The Moody Blues – The Magnificent Moodies (1965)

FrontCover1The Magnificent Moodies is the 1965 debut album by The Moody Blues, first released in the UK, and the first and only album featuring their R&B line-up of guitarist Denny Laine, bassist Clint Warwick, keyboardist Mike Pinder, flautist–percussionist Ray Thomas, and drummer Graeme Edge. Lead vocals were shared by Laine, Pinder and Thomas. The album is a collection of R&B and Merseybeat songs, including the cover of “Go Now”, produced by Alex Wharton, that had been a Number 1 hit single earlier that year. For the U.S. release, on London Records, with the title of Go Now – The Moody Blues #1, four songs were replaced and the tracks re-ordered.

The album did not make the Record Retailer/Music Week chart even though it reached number 5 in August 1965 in the New Musical Express album chart. The U.S. album did not make the Billboard chart.

The sleeve notes on the original UK release include an (undated) review by Virginia Ironside, music critic of Daily Mail, which concludes, “With the Moody Blues, all you need to write is “MAGNIFICENT” in pink lipstick and leave it at that”; and a prose poem by Donovan recommending the band. All the tracks on the UK release were produced by Denny Cordell; except for “Go Now”, which was produced by Alex Wharton.

Laine and Warwick left the group in 1966, and were replaced by guitarist Justin Hayward and bassist John Lodge respectively. (by wikipedia)

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The pre-psychedelic Moody Blues were represented in England by this album, which is steeped in American soul. The covers include songs by James Brown, Willie Dixon, and Chris Kenner, plus the chart-busting “Go Now” (originally recorded by Bessie Banks), interspersed with a brace of originals by lead singer/guitarist Denny Laine and keyboardist Mike Pinder, and one Jeff Barry/Ellie Greenwich number, “I’ve Got a Dream.” The shouters, like “I’ll Go Crazy” and “Bye Bye Bird,” will be the big surprises, showcasing the rawest sound by the group, but “I’ve Got a Dream” shows a lyrical, harmony-based sound that is vaguely reminiscent of the Four Tops (which is ironic, as that group later cut a single of the latter-day Moody Blues original “So Deep Within You”), while “Thank You Baby,” a Laine/Pinder original, offers them doing a smooth, dance-oriented number with some catchy hooks. The group’s sound is good and loud, and Laine was a phenomenal singer, though the band lacked the charisma and built-in excitement of such rivals as the Rolling Stones and the Animals. This album is more interesting than its American equivalent, but also not as good, since it leaves off such single sides as “Steal Your Heart Away” and the Pinder/Laine “From the Bottom of My Heart,” the latter being the best side this version of the group ever recorded. (by Bruce Eder)

Ray Thomas, flautist and vocalist for British rock group The Moody Blues, has died suddenly on January 4, 2018 …

Listen to his harmonica solo on “Bye Bye Bird” … bye bye Ray Thomas ….

The Moody Blues in Concert at The Pier - Summer 1987

Personnel:
Graeme Edge (drums, percussion, vocals)
Denny Laine (vocals, guitar, harmonica)
Mike Pinder (keyboards, vocals)
Ray Thomas (flute, harmonica, percussion, vocals)
Clint Warwick (bass, vocals)
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Elaine Caswell (percussion)

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Tracklist:
01. I’ll Go Crazy (Brown) 2.08
02. Something You Got (Kenner) 2.49
03. Go Now (Banks/Bennett) 3.09
04. Can’t Nobody Love You (Mitchell) 3.59
05. I Don’t Mind (Brown) 3.24
06. I’ve Got A Dream (Greenwich/Barry) 2.48
07. Let Me Go (Laine/Pinder) 3.11
08. Stop (Laine/Pinder) 2.02
09. Thank You Baby (Laine/Pinder) 2.26
10. It Ain’t Necessarily So (Heyward/G. Gershwin/I. Gershwin) 3.18
11. True Story (Laine/Pinder) 1.42
12. Bye Bye Bird (Williamson/Dixon) 2.47LabelB1

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Ray Thomas

Ray Thomas, flautist and vocalist for British rock group The Moody Blues, has died suddenly on January 4, 2018, his record label said. He was 76. Cherry Red Records and Esoteric Recordings said in a statement: “We are deeply shocked by his passing and will miss his warmth, humour and kindness. It was a privilege to have known and worked with him and our thoughts are with his family and his wife, Lee, at this sad time.” In 2014 Thomas revealed on his website that he had been diagnosed with prostate cancer. He said he had received his diagnosis in 2013. Born in 1941, Thomas founded The Moody Blues in 1964 with fellow musicians including Mike Pinder and Denny Laine. The band soon swapped blues roots for a more orchestral sound that came to be called progressive rock. Thomas’s flute solo was a key ingredient on one of its biggest hits, “Nights in White Satin.” The band is due to be inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in Cleveland, Ohio in April 2018. – The Guardian/Billboard

