralph Jones (drums)
Al Rex (bass)
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Rudy Pompilli (saxophone, clarinet on 02.)
Billy Williamson (steel guitar, vocals on 08.)

Rocksänger Bill Haley and The Comets
Tracklist:
01. Whoa Mabel! (Haley/Gabler/Keefer/Cafra) 2.25
02. Ida, Sweet As Apple Cider (Leonard/Munson) 2.15
03. Eloise (Haley/Gabler/Keefer/Cafra) 2.24
04. Dinah (Lewis/Young/Akst) 2.24
05. Skinny Minnie (Haley/Gabler/Keefer/Cafra) 2.57
06. Mary Mary Lou (Mangiaracina) 2.38
07. Sweet Sue, Just You (Harris/Young) 2.12
08. B.B. Betty (Haley/Gabler/KeeferCafra) 2.29
09. Charmaine (Rapee/Pollack) 2.47
10. Corrine, Corrina (Chatmon/Parish/Williams) 2.23
11. Marie (Berlin) 2.18
12. Lean Jean (Lee/Grande/Jones/Pompilli) 2.32

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William John Clifton Haley (July 6, 1925 – February 9, 1981)

Little Richard – Here’s Little Richard (1957)

FrontCover1Richard Wayne Penniman (December 5, 1932 – May 9, 2020), better known as Little Richard, was an American singer, songwriter, and musician. An influential figure in popular music, Richard’s most celebrated work dates from the mid-1950s, when his dynamic music and charismatic showmanship laid the foundation for rock and roll, leading him to be given the nickname “The Innovator, The Originator, and The Architect of Rock and Roll”. Characterized by his frenetic piano playing and raspy singing voice, Richard’s music also played a key role in the formation of other popular music genres, including soul and funk. He influenced numerous singers and musicians across musical genres from rock to hip hop, and his music helped shape rhythm and blues for generations to come.

“Tutti Frutti” (1955), one of Richard’s signature songs, became an instant hit, reaching No. 2 on Billboard Rhythm and Blues Best-Sellers chart and crossing over to the pop charts in both the United States and overseas in the United Kingdom. It reached No. 21 on the U.S. Billboard Top 100 and No. 29 on the UK singles chart. Richard’s next hit single, “Long Tall Sally” (1956), hit No. 1 on the Billboard Rhythm and Blues Best-Sellers chart and No. 13 on the Billboard Top 100 while reaching the top ten in the UK. Following his success, Richard built up his backup band, The Upsetters, with the addition of saxophonists Clifford “Gene” Burks and leader Grady Gaines, bassist Olsie “Baysee” Robinson and guitarist Nathaniel “Buster” Douglas. Richard’s critically acclaimed debut album Here’s Little Richard (1957) peaked at No. 13 on the Billboard Top LPs chart.

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In 1962, concert promoter Don Arden persuaded Little Richard to tour Europe after telling him his records were still selling well there even though they were not in the United States. Having heard of Richard’s European tour, Brian Epstein, manager of The Beatles, asked Arden to allow the band to open for Richard on some tour dates, to which he agreed. The first show for which the Beatles opened was at New Brighton’s Tower Ballroom that October. During this time, Richard advised the group on how to perform his songs and taught Paul McCartney his distinctive vocalizations. In the fall of 1963, Richard agreed to rescue a sagging tour featuring The Everly Brothers, Bo Diddley and The Rolling Stones. At the end of that tour, Richard was given his own television special for Granada Television titled The Little Richard Spectacular.

Richard was honored by many institutions. He was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame as part of its first group of inductees in 1986. He was also inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame. He was the recipient of a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Recording Academy and a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Rhythm and Blues Foundation. In 2015, Richard received a Rhapsody & Rhythm Award from the National Museum of African American Music for his key role in the formation of popular music genres and helping to bring an end to the racial divide on the music charts and in concert in the mid-1950s changing American culture significantly. “Tutti Frutti” was included in the National Recording Registry of the Library of Congress in 2010, which stated that his “unique vocalizing over the irresistible beat announced a new era in music”.

