If you happen to catch me at the gym with an Existentialist look on my face, kinda wondering what I’m doing there perhaps, it could be that I’m listening to a song with a chorus that includes the lines:
I tried so hard,
and got so far,
but in the end, it doesn’t really matter….
It’s not uncommon at the YMCA for me to start thrashing on the walking track (but only in the walking lane for safety reasons).
It looks more like a seizure than it used to because I no longer have flowing golden locks:
But watch closely: when I’m at the gym, does it look like I’m thrashing a mullet, or does it look like I’m thrashing braids? It’s a subtle difference, but the second certainly indicates I’m listening to….
I’m old enough that I just don’t care how I look, so when I’m working out at the gym, I often lip sync the words with the songs that come on the radio. At least, I hope I’m not really singing the words. And sometimes I’ll smile when I hear a song I haven’t heard in a while but that I clearly think rocks or it wouldn’t be on the iPod Shuffle.
But sometimes, I’ll hear the opening of a song, and I’ll stop mouthing the words in case anyone at the gym can read lips and I’ll glance furtively about to see if there’s anyone close enough to hear any of the loud music leaking from my nostrils.
If you see me doing this, you know it’s probably…
I know, I know. They’re like a Canadian rock version of the Gin Blossoms (the comparison is likely to get me into fights with actual Gin Blossoms fans if any), but a couple of their songs
“How You Remind Me”:
I’m not going write up an academic-level defense of Nickelback, but some of their songs are going to have staying power longer than their usage as a punchline amongst rock fans. Even if it’s just on my iPod.
The Friends of the Springfield-Greene County Library moved the semiannual book sale from a location about fifteen minutes from me to a location about forty-five minutes away, plus or minus fifteen minutes with traffic. So I’m only going once this year, and I made a beeline to the record albums. I knew I was going to be in trouble when the second album I touched was Eydie Gorme and The Trio Los Panchos More Amor.
So I bought a lot of LPs.
Don’t bother counting. That’s sixty albums. They had a large number of Brazilian albums, mostly samba and MGB, so I ended up with a pile of them now.
Here’s what I got:
Angela Bofill Angie
Artie Shaw Tiara Spotlight Series
Bent Fabric Alley Cat
Beth Carvalho Sentimento Brasileiro
Beth Carvalho Suor No Rosto
Billy Ocean Love Zone
Boots Randolph Plays the Greatest Hits of Today
Burl Ives Christmas Album
Burt Bacharach Bacharach Baroque: The Renaissance
Charlie Barnet Presents a Tribute to Harry James
Chick Corea Touchstone
Clara Nunes Sucessos de Ouro
Dean Martin Favorites
Dean Martin Welcome to My World
Donna Summer Bad Girls
Eartha Kitt The Fabulous Eartha Kitt
Elba Ramalho Coração Brasileiro
Elis Regina Nada Será Como Antes
Elis Regina Vento de Maio
Eric Gale Touch of Silk
Estela Núñez Uno…
Eydie Gorme and The Trio Los Panchos More Amor
Gal Costa Fantasia
Gal Costa Baby Gal
Ginny and the Gallions The Two Sides Of
Grover Washington, Jr. Baddest
Grover Washington, Jr. Skylarkin’
GRP Live In Session
Harold Gomberg The Baroque Oboe
Herb Alpert and the Tijuana Brass Going Places!!
Herb Alpert and the Tijuana Brass Summertime
Herb Alpert and the Tijuana Brass What Now My Love
Herbie Mann Waterbed
Hiroshima Third Generation
Jackie Gleason The Best of Jackie Gleason Volume 2
Jean-Pierre Rampal Suite for Flute and Jazz Piano
Johnny Mathis and the Nelson Riddle Orchestra Live It Up!
Kiri and the Nelson Riddle Orchestra Blue Skies
Leny Andrade Leny Andrade
Les Elgart Half Satin Half Latin
Linda Ronstadt and the Nelson Riddle Orchestra Lush Life
Maria Bethânia Alteza
Nelson Ayres Mantiquiera
Pete Fountain Salutes the Great Clarinetists
Sergio Mendes & Brasil ’66 Herb Alpert Presents
Sergio Mendes & Brasil ’66 Look Around
The Commodores Midnight Magic
The Commodores Natural High
The Tonight Show Band with Doc Severinsen
The Tonight Show Band with Doc Severinsen Volume II
Tony Bennett The Many Moods of Tony
Tony Bennett Who Can I Turn To?
