Saturday, October 08, 2005

Oodles of Doodles CXXXVI

I've got a great doodle for you today, along with a great LP cover and another of those RCA tags that are a favorite of mine. This sketch is by Lou Myers (a veteran of at least two other doodles around here) and is featured on the flip side of Xavier Cugat And His Orchestra-Chile Con Cugie (RCA Victor LSP-1987, 1959). (You saw Xaviar Cugat before around here, in a self-sketched doodle, no less!) The cover is a beautiful classic like so many of the RCA covers of the period. Take a close look and you'll see the chile pepper in mid-fall, a chicken in the crook of Cugie's arm, and a busty model with no shoes on. It doesn't get much better than this. And to top it all off, we get a tag that days "Mexican Fiesta". By the way, that price tag says that this LP originally cost $2.35, but it was crossed out and a hand-written price of $1.25 got air-brushed out by me. Not a bad find for the dollar I paid, either.

Take Care Of Your Records

Here's another installment in my series of scans about how to take care of your records, this time from Columbia Records. This is a scan of an inner sleeve that was actually found inside an RCA Victor LP from 1959, so that doesn't help me date it much. However, the flip side of the sleeve says something about celebrating their 10th anniversary, so that would put the date at around 1911. Hmmm, that can't be right. Perhaps they mean the 10th anniversary of the LP album? Ah, that looks better. Now the date comes out to around 1958. Anyhow, the helpful steps we can all learn from the info above are: Always handle the record by its edges, Always buckle the record jacket, Wipe the record lightly and Store record albums vertically. It also says to check the needle for wear at your Columbia Dealer. I'm going to carry my needle down to Specs and see if they can check it for me.

Friday, October 07, 2005

Oodles of Doodles CXXXV

Before the Lambada, there was the Flamenco. I don't know if it was ever forbidden, but it was at least as passionate. This doodle is from the back of an LP titled simply Flamencos, credited to Manolo Leiva With Guitar Solos And Accompaniment Of Pepe de Almeira (Seeco SCLP-9050, 1955). At least we get a nice doodle out of it. This doodle is signed down at the bottom right, but I can't make out what it says.

Melancholy Babes

I found this record (and a whole stack of other cool stuff) at the Goodwill store this afternoon. I grabbed it because I liked the swanky chicks with the sax man. Gotta love those late 50's fashions. This LP is Georgie Auld Plays For Melancholy Babies (ABC-Paramount ABCS 287, 1959). Hope you like it.

Oodles of Doodles CXXXIV

In honor of Oktoberfest, how about a beer-swilling doodle from Alfons Bauer And His Hofbrau Entertainers Featuring Die Hofbraumusikanten And Other Bavarian Stars-More German Beer Drinking Music (Capitol T 10297)? Some of the track titles on this one are "I'd Like To Be A Tankard", "A Tankard As Big As All Bavaria", "We Haven't Been Home For Three Days", "We'll Stick With Beer" and "Grouchy Wife". Sounds pretty authentic to me.

Thursday, October 06, 2005

The Little Record With The Big (Or Small) Hole

I found this sleeve for a 7" record the other day, and thought it was sorta interesting. For years I thought all 7" 45 rpm records had a big hole in the center. Then I found some with a little hole, but they all played at 33 rpm. Then I found a few records from the UK that had a center you could pop out if you wanted a big hole, or leave the center in for a small hole. I never knew such a think had ever existed here in the US, but here's a bit of proof. The little doodles to the left and right of the center hole explain how to adapt the record to your turntables requirements. You never know what's out there until you find it. 'O.C. 45' they call it, Optional Center, from your friends at Capitol Records.

More Mundane

Here is a slightly more mundane shot of the mystery building I have been teasing you with all week. But if you look close at this shot, you can see some funny brickwork going on. (See how the corner sort of curves away up there, taking the window with it?) Keep those guesses coming in!

No, the architect isn't Frank Lloyd Wright, but as a hint, he was featured in an episode of The Simpsons. (Actually FLW was mentioned in a song sung by Apu once on The Simpsons. He claimed Marge's hair was designed by Frank Lloyd Wright, but this architect was featured in a much more recent episode.)

Apples (Not Oranges)

I'm a Florida boy. I don't know anything about apples. So it was pretty cool when I visited an apple grove in Ohio. Sorry, apple orchard. We have orange groves around here, or at least we used to before they built all these houses. Anyhow, it was neat to see that the apples grew in clusters, and not individually like oranges do. And unlike oranges, apples come in different colors, even when they are ripe. All ripe oranges are orange. Go figure!

