Sunday, February 23, 2014

Record #0545: Mississippi Mud / I'm Getting Sentimental Over You – TOMMY DORSEY AND HIS ORCHESTRA

RCA Victor 447-0117 (original as a 45 rpm single) USA, 1955
Music by:  Side A – Harry Barris, James Cavanaugh; Side BNed Washington, George Bassman
Musicians: Tommy Dorsey (trombone), Side A - others unknown; Side B - Andy Ferretti, Sterling Bose, Bill Graham, Cliff Weston (trumpets), Ben Pickering, Dave Jacobs (trombones), Sid Stoneburn (clarinet), Noni Bernardi (alto sax), Clyde Rounds (alto sax), Johnny van Eps (tenor sax), Paul Mitchell (piano), Mac Cheikes (guitar), Gene Traxler (bass), Sam Rosen (drums)
Recording sessions: Side A - New York (?), NY, Oct. 1928 (?); Side B - New York, NY, Oct. 18, 1935
Highest chart positions:  none, but the original 78 rpm of the flip-side went to US #8 in 1936.

For many other jazz musicians it's fairly easy to find comprehensive session details of their recordings, but apparently not for Tommy Dorsey. This was a tough one to crack - and I was able to find the pieces for the flip only.

RCA reissued many of Dorsey's hits of the 30's and the 40's in 1955 and 1956.

List price:  Very Good+ is $5, Near Mint is $10

Record #0544: Eddie My Love / Yum Yum – THE FONTANE SISTERS

Dot 15450 (original) USA, Feb. 1956
Words & Music bySide AAaron Collins, Maxwell Davis, Ling; Side BDoc Pomus
Musicians: Bea Rosse (vocals), Marge Rosse (vocals), Geri Rosse (vocals), others unknown
Recording sessions: New York (?), NY, Jan. 1956
Highest chart positions:  US #11

The title song was originally recorded by The Teen Queens in Dec. 1955 and their release went US #14 and US R&B #2. The Fontane Sisters and The Chordettes covered this quickly and made rush releases; the latter also got to US #14.

List price:  Very Good+ is $6, Near Mint is $12

Friday, February 21, 2014

Record #0543: Bony Moronie / You Bug Me, Baby – LARRY WILLIAMS

Specialty 615 (original) USA, Oct. 1957
Words & Music bySide ALarry Williams; Side B – Williams, Sonny Bono
Musicians: Larry Williams (vocals and piano), René Hall (guitar), Ted Brinson (bass), Earl Palmer (drums), Plas Johnson (tenor sax), John E. Oliveri (tenor sax on side A), Jewell Grant (baritone sax on side B)
Recording sessions: Produced by Art Rupe at Master Recorders, Hollywood, CA, Side A - Sep. 11, 1957; Side B - Jun. 20, 1957
Highest chart positions:  Side A - US #14, US R&B #4, UK #11; Side B - US #45

This is another fine R&R classic recorded at Master Recorders, where artists such as Little Richard, The Robins, The Coasters, James Brown, Ricky Nelson and Sam Cooke also recorded many of their tracks.

This was the last hit single for Williams and it had his only flip-side that charted. His wild lifestyle was soon setting his career back, and the final blow came in 1960, when he was arrested on dealing drugs, which led to three years in prison.

The flip was the first charting song for songwriter Sonny Bono.

List price
:  Very Good+ is $20, Near Mint is $40. Red vinyl pressings are from 1984 and listed at four bucks for a Near Mint.

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Record #0542: Way Down Yonder In New Orleans / Fractured – FREDDY CANNON

Swan 4043 (original) USA, Oct. 1959
Words & Music bySide AHenry Creamer, John Turner Layton; Side B – Frank Slay, Bob Crewe
Musicians: Freddy Cannon (lead vocals), others unknown, but possible including: Kenny Paulsen (guitar), Frank Slay (piano), Sticks Evans (drums)
Recording sessions: Produced by Frank Slay and Bob Crewe in Philadelphia, PA, or in Allegro Studios, New York, NY, 1959
Highest chart positions:  US #3, US R&B #14, UK #3

Here's Freddy "Boom-Boom" Cannon's biggest hit single. Though his debut hit "Tallahassee Lassie" was a bit more rocking track, I'd still consider "Way Down Yonder In New Orleans" as my favorite Cannon song.

Reportedly this record was the first one in rock genre to have a full brass section.

The title song was included on Cannon's debut album "The Explosive Freddy Cannon", which became the first UK #1 album of the 60's.

List price:  Very Good+ is $10, Near Mint is $20

Monday, February 17, 2014

Record #0541: Stick Shift / Cruising – DUALS

Sue 745 (kind of original, 2nd pressing on this label) USA, Jul. 1961
Music bySide A – Henry Bellinger; Side B – Bellinger
Musicians: Henry Bellinger (lead guitar), Johnny Lageman (rhythm guitar), others unknown
Recording sessions: Produced by H.B. Barnum in Hollywood, CA, 1961
Highest chart positions:  US #25

The very first pressing of this was under a small Hollywood label, Star Revue Records (number 1031) in May 1961. The record soon became too big to handle for the label, so Sue Records agreed to take it for national distribution. Sue pulled a fast one on Star Revue and the Duals and didn't pay them their royalties, hence they later sued Sue and got their paycheck in 2004. Not much comfort for Bellinger, who had already passed away by then.

List price:  Very Good+ is $15, Near Mint is $30. If you have the Star Revue release of this, that's a keeper (NM is $800).

