Clock In

I was fortunate to nab the bulk of Elvis Costello / Elvis Costello and the Attractions’ early releases at rock-bottom, dirt-cheap prices (something like $4 each). One of them was this 1983 release from Columbia Records titled, Punch the Clock. Since I’ve been slammed at the money-maker lately, I figured this album’s title was pretty damn appropriate.

One from the Songbook

Record inserts are one of my favorite things to explore / discover, especially those from the 50’s and 60’s (check out the Inserts category for more). Presented here is the flip side to a custom insert to Harry Belafonte’s 1962 album, The Midnight Special. Simple. To the point. Effective. Not much else is needed for a record shirt, as far as I’m concerned.

Groove, Holmes

Master composer and electro musician David Holmes hits a game-winning grand slam with this double LP compilation (un)remix album titled, Come Get It I Got It. Released back in ’02 from over the pond in the UK, this album is a DJ’s dream (not that I know from experience), and is perfect for casual, groove-heavy, atmosphere-creating chill-out sessions of any and every variety. Obviously coming highly recommended, Come Get It I Got It all but fell into my lap at a dirt cheap price some several years back. Acquired at a small clothing / record store (somewhere) in the valley, CGIIGI was stuffed into a small crate alongside other DJ singles and remix albums. If you can find it, don’t hesitate.

The Bros, Bro

1972’s Country Music Then and Now by Virginia’s own The Statler Brothers features one of the best releases from their acclaimed library. I’m speaking, of course, about The Class of ’57. To say that this sobering tale of aged / aging High School classmates is bittersweet would be an understatement. It certainly doesn’t hurt that the song’s rhythmic tone is a bit somber in and of itself, but stir in the slow-moving harmonics of The Brothers, and you’ve got the makings of a Debbie Downer theme song. All of this, of course, makes The Class of ’57 an essential listen. Please be warned: this one tends to hit fairly close to home.

Smash it Up

My first actual, experience if you will, with The Jimi Hendrix Experience was with this 1969 compilation, Smash Hits. It was played, quite frequently, at Jr. High dances some 25 years ago. Smash Hits is exactly what it sounds like. 12 of The Experience’s best-known hits: Foxey Lady, Stone Free, Manic Depression, Hey Joe, The Wind Cries Mary, All Along the Watchtower, and of course, Purple Haze. Not that anyone should, but if someone needed a one-stop-Jimi-shop, Smash Hits would certainly do the trick.

Punk Rock BBQ, August 2018 Edition

Another Sunday, another successful Punk Rock BBQ. Starting off the day’s festivities was Herbert., a whimsical, one-man-dixieland-show, complete with prosthetic mask and demonic-like vocals. I can honestly say, I’ve never experienced anything like Herbert. before in my life, and I want to experience much, much more! Photo provided of mike watt + the secondmen, which was, like always, an amazingly good time. Lawndale and The Last rounded out the set (not in that order), and cheap drinks and free dogs were enjoyed by all. I can’t wait for the next iteration!

BBHC

Saturday’s Venice Music Festival showcased the mind-bending blues rockers, Big Brother and the Holding Company. Free shows are all the rage this weekend, and not one performer left us wanting more. There are tons of free shows in-and-around the Los Angeles area on any given weekend, and the Venice Music Festival is certainly one we’ll be sure to return to. Also, BBHC KILLED it!

Order Steve Miller Schwag

Oh, Steve Miller. Tucked inside my 1977 copy of Book of Dreams was this pristine insert order form. From posters, to a concert / tour book, to a variety of shirts, and finally to a grab-bag fan club kit, Jokers and Jet Airliners alike could spend their hard-earned, late 70s cash on solid Steve Miller schwag, and for seemingly modest prices. One can never have too much Steve Miller schwag as far as I’m concerned, and the fine people at Capitol Records felt the same way.

“Unusual”

Is something unusual just because you declare it to be unusual? Well, since truth isn’t truth, I suppose so? Presented here is the smash debut by Cynthia Ann Stephanie Lauper, 1983’s She’s So Unusual. My love for Cyndi Lauper stems from The Goonies, mainly, but this album is kind of essential for your 80s vinyl collection… that and Animotion’s Animotion.

