Saturday, February 21, 2015

Spooner Oldham

Very obscure record from Muscle Shoals vet and Dan Penn partner. Some find his singing a little lacking. Me, I think it's part of the charm.


Friday, February 20, 2015


By request, here's a lushly orchestrated record by Tartaglia, whose arrangements remind me somewhat of David Axelrod. His other album, "Good Morning Starshine," is in the file as well.


Thursday, February 19, 2015


Here's an obscure spoken-word album from a guy named Richard Christensen, who sounds at times a little like Rod McKuen. The arrangements, by Tartaglia, are ornate and rather beautiful, and because it's on Capitol it sounds as though no small expense was made. But really, what were they thinking?


Thursday, February 12, 2015

6680 Lexington

Another one of those records full great songs and amazing players (including Darlene Love and Bill Medley) that came and went with little buzz. Very much worth hearing, nonetheless.


Friday, February 6, 2015

Hey Baby!

From Allmusic: Nino Tempo & April Stevens (who were actually brother and sister, born Nino LoTempio and Carol LoTempio) bobbed up and down through the pop charts through much of the 1960s, enjoying only a couple of major successes ("Deep Purple" and "Whispering") but maintaining enough momentum to stay in the good graces of several major labels throughout the decade. Hey Baby! was recorded during the duo's tenure with Atco Records, and it's fairly typical of their work of the period, a polished set of well-known pop tunes ("Hey Baby," "Land of 1000 Dances," "These Arms of Mine") and some well-crafted originals ("Swing Me," "Tomorrow Is Soon a Memory," "Ooh La La") alongside a few genuine eccentricities ("Mohair Sam" is given a fairly improbable parody as "No Hair Sam" and an otherwise strong folk-rock arrangement of "I Love How You Love Me" is punctuated with a hyperactive bagpipe). While Nino & April's efforts to sound hip usually end in failure, they harmonize well and they were capable solo vocalists too, with April sounding sweetly seductive on a new recording of "Teach Me Tiger" and Nino handling his Otis Redding cover quite well indeed. Nino was a talented producer and sax player as well as a vocalist and songwriter, and if this isn't top-shelf mid-'60s pop, the craft is strong throughout and if he and April often sound as if they'd be more comfortable in a supper club than at a rock show, they avoid the suggestion that they're looking down on the material; Hey Baby! doesn't include any of their major hits, but it's certain to please completists.


Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Rudy Ramos

Anyone remember "The High Chaparral"?


Reuben Howell

Here are the two albums by Reuben Howell, the first white dude signed to Motown. A caveat: for reasons unknown, my frickin' iTunes won't let me tag the song titles of the first album.


Monday, February 2, 2015

Richard Twice

A band so nice they named it ... Twice. Features Wrecking Crew back-up. 'Nuf said.