Saturday, November 25, 2006

The Avon Lady Always Rings Twice

Here's another share from last year that I want to highlight for this season. This little 10" record contains some, err, interesting advice for the Avon saleslady who's preparing for those holiday sales. You might find it rather interesting. It's begging to be cut up into chunks and interspersed on your Christmas CD. The flip side is some rather innocuous Christmas music that you probably won't listen to twice. What more can I say? Got get it! Avon Campaign 21 (Avon, 1968)

Moog Madness Returns

One of my readers was kind enough to point out a number of shares from last year that I hadn't reuploaded. Oddly enough, it turned out that when I went to look for those recordings, I couldn't find them. For some reason, they didn't get filed away with all my other rips. So, I had to go back and do some re-recording. This is the first one of those. The sound should be better on this one than what I gave you last year, anyway. I know the cover of this one is in much better shape than the one I scanned last year. Also, I'm sharing stuff at a slightly higher bit rate this year, so even if the vinyl weren't cleaner (and it is), it will sound better. But blah-blah, blah, you just want to get some great music, don't you? Here's the second greatest Moog Christmas LP ever recorded, The Moog Machine-Christmas Becomes Electric (Columbia CS 9959, 1969).

For those of you that have read this far, how would you like a secret share? I found an awesome moog version of Handel's Messiah on an LP by Ralph Carmichael called The Electric Symphony (The MOOG Synthesizer). The rest of the record is mostly original compositions with a Christian theme that you really don't need to hear. But this track I'm sharing? WOW! You gotta hear this! It's going on my annual Christmas CD for sure. So here is The New Hallelujah "Handel's Hallelujah Chorus" by Ralph Carmichael & Clark Gassmann from The Electric Symphony (The MOOG Synthesizer) (Light LS-5541-LP).

Request Lines Are Open

Hello out there! I hope everyone is enjoying the shares. I see lots of downloads, but no one is leaving any comments. Not that you have to, but it makes a bloggers heart warm to get little notes now and again. I shouldn't say that I've gotten no comments, but I haven't gotten many. And the ones that I have gotten are very much appreciated. But the reason for this post is to try and get a little more feedback. It's still early in the season, and there is plenty of time to maybe get some requests in here. Everything I post is from my own personal record collection, and my own rips, but maybe there is something in my collection that you'd like to hear. Just leave me a comment, and I'll see what I can do. I certainly don't have copies of every Christmas record ever released, and a lot of what I have is stuff that no one is going to want to listen to, but maybe. I'm willing to throw the door open to suggestions. Better to make your requests now than in the waning days of December. I do have a few other things I need to do besides work on this blog...

Oh, don't forget the rules. It has to be something that's out of print. That means you can't go to Best Buy and get it, or order it online from somewhere, or even download it from iTunes. And lately, that rules out a lot of stuff. So please don't ask me for any of those things, I'm just going to have to tell you no.

Sammy Kaye Day, Part Three

I know it's hard to believe, but there is more Sammy Kaye to be had here. (There's also more Sammy Kaye to be had out there. I know there are some singles floating around, so if anybody feels like contributing to the cause here, drop me a line...) This is the final bit of Sammy Kaye Christmas I have in the archives. A three record set of 45s with a seasonal theme, this little gem came my way a few months ago. One record has White Christmas on one side and Winter Wonderland on the other, so that's what you're going to get in the download. To tell you the truth, I didn't even record the rest of the set. Hope you don't mind too terribly bad. You'll have to go to some other blog for the rest of the year. So, to finish out our Sammy Kaye collection, here is Year 'Round Favorites With Sammy Kaye And His Orchestra (RCA Victor WP 184, 3x7", 1949). Wow, that's old! And why are all three of these releases on different labels?

Sammy Kaye Day, Part Two

Remember, I said more to come, and here's some more. This is a set of four 7" 45 rpm singles in a little box, which I guess used to be a competing format for the 12" LP. Sounds like the same old competing technology war you thought was a modern invention. But that's beside the point. We're interested in the music. This recording takes us all the way back to 1951, which to tell you the truth is long, long before I was ever around. But I can still enjoy it. What I don't enjoy is the way there's an announcer on nearly every track telling you who's singing. It's all Sammy's orchestra, but he has different vocal groups, including the Three Kaydets & The Kaye Choir. Trust me, it gets old fast. But you'll have to download it and see for your self. Here are those jolly snowmen, Sammy Kaye-Christmas Serenade (Columbia B-285, 4-7", 1951).

