Monday, August 1, 2016

Val McKenna - House For Sale - Spark (1968)


House For Sale is a killer from Val McKenna originally released on the Spark label in 1968. Pop tracks like this are often missed by compilers, which is a shame. This is top notch stuff. Amazing lyrics and seductive chorus.

Friday, July 15, 2016

The Zephyrs - There's Something About You - Rotate (1965) Shel Talmy Production

I was on a kick a few years ago to discover other Shel Talmy productions outside of the Kinks and the Who, and discovered this great tune by the Zephyrs. So much good music was coming out of Britain in the 1960s, it wasn't possible for everything that deserved to be a hit to become one. This is another one of those classics that slipped through.


The Zephyrs - There's Something About You - Rotate (1965) Shel Talmy Production 

Friday, July 1, 2016

The Black Sheep - It's My Mind - Columbia (1966)

I know very little about this blistering folk rocker. It's a US band. Rumor was that actor Mark Harmon was in the band, but this turned out to be untrue. It's My Mind was not a hit, but is much better than most garage rock that ends up on comps. Thank you to Opulent Conceptions for turning me onto this track.

The Black Sheep - It's My Mind - Columbia (1966) 

The Black Sheep - It's My Mind - Columbia (1966) 

Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Gullivers People - Splendor In The Grass & Took This Land - Parlophone (1966)

Glorious Stuff! I first heard this song on the excellent Dream Babes series. Splendor In The Grass was written by Jackie De Shannon and recorded with the Byrds. While Jackie's recordings for Liberty were often glorious and meticulous, her original version seemed a little shambolic. The Byrds were a shortcoming in this case, unfortunately. The all-female group called the Boys recorded the song later, but the Gullivers People version is the best of the three. This is partly due to the stunning production that made mid-60s British recordings so compelling. I also included the b-side, Took This Land, a pop folk protest song which was trendy during this period. Again, the production elevates the song.

Gullivers People - Splendor In The Grass - Parlophone (1966) 



Gullivers People - Took This Land - Parlophone (1966) 




Thursday, June 16, 2016

Antoine - Ma Ceinture De Sécurité - Disques Vogue (1971)

Although Ma Ceinture De Sécurité is from 1971, this classic by Antoine tucked away as a C-side on a 3 song single sounds very 60s. The production is fantastic. The song has a cool, laid back beat and a perfect sneer from Antoine. I first heard this song at the Vampyros Lesbos party with DJ Franco (now Voodoo Funk). As Jeff Goldblum says, "It's a scorcher."


Antoine - Ma Ceinture De Sécurité - Disques Vogue (1971) 
Antoine - Ma Ceinture De Sécurité - Disques Vogue (1971)

Tuesday, June 7, 2016

The Ragamuffins - Don't Be Gone Long - Tollie (1964)

I owe YouTube user sunshinetunes67 a thank you for turning me on to this moody, atmospheric slice of vocal pop. I found a nice clean copy of Don't Be Gone Long, improving the fidelity a bit over the current version on YouTube. This type of song would nearly vanish shortly after 1964 thanks to those pesky mop headed quartets. Gary Zekley wrote and produced for many acts in the 60s, including the Clique, Mama's and the Papa's and Spanky and Our Gang.

The Ragamuffins - Don't Be Gone Long - Tollie (1964) 
The Ragamuffins - Don't Be Gone Long - Tollie (1964) 

Wednesday, June 1, 2016

Gary Usher - It's A Lie - Capitol (1965)

I recently got on a Gary Usher kick after hearing the amazing Just Walk Away by the Castells. The man behind the knobs was Gary Usher, famous for his work with the Beach Boys and late 60s psych projects. Usher was responsible for a number of mid-60s gems. Because I tend to gravitate towards pop songs neatly compressed in under 3 minutes, songs like It's A Lie are right up my alley. The song suggests a subtle move away from surf into folk rock territory, with chiming guitars and Beatles For Sale inspired complaints. 

Gary Usher - It's A Lie - Capitol (1965) 


Gary Usher - It's A Lie - Capitol (1965) 

Saturday, May 21, 2016

Joe Brown - Sally Ann - Piccadilly (1963)

Sally Ann is a cool 3/4 time song written by famed manager to the stars Allen Klein. Joe Brown scored a deserved hit with this number in 1963. The production is gorgeous and thick, likely recorded in Pye Studios.