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Jim Messina & His Jesters – The Dragsters (1964)

BenQ DC S1410“Early in his career — right at the outset, in fact — 18-year-old Jim Messina was a devotee of surf music, enamored of the music of Dick Dale, the Champs et al. The Jesters was among his early professional efforts, a surf band that included, along with Messina, Bill Beckman and Ron House on guitars, Jim Sholstedt on bass, Dave Archuleta on saxophone, and Larry Cundieff on drums. They won a lot of local band competitions in California, where the competition in the field was still fierce in 1965 and 1966, and were good enough to get to record an entire LP for Audio Fidelity. It was re-released on the Thimble label in the mid-1970’s, to capitalize on Messina’s success as one half of Loggins & Messina”

”The original Jesters LP was released sometime in ’64 and was credited to “Jim Messina and his Jesters” (notice the copy of “Dick Dale and HIS Del-tones”) and it was called The Dragsters. This is the LP that was reissued on CD on the semi-legit Euro label Surf in the ’90s. It’s great stuff, 14 songs, 11 of them written by Messina. The covers are: an uptempo version of the Breeze and I, and surf-guitar-led versions of fifties instro hits Honky Tonk and Raunchy. Messina’s guitar work is truly exceptional, sounding like DD’s flashier doppleganger, with a lot of nimble fingerwork full of fast hammer-ons and pull-offs, and not as much double-picking as you may expect. (I only recently started noticing how Dick-Dale-ish Messina’s playing was. Listen to “The Thing” – it’s a total rip-off of DD’s “Surfing Drums” – which of course was a Bo Diddley rip-off itself! – and the licks he’s playing are completely DD.

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Live at Lier´s Music, San Bernadino, California, ca. 1963

Messina also uses the pickup position #4 (neck and middle pickups) a LOT, which is also something that DD pioneered in surf music.) I HIGHLY recommend this CD. The highlights for me are “The Jester”, which is as good as any surf song I think, “The Cossack”, “High Voltage” (an apt title!), and “Yang Bu”. If there is one criticism I would have of the material is that it’s a bit light on melody, instead relying on groove, energy and improvisation. But it works most of the time. There’s a really nice jazz and even blues influence throughout, especially evident on “Suspense Run” and “Hollywood Sound” (both very jazzy in rhythm and featuring some tasty surf-blues guitar playing, with the latter obviously influenced by Mel Torme’s “I’m Comin’ Home Baby”). And as Messina mentioned in his interview, almost every song has a bunch of engine revving and tires skidding noises overdubbed. A lot of songs also have the noises of the band shouting along with the music, as if they’re really into it. I suspect these were overdubbed later, along with the car-related noises.” (by Ivan P. – Surf Guitar Magazine 101, June 25, 2004)

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Personnel:
Dave Archuleta (saxophone)
Bill Beckman (guitar)
Larry Cundieff (drums)
Ron House (guitar)
Jim Messina (lead guitar)
Jim Sholstedt (bass)

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Tracklist:
01. The Breeze And I (Lecuona/Stillman) 1.31
02. Raunchy (Justis) 1.37
03. No Name Dragster (Messina/Frey) 2.02
04. Strange Man (Messina/Frey) 1.40
05. High Voltage (Messina/Frey) 1.58
06. Yang Bu (Messina/Frey) 2.29
07. The Thing (Messina/Frey) 2.04
08. The Jester (Messina/Frey) 2.00
09. Suspense Run (Messina/Frey) 3.05
10. The Cossack (Messina/Frey) 1.55
11. Masatlan Rally (Messina/Frey) 1.54
12. Honkey Tonk (Oliver) 2.33
13. Chihiuaha (unknown) 2.05
14. Tamale Wagon (Messina/Frey) 1.43

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Jim Messina And The Jesters ( ’82 reissue with different mix; 10 tracks only)
01. The Jester (Messina/Frey) 2.31
02. Hollywood Sound (previously unreleased) (Messina/Frey) 2.15
03. Masatlan Rally (Messina/Frey) 2.08
04. High Voltage (Messina/Frey) 2.08
05. Yang Bu (Messina/Frey) 2.16
06. Honkey Tonk (Oliver) 3.45
07. Strange Man (Messina/Frey) 1.33
08. The Cossack (Messina/Frey) 2.02
09. Tamale Wagon (Messina/Frey) 1.57
10. The Thing (Messina/Frey) 2.00