It's Mind, Not Yours

I tried to post this last night, but Blogger was down. Here's a little bit of Jimmy Boyce At The Console-The Organ Blows It's Mind (Concert Recording CR-0111). This is the exact same stuff they played at the roller rinks before they discovered that people would rather just listen to regular music. And, man, is it bad!

Wednesday, October 05, 2005


Here's another view of my mystery building. Pretty weird, eh? Any ideas? Anyone paying attention?

The Shorebirds Of Longboat Key

I was playing with the long lens Sunday out on Loangboat Key, FL, and I got some pretty good shots of the little birds that run back and forth chasing the surf all day. I'm afraid I don't know their names, so you'll have to do the research yourself. But they look pretty cool, don't they? These are three of the ones I see most frequently, but can never get close enough to get decent shots. The two below are not the same if you look close. One is actually much larger than the other, but it's hard to tell the scale in these pictures.

Update: The bird above is a ruddy turnstone, which is a species of sandpiper. I think they are all sandpipers, but what do I know?

Tuesday, October 04, 2005


There's a whole group of record collectors out there who specialize in records for someone or something, and I myself have bought up quite a few of them. This particular one is for the father who's wife is about to have a baby. And he's really hoping it's not a girl. (Remember, this was in the days when you didn't know the sex of your newborn until the doctor came out of the delivery room, slapped you on the back and said "It's a .....") The record is Fontanna And His Orchestra-Music For Expectant Fathers (Remington 33-1911/33-1912, 1957), and to tell you the truth, I didn't listen to it. The liner notes describe it as "an album made for day-dreaming". That's not for me... But the cover is cool, the father wearing a weary, glazed over look, and the vintage toys are pretty interesting. The tie is a little bit staid, though.

Lock And A Hard Place

Back in the day, the easiest way to transport goods wasn't by trucks or trains, it was by boat. And where the rivers didn't go, they built canals. What you see above is one of the locks from the old Ohio & Erie Canal, #28 to be exact. To look at the remaining bits of this canalway, to see the rough terrain it bridged, the deep cuts and locks that allowed it to flow from one end of Ohio to the other, it's truly amazing. This particular lock was known as Deep Lock, because it raised or lowered the boats going through it by about 17 feet.

Our Lady Of The Holy Oil Can

One of the interesting sites around Cleveland is a drive down Euclid Avenue. The street is lined with many million dollar homes built in the early twentieth century (known as Millionaires Row) and many, many churches. The church above is located just off of Euclid, but it had the most interesting steeple. The locals refer to it as the Holy Oilcan, the reason for which might be more obvious if I had taken this photo from farther away. Either way, it's a very interesting building. I wish I had gotten pictures of more of the houses and buildings along Euclid, but it's not the best neighborhood down through there...

Twisty Curvy

Here's another shot of the mystery building I brought you yesterday. I'm sure that by now you at least know who the architect is, don't you?

Monday, October 03, 2005

Take Me Along!

I'm not sure what attracted me to this LP cover. Maybe it's because I always like the idea of getting on a big jet plane via one of those little drive-up ramps, like The Beatles or the president. (I flew to Ohio from St. Pete/Clearwater International, and they're like that.) Maybe it's the dated fashions. It could just be the slick glossy photo-quality cover. Whatever it was, it was enough for me to invest a dollar. The LP in questions is The Ray Charles Singers-Take Me Along! (Command/ABC RS 926 SD, 1968). Before you ask, no, it's not that Ray Charles. This Ray is the guy at the bottom of the ramp in the captain's hat. According to the liner notes, the title song was used as a commercial for United, and when the Ray Charles Singers recorded it, United saw a great opportunity for a tie-in, and loaned them one of their jets for a photo shoot. The people you see in the photo are actually members of the group on the LP. And the ladies in the group were quite miffed about only have their backsides on the album cover. Those are the breaks, ladies, those are the breaks.

Thinkin' 'Bout Last Night

Did I show you sunset last night? I don't think I did...

Foghorn (Not Leghorn)

As promised, this is the warning sign on the backside of the small square lighthouse I shared below. Pretty scary, eh? I was there on a clear day with nothing but blue sky, but I was nervous about what might happen if I stood there too long.