Joe Brown - Sally Ann - Piccadilly (1963) 

Joe Brown - Sally Ann - Piccadilly (1963) 

Saturday, May 14, 2016

Françoise Hardy - Je Pensais (1965) & finding the elusive L' Integrale Disques Vogue 1962/1967 (The Complete Vogue Recordings) boxed set

Full credit should go to Richie Unterberger's 1998 book, Unknown Legends of Rock n' Roll, for introducing me to Françoise Hardy. Pre-Internet, it was difficult to find her music aside from a few CD compilations at Tower Records in New York City. What I was really after was a boxed set called L' Integrale Disques Vogue 1962/1967 (The Complete Vogue Recordings) released in 1995. Unfortunately, the boxed set was extremely limited and I never saw it for sale. The box was ideal, because it contained Hardy's complete French recordings for Vogue Records from 1962 - 1967. Fortunately, a lot has changed since the late 1990s. Françoise Hardy's albums have been reissued with wonderful packaging, including rare recordings made in other languages. Occasionally, L' Integrale Disques Vogue 1962/1967 (The Complete Vogue Recordings) pops up on eBay for ridiculous prices. After seeing another one appear on eBay this spring for $450, I decided to go on a scavenger hunt. The original boxed set contained 83 songs on 4 CDs. My question: Is there anything on L' Integrale Disques Vogue 1962/1967 (The Complete Vogue Recordings) that has not been reissued since? What songs am I missing? Is it worth buying the 1995 boxed set?

 
Françoise Hardy - L' Integrale Disques Vogue 1962/1967 (The Complete Vogue Recordings) boxed set

The answer? It has all been reissued. It is not worth buying the 1995 boxed set unless you are a die hard collector who needs to complete a collection of physical media. In fact, 79 of the 83 tracks appear on a 2009 boxed set called La Collection 62-66. This later box contains 93 tracks, meaning the buyer gets 14 additional foreign language tracks. Best of all, copies can still be had for well under $100, but the buyer will still be missing 4 songs from the 1995 Complete Vogue Years box.

Françoise Hardy - La Collection 62-66
For you obsessive types who want it all, the last 4 tracks that appear on L' Integrale Disques Vogue 1962/1967 (The Complete Vogue Recordings) but NOT on La Collection 62-66 are:

Track 80 & 83: Voilá & Qui Peut Dire - These two tracks appear on the album Ma Jeunesse Fout Le Camp. This album can be purchased cheaply as a standalone or in a boxed set called 5 Albums Originaux, an extremely affordable and recommended boxed set covering her late 1960s and early 1970s output.

Françoise Hardy - Ma Jeunesse Fout Le Camp LP

Track 81: (Les) Petits Garçons - This track is on a number of compilations, including The Vogue Years. Like track 82, it also appeared on the vinyl Voilà EP.

Track 82: Au Fond Du Rêve Doré - This is the oddball song from L' Integrale Disques Vogue 1962/1967 (The Complete Vogue Recordings). Later, Françoise re-recorded this song with the band Air. The original version of Au Fond Du Rêve Doré is available on the vinyl Voilà EP, which is still pretty cheap on Discogs. Au Fond Du Rêve Doré has also been reissued on a few CDs, including 100 Chansons, Story 1965-1967 and Blues. Most of the CDs are out of print and vary in price. 

Françoise Hardy - vinyl Voilà EP

That's it. Is it worth going to all of this trouble to pursue Françoise Hardy's catalogue? Absolutely! Even nearly 20 years after first hearing her music, songs still pop up that surprise and intrigue me. Je Pensais showed up on a random mix last month and reminded me how great Françoise Hardy was and continues to be.

Françoise Hardy - Je Pensais from L'Amitié - Vogue Records (1965) 

Saturday, May 7, 2016

Bobby Fuller Four - Never To Be Forgotten (mono LP version & stereo Mustang Years version) - 1966 & The Reverb / Delay of the BF4

For years, I wondered how Bob Keane got the incredible reverb sound on the Bobby Fuller Four records. The secret was revealed in Keane's 2006 autobiography, The Oracle of Del-Fi on page 213 and 2014:

"One of the outstanding features - which was responsible for that great cavernous sound on Bobby's records - was our echo chambers, actually under the bank, two floors below our studio. The bank okayed the use of the unused vaults as echo chambers, and for several days, Bobby, and the band and I went to work "processing" the walls in the smaller rooms, even building some false walls so the sound wouldn't slap when reverberating. After placing speakers and microphones in the chambers to pick up the "reverb," we were ready to record what I believed would be the Bobby Fuller Four's first big hit for Del-Fi/Mustang."