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Front + back cover from the 1982 edition

Alan Jay Lerner & Frederick Loewe – My Fair Lady (OST (1964)

FrontCover1My Fair Lady is a 1964 American musical film adapted from the Lerner and Loewe eponymous stage musical based on the 1913 stage play Pygmalion by George Bernard Shaw. With a screenplay by Alan Jay Lerner and directed by George Cukor, the film depicts a poor Cockney flower seller named Eliza Doolittle who overhears an arrogant phonetics professor, Henry Higgins, as he casually wagers that he could teach her to speak “proper” English, thereby making her presentable in the high society of Edwardian London.

The film stars Audrey Hepburn and Rex Harrison as Eliza Doolittle and Henry Higgins respectively, with Stanley Holloway, Gladys Cooper and Wilfrid Hyde-White in supporting roles. A critical and commercial success, it won eight Academy Awards, including Best Picture, Best Actor, and Best Director. In 1998, the American Film Institute named it the 91st greatest American film of all time.

In Edwardian London, Professor Henry Higgins (Rex Harrison), a scholar of phonetics, believes that the accent and tone of one’s voice determines a person’s prospects in society. In Covent Garden one evening, he boasts to a new acquaintance, Colonel Hugh Pickering (Wilfrid Hyde-White), himself an expert in phonetics, that he could teach any person to speak in a way that he could pass them off as a duke or duchess at an embassy ball. Higgins selects as an example a young flower seller, Eliza Doolittle (Audrey MoviePosterHepburn), who has a strong Cockney accent. Eliza’s ambition is to work in a flower shop, but her thick accent makes her unsuitable. Having come from India to meet Higgins, Pickering is invited to stay with the professor. The following morning, Eliza shows up at Higgins’ home, seeking lessons. Pickering is intrigued and offers to cover all expenses if the experiment should be successful.

Eliza’s father, Alfred P. Doolittle (Stanley Holloway), a dustman, shows up three days later, ostensibly to protect his daughter’s virtue, but in reality simply to extract some money from Higgins, and is bought off with £5. Higgins is impressed by the man’s honesty, his natural gift for language, and especially his brazen lack of morals. Higgins recommends Alfred to a wealthy American who is interested in morality. Eliza goes through many forms of speech training, such as speaking with marbles in her mouth, enduring Higgins’ harsh approach to teaching and his treatment of her personally. She makes little progress, but just as she, Higgins, and Pickering are about to give up, Eliza finally “gets it”; she instantly begins to speak with an impeccable upper class accent.

As a test, Higgins takes her to Ascot Racecourse, where she makes a good impression initially, only to shock everyone by a sudden lapse into vulgar Cockney while cheering on a horse. Higgins, who dislikes the pretentiousness of the upper class, partly conceals a grin behind his hand. Eliza poses as a mysterious lady at an embassy ball and even dances with a foreign prince. At the ball is Zoltan Karpathy (Theodore Bikel), a Hungarian phonetics expert trained by Higgins. After a brief conversation with Eliza, he certifies that she is not only Hungarian, but of royal blood, declaring her to be a Princess.

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After all the effort she has put in, however, Eliza’s actions aren’t even acknowledged; all the praise going to Higgins. This, and his callous treatment towards her afterwards, especially his indifference to her future, causes her to throw Higgins’ slippers at him, and to walk out on him, leaving him mystified by her ingratitude. Accompanied by Freddy Eynsford-Hill (Jeremy Brett), a young man she met at Ascot and who is charmed by her, Eliza returns to her old life, but finds that she no longer fits in. She meets her father, who has been left a large fortune by the wealthy American to whom Higgins had recommended him, and is resigned to marrying Eliza’s stepmother. Alfred feels that Higgins has ruined him, since he is now bound by morals and responsibility. Eventually, Eliza ends up visiting Higgins’ mother (Gladys Cooper), who is enraged at her son’s behaviour.