Record #0540: Too Much / Playing For Keeps – ELVIS PRESLEY

RCA 47-6800 (original) USA, Jan. 4, 1957

Looks like I have two copies of the same pressing; the previous post of the same is here.
(But this copy has much better labels.)

Sunday, February 16, 2014

Record #0539: Runaround Sue / Runaway Girl – DION

Laurie 3110 (original) USA, Sep. 1961
Words & Music bySide AErnie Maresca, Dion DiMucci; Side BEliot Greenberg, Robert Schwartz, Barbara Baer
Musicians: Dion DiMucci (lead vocals), The Del-Satins (backing vocals), and an orchestra conducted by Glen Stuart
Recording sessions: New York, NY, 1961
Highest chart positions:  US #1, US R&B #4, UK #11

This was Dion's first record where he had replaced his backing from The Belmonts to The Del-Satins. Apparently it was a pretty good move as the record brought him his first US #1 and his first cross-over hit.

In the UK, Doug Sheldon did a cover of "Runaround Sue" and got it to UK #36 in November 1961. Leif Garrett got his cover version to US #13 in November 1977.

List price
:  Very Good+ is $12.50, Near Mint is $25. Stereo pressing is $50 for a Near Mint.

Record #0538: Pretty Little Angel Eyes / Gee How I Wish You Were Here – CURTIS LEE

Dunes 2007 (original) USA, Jun. 1961
Words & Music bySide A – Curtis Lee, Tommy Boyce; Side B – Boyce
Musicians: Curtis Lee (lead vocals), The Halos (backing vocals), Daryl Hall (guitar?), others unknown
Recording sessions: Produced by Phil Spector in New York, NY, 1961
Highest chart positions:  US #7, UK #47

This was Curtis Lee's biggest hit in his fairly short strike of success. He was in the business for about ten years, but he got charting singles out only in 1961-62.

Daryl Hall (of Hall & Oates) played on this record, but I wasn't able to verify what instrument he played.

This was the second US Top 10 song for Tommy Boyce. He soon started writing songs with Bobby Hart and they hit the jackpot when they wrote "Last Train To Clarksville" (US #1, UK #23) for The Monkees and many hits followed.

Showaddywaddy covered "Pretty Little Angel Eyes" in 1978 and got it to UK #5

List price:  Very Good+ is $12.50, Near Mint is $25

Saturday, February 15, 2014

Record #0537: Ram-Bunk-Shush / Lonely Heart – THE VENTURES

Dolton 32 (original) USA, Jan. 1961
Music bySide ALucky Millinder, Henry Glover, Jim Mundy; Side B – Bob Bogle, Don Wilson
Musicians: Nokie Edwards (lead guitar on side A, bass on side B), Bob Bogle (bass on side A, lead guitar on side B), Don Wilson (rhythm guitar), Howie Johnson (drums), unknown vocals on side B
Recording sessions: Hollywood, CA, 1960
Highest chart positions:  US #29, UK #45

This was the first single that The Ventures recorded in Hollywood. The first two (Dolton) singles were recorded in Seattle, WA.

The recording was done around the time when Nokie and Bob were starting to switch places, leading to the line-up where Nokie played the lead.

List price:  Very Good+ is $10, Near Mint is $20

Record #0536: Needles & Pins / Saturday Night Out – THE SEARCHERS

Kapp 577 (original) USA, Feb. 1964
Words & Music bySide A – Jack Nitzsche, Sonny Bono; Side B – Robert Richards, Mark Anthony (Tony Hatch)
Musicians: Tony Jackson (lead vocals and bass), Michael Pender (vocals and lead guitar), John McNally (vocals and rhythm guitar), Chris Curtis (vocals and drums)
Recording sessions: UK, 1963
Highest chart positions:  US #13, UK #1

This was The Searchers' second #1 hit in the UK and their first Top 40 entry in the States. Also, this was the first big hit for songwriter Sonny Bono, who later found more fame in Sonny & Cher.

The title song was originally recorded by Jackie DeShannon in early 1963.

The flip was covered by a Finnish rock bassist, Cisse Häkkinen, on his debut solo album "Teendreams" in 1976.

List price:  Very Good+ is $5, Near Mint is $10. Another variant (with same label & number) has "Ain't That Just Like Me" on the flip side. That one is $12 for a Near Mint.

Friday, February 14, 2014

Record #0535: Peppermint Twist / Tuff – LEROY JONES

Giant 1001 (original) USA, 1962
Words & Music by:  Side A – Joey Dee, Henry Glover; Side B – Ace Cannon
Musicians: Leroy Jones (vocals), others unknow
Recording sessions: Nashville (?), TN, 1962 (?)
Highest chart positions:  Didn't chart nationally

Leroy Jones was an alias used by some artists of the late 50's and early 60's. This guy's real name was Herbert Hunter. I couldn't find too much info about him nor this record.

Here is another release he made with Giant label.

List price:  Not listed in Goldmine catalog.

Sunday, February 09, 2014

Record #0534: Bring It Up / Nobody Knows – JAMES BROWN & THE FAMOUS FLAMES

King 6071 (original) USA, Dec. 1966
Words & Music bySide A – James Brown, Nat Jones; Side B – James Brown, James L. Crawford
Musicians: James Brown (vocals), others unknown, but probably including: Ernie Hayes (piano), Billy Butler (guitar), Nat Jones (sax)
Recording sessions: RCA Studios, New York, NY, Oct. 4, 1966 (not sure if the flip is from the same session)
Highest chart positions:  US #29, US R&B #7

Here's the "hardest working man in the show business" with one of his sixty US R&B Top 10 hits.

List price:  Very Good+ is $6, Near Mint is $12