The song that Keane was hoping would be the first big hit was Let Her Dance. Although it was a regional hit and a minor national hit, peaking at #45, success came shortly after with I Fought The Law. Interestingly, Keane explained that the band were not keen (sorry) to shed some of their raw, Buddy Holly inspired sound in favor of the Mustang productions reverb-o-rama. Although I understand the concern of the band, I feel that the bank vault reverb took the Bobby Fuller Four into modern, interesting and even innovative sonic territory. Their Texas recordings never came close to this.


Never To Be Forgotten is one of many great nearly-unheard songs by the BFF. The stereo version is really interesting, but the vocals are buried under a huge cloud of bank vault verb and echo. Only in the mono version, which was never reissued, can you hear the band clearly. Honestly, I love both versions. The stereo version sounds like a monstrous painting.



Bobby Fuller Four - Never To Be Forgotten (unavailable mono LP version) from I Fought The Law - Mustang (1966)


Bobby Fuller Four - Never To Be Forgotten (stereo remaster) from The Mustang Years - Mustang (1997)


Bobby Fuller Four - I Fought The Law mono LP - Mustang (1966)

Sunday, May 1, 2016

Bern Elliott - Good Times - Decca & London (1964)

According to Wikipedia, we have Phil Smee, a music journo, to thank for coining the term Freakbeat in the 1980s to describe the harder edged, post-British Invasion pop sound. To my ears, Bern Elliott's Good Times definitely fits snuggly into the Freakbeat category, with the song's in-the-red soul vocals and spooky reverbed organ. Although Good Times never appeared on Greg Shaw's Bomp/AIP Freakbeat compilations, possibly because it had been reissued on larger labels by this time, it would have been a worthy addition.

Bern Elliott - Good Times - Decca & London (1964) 


Bern Elliott - Good Times - London (1964) 

Thursday, April 21, 2016

Johnny Sandon - Some Kind Of Wonderful - Pye (1964)

Some Kind of Wonderful (mislabeled Some Kinda Wonderful) is Johnny Sandon's cover of the Drifters 1961 classic written by Gerry Goffin and Carole King. While Sandon's does not top the Drifters version in originality, the recording is gorgeous and full of British beat energy, bravado and walloping production. The original 45 is scarce. Fortunately, it was beautifully preserved and reissued in 1991 on the Best of Tommy Quickly (which is now also hard to find) and later on the Beat Beat Beat 5 CD series.

Johnny Sandon - Some Kind Of Wonderful - Pye (1964) 



Johnny Sandon - Some Kind Of Wonderful - Pye (1964)

Thursday, April 14, 2016

The Neptunes - Shame Girl - Warner Brothers (1964)

I was unaware of Gary Usher's fantastic production work for the Cascades and more obscure early 60s groups, like the Neptunes, until recently. While his later work with groups like Sagittarius is great, I tend to favor this era of pop song. Shame Girl was recorded in July of 1964 and is full of beach balls + bikini buoyancy. Incidentally, the tune sounds quite "hot" and on the edge of distorting. I wonder if Usher pushed the gear to the limit to give Shame Girl some edge when mixing or if the distortion came out during mastering. A little distortion never hurt, especially a genre like surf that needs some toughness.

The Neptunes - Shame Girl - Warner Brothers (1964) 

The Neptunes - Shame Girl - Warner Brothers (1964) 

Thursday, April 7, 2016

Jonathan King - Mary My Love - Decca (1973)

Mary My Love may be the great lost hit of the 1970s. I realize that this is largely a 60s blog, but this one is too good not to post. I'd rather not get into Mr. King's complex personal history in RBM. I first heard this song on King's boxed set called King Of Hits, which may be the craziest, silliest, gutsiest, catchiest, most entertaining group of songs ever assembled. The word guile might sum up Mr. King in his entirety. For his recordings, that is a very good thing indeed. The picture sleeve below comes from Italy.