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The next day, Higgins finds Eliza gone and searches for her, eventually finding her at his mother’s house. Higgins attempts to talk Eliza into coming back to him. He becomes angered when Eliza announces that she is going to marry Freddy and become Karpathy’s assistant. He makes his way home, stubbornly predicting that she will come crawling back. However, he comes to the realization that he has “grown accustomed to her face.” Henry returns to his study to lament his loneliness. As he listens to Eliza’s recorded voice, she reappears in the doorway behind him, turning off the recording and saying in her old Cockney accent, “I washed my hands and face before I come I did.” Higgins looks surprised then pleased before asking for his slippers once more as Eliza smiles on behind him, leaving the audience to decide what happens next. (by wikipedia)

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My Fair Lady is–deservedly–one of the most famous musicals of all time. Its popular 1964 film version, directed by George Cukor, has ensured that for most people Audrey Hepburn is Eliza Doolittle, while Broadway-heads swear by Julie Andrews’s stage performance, immortalized on the 1956 cast album. Of course, for the purposes of a CD review it’s more accurate to compare the performances of Andrews and Marni Nixon, who sang the songs lip-synched by Hepburn in the movie. While Andrews usually comes out on top (especially on “I Could Have Danced All Night”), Nixon is no slouch (after all, she also dubbed Natalie Wood in West Side Story and Deborah Kerr in The King & I). Rex Harrison, of course, does his own vocals, but then he doesn’t so much sing his songs as talk them. While Nixon and Harrison are tops, the truth is that Lerner and Loewe’s songs are so good as to endure almost anybody’s interpretation: “Wouldn’t It Be Loverly,” “With a Little Bit of Luck,” “On the Street Where You Live,” “Get Me to the Church on Time,” and so on–not many shows can boast as many classics. The movie version’s real bonus is Andre Previn’s swellegant orchestration. (by Elisabeth Vincentell)

And I add a large collection of lobby cards from this classic movie. Thanks to legendsofsfandfantasyart.blogspot

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Personnel:
Rex Harrison ( Professor Henry Higgins)
Audrey Hepburn (Eliza Doolittle)
Stanley Holloway (Alfred P. Doolittle)
Marni Nixon )as Eliza’s singing voice)
Bill Shirley (for Jeremy Brett) (Freddy Eynsford-Hill )
Wilfrid Hyde-White (Colonel Hugh Pickering)
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The Warner Bros. Studio Orchestra conducted by André Previn

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Tracklist:
01. Overture 3.27
02. Why Can’t The English Learn To Speak? (Rex Harrison, Audrey Hepburn, Wilfrid Hyde-White)
03. Wouldn’t It Be Loverly? (Marni Nixon (for Hepburn))
04. I’m An Ordinary Man (Harrison)
05. With A Little Bit Of Luck (Stanley Holloway)
06. Just You Wait (Hepburn, Nixon)
07. The Rain In Spain (Harrison, Hepburn, Nixon, Wilfrid Hyde-White)
08. I Could Have Danced All Night (Nixon)
09. Ascot Gavotte
10. On The Street Where You Live (Bill Shirley (for Jeremy Brett))
11. You Did It (Harrison, Hyde-White) (without the choir “Congratulations”)
12. Show Me (Nixon, Shirley)
13. Get Me To The Church On Time (Holloway)
14. A Hymn To Him (Why Can’t A Woman Be More Like A Man?) (Harrison, Hyde-White)
15. Without You (Nixon, Harrison)
16. I’ve Grown Accustomed To Her Face (Harrison) 4.53

Music and lyrics: Alan Jay Lerner & Frederick Loewe

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Swinging Blue Jeans – Blue Jeans à Swinging (1964)

LPFrontCover1Blue Jeans a’Swinging is the first UK studio album by British Merseybeat band the Swinging Blue Jeans, released in November 1964 on HMV.

The Swinging Blue Jeans were near the top of Liverpool’s rock & roll bands, although Americans who’ve only heard their pile-driver-textured Top 30 version of “Hippy Hippy Shake” (utterly unrepresentative of their sound or range) might wonder at that statement. This album provides the evidence — ironically, with a little better choice of material, it would rate very close behind the With the Beatles LP as a fresh and brilliant piece of music-making, and even as it stands, it’s not too far behind. In order to fully appreciate Blue Jeans a’ Swinging, you have to put yourself back in 1964. Liverpool and the rest of the north are filled with acts that can thump away hard, or harmonize pleasingly, but only a handful that can do both, and even fewer that can do both well, and most of those, apart from the Beatles, can’t decide if they want to be the Everly Brothers or Chuck Berry. The Beatles knew that with a little care, they could be both — and based on the evidence on this album, the Swinging Blue Jeans were of the same mind and had the talent to pull it off.

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Blue Jeans a’ Swinging features punchy, crunchy rhythm guitar, jangling lead guitar, some pretty raw singing by all four bandmembers alternating with decent harmonizing. There are also a few offbeat song choices, starting with the opening track, “Ol’ Man Mose.” Their cover of “Save the Last Dance for Me” is a credible rendition of a contemporary Drifters hit, and their versions of “Lawdy Miss Clawdy” and “Long Tall Sally” are solid pieces of rock & roll. Their Buddy Holly-like versions of the Hank Marvin-Bruce Welch songs “That’s the Way It Goes” and “Don’t It Make You Feel Good” have enough hooks that either could’ve been a single and a hit; the ballad “All I Want Is You,” dominated by the quartet’s harmony vocals, sounding even more like Holly.