Toshiko Akiyoshi Notorious Tourist from the East
The Baroque Trumpet
Baroque Fanfares and Sonatas for Brass
Voices of the Middle Ages
Sucessos Inesquecíveis Da M.P.B.
A&M Records Million Dollar Sampler
I got three albums (Herb Alpert and the Tijuana Brass Going Places!! and What Now My Love and Sergio Mendes and Brasil ’66 Look Around) because they had better covers than the ones I already have. I got two albums (Blue Skies and Live It Up!) because of the “and the Nelson Riddle Orchestra”.
And I’ve got a couple weeks worth of listening for about $60.
I got three books, too, as you can see. And my children found a Perry Como title in the CDs for me, but when I got home, I discovered it was a copy inside, so I discarded it. I try to be careful about that, but I was too busy worrying about the records to check the CD I guess.
Also, I tested my beautiful wife’s love as never before as I brought in this ten inch stack of records. Followed soon by the greatest test ever of my furniture making skill as I try to create a storage solution for my hundreds of LPs.
The next day was a Sunday, and I couldn’t remember when Relics opened. I have an hour between 9:30 and 10:30 where the children and my beautiful wife are in Sunday School and I’m in the corner of Springfield by Red Racks. Monday through Saturday, Relics opens at 10; on Sunday, though, it doesn’t open until noon.
Still, I was hungry for LPs, so I stopped by the Red Racks thrift store nearby.
Red Racks has a decent collection of LPs for sale, eight or ten orange crates full, but the turnover isn’t that good, so I end up seeing the same or very, very similar sets of records every time I go there. A lot of Mac Davis, a lot of gospel, and enough Tennessee Ernie Ford to fill Tennessee.
I passed on a Steve Lawrence title or two (although based on intelligence gleaned from Dustbury’s comment to the post linked above, I might start grabbing some of them as I come across them. I also passed on a Claudine Longet LP that I don’t have because I didn’t really glom onto her work when I’ve listened to the other couple I got (from Red Racks, appropriately enough).
I found this pair:
Maynard Ferguson’s Hollywood; I’ll buy any Ferguson on sight.
Richie Cole’s alto madness; now this is the sound I associate with jazz. A light, airy, saxophone heavy bit of background music. I’ll look for this artist in the future.
One of my Christmas presents was a gift certificate (well, two) for Relics Antique Mall. Which meant I could get something old and/or nice and/or overpriced (like common Atari 2600 cartridges for $8 each, although someday that will be a bargain).
So, of course, I got records.
Eydie Gorme, Let the Good Times Roll. This is a collection of gospel/soul standards, and probably my least favorite Eydie record.
Eydie Gorme, Eydie. A later 1960s outing.
Steve Lawrence and Eydie Gorme, Two on the Aisle. It’s a collection of movie themes. It also contained an extra platter that I didn’t notice–I thought it was a two album set.
Steve Lawrence, Portrait of My Love. The aforementioned freebie.
Pete Fountain, Bateau Lounge.
Pete Fountain, Licorice Stick.
Pete Fountain, Music to Turn You On.
Sergio Mendes and Brasil ’66, Ye-Me-Le.
The Crosby Bros, Presenting the Crosby Bros. Bing’s kids. They did better backing him up on his various endeavors.
Longines Symphonette Great Vocalists of the Big Band Era, a compilation record including Nat King Cole, Bing Crosby, and so on.
Linda Ronstadt, Greatest Hits. So that sound was a thing in the 1970s, apparently: Linda Ronstadt and Olivia Newton-John sound a lot alike, as do Claudine Longet and Lynda Carter for that matter.
Linda Ronstadt, Living in the U.S.A.. This 1980s effort features the high and tight curly perm that some women wore in the 1980s. Me, I’m still a fan of the big, teased hair, but the tight curls doesn’t impress me. Perhaps, Dr. Freud, it’s because my mother would sometimes get this when one of her friends would give her a makeover and make her look like a zombie with tight curls.
Jackie Gleason, Silk ‘n’ Brass.
Sammy Davis, Jr., and Carmen McRae, Boy Meets Girl.
Henry Mancini, Mancini’s Angels, a collection of Mancini’s later themes.
Switched on Bach, Bach run through a Moog synthesizer.
Bach’s Head, a collection of Bach’s works apparently targeted to the marijuana using public.
Lo Mejor del Año (1983), a collection of Spanish language pop from 1983.
Die Große Starparade Folge 14 a collection of (West) German pop from the 1950s. It sounds like American pop of the era infused with polka and with the vocal tracks run backwards.
A Greek pop album whose name I cannot reproduce for you right now either because I’m too lazy to rekey it using Greek symbols or because I’m afraid in doing so I’ll summon an ancient evil.
