Tag Archives: pop

Friday, 25 November 2011

Cilla Black: Anyone Who Had A Heart / Just For You (1964)


 
here we have another cute girl pop number, this time from the other side of the big pond. cilla black was born priscilla white in liverpool 1943, and was the first (and only) female musician to sign a contract with the beatles’ manager brian epstein. funny enough she picked up ‘black’ as her stage name after the editor of the local music newspaper ‘mersey beat’ wrote about her with that name by mistake. ‘anyone who had a heart’ was her first #1 hit and her big breakthrough, after her first single ‘love of the loved’ (a lennon/mccartney song) only made it to #35 in the UK. it is a sweet and touching ballad about unreturned love, which becomes even more touching by cillas incredibly rich and powerful voice. when you first listen to this, the first impression that hits you might not even be the beauty of the song itself but rather the overwhelming realisation of ‘wow that girl can SING!’. cillas marvelous vocals are accompanied by some orchestration and a background choir, which makes the whole arrangement more sweet and soulful. awww, this is another number i just cant stop listening to! the b-side, however, is far …

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Friday, 25 November 2011

Irma Thomas: Wish Someone Would Care / Break-A-Way (1964)


 
here is my first music post for a loooong time, and it is special in many other ways, too. first of all this a very big favourite of mine, and also it is the first example of girl pop that i ever posted on twenty flight rock. and telling you why i love this record so much, i will start with the b-side: i have heard this song thousands of times on the radio sung by tracy ullman (as you may know i was as unfortunate as to be born around that time, the late 20th century). i always wondered how i could like a song from the 80s that much, because except from the blues brothers (1980) i dont let anything from that decade touch my ears (im a weird kind of purist somehow). of course i wasnt surprised at all when i found out that miss ullman covered a 60s song and instantly looked for the record to add it to my collection. in fact its a pretty shame that ullmans version became so popular and this one slipped into obscurity so soon. irma thomas, the ‘soul queen of new orleans’, who is often associated with …

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Monday, 25 October 2010

The Moody Blues: The Magnificent Moodies (1965)


 
alright folks, all the pictures have been uploaded successfully, so here we go with the next record. i bought this record as a primary issue (first pressing), but as it turned out it is a re-pressing (wine red decca label, thus must be post 1970). however, this at least provides us a perfect crystal clear sound quality on this beautiful mono LP.
i dont think i have to introduce the group a lot, as virtually EVERYONE knows nights in white satin – but here we have the moodys debut record, still recorded with their first singer denny laine (later replaced by justin hayward, who sang their famous no 1 hit). so you can expect typical british invasion, mid-60s pop beat stuff, with some nice r&b; influences.
i must admit that i like the a-side much better than the b-side, although it contains mostly cover songs while the b-side has all the original denny laine / mike pinder songs on it.
however, on the a-side we have beautiful, grooving renditions of james browns ill go crazy and i dont mind (with mike pinder on vocals), chris kenners something you got and of course the moodys break-trough …

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Tuesday, 14 September 2010

Jacques Dutronc: La Publicité (1967)


 
resuming the series on french artists that i once started (yes i admit it is not very coherent), heres a (imho) marvelous ep by french singer jacques dutronc (husband of francoise hardy by the way).
the style of his music ranges from 60s pop, rock to garage rock or yeye as french 60s music is often called, and – unlike michel polnareff for instance – exclusively sung in french. the title track is a swinging little number with a lot of drive, followed by a slow beautiful ballad somewhat more into the vein of chanson, with amazing soft vocals. again i am sorry that i cant tell you a lot about the lyrics, if youre curious just google the title and look for a translation (the better if you speak french yourself ;-).
the flipside starts with a song that id call the weakest on this record, but, as this is a fine record, even the weakest song is a good one. well, my favourite track on this ep, and i must say also my favourite dutronc song over all, is the last one: hippie hippie hourrah. this time i also looked up the lyrics, and …

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Sunday, 29 August 2010

The Tremeloes: Even The Bad Times Are Good / Jenny’s Alright (1967)


 
heres a cute little 45 by the tremeloes (without brian poole). the a-side, ‘even the bad times are good’, is a cheery party tune, typical lovely 60s pop music (if the silly “la la la” chorus doesnt annoy you). nevertheless i quite like this song and i would rate it somewhere between four and five stars.
the b-side is not really bad, but not very interesting either. i had to copy a track from a sampler here, because the record would jump after about a minute and was impossible to make it play any further because the grooves were completely damaged at a certain spot so the needle would loose grip every round. what a drag. the song, however, is not that good that it would make me sad to have the b-side damaged (three stars at best).
but please listen yourself and tell me what you think!

interesting links:
a fansite
the tremeloes on rateyourmusic
the tremeloes on last.fm