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The band reaches back further than the Shadows, covering, “It’s All Over Now,” an offbeat lament written by Wally Whyton of the Vipers Skiffle Group-this is their “Ringo Starr number, ” slightly goofy, with a vague country-ish tint. Even the one original here, a group composition called “It So Right,” is a good rock & roll number with acceptably clever wordplay. Only their version of the Boudleaux Bryant “Some Sweet Day” seems flaccid and second-rate. That flaw aside, this is one of the best rock & roll albums of its era to come out of Liverpool. (by Bruce Eder)

Many songs are from the innocent side of the early Beat music (like “Save The Last Dance For Me”)  … but on this album you can some real hightlights from this period of music like “TuttiFrutti”, a great version of “Around And Around” by Chuck Berry and of course “Long Tall Sally” … one of the est versions ever recorded …

Oh … let´s have some fun tonight …

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Personnel:
Les Braid (bass, keyboards)
Ray Ennis (lead guitar, vocals)
Ralph Ellis (guitar)
Norman Kuhlke (drums)

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Tracklist:
01. Ol’Man Mose (Armstrong/Randolph) 3.07
02. Save The Last Dance For Me (Pomus/Shuman) 2.53
03. That’s The Way It Goes (Marvin/Welch) 2.38
04. Around And Around (Berry) 2.09
05. It’s All Over Now (B.Womack/S.Womack) 1.58
06. Long Tall Sally (Johnson/Blackwell/Penniman) 1.45
07. Lawdy Miss Clawdy (Price) 1.42
08. Some Sweet Day (F.Bryant/B.Bryant) 2.07
09. It’s So Right (Braid/Kuhlke/Ellis/Ennis) 1.58
10. Don’t It Make You Feel Good (Welch/Marvin) 1.42
11. All I Want Is You (Ireland/Chilton) 2.11
12. Tutti Frutti (LaBostrie/Lubin/Penniman) 1.58

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They say the joint was rocking
Going round and round
Yeah reeling and a rocking
What a crazy sound
Well they never stop a rocking
Until the moon went down

Oh it sound so sweet
Gotta take me a chance
Rose out of my seat
Just had to dance
Started moving ma feet
Well and clapping my hands

Well the joint started rocking
Going round and round
Yeah reeling and a rocking
What a crazy sound
Well they never stoped rocking
Until the moon went down

Twelve o’clock
Well the place was packed
Front doors was locked
Well the place was packed
When the police knocked
Both doors flew back

Well they kept on rocking
Going round and round
Yeah reeling and a rocking
What a crazy sound
Well you never stop rocking
Until the moon went down

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The Swinging Blue Jeans, live in 2013 !!!

Yardbirds – Five Live Yardbirds (1964)

FrontCover1.jpgFive Live Yardbirds is the live debut album by English rock band the Yardbirds. It features the group’s interpretations of ten American blues and rhythm and blues songs, including their most popular live number, Howlin’ Wolf’s “Smokestack Lightning”. The album contains some of the earliest recordings with guitarist Eric Clapton.

Recorded at the Marquee Club in London on 20 March 1964, it was released in the United Kingdom by Columbia Records nine months later. Despite several favourable retrospective reviews, the album did not reach the UK album charts. It was not issued in the United States; however, four songs were included on the Yardbirds’ second American album, Having a Rave Up.

In October 1963, the Yardbirds took over the Rolling Stones’ position at the Crawdaddy Club and had signed a management contract with club owner Giorgio Gomelsky. After touring with Sonny Boy Williamson II, the band signed a contract with Columbia Records. In 1964, they recorded two singles, “I Wish You Would” and “Good Morning Little Schoolgirl”. These had limited success and Gomelsky was able to persuade Columbia to release a live album as the Yardbirds’ debut album.

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The Yardbirds were a popular live attraction at music clubs. Much of their reputation was built on their use of a “rave up” musical arrangement, an instrumental interlude that builds to a climax. Clapton credits the rave up to bassist Paul Samwell-Smith and explains: “While most other bands were playing three-minute songs, we were taking three-minute numbers and stretching them out to five or six minutes, during which time the audience would go crazy”. In was at such performances that Clapton often broke a guitar string. While he was putting on a new one, the audience would slowly clap their hands (slow handclapping). This led manager Gomelsky to nickname him “Eric ‘Slowhand’ Clapton”.