Sammy Kaye Day, Part One

It's time for our first theme day around these parts, or at least our first well-themed day. Most days I like to post in free-form, train of thought ways, and you never know where that's going to take you, but today I have a well-thought out plan. Yes, it's Sammy Kaye Day! (No, not Danny Kaye. If you want him, go here.) This first selection is the most recent, and also the only one in stereo, allowing you to use both ears at the same time. You really should listen to this while you're putting up your Christmas tree. And can anyone tell me what has that little girl on the cover so fixated? She's not paying any attention to her stuffed poodle, or Mom and Dad for that matter. There's something very interesting at the other end of that couch. I'm guessing a new PS3. Or perhaps not. Anyhow, please download and enjoy Sammy Kaye And His Orchestra-Christmas Day With Sammy Kaye (Decca DL 74070, 1960). More to come...

Friday, November 24, 2006

Christmas Talk

Another performer that we lost in 2006 was Mike Douglas. Mike recorded two Christmas LPs in his lifetime, this one, and a second on the Word label, which I have yet to find. I shared this out back in August not long after his death, and I offer it to you again now. Please download and enjoy Mike Douglas-My Kind Of Christmas (Epic BN 26322, 1967).

You know, the catalog number on this one is pretty close to the number on the Eddie Layton one I shared with you earlier. So that Layton is probably from the same year, or maybe a year earlier. That sounds about right.

Dee-lirious Holi-Dee

Speaking of Lenny Dee, you owe it to yourself to go get this LP. Don't be scared off by the toy poodles or the cheap Santa suit, this record is Dee-licious. The artist is Lenny Dee, the instrument is the organ, the album is Happy Holi-Dee (Decca DL 74146, 1961). Oh, and the vocals on three tracks are handled by The Anita Kerr Singers. This is an album I would have loved to bring to you, but someone beat me to it. You can go download this over at Check The Cool Wax, along with plenty of other holiday goodies. Go get it now! I'll still be here when you get back.

Sadly, Lenny Dee passed away earlier this year. He died here in Florida at the age of 83.

Better Layton Than Ever

I promised myself I wouldn't do it, but I did anyway. I just found this record today, so I rushed home, ripped it, scanned it, converted it, uploaded it and now I'm posting it. I should let these things sink in more, but I got caught up in the moment. One of the tracks I shared out during Christmas In July was a wiz-bang version of Winter Wonderland by Eddie Layton, so I was quite excited to find a whole Christmas LP from him today. It's somewhat later than his other, more out-there stuff on Mercury, but it still has its moments. No, it's not Lenny Dee or Earl Grant, but you'll still enjoy it. I don't have a date on this one, but I'm guessing around mid-60s. The liner notes mention that this is his first LP for Epic, so it's a little surprising that they decided to start with a Christmas record. There were no listings for this record on GEMM, so maybe it's pretty rare. (They do list a 4-song holiday EP on Columbia that I need to dig up, though). So please download and enjoy Eddie Layton-Organ Music For Christmas With Chimes And Brass Choir (Epic BN 26118).

Christmas With Billy

One of my goals this year is to share with you as much old, crusty, out-of-print and forgotten Christmas music as possible. So, to maximize that, I'm going to point you towards some other sharity sites with Christmas records available for download that I think you might like. Whenever I have the record they're sharing, I'll scan it in and throw it up here, otherwise, I'll just give you the link. The record I want to point you to now is Billy Vaughn-Christmas Carols (Dot DLP 25148, 1958). Well, I think the date is 1958. This LP was released with a couple of different covers, this being one that came out later, I think. Also, it's stereo, and 1958 is really early for stereo, so sometimes you get a rerecording from a later date on these stereo releases. But enough semantics. You can get this LP over at The Tuna Melt, so have at it.

Just in case that isn't enough Billy Vaughn for you, he was featured twice back during the Christmas in July celebration here at Ernie (Not Bert). Check the archives and you can download Billy performing Winter World Of Love and The Chipmunk Song. (His version of The Chipmunk Song actually made the Christmas In July Best-Of disc!)

David Wayne (Not Bruce)

Good morning everybody! Welcome to a new day of Christmas music magic. Today is Black Friday, which means I am going to try not to leave the house all day, 'cause anywhere I may try to go is just going to be a mess of people trying to find bargains. Well, I might try to go to Steak N Shake for lunch, but that's no big surprise. But enough about me, you're here for the music, right? The album of the moment is a pair of well-presented stories on the Cricket label. I think the Cricket label is a few steps above the usual kiddie record garbage that comes out on Pickwick or Premiere, even though it does appear to be a subsidiary of Pickwick. I really enjoyed the two stories on here. I'm afraid I have little info on the featured narrator, David Wayne, though. There is an IMDB entry on a David Wayne (from The Andromeda Strain!), but I have no way to confirm if it's the same guy or not. In fact, they list five David Waynes. Either way, this certainly isn't Batman's alter ego, Bruce Wayne. But enough of the babbling, here is David Wayne Narrates The Little Star Of Bethlehem & The Toy Box, John L. Eastman Conducting The Cricket Symphony (Cricket CR-X1). The back cover of this is just ads for other records in "The Grand Prix Series", so I didn't scan it in. Oh, and there is some bad surface noise at the beginning of side two, but it goes away pretty quick, so try not to let it annoy you too badly.