Perry Como, No Other Love.
Perry Como, And I Love You So.
Perry Como, Como’s Golden Records. That’s what I get for saying you never see Como. Now I see him everywhere, and I must buy them all.
Roger Wagner Chorus, The Songs of Stephen Foster. I got this one because it was in the sleeve for Perry Como Swings, which is one of the first things I picked up. Somehow, I failed to double-check it, so now I have an extra sleeve for a Como album and an album I would not have otherwise bought.
Overall, not a bad haul. For free with the gift certificates. Had I known, I would not have put down the copy of Lee Aaron’s Metal Queen which I put back because I don’t tend to listen to rock on the turntable, but as the night went on, I vowed to return for it.
In the middle of December, we hit the local Vintage Stock, which sells old comic book, video games, movies, and, I discovered, LPs, to see if they had a Game Boy Advance Legend of Zelda game. They did not, but did I mention they have LPs, many as low as a dollar each?
So I bought a few.
Here’s what I picked up:
Eydie Gorme, Eydie in Love. This might be my favorite Eydie Gorme album now.
Steve Lawrence and Eydie Gorme, The ABC Collection.
Sade, Stronger than Pride. I love Sade and have a couple of her CDs, but this is my first LP.
Maria Muldaur, Southern Winds. I never heard of her, but I took a flier because she might Diana Maldaur’s sister. Well, no, she’s not, but they have the same last name. The LP is 80s songbird pop, a little more electrified version of Linda Ronstadt and Olivia Newton John circa 1976.
Sergio Mendes and Brasil ’66, Look Around. I like this band, but when I put the record on, I thought perhaps I already had it. But that’s because the band’s music sounds very similar on most their albums. Also, one of my previously purchased albums came in the wrong cover, so I might already have it and not recognize it.
Dan Hartman, I Can Dream About You. I originally had this on audiocassette that I bought as a cut-out. I’ve played the Fletch soundtrack which features a couple of these songs a bunch for years, but this album includes the title hit.
Natalie Cole, Don’t Look Back.
Dean Martin, Hits Again.
Dean Martin, Gentle on My Mind.
Dean Martin, The Hit Sound of Dean Martin.
Ray Parker, Jr., and Raydio, A Woman Needs Love.
They were only a buck each, and one of the Dean Martin covers came with two unrelated platters in it. When I pointed it out to the kid behind the counter, he said “Freebie.” As I said, many of the albums are only a dollar which is cheaper than the thrift stores, and the dollar ones are the ones in my wheelhouse. Others, such as 1970s and 1980s rock, are more than that, but they’re not the sort of thing I listen to on LP.
Hours of listening pleasure, and I ran out of Mylar album protectors after this batch. I know, you’re saying “Did he use four hundred-packs or only three?” Well, to tell you the truth, in all the excitement, I lost track myself. So the question you have to ask yourself is, “Did he order more, the punk?”
Well, yes, I did. And I’ve used over a quarter of the new pack already, but that’s a Good Album Hunting post for another day.
So amid the monsoon, I’m listening to the rain thunder on the roof of the industrial-plant-turned-antique-mall and the occasional thunder actually thunder throughout the building. I’ve got a couple of gift certificates that I received for Christmas (this is an antique mall, after all, and not a resale shop or used content venue), and I’ve put a stack of (24) LPs on the counter for the woman behind the counter to begin laboriously typing in the tags from each booth where I collected the records, and the man in the CHICAGO BEARS jersey dares to speak to me about vinyl coming back.
It seems he’s a collector, too. He had some 50s, 60s, and 70s stuff before he went into the service, he gave it all away and then spent years trying to recollect what he’d given away. He said he had about 300, which is a number my beautiful wife wishes I’d held to. The fellow also mentioned that Columbia House was restarting because the millenials are discovering vinyl.
This album differs from some of the other Bing Crosby compilations (such as Christmas with Bing) because it’s a Christmas album as a Christmas album, not a collection of other songs from other records. This one features more swing to it, as it was recorded in the 1950s while Bing was relatively young and not later as he grew to be an elder statesman of music and television host. Several tracks feature the Andrews Sisters as well to give you an idea.
The track list includes>
Adeste Fideles (Oh, Come, All Ye Faithful)
God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen
Faith Of Our Fathers
I’ll Be Home For Christmas (If Only In My Dreams)
Santa Claus Is Comin’ To Town
It’s Beginning To Look Like Christmas
Christmas In Killarney
The song “Faith of our Fathers” is new; the others, although standards, have a little zip on them and are festive. Overall, it’s a good listen for the holidays and breaks out of the normal Bing Crosby ouevre. Which, I suspect, many Bing Crosby albums do once you move beyond the often-anthologized.