Jonathan King - Mary My Love - Decca (1973) 


Jonathan King - Mary My Love - Decca (1973) - Italian picture sleeve

Friday, April 1, 2016

The Lettermen - She Don't Want Me (mono & stereo) from Warm - Capitol (1967)

Song: She Don't Want Me
Writers: Dick Addrisi-Eddie Chandler
Recorded: 1967
Producer: Steve Douglas

My father saw the Lettermen in concert in the early 60s and said that the show was magical. My parents didn't spin them around the house during my childhood, favoring Simon & Garfunkel, the Moody Blues and the Beatles. As a result, my knowledge of the work of the Lettermen is fairly limited. I have been surprised to discover that the Lettermen recorded in some styles outside of the soft harmony pop that they were known for. She Don't Want Me nearly sounds like a Left Banke song, with gorgeous baroque pop touches. 

The Lettermen - She Don't Want Me (mono & stereo) from Warm - Capitol (1967)


The Lettermen - Warm - Capitol (1967)

Monday, March 21, 2016

The Thomas Group - Penny Arcade - Dunhill (1966)

Song: Penny Arcade
Writers: Sloan-Barri
Recorded: May 1966
Producer: Lou Adler

Penny Arcade is one of many great lost songs from the great, and recently late, P.F. Sloan and collaborator Barri. Sloan was a member of The Thomas Group. Sloan speculated that producer Lou Adler prevented his records from becoming hits to keep him working for Dunhill.

The Thomas Group - Penny Arcade - Dunhill (1966)




Monday, March 14, 2016

The Shadows - Will You Be There? - EMI Columbia (1966)

Song: Will You Be There?
Writers: Marvin-Welch
Recorded: June 24th, 1966

The Shadows were successful, absurdly talented and underrated outside of the UK. The group were overshadowed and maligned by the Beatles, perhaps because they were the primary professional competition during the early days. Even in Anthology, George Harrison dismissively mocks the Shadows galloping style. Thanks to beautiful, inexpensive reissues and Bill Luther, I now know better. Although they are best known for their instrumentals and backing work for Cliff Richard, the Shadows took a few cracks at recording vocal pop records of their own. The results were excellent. Having the thick, powerful EMI sound gave the Shadows records majesty. Run, don't walk, and purchase as much by the Shadows as you can.

No copyright infringement intended. I will remove this immediately at the request of the owners. This channel and blog are not monetized. The purpose is to promote the music. If you like what you hear and it is available on cd, vinyl or as a digital download, please purchase and support the artists & labels.

The Shadows - Will You Be There? - EMI Columbia (1966)

The Shadows - Will You Be There? - EMI Columbia (1966)

Monday, March 7, 2016

The Savages - Little Miss Sad - National & Laurie (1966)

Song: Little Miss Sad
Writers: D. Addrisi & D. Addrisi
Recorded: 1966 at H&H Productions - Tampa, Florida


Little Miss Sad was enough of a hit for Tampa, Florida's The Savages in 1966 to warrant a licensing deal from Laurie records. Tampa had a fantastic pop scene in the mid-1960s that was, perhaps, several bars higher in quality than most other small markets in the United States.

No copyright infringement intended. I will remove this immediately at the request of the owners. This channel and blog are not monetized. The purpose is to promote the music. If you like what you hear and it is available on cd, vinyl or as a digital download, please purchase and support the artists & labels.

The Savages - Little Miss Sad - National & Laurie (1966)






Tuesday, March 1, 2016

Kingston Trio - Three Song from Stay Awhile - Decca (1965)

Song: Three Song
Writer: Mason Williams
Producer: Frank Werber
Recorded: 1965


Welcome to the Resurrection Beat Machine! This blog is dedicated to lost 60s pop songs from the US, UK and abroad. Whenever possible, please purchase music and support the artists / labels. Kingston Trio - Stay Awhile available here.

Three Song was recorded for a group of Decca albums during latter part of the career of the Kingston Trio, sometimes called the (John) Stewart Years, after the departure of Dave Guard in 1961. Three Song was not a hit for the group. Interestingly, though, it was written by Mason Williams, who, in 1968, scored a huge hit with Classical Gas. Three Song is a lovely little harmony number that has more in common with 60s folk than the manly, Irish pub style ballads that the Kingston Trio became famous for during their early career. The Kingston Trio decided to fold two years later in 1967 due to the changing tastes of the public. That year, John Stewart scored a huge hit with Daydream Believer for the Monkees.

No copyright infringement intended. I will remove this immediately at the request of the owners. This channel and blog are not monetized. The purpose is to promote the music. If you like what you hear and it is available on cd, vinyl or as a digital download, please purchase and support the artists & labels.


Kingston Trio - Three Song from Stay Awhile - Decca (1965)





Kingston Trio - Three Song from Stay Awhile - Decca (1965)