Stereo Candy

Here's another of the things I shared out last year that I wanted to remind you of. The great Pete Fountain released Candy Clarinet (Coral 57487, 1967) long before he had to fight off Hurricane Katrina. If you really, really want to, you can download my copy, but why would you want to when you can get the Stereo version over at my buddy's place, You'll be glad you did. (Thanks for the stereo rip, Cap'n!)

Thursday, November 23, 2006

Little Hawk

I mentioned that I shot two birds today on Thanksgiving, so here is the other. Yep, it's the same American Kestrel (or it's mate) that I shot a couple of months ago. Evidently, they love the field behind my parent's house. Unfortunately, they are also very skittish. I couldn't get within a few hundred yards of this guy. I actually hopped a fence this time, trying to get closer, fighting my way through weeds that were quite literally up to my neck. But the closer I got, the more he fidgeted, until he finally flew off and didn't return. A couple of times he flew off, circled around, then came back to rest on a different branch of the same tree. During on of those orbits, I got the shot below of the little guy on the wing. My camera has a real hard time focusing on such a small object that's so far away and in motion. I even had a monopod to try and steady the shot, but it's still quite fuzzy. You can also see the grain in the picture from the high ISO I used. But I saw the kestrel again, and that's the important part!

Little Wing

It's not all about the Christmas music just yet. I'm still trying to get out and take some pictures between the recording sessions. Today I went to my parents house for Thanksgiving, and happened to catch a couple of interesting birds. This is the first one, but I'm afraid I have no idea what it is. It's hard to shoot these little guys since they are rarely out of the bushes, and they are so small. Again, I need a longer lens. But this one came out pretty well, with lots of color.


Somebody help me, I can't stop with the segues! In my last post, I mentioned Harry Simeone, and his famous arrangement of Carol Of The Drum, which he smartly renamed The Little Drummer Boy, and thus collected royalties for ever and ever. But that's neither here nor there. What is here is the cover of the 45 RPM 7" release of that track, which I had never seen before until I stumbled across this copy the other day. The track is incredibly easy to come by, so there's no download here, I just wanted to share the picture sleeve with you. By the way, the flip side on the record inside is Die Lorelei, From the 20th Century-Fox Picture "Fraulein" by The Voices Of The Junior Chorale. I don't think that's a Christmas tune... Oh, for the completists, the label is 20th Fox, and the catalog number is 45-121, and the label goes out of its way to mention that this is the original version.

Nutcracker Sweet!

Since I just reposted a Fred Waring record, why not throw up something new by him as well? (New being a relative term, since this came out way back in 1950!) Keep in mind that they didn't yet have hi-fi in 1950, so this one sounds like it was originally recorded as a 78, but it's still worth a few listens. And as an added bonus, they added lyrics to the traditional Tchaikovsky tunes. Who'd a thunk it? One of the writers of those lyrics (and the arranger) is one Harry Simeone, who you may recognize as the guy behind one of the greatest Christmas records of all time, Little Drummer Boy. Without further ado, here is Fred Waring And His Pennsylvanians-Nutcracker Suite (Decca 1-111 7", 1950).

Last Christmas, I Gave You Some Tunes

I want to highlight some of the stuff I shared out last year, in case anybody new stops by, or maybe you missed it last Christmas. (For those of you who are brave, I've re-upped everything from last year, so it's all available for download. You'll just have to search the archives, or wait for me to re-post it like this.) One of the few requests I posted last year was this Fred Waring LP. I don't have a lot of time to rip the records that people request, but sometimes I get the chance, or I really like what I hear when I dig out the record. That was the case with this one. I didn't expect much, but this is a really great Christmas record. So if you missed it last year, please go download Fred Waring And The Pennsylvanians-'Twas The Night Before Christmas (MCA 15016, originally released in 1955). You'll be glad you did.