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Here’s Little Richard is the debut album from Little Richard, released on March 1957. He had scored six Top 40 hits the previous year, some of which were included on this recording. It was his highest charting album, at 13 on the Billboard Pop Albums chart. The album contained two of Richard’s biggest hits, “Long Tall Sally”, which reached No. 6, and “Jenny, Jenny”, which reached No. 10 in the U.S. Pop chart.
In 2003, the album was ranked number 50 on Rolling Stone magazine’s list of the 500 greatest albums of all time, maintaining the rating in a 2012 revised list. It is included in the book 1001 Albums You Must Hear Before You Die and in 2010 Time listed it in the Top 100 Albums of All Time. The opening track “Tutti Frutti” was listed as No. 43 in Rolling Stone ‘s 500 Greatest Songs of All Time. (by wikipedia)

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Little Richard had been making records for four years before he rolled into Cosimo Matassa’s J&M Studio in New Orleans and cut the epochal “Tutti Frutti” in the fall of 1955, but everything else he’d done — and much of what others had recorded — faded into insignificance when Richard wailed “A wop bop a loo mop a lomp bomp bomp” and kicked off one of the first great wailers in rock history. In retrospect, Little Richard’s style doesn’t seem so strikingly innovative as captured in 1956’s Here’s Little Richard — his boogie-woogie piano stylings weren’t all that different from what Fats Domino had been laying down since 1949, and his band pumped out the New Orleans backbeat that would define the Crescent City’s R&B for the next two decades, albeit with precision and plenty of groove. But what set Richard apart was his willingness to ramp up the tempos and turn the outrage meter up to ten; “Tutti Frutti,” “Rip It Up,” and “Jenny Jenny” still sound outrageous a half-century after they were waxed, and it’s difficult but intriguing to imagine how people must have reacted to Little Richard at a time when African-American performers were expected to be polite, and the notion of a gay man venturing out of the closet simply didn’t exist (Richard’s songs were thoroughly heterosexual on the surface, but the nudge and wink of “Tutti Frutti” and “Baby” is faint but visible, and his bop threads, mile-high process, and eye makeup clearly categorized him as someone “different”).

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These 12 tunes may not represent the alpha and omega of Little Richard’s best music, but every song is a classic and unlike many of his peers, time has refused to render this first album quaint — Richard’s grainy scream remains one of the great sounds in rock & roll history, and the thunder of his piano and the frantic wail of the band is still the glorious call of a Friday night with pay in the pocket and trouble in mind. Brilliant stuff. (by Mark Deming)

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Personnel:
Lee Allen (saxophone)
Edgar Blanchard (guitar)
Frank Fields (bass)
Earl Palmer (drums)
Little Richard (vocals, piano)
Alvin “Red” Tyler (saxophone)
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Justin Adams (guitar on 01. + 05.)
Charles Connor (drums on 12.)
Nathaniel Douglas (guitar on 12.)
Lloyd Lambert (bass on 02.)
Roy Montrell (guitar on 09.)
Oscar Moore (drums on 02.)
William “Frosty” Pyles (guitar on 02.)
Renald Richard (trumpet on 02.)

Olsie Richard Robinson (bass on 12.)
Huey Smith (piano on 05.)
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saxophone on 02.:
Clarence Ford – Joe Tillman
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saxophone on 12.:
Wilbert Smith – Grady Gaines – Clifford Burks – Jewell Grant

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Tracklist:
01. Tutti-Frutti (Penniman/La Bostrie) 2.27
02. True Fine Mama (Penniman) 2.40
03. Can’t Believe You Wanna Leave (Price) 2.25
04. Ready Teddy (Marascalco/Blackwell) 2.06
05. Baby (Penniman) 2.03
06. Slippin’ And Slidin’ (Penniman/Collins) 2.41
09. Long Tall Sally (Penniman/Johnson/Blackwell) 2.07
10. Miss Ann (Johnson/Penniman) 2.14
11. Oh Why? (Scott) 2.06
12. Rip It Up (Marascalco/Blackwell) 2.21
13. Jenny, Jenny (Johnson/Penniman) 2.03
14. She’s Got It (Penniman/Marascalco) 2.24

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FILE PHOTO: Entertainer Little Richard performs on stage at Crossroad festival in Gijon, northern Spain.
Little Richard (December 5, 1932 – May 9, 2020)
RIP and thanks a lot for the fun you gave us