This 1984 RCA Records compilation of Elvis Presley material (originally recorded 1956-1957) is part of the label’s Elvis 50th Anniversary Series which is described by RCA as follows: “RCA is proud to present a series of releases designed to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the birth of the King of Rock’n’Roll – Elvis Presley.” Looks like RCA rereleased the bulk of Elvis’ early albums for this series, including his first two, Elvis Presley and Elvis. Rocker is, well, just that. Containing classics like Shake, Rattle & Roll, Hound Dog, Jailhouse Rock, and of course the Carl Perkins masterpiece, Blue Suede Shoes, it’s clear where label execs got the name for this heavy comp.
Harry Nilsson’s 1974 collaboration with John Lennon falls a bit short from misguided expectations, but is still a necessary inclusion to any collection focusing on pop music history. Pussy Cats was hyped as having been recorded during Lennon’s 18-month “Lost Weekend,” a period he’d spend in the early 70’s apart from Yoko. Nilsson’s broken voice and (obviously) medicinally-influenced demeanor are something to note in this gluttonous series of 10 tracks. Buy it not expecting much, and you’ll be pleasantly surprised. This 2018 RSD release on hardwood vinyl is limited to 1500 copies. Enjoy.
Back in 1980, Jerry Reed released a 10-track collection of classic Jim Croce songs titled, Jerry Reed Sings Jim Croce. Staying fairly close to the original inceptions of Croce’s compositions, Reed pays well-deserving respect to one of the best pop songwriters of the 1970’s (or otherwise). Reed’s twang and grit offer only a tinge of dirt-riddled flair to Croce’s already rough-around-the-edges approach, but all-in-all, Reed Sings Croce is a delightfully pleasant spin, and should be heard by any fan of either prestigious artist. From The Avalanches to Jerry Reed… that’s how we do it here at The Groove.
Everyone knows the iconic cover to Elvis Presley’s debut LP, but what few may recognize, outside of those who own, is its subtle back cover. Released on RCA in 1956, I present to you, for the first time on this site, Elvis Presley’s debut self titled back cover art. Disregard the purple pen scribbles.
To prove to everyone that I’m not a liar (but, mainly just proving to myself), here is the full Best of Dolly Parton album cover w/ “POSTER INCLUDED” hype as mentioned on the 11/11/16 post from the Prudent Groove (enter shameless self-promoting plug here). 80’s love songs may or may not be spilling from our living room Echo at the moment, but our post-dinner spin will include a cut (or two) from Best of… the poster may or may not make an prominent appearance. Have a groovy evening, kids.
Here is a pristine poster from RCA’s 1975 compilation, Best of Dolly Parton. Featuring the same artwork / photo from the album’s cover, this poster has laid dormant for 40+ years and was just discovered the other day by yours truly. She’ll likely lay dormant for another 40+ years, or whenever the kids get their grubby little mitts on it.
Hugo Winterhalter Goes… Latin, and we here are thankful that he did, since, as far as I can recollect, we can all benefit from this throwaway, yet strikingly beautiful 1959 design layout nonchalantly strewn across his majestic cover… or some type shit. You, my friend, exist, within “Living Stereo.” Manufactured in 1958, the Living Stereo logo is both synonymous with quality, and visual brilliance… not to mention it’s 58 years old. Respect the history of graphic design, kids.
So… I’m going to expose myself in admitting that I have no recollection of obtaining this album. Mr. Mister’s Welcome to the Real World, an RCA Records 1985 release, contains both No. 1 singles Broken Wings and Kyrie. Wikipedia tells us that bassist and lead singer Richard Page turned down replacement roles in both Toto and Chicago to stay with Mr. Mister, so, you know, that’s something. This, the band’s second album, proved to be their most successful, and is a perfect glimpse of mid-80’s power-pop. (Electro-madness!) Happy Sunday, kids!
It doesn’t take much for an avid Kinks fan to purchase an album (for the third time), when a bonus disc is involved. If you’re smart, you already own The Kinks’ 1971 masterpiece, Muswell Hillbillies. If you’re late to the game, do yourself a favor and pick up 2014’s remastered double LP with a vinyl pressing of this amazing “bonus disc” chock full of alt takes and BBC session what-have-yous. It’s a great way to experience a classic album with new, stereophonic ears, and that’s all I’m willing to say on the matter.
It’s Thursday evening… time to enjoy this Country Sunshine, complete with the confused, and somewhat befuddled look of master Croce impersonator, Jerry Reed (row one, column two… also below).