Five Live Yardbirds was recorded at the Marquee Club in London. Yardbirds’ biographer Gregg Russo describes the conditions and equipment for recording at the club was less than ideal, they were able to capitalise on their greater popularity there than at the Crawdaddy.

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He adds: The recording date for the album has been previously listed as Tuesday, March 10, 1964, but Gomelsky distinctly remembers the show taking place at Wardour Street. On March 10, the club was still at Oxford Street, and combined with the fact that the Yardbirds played on Fridays at the Wardour Street location, the March 20, 1964 recording date seems much more likely.

All of the songs that appear on Five Live Yardbirds were written by American blues and rhythm and blues artists and several of the original recordings appeared on the American record charts. The band’s early material reflects the repertoires of the early British rhythm and blues groups, such as the Rolling Stones and the Animals.[6] Clapton biographer David Bowling described the album as “a lot of straight electric blues, but at times they come close to a rock sound.” Their version of Chuck Berry’s “Too Much Monkey Business”, which is the album opener, is the most rock-oriented song on the album.

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18th May 1964: British rock group the Yardbirds, (left to right) lead guitarist Eric Clapton, bassist Paul Samwell-Smith, singer Keith Relf, drummer Jim McCarty, and rhythm guitarist Christopher Dreja performing on a backyard patio for British playwright Lord Willis and his daughter Sally. (Photo by Daily Express)

Several songs feature extended instrumental improvisation. Bo Diddley’s “Here ‘Tis” and the Isley Brothers’ “Respectable” are high-energy tunes, which represent the use of double-time feature of the rave up for the entire songs. AllMusic critic Matthew Greenwald describes “Here ‘Tis” as “driven by a furious “Bo Diddley” beat and rhythm … Clapton’s interplay with bassist Paul Samwell-Smith is one of the great moments in the band’s recorded history” The instrumental spotlight was also shared with singer and blues harmonica player Keith Relf. Clapton and Relf trading riffs is one of the highlights of “Smokestack Lightning”. The Howlin’ Wolf song was the Yardbirds’ most popular live number and a regular in their sets. Performances of the song could last up to 30 minutes.[10] Howlin’ Wolf reportedly referred to the group’s 5:35 album version as “the definitive version of his song”.

The slow blues standard, “Five Long Years”, features extended guitar soloing by Clapton in a style he further developed with John Mayall & the Bluesbreakers. Clapton and Samwell-Smith share the lead vocals on “Good Morning Little Schoolgirl”, which is based on the version by the American R&B duo Don and Bob. Bo Diddley’s “I’m a Man” (which became a hit when the Yardbirds later recorded it with Jeff Beck) and songs by Slim Harpo and John Lee Hooker round out the album.

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Five Live Yardbirds was released before critical rock music journalism became popular. However, Clapton biographer Christopher Sandford notes “When Five Live Yardbirds was released that winter, to generally favourable reviews (‘Raucous interplay … great guitar …feral energy of the ensemble’) it, too, failed to materially benefit the group.” The album did not appear in the British record charts and subsequently was not issued in the US.

Later, several critics have also given the album favourable reviews. AllMusic’s Eder gave the album four and a half out of five stars and describes it as “Five Live Yardbirds was the first important—indeed, essential—live album to come out of the 1960s British rock & roll boom. In terms of the performance captured and the recording quality, it was also the best such live record of the entire middle of the decade”. In a separate review for AllMusic, Rick Clark noted “Smokestack Lightning” [and other songs] were open-ended improvisations that helped lay the groundwork for groups like Cream and the Jimi Hendrix Experience.” Bowling calls the material “raw and powerful” and Russo adds it is “a completely faithful reproduction” of the group’s early shows. “Ultimate Classic Rock” ranked the album in the “Top 100 Live Albums, and called it an “explosive document of a British blues band fueling a decidedly American music with power, fireworks and amped-up resourcefulness. (by wikipedia)

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Personnel:
Eric “Slowhand” Clapton (lead guitar, co-lead vocals on 03.)
Chris Dreja (guitar)
Jim McCarty (drums)
Keith Relf (vocals, harmonica, maracas)
Paul “Sam” Samwell-Smith (bass, vocals on 03.)