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Saturday, 28 August 2010

Episode Six: Here, There And Everywhere / Mighty Morris Ten (1966)


 
this is a kind of re-up, but not really. i posted this record before, but without cover art. i have an original english pressing, with a company sleeve, and now i also have a german pressing – with original picture cover! if anyone has ever tried to collect original covers of episode six records, he will know how terribly rare and expensive they are. both records play in exactly the same quality, so if you downloaded the other rip before you will not notice that its a new rip i post here.
now for those who missed the first post, heres what i wrote about this record before on 20th february:

have you ever heard ian gillan, singer of hard rocking deep purple, sing a sweet melodic beatles cover? well, heres your chance! from 1965 right until joining purples second incarnation in summer 1969, episode six was the group that gillan and his mate roger glover (who also was a founding member) were part of, as lead singer and bass player respectively. they only relased a couple of singles and played a few times at the bbc (once filling in for pink …

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Thursday, 26 August 2010

St. Louis Union: Girl / Respect (1966)


 
another british group (a six-piece), but this time a really obscure one. st. louis unions entire work comprises three 45s released in 1966, and this is one of them. their most famous song was a pretty cool cover of bob segers ‘east side story’. here, on their debut record, we also have two cover songs, the a-side is lennon/mccartneys ‘girl’ from rubber soul, the b-side a rendition of otis reddings ‘respect’. both nice but not outstanding (im still looking for that east side story record!), give it a try and tell me what you think. sorry, no cover art this time.

interesting links:
biography on manchesterbeat
st. louis union on rateyourmusic
st. louis union on last.fm

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Thursday, 26 August 2010

Johnny Kidd & The Pirates: A Shot of Rhythm and Blues / I Can Tell (1962)


 
a real classic from englands early 60s rock&roll-beat; scene, heres a marvelous cover of ‘a shot of rhythm and blues’ (first released the year before by arthur alexander) by legendary johnny kidd (born frederick alfred heath) and his pirates, who died at the young age of 30 in a car crash. although during the groups early days he had gained quite a reputation, he didnt become a devotionally worhsipped rock-myth like eddie cochran or buddy holly – and, well, just imagine going out on the street today and asking people about him. who will remember that it was him who wrote the famous song ‘shakin all over’?
among collectors and followers of the british rock&roll; scene though his work is still highly acclaimed. but by the time the fatal accident happened, the heydays of shakin all over and such were long gone and kidd was trying for a comeback. the lineup of his pirates now changed a lot, and especially the job of the bassist was vacant. many applied for it, among them the future bassist of the belgian beat group the shake spears, and the future bassist of a group that would start as ’roundabout’ – …

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Thursday, 19 August 2010

Episode Six: I Can See Through You / When I Fall In Love (1967)


 
concerning the time of its release, ‘here there and everywhere’ would have been more appropriate to post now, as it was released on just this day 44 years ago (19th august 1966 – ian gillans 21st birthday). but due to the order in which i bought the records this ones the one thats left at the moment (episode six records are quite rare to get and also rather expensive (and of those with original picture cover one can only dream – thus of course this cover is taken from the web, i could only scan the bare record for you).
however, ‘i can see through you’, is perhaps the most beautiful song written by roger glover. bright, colorful beat music in the vein of mid-to-late 60s british psych-pop with gorgeous male-female vocal harmonies and of course gillans soft, clear voice – still “unspoilt” by hard rock and heavy metal (cigarettes and alcohol included). the song contains a rather harsh instrumental bridge that i find a little annoying, but the cute flute sequence that follows it opening another (extended) chorus outweighs it all. what can i say, this song simply makes me feel good. go and try it …

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Saturday, 31 July 2010

Grapefruit: C’Mon Marianne / Ain’t It Good (1968)


 
completely changing the subject, heres some lovely british psych-pop by one of my favourite groups: grapefruit – formerly known as ‘the grapefruit’ (named after yoko onos infamous book). their most famous song was ‘dear delilah’ (to follow soon, i didnt have time to rip it yet), and their debut album ‘around grapefruit’ is legendary, most of the material being written by the groups bassist george alexander, born alexander young (his brother george young being a founding member of the easybeats, brothers malcom and angus young being founding members of AC/DC). one of the two swettenham brothers, geoff (drums), later joined the mysterious but just as legendary 70s prog band fynn mccool.

the nice psychedelic cover art is more than obviously “stolen” from pink floyds ‘the piper at the gates of dawn’! but now about the music:
‘cmon marianne’ is a fast, driving and cheery song with a dynamic drum beat, fresh and lively brass accompaniment and sweet beatlish background vocals. perfect to lift up your mood when feeling down!
sorry for the noise on the b-side, this is the best that i could make out of the original rip. ‘aint it good’ (written …