Presented by Goodyear and released by RCA Special Products, the long and unrelenting days of laborious fieldwork almost make themselves worth the back-breaking efforts when at the end of each sundown is a mason jar full of bootlegged moonshine and this, 1980 10-track comp ripe with shade-searching Country Sunshine.
So, what do you do when you’re halfway into work and the piercing notion strikes that, once again, you forgot to snap a few pics for the day’s post?! Some would veer their car off the next overpass, while others would make up some vague excuse, double back, and snatch the visual interpretation of one’s daily obsession. So… what did I do? I cursed myself, countless times, and left it up to “oh, well, we’ll figure it out” as a viable, and ONLY option.
So, here’s a photo of a mid-seventies MCA Records logo. Swallowed up by the mighty Universal Music Group, MCA Records gasped its last, fleeting breath back in 2003.
As I fought inevitability this morning in an epic battle of comfort vs. responsibility, the lyrics to Gotta Get Up by Harry Nilsson began to loop inside my groggy head like a snooze-less alarm. I have no shame admitting my adolescent experience with the mighty Mr. Nilsson, having just “discovered” him via means of the sobering documentary, Who is Harry Nilsson (and Why is Everybody Talkin’ About Him?).
Call me a newcomer, a sap-hearted seedling, or a punk-eared Johnny-come-lately. Call me whatever you wish, just remember to call me a fan of Harry Nilsson.
Bring home the gift of timeless music with this collection of Harry Belafonte favorites. With this limited time offer, you can enjoy such chart topping classics as, Jump Down, Spin Around, Angelina, Cocoanut Woman and many more! Not only is Harry Belafonte a handcrafted compilation of previously released material, it’s also pressed on dynaflex, which as you know is:
The RCA trademark for a new development in record manufacturing that provides a smoother, quieter surface and improved ability to reproduce musical sound. This lightweight record also virtually eliminates warpage and turntable slippage.
Harry Belafonte: offering affordable classics while instigating the right wing since 1952!
Brenda Lee was mindful enough to remember us this year, and put together a rip-roarin’ collection of rockabilly and surf rock tidings of good cheer to keep all of us, especially those in the colder regions, busy and movin’ this holiday season. Kickin’ off this 12-track comp (released in 1986 by MCA Records) is Little Miss Dynamite’s (aka Brenda Lee) 1958 classic, Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree. What follows is a musical sleigh ride of body movin’ classics from Bobby Helms & The Anita Kerr Singers, Dodie Stevens, the Surfaris, Chuck Berry and others (others is not a band, I just didn’t want to type up the rest of talented acts featured on this flawless album…).
This record in particular generally gets more spins each holiday than the other knots in the holiday tree library. Played again, for the 3rd time just yesterday, I foresee (Brenda Lee Presents) Rockin’ Little Christmas to fill these walls at least three more times in 2013. After that she’ll head off to the dormant “Christmas section” and hibernate for a good 12 months. At this point, I’m just about over the whole Christmas music deal, but I agreed to something and I’m sticking with it (facepalm).
This dapper gent’s got something on his mind, and he’d like to tell you about it. Actually, he has 12 things on his mind, and, if you have the time, Mr. John Gary has a few songs… songs for you alone.
So Tenderly does this man whisper sweet nothings into your eager ears, So Tenderly does he weave tales of love, brown-eyed baby boys, and a Red Rosey Bush. It’s not enough that this dashing, fist-on-chin-resting, expensive watch wearing, googly-eyed slickster sits in a room of bright orange… it’s the jaw-dropping style with which he masterfully does it!
Look at those eyes… they’re cutting deep grooves of tenderness right into your pulsating heart… a heart that beats, in perfect time, to the lustful syllables lovingly, and tenderly, So Tenderly, beaming from John Gary’s mouth-hole… an angel’s mouth-hole… a mouth-hole for you, and you alone.
Descriptive words… in print… next to full-color album cover pictures… sent directly to the address of my choosing… for only 25¢? Sign me the hell up! This is the ecstatic line of thinking RCA Records had in mind when they advertised their loose leaf booklet on special insert sleeves of their record albums. The Record Album?
Titled “Music America Loves Best” this alphabetical catalog can be shipped directly to your doorstep (or conversion van’s side-door) for only one, easy payment of just 25¢. Upon receiving this staple of profound literature, you’d be awarded the opportunity to peruse a catalog “with alphabetical listing by artist, of all record albums by RCA Records.” No indication of ordering any of these records is provided by this special offer.
RCA Records (aka Radio Corporation of America Records) existed back before the Cubs won their last World Series, and for a measly 25¢, you could own a little piece of recording history… or at least the “complete contents of” the undisputed masterwork that is The Best of Eddy Arnold.