Let There Be Light

While in Ohio, I had the pleasure of visiting three lighthouses. Well, I at least saw three lighthouses. The one above, at the mouth of the Cuyahoga River in Lake Erie, was so far away I could only get a slightly blurry picture using a very long lens. I had hoped to take a boat ride and maybe get a closer view, but fate conspired against that scenario. (You saw this light before in the background of this sunset picture.)

This was the second lighthouse I got to visit, and I actually was able to walk out to this one. This small outpost marks the entrance to the Grande River (I think) and isn't really very old. I should post the sign on the far side that warns fishermen of the very, very loud foghorn.

This last lighthouse is across the river and up the hill from the last one. It's older than the other two, and no longer in service. If I'd been in Ohio a week earlier, I could have actually toured this one. But the tourist season was over, and I was out of luck.

What The???

You didn't think I'd forgotten about my Ohio pictures, did you? I've got plenty more of them to share. Here's a little teaser for you of some shots to come. Any idea what you're looking at here? :)

Florida v/s Ohio

It's supposedly Fall now, which means some of the country is starting to get cooler, and the leaves are turning. Here in Florida it just means that it's almost time for the snowbirds to fly back down from up North and tell us how much better everything is back where they come from. But on a different note, here are a couple of pictures that illustrate the difference between Fall in Ohio and Fall in Florida. The colorful gourds and pumpkins above show the color I found at a Fall Festival in Ohio. The colorful bougainvillea flowers below show the color I found at a Fall Festival in Florida. Two pictures, six days apart. Big difference, eh?

Sunday, October 02, 2005

Out Of This World

I wanted to share this LP cover with you as a sort of corollary to the X-15 I showed you yesterday. This is from Eddie Layton At The Hammond Organ-Great Organ Hits (Mercury SR 60639), and as you can see, he's hitched his organ to this rocket, and he's about to blast off for points unknown! Far out, man! (You saw Eddie Layton here at Ernie (Not Bert) in a doodle previously, and it even included an autograph!)

The First Full Week In October

I usually post my weekly calendar picture on Monday, but I'm getting a jump on the week and putting it up today. Enjoy it while it lasts. I shot this Super Bee at a car show up in San Antonio, Florida, during the Rattlesnake Festival. The rattlesnakes were practically non-existent, so I had to make do with a small car show. When was the last time you saw a logo on a car that was as cool as this little guy? I'm sure it's been a good long while.

Before And After

I keep talking about storms today, so here's the proof. Take a look at the above picture. The shy is black, but you can still have pretty decent visibility across the bay. See the base of the bridge ramping up to the right? Now look at the shot below, taken two minutes later. Now do you believe there was a storm? Of course, this being Florida, it was bright and sunny ten minutes later, but still, I had to run for the car to keep from getting soaked.

One Of A Kind

If there is anything we have too much of in Florida, it's development. But if you know where to look, there are still some places that remain relatively quiet and serene, or at least quaint in their arcane charm. One such spot is the Blackburn Point Pivot Bridge onto Casey Key down in Osprey, Florida. The key is filled with million dollar homes, but the bridge to the island is a small, one-laned steel span that rotates 90 degrees to allow the boat traffic to pass. I've never found a good spot to get a picture of this bridge, so I apologize about the composition of these shots. But hopefully you get the idea. I think the clearance under the closed bridge is about 6 feet, so it has to open for almost all the boat traffic, and there is a lot. And believe it or not, the operation of the bridge is not automated. A bridge tender has to activate the gates to block the traffic, then walk to the center of the span to operate the controls and rotate the bridge. I wanted to ask if I could walk out with the operator and ride the bridge, but I was too shy. Maybe next time...

Ride The Wind

Before I caught the rainbows you see below, I was looking for things to shoot, and I found some windsurfers on Sarasota Bay. I thought some of the shots came out pretty good, so I'm sharing one with you. I don't think they are going to be publishing me in their trade papers just yet, but I'm still practicing. If you look close at the picture above, you can see the dark sky in the background. That's the storm that produced the second rainbow below.

I'm Forever Chasing Rainbows

This is one of two rainbows I caught today. They were from two separate storms that blew in over Sarasota. One storm dumped more water on me than I care to think about, and the other one seemed to rain itself out before it got across the bay to the island I was shooting from. Both rainbows were about the same size, so you aren't missing much from me not posting any pictures of the other one. Well, maybe you are, because I shot the other one with the long lens. Hold on while I find those pics... Here ya go!