So I snuck off to the Friends of the Springfield-Greene County Library Book Sale on Thursday to raid the LPs.
Here’s what I got:
Pete Fountain The Sunsetters$2.00
Sergio French La Dolce Italy$7.00
Brass Impact Going Someplace$7.00
Roger Blackburn Barbershopping in Brass$5.00
Henry Mancini 10$0.99
Pete Fountain Plays and the Angels Sing$3.49
The Brass Connection$4.50
Steve and Eydie Together on Broadway$4.50
Perry Como Hello, Young Lovers$0.68
Dinah Washington What a Diff’rence a Day Makes$0.99
Jackie Gleason Presents A Taste of Brass for Lovers Only?
Maria Callas Arias I Love$4.54
Dean Martin Greatest Hits Volume 1$0.50
Dresden State Orchestra Wagner Overtures?
Jim Howard Pat Sullivan Jazz Orchestra No Compromise$9.99
Jackie Gleason Presents Lazy Lively Love$1.25
Jackie Gleason Presents Lush Musical Interludes for That Moment$1.00
Quincy Jones and His Orchestra The Quintessence$1.50
Billy Butterfield and His Orchestra Blows His Horn$4.49
Artie Shaw and His Orchestra Moonglow$1.00
Pete Fountain Something Misty$0.90
Boots Randolph The World of Boots Randolph$0.51
All the LPs were a buck each; the thumbnail values above are courtesy of Discogs. They’re a quick lookup, represent what others are selling the items for and not what people will pay for them, and in no way shape or form should be used in tallying my personal wealth.
Still, Discogs leads me to believe I might have come out with $40 more value than I spent. Of course, they’ll give me hours of enjoyment so it’s more than that.
I also picked up a couple dollar books on the way by: A short bio sketch of H.G. Wells and a dollar collection of chapbooks grouped about their common theme of humorous accents. No doubt you’ll see some of them reported on biemby.
I don’t know if I’ll hit the Better Books section of the sale on half price day (Saturday) or bag day (Sunday). It’ll have to depend upon how flush I’m feeling on the weekend and how the scheduling shakes out. But I notice that the Friends group has wisely scheduled bag day on the Packers’ bye week. Do they know me or what?
If I close my eyes forever
Will it all remain unchanged?
If I close my eyes forever
Will it all remain the same?
We turn to members of the Eleatic School, Parmenides and Zeno, to answer.
Parmenides: Yes indeedly do (Μπορείτε να στοιχηματίσετε γάιδαρο σας). How could what is perish? How could it have come to be? For if it came into being, it is not; nor is it if ever it is going to be. Thus coming into being is extinguished, and destruction unknown.
Zeno: That counts quadruple for semi-forgotten 80s hair metal. Then it counts double. Then it counts once. Then one half. And so on into infinity. If everything when it occupies an equal space is at rest, and if that which is in locomotion is always occupying such a space at any moment, the flying arrow is therefore motionless.
Parmenides: [What exists] is now, all at once, one and continuous… Nor is it divisible, since it is all alike; nor is there any more or less of it in one place which might prevent it from holding together, but all is full of what is. So get over yourself.
The baby that the poet-narrator of Madonna’s “Papa Don’t Preach” didn’t give up would turn 30 next year.
What a strange world we live in, professor. The film garnered some controversy in the 1980s by its frank portrayal of teenaged pregnancy. I remember, if my aged memory serves, much of the hubbub was because some said it promoted teenaged sex which, I’m told, occurred amongst some of the population when I was teenaged. However, in the twenty-first century, it might garner more controversy for the poet-narrator deciding to keep the baby instead of producing post-conception raw materials for profit.
Perhaps I should start a new series called Good Record Hunting to account for my trips to thrift stores looking for LPs (and, in my defense, a cheap television to hook up old computers).
Yesterday, I visited the DAV Thrift Store and briefly browsed its LPs, but they were poorly arranged for browsing and cost $2.48 each. I also visited the Salvation Army thrift store next door. There were fewer, they were easier to browse, and they only cost $1 each, so I got:
This group includes:
The Opera Society’s small disc version of Rigoletto’s Verdi. Or Verdi’s Rigoletto. Sometimes, with these modern things, it’s hard to tell which is the band name and which is the song.
Keely Smith, Be My Love.
Perry Como, In Italy. To be honest, I didn’t look close to see if he sings any Verdi.