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Tracklist:
01. Too Much Monkey Business (Berry) 3.49
02. I Got Love If You Want It (Moore a.k.a. Slim Harpo) 2.37
03. Smokestack Lightnin’ (Burnett) 5.35
04. Good Morning Little Schoolgirl (Demarais) 2.41
05. Respectable (K.Isley/R.Isley(R.Isley) 5.30
06. Five Long Years (Boyd) 5.16
07. Pretty Girl (McDaniel) 3.02
08. Louise (Hooker) 3.41
09. I’m A Man (McDaniel) 4.30
10. Here ‘Tis (McDaniel) 5.09
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11. You Can’t Judge A Book By Looking At The Cover (Dixon) 2.56
12. Let It Rock (Berry) 2.17
13. I Wish I Would (Arnold) 5.54
14. Who Do You Love (McDaniel) 5.07
15. Honey In Your Hips (Relf) 2.28
16. A Certain Girl (Neville) 2.17
17. Got To Hurry (Rasputin2.48
18. I Ain´t Got You (Carter) 1.59
19. Good Morning Little Schoolgirl (Single) (Demarais)

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Bob Dylan – Another Side Of Bob Dylan (1964)

FrontCover1Another Side of Bob Dylan is the fourth studio album by American singer and songwriter Bob Dylan, released on August 8, 1964 by Columbia Records.

The album deviates from the more socially conscious style which Dylan had developed with his previous LP, The Times They Are A-Changin’. The change prompted criticism from some influential figures in the folk community – Sing Out! editor Irwin Silber complained that Dylan had “somehow lost touch with people” and was caught up in “the paraphernalia of fame”.

Despite the album’s thematic shift, Dylan performed the entirety of Another Side of Bob Dylan as he had previous records – solo. In addition to his usual acoustic guitar and harmonica, Dylan provides piano on one selection, “Black Crow Blues”. Another Side of Bob Dylan reached No. 43 in the US (although it eventually went gold), and peaked at No. 8 on the UK charts in 1965.

With Dylan’s commercial profile on the rise, Columbia was now urging Dylan to release a steady stream of recordings. Upon Dylan’s return to New York, studio time was quickly scheduled, with Tom Wilson back as producer.

Dylan01The first (and only) session was held on June 9 at Columbia’s Studio A in New York. According to Heylin, “while polishing off a couple of bottles of Beaujolais”, Dylan recorded fourteen original compositions that night, eleven of which were chosen for the final album. The three that were ultimately rejected were “Denise Denise”, “Mr. Tambourine Man”, and “Mama, You Been on My Mind”.

Nat Hentoff’s The New Yorker article in late October 1964 on Dylan includes remarkable descriptions of the June 1964 recording session. Hentoff describes in considerable detail the atmosphere in the CBS recording studio and Dylan’s own asides and banter with his friends in the studio, with the session’s producers, and Hentoff himself.

Ramblin’ Jack Elliott was present during part of this session, and Dylan asked him to perform on “Mr. Tambourine Man”. “He invited me to sing on it with him,” recalls Elliott, “but I didn’t know the words ‘cept for the chorus, so I just harmonized with him on the chorus.” Only one complete take was recorded, with Dylan stumbling on some of the lyrics. Though the recording was ultimately rejected, Dylan would return to the song for his next album.

By the time Dylan recorded what was ultimately the master take of “My Back Pages”, it was 1:30 in the morning. Master takes were selected, and after some minor editing, a final album was soon sequenced. (by wikipedia)

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The other side of Bob Dylan referred to in the title is presumably his romantic, absurdist, and whimsical one — anything that wasn’t featured on the staunchly folky, protest-heavy Times They Are a-Changin’, really. Because of this, Another Side of Bob Dylan is a more varied record and it’s more successful, too, since it captures Dylan expanding his music, turning in imaginative, poetic performances on love songs and protest tunes alike. This has an equal number of classics to its predecessor, actually, with “All I Really Want to Do,” “Chimes of Freedom,” “My Back Pages,” “I Don’t’ Believe You,” and “It Ain’t Me Babe” standing among his standards, but the key to the record’s success is the album tracks, which are graceful, poetic, and layered. Both the lyrics and music have gotten deeper and Dylan’s trying more things — this, in its construction and attitude, is hardly strictly folk, as it encompasses far more than that. The result is one of his very best records, a lovely intimate affair. (by Stephen Thomas Erlewine)

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Personnel:
Bob Dylan (vocals, guitar, piano, harmonica)

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Tracklist:
01. All I Really Want To Do 4.02
02. Black Crow Blues 3.12
03. Spanish Harlem Incident 2.22
04. Chimes Of Freedom 7.09
05. I Shall Be Free No. 10 4.45
06. To Ramona 3.50
07. Motorpsycho Nitemare 4.31
08. My Back Pages 4.20
09. I Don’t Believe You 4.20
10. Ballad In Plain D 8.15
11. It Ain’t Me Babe 3.30