Swingingest Christmas (Oodles Of Doodles CCVII)

I've been agonizing for months now over what to share out first for Christmas 2006. I finally decided just this morning that this record had to be it. It's got all sorts of things about it that I love to share here at Ernie (Not Bert). First, it's one of those records that's just hard as all get-out to find. I nearly dropped it when I first picked it up and realized what it was this past summer. It was at a Goodwill store in Englewood, FL, among a bunch of other mildly interesting stuff. Having never seen one in the flesh, I really had to look at it well to understand what it was. In case you don't know either, let me explain it. This is a various artists LP from 1959. What distinguishes it from the others is that one of the artists was Esquivel, who arguably had a bigger career during the Space Age Pop revival of the nineties than he did in the fifties and sixties. The other artists include Ray Martin, Mimi Hines and The Skip-Jacks.
What else is there to love about this album? Well, you get one of those RCA Victor tags that I love so much. Oddly enough, this is one of the few taglines that they repeated in their series. I shared another Merry Christmas tag with you back on the opening day of Christmas In July. (I see that I also mentioned this record, and wished for it. I guess Santa came early this year.)
Can it get much better? Of course it can. There's a doodle on the back! A sort of a Santa-themed cuckoo clock motif, where Santa and your mother hook up right at midnight. And if you look closely, someone sees Mommy kissing Santa Claus.

So all of this adds up to the perfect start to the Christmas Share-A-Thon for 2006. The only problem is that parts of this record have been released on CD. Several years ago, they took the Esquivel solo tracks, as well as the tracks on which he backs the Skip-Jacks, mixed in some LP tracks that had a holiday theme, added a rather merry non-holiday B-side, a couple of tracks by a famous swing-revival DJ featuring a voice-over from the bed-ridden Esquivel, and called it an Esquivel Christmas album. It's short, but great. So that means I can't share 6 of the 12 tracks with you. Trust me, the remaining six tracks are well worth your time. The remaining tracks all feature Ray Martin And His Orchestra, and most of those feature lead vocals by Mimi Hines. She does a great job using several different voices to make each song sound a little different. After all that build up, are you ready to download The Merriest of Christmas Pops (RCA Victor LSP-2032, 1959)? Go get it, end enjoy!

Happy Turkey Day!

Happy Thanksgiving everybody! Same as last year, we're celebrating by sharing out pretty much the only Thanksgiving-themed track we know of, Spencer Ross-Thanksgiving Day Parade (Columbia 4-41532 7" 45 RPM single, 1960). This upbeat march is a great way to officially kick off the 2006 Christmas Share-A-Thon here at Ernie (Not Bert). It's going to be bigger and better than last year, with all your old favorites, plus more new stuff than you can shake a stick at. So as soon as you've eaten that last little bit of turkey, drop by and see what we have to offer. You won't be disappointed!

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

More Of The White Stuff

Those of you who experienced the Christmas Share-A-Thon last year at Ernie (Not Bert) know that I always tried to get two shares up a day. I didn't always make it, and sometimes all I could throw up was a single with two measly tracks, but I tried. So this year I intend to keep up that tradition. When possible, I like to have a theme as well, and since the holidays really haven't started yet, our theme has to be something else. And since I have a second album for skiers, here it is, making our theme 'Skiing'. This LP doesn't have the humor of our previous share, but it's got some decent tracks. The style is 70s country-rock. Think Eagles, or something similar. Maybe not as good, but you get the idea. Please download and give a listen to Six Family Mountain-Takin' A Ride With The Wind (National Ski Patrol NSP-1001). I think I shared the doodle from the back of this LP with you sometime last year... Oh, and what's with these two LPs both having a slangy contraction in their title? Curious...

The Colors, The Colors!

I'm starting to go loopy. I've recorded so much vinyl lately, it's all started to run together, but not into a black soup. Instead, it's a colorful kaleidoscope of different wavelengths, sound waves morphing into light waves. It's all so trippy...

'Twas The Day Before Thanksgiving (Oodles Of Doodles CCVI)

I can't wait anymore. Everybody is already posting their Christmas music, and I'm feeling left out. But you aren't supposed to have anything to do with Christmas until the afternoon of Thanksgiving, right? So, how about if I cheat a little and share out a non-Christmas album? Something that fits into the winter theme, but doesn't involve any holiday at all. So, how about a folk album about skiing? Yep, here's a great LP all about how great it was to go skiing in the 60s. There's some very dated terminology in here, but I'm sure you'll get the point. I only ever went skiing once (if you want to call it skiing...) and I often know what he's talking about. I had to think about Round Bottomed Bogners for a minute, but I figured it out. Oh, and there are some great little doodles around the edge of this LP that to me look like the Schmoo, but your mileage may vary. So please, download and enjoy this, the first share of the season from Ernie (Not Bert): Ray Conrad-The Cotton-Pickin' Lift Tower And Other Skiing Songs (Prestige International INT 13039) !

Monday, November 20, 2006

The Week Of Thanksgiving

Welcome to the week of Thanksgiving. I am giving thanks for the fact that I only have to work three days this week! Hooray! By a strange coincidence, the picture this week was taken on Thanksgiving Day last year. These white ibis were hanging around the small pond in my aunt's back yard last year while my family was gathered to celebrate the holiday. How's that for a coincidence?