Dean Martin, Everybody Loves Somebody (The Hit Version).
Perry Como, Just For You, a Sylvania-branded record.
The Czechoslovakian Philharmonic Orchestra doing some Mahler.
It’s funny when you go to thrift stores and book sales, you seem to find more LPs than cassettes. I don’t know if this is only a perception thing because they’re bigger than tapes, but it’s probably because the LP sale prominence lasted for decades and audio cassettes only sold for, what, twenty years, mostly in parallel with LPs and then CDs. Also, they’re small and easy to throw out and LPs are big enough to think they’re worth something.
Also, I don’t think I’ll start a whole new category of posts, as I don’t imagine I’ll do this that often. Although it might prove to be more often than I go to book sales these days.
Also, please note I use Discogs for my record research (and I poach images of the LPs from them). It’s a cool site. If you dig records, you should check it out.
The critics predicted it: Gay marriage becomes the law of the land, and people would start buying albums of show tunes.
Although, in my defense in this case, it was a collection of Pat Suzuki singing show tunes:
If Mark Steyn can listen to show tunes, I can, too.
At any rate, the acquisition stems from a recent trip to the local thrift store. I was looking for a cheap television set to hook a couple of old computers. I didn’t find any, but I did find the shelf with the crates of LPs on them. Ha, just kidding! I knew where it was all the time, and I went right to it after realizing that thrift stores generally don’t have old televisions any more.
At any rate, check out what I have in a sort-of Johnsonesque roundup:
Quincy JonesExplores The Music of Henry Mancini.
Boots RandolphYakety Sax. My children will never equate this song with sophisticated British comedy that our fathers all enjoyed.
Boots RandolphMore Yakety Sax.
Boots RandolphBoots with Strings.
Boots RandolphSunday Sax. I figure, if I buy one from a new artist, I should buy all that I find. Just in case I like the artist.
Claudine LongetThe Look of Love. Claudine Longet, at first blush, seems a little soft and breathy for LPs. I tend to put on a record and listen to it from the next room, so stronger voices tend to sound better. Longet, like Erin Bode, might be better for CDs and closer listening. Longet appears on A&M records, Herb Alpert’s label. I’m enjoying exploring its catalog as I gather records.
Herb Alpert & The Tijuana BrassThe Beat of the Brass. I bought this one, a title I already owned, because the cover is in better condition. If I put the better record in the better cover, is that like mixing serial numbers on a collectible car or gun?
Steve Lawrence and Eydie GormeWe Got Us. I will buy Steve and Eydie albums because of Eydie; I left a couple of Steve Lawrence solo works in the bins.
Benny Goodman and His OrchestraLet’s Dance Again. Pete Fountains is leading me to appreciate the clarinet. How many people in the 21st century would say Pete Fountains led them to give Benny Goodman an audience? Very few. Or one.
The Isley BrothersDo Their Thing. Not to be confused with “It’s Your Thing” which the Isley Brothers do. The Isley Brothers do all things.
Olivia Newton-JohnMaking a Good Thing Better. Because as of this spring, I’m apparently a collector of Olivia Newton-John albums.
Louis Armstrong and His All-StarsI Love Jazz!.
Perry ComoSeason’s Greetings from Perry Como. Because I’ve recently started finding Perry Como albums in the wild (after I said one rarely does), I’ve started buying them.
Dean MartinWinter Romance. This is the other Christmas album, the one with “Baby, It’s Cold Outside” on it. (The non-other album, of course, is The Dean Martin Christmas Album.)
Bennett & BasieStrike Up The Band.
Tennessee Ernie FordSixteen Tons.
Harry James and His Big BandMr. Trumpet. I’ve never heard of Harry James before, but apparently he played for Benny Goodman before starting his own band at 23. I’ll look for more of his work in the future.
The McGuire SistersMay You Always.
Eydie GormeVamps the Roaring 20s.
Natalie ColeUnpredictable. When I first say it, I thought the word was Unforgettable, and I was confused as to why the song was not actually on the album. Danged cursive.
Pat SuzukiThe Many Sides of Pat Suzuki.
Pat SuzukiBroadway ’59. Again, when I see multiple discs from an artist I don’t know, I’ll tend to buy them all in case I like the artist. This turned out well, as Suzuki has a strong voice and belts out some songs. These two discs represent half her catalog, which is a shame.
It was a fruitful trip, except for the no televisions. I think I’ll use the search-for-televisions thing to hit one or more other local thrift stores and see what other LPs I can gather, at least until my beautiful wife becomes my beautiful-when-she’s-angry wife.