Souls

I remember visiting California in late 1999 from Wisconsin, and heading down to Huntington Beach for seafood and discovering a little hole-in-the-wall record shop adjacent to the staple restaurant. Ducking in while we waited for a table, I was floored to discover the rainbow of plush, punk records, cheap, and ripe for the picking. We didn’t have near enough time to dig through everything, but I was able to procure the first album by The Bouncing Souls, The Good, The Bad, and The Argyle. The picture presented here is the non-lyric side of that 1994 album’s insert.

1st

The Bee Gees, like you (may have) never heard them before! Almost a decade before their award-winning work on the grimy, mirror-ball-spinning Saturday Night Fever soundtrack, the Bee Gees, then a five-piece, dug their feet firmly into the mushroom-laden ground of late 60s pop psychedelia. Case-in-point, their debut album, Bee Gees’ 1st. Though the three singles are New York Mining Disaster 1941, To Love Somebody, and Holiday, it’s the opener, Turn of the Century that is an absolute must-hear. Bee Gees’ 1st is a pleasant and blissful listen, and comes, strangely, very highly recommended.

It’s All in the Reflexes

Man, do I love Mondo. Though there is a SDCC (San Diego Comic Con) pressing on clear vinyl with blue splatter (limited to only 500 copies), I’m more than happy to own this retail version on blood red splattered vinyl. This soundtrack to John Carpenter’s unquestionable classic, Big Trouble in Little China, is a remastered, double LP set, and sounds absolutely perfect. If you don’t already own the original 1986 soundtrack, or hell, if you do, treat yourself (right now) to this essential classic, and remember, it’s all in the reflexes.

Off Broadway

Between my fits of laughter over movie quotes pertaining to tomorrow’s post, I remember an old, short-lived Chicago punk band from the Asian Man Records label. The Broadways released one studio album in 1997’s Broken Star. Presented here is a reissue from a questionable, yet recent year on gray marble vinyl. It’s either from 2008, 2014, or 2016. My memory tends to lag these days. Anyway, check out 15 Minutes for a good idea of this seminal band. You’re welcome.

Mr. Bruce

To be completely honest, I’m not exactly sure where, or by what means I acquired Lenny Bruce’s first two records. Ebay maybe? This would have been quite some time ago, but it’s been a while since I spun either of them. Relatively tame, all Lenny Bruce-things considered, I’d still suggest both of these Fantasy Records releases to those of you into history and comedy, and generally anything good. To my knowledge, there are both red and black vinyl versions of both, so, you know, pick your poison.

I Happen to Have the Lyric Sheet at Home

Have you ever wanted to know the lyrics to Minor Threat’s 1984 compilation, Minor Threat? I mean, let’s be honest here. Of course you have. So, allow me to present this 2008 reissue of the original lyric sheet-insert-type-deal. In the bit of research I’ve done on this release, there appears to be several different versions of the cover, some of the early versions fetching a hefty sum. This version was purchased used up in Ventura some 8-or-so years back, not that that matters, but the point is, really, that Minor Threat’s compilation, Minor Threat, is an absolute must-own. Carry on.

De-De-De-Decca!

Man, gone are the days when “Organ” is a marketable category. Circa: 196x?, this “new world of sound” insert shines a stark spotlight into a bit more of the inconspicuous corners of the Decca Records catalog. With bold sections like “Piano” and “Instrumentalists,” it’s fairly evident that Decca wanted to showcase their vast and eclectic tastes, while still adhering to some of their main staples like “Country and Western” and “Folk.” Another day, another insert. Sadly, we’re beginning to run out…

The Beatles’ 20

Not that anyone every would, but someone could potentially only need to acquire this 20-track compilation record to get a very good representation of the luxurious Beatles catalogue. Titled 20 Greatest Hits, this 1982 Capitol Records comp covers (just about) all of the essentials in one, compact record. Like I said, every proper studio release by these clowns is essential for even the modest collector, but in a pinch, 20 Greatest Hits does just fine.