All songs written by Bob Dylan

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Petula Clark – Down Town (1965)

LPFrontCover1Born November 15, with “a voice as sweet as chapel bells,” Petula Clark first broke into the limelight during World War II when as a child she entertained the troops, both on radio and in concert. She is said to have performed in over 200 shows for the forces all over England before the age of nine and by war’s end, Petula Clark–the British “Shirley Temple” who had come to represent childhood itself–was so popular in England she was asked to sing at a national victory celebration at Trafalgar Square. In 1944, Petula made her first movie and has since appeared in over 30 British and American films. Born November 15, with “a voice as sweet as chapel bells,” Petula Clark first broke into the limelight during World War II when as a child she entertained the troops, both on radio and in concert. She is said to have performed in over 200 shows for the forces all over England before the age of nine and by war’s end, Petula Clark–the British “Shirley Temple” who had come to represent childhood itself–was so popular in England she was asked to sing at a national victory celebration at Trafalgar Square. In 1944, Petula made her first movie and has since appeared in over 30 British and American films.

PetulaClark1Throughout the forties and fifties Petula was a regular guest on a vast number of radio shows and became something of a television “pioneer” in England, first appearing on experimental TV in the forties and later as host of several of her own television series during the very early years of British programming, with Pet’s Parlour being her longest running and most popular. Although she sang regularly in concert, on radio and TV all through the forties, it wasn’t until 1949 that she recorded her first song Music, Music, Music and that pretty much sums up her very prolific recording career.
She has never stopped recording — 50 plus years and over a 1,000 songs and still counting!  Her first hits were children’s songs like Where Did My Snowman Go (1952) and The Little Shoemaker (1954). To date, she has sold well in excess of 68 million records.
In answer to the rock-and-roll craze of the late fifties, Petula recorded Sailor, Romeo and My Friend The Sea and was back on the charts again. In 1957, she was invited to sing at the famed Olympia theatre in France. After one song the French crowd went wild, and an entirely new career was launched.

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Asked to record in French, Petula declined at first but was quickly persuaded to do so by Frenchman Claude Wolff with whom she fell madly in love – they were married in June 1961. (They have three children, daughters Barbara and Catherine and son Patrick and a granddaughter and grandson.) By the early sixties, Petula found herself reinvented as a French chanteuse, even rivaling the legendary Piaf–during Piaf’s own lifetime. (She is still classified as a “French” singer

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on the shelves in French and French-Canadian record stores.) In addition to her newfound French pop star status, Petula also began to enjoy success with the songs that she had begun to record in German and Italian. By the mid-sixties she’d established herself as superstar throughout Europe with Number One tunes sung in different languages in different countries all across the Continent. (Interesting to note, each of her early European hits were with entirely different songs–a feat not duplicated by any other singer since!)

pictured at the Ideal Home Exhibition 1965.
Urged by her friends in Britain to record something in English, Petula allowed Tony Hatch to visit her in Paris where he presented his new song, Downtown. Petula recorded it and the rest is music history. Downtown skyrocketed to number 1 in the USA, launching Petula’s American career and earning her a Grammy in 1964. She quickly followed with I Know A Place which went to number 3 and earned Petula her second Grammy in 1965. Numerous top 40 hits followed. All told, Pet has had 15 top 40 hits in the USA (two #1 hits). Internationally, Petula Clark has charted in the top 40 somewhere, sometime, with 159 recordings! (in her own words)

And here´s this album with this sensational chart sucess all over the world: Downtown! And this song is of course a milestone in the history of British pop …

I add thsi song in the Frechn, German and Italian version … just for fun.

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Personnel:
Petula Cark (vocals)
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unknown studio orchestra

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Tracklist:
01. True Love Never Runs Smooth (Bacharach/David) 2.13
02. Baby It’s Me (Anthony) 2.21
03. Now That You’re Gone (Ballay/Newell/Clark) 2.56
04. Tell Me (That It’s Love) (Clark/Bernet/Hatch) 2.33
05. Crying Through A Sleepless Night (Anthony) 2.26
06. In Love (Freed/Lester/Fuqua) 2.34
07. Music (Hatch) 3.10
08. Be Good To Me (Anthony/Clark) 2.04
09. This Is Goodbye (Aber/Anthony/Clark) 2.23
10. Let Me Tell You (Anthony) 2.15
11. You Belong To Me (Price/King/Stewart) 2.41
12. Downtown (Hatch) 3.07
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13. Downtown (German version) 3.05
14. Downtown (French version) 3.14
15. Downtown (Italian version) 3.00

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