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Saturday, 31 July 2010

Michel Polnareff: Pourquoi Faut-Il Se Dire Adieu (1968)


 
sorry first of all for the poor quality of these rips, but my copy of this record was already damaged when i bought it earlier this year. but as the first track is a melancholic ballad, the crackling sounds ironically somehow fit the atmosphere and give a nice nostalgic feeling. the title track is nice and sentimental, but occasionally the orchestral arrangements become just too much and it gets sort of trashy; but this is compensated by polnareffs clear and soft vocals – stunningly beautiful!
the next track, ‘ring-a-ding’, is a sweet pop song that i like a lot. it has a cute chorus, accompanied by a (hardly to be heard) female background choir, and im always sad when i reckon the songs over again, as it runs for only 2:21. does anyone know about an extended version of it? :-)
the b-side opens with a rather melancholic piece again, ‘jai du chargin marie’ is sung in french like the a-side, but with occasional lines in english in the chorus. orchestral arrangements are to be heard here aswell, but far more discreet and thus the ballad isnt trashy at no point – a pleasant listen for …

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Sunday, 25 July 2010

Los Bravos: Going Nowhere / Brand New Baby (1966)


 
well, as you can see above this 45 is not one of my favourites, but i think it always interesting to look beyond the ‘big numbers’ of one hit wonders – in this case its los bravos from madrid, who scored a US #4 and UK #2 hit with ‘black is black’ (we already had a cover of that one from johnny hallyday here: noir c’est noir), a song i guess most of you will be familiar with.
now this record sort of was hard for me to rate, because i couldnt really decide whether i should rate it with three or four stars. first of all, both sides are rather unspectacular early-60s pop numbers, sounding a little as if they were recorded one or two years earlier than they were; so, nothing outstanding (also compared to ‘black is black’). on the other hand, both songs are definitely not too bad, so its average, nice pop music typical for its time. apart from that it is quite interesting that those – spanish – guys dont have any accent like that to be heard, i thought, until i read that their lead singer actually was german.
so …

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Thursday, 22 July 2010

Jeff Beck: Tallyman / Rock My Plimsoul (1967)


 
following the jeff beck concert report heres the second one of his two only solo singles between his time with the yardbirds and the jeff beck group. the special thing about this 45 and the other one (‘hi ho silver lining’ / ‘becks bolero’) is that beck is (rumored to be) singing the vocals himself for the first time. beck had been one of the highly acclaimed session guitarists in the mid 1960s, alongside jimmy page. if one of them doesnt play on a (any) record of this time, you can almost be sure the other one contributed to it. finally page had replaced beck as the lead guitarist of the famous group the yardbirds (who before beck had eric clapton on lead guitar), after a short while with both of them being in the group simultaneously. after leaving the yardbirds beck started the (perhaps) even more famous jeff beck group, with giants like rod stewart, ron wood, nicky hopkins, aynsley dunbar and others, and became very successful. he continues this success to this day with his solo carrier.
now about this record: the a-side is a very nice, typical mid 60s pop/rock number, that can be …

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Sunday, 4 July 2010

Michel Polnareff: Le Bal Des Laze (1967)


 
closing a gap of more than two months, heres the next record by michel polnareff. this time it is a favourite of mine – more than the one i posted last time – a ’67 ep called ‘le bal des laze’.
of course the title track is the first one on the a-side and it also is the most beautiful song on this record. a slow, moody ballad with a sort-of bewitching, continuous organ play dominating the orchestral accompaniment. although this track is rather long (almost 5 minutes) i like it a lot and it doesnt get boring. following is a short filler track, ‘le temps a laisse son manteau’, a bit distorted and strange, but it fits the musical context of the a-side.
the flipside, however, is a lot different, as both tracks are rather tounge-in-cheek, a slow, bluesy chanson and a crazy wild-west vocal parody (or how the hell would you call this??).
so all in all this record offers a lot of variety and is pretty interesting, despite the rather boring cover art. enjoy!

interesting links:
a detailed biography
michel polnareff on rateyourmusic
michel …

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Thursday, 24 June 2010

Colin Blunstone: Wonderful / Beginning (1973)


 
a lot musicians birthdays today! after ive missed out some birthdays last week (paul mccartney (68) on the 18th june, rod argent (65) on the 14th june) – mainly because i dont have any records by them that i could post – it even hard to catch up today, as on the 24th june three 60s heroes were born: first, arthur brown and jeff beck, who were born on the same day in 1944, and of course colin blunstone of the zombies, who became 65 today.
now about this record: although the a-side is written by zombies songwriters rod argent and chris white, and the b-side penned by blunstone himself, both sides do not sound like zombies songs at all (but keep in mind theres nine years between this record an the zombies initial hit ‘shes not there’) – but it is blunstones distinctive, clear voice that is at once recognizable and will inevitably remind one of those fresh, bright 60s pop songs. both ‘wonderful’ and ‘beginning’ are slow light-weight pop ballads, the first going right into the synth sound typical for the early-mid 70s. the b-side is a better though, so all in all this record …

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