Monday, August 30, 2010

Back on Ebay

After many months of inactivity I'm back on Ebay and have started advertising again. I've put 15 LPs on and will put some more records on over the coming weeks. In the past I've sold several hundred singles and LPs and had quite a bit of success. They were mostly records that didn't quite fit into my collection, but in future I may try and sell some records that fit in rather more. The latest batch includes LPs by Rick Nelson (pictured), Del Shannon, Bobby Darin (all doubles), the Beatles (always good sellers) and Inex and Charlie Foxx. For anyone who is interested my Ebay name is soulboy1946.

I try to be honest with descriptions and always illustrate the record with a photo, but uploading photos is a rather slow business. One of my biggest sellers in the past was a demo of Edwin Starr's 'Stop Her On Sight' on Polydor, which I first obtained when I was reviewing records for the Croydon Advertiser back in the 60s, but mostly they were records that I picked up at car boot sales which I didn't want to keep. Hopefully my Ebay sales will supplement my income now that I am retired and not earning anything.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Lawdy Miss Clawdy - The Musical

Plans have been unveiled for a Broadway musical celebrating Lloyd Price and his great recording of Lawdy Miss Clawdy to be launched in 2011. Here's a link to the website
And here's a story from
New Orleans Plans Big Broadway Musical
'Lawdy Miss Clawdy' Is Story Of True Origin Of Rock And Roll
NEW ORLEANS -- Plans were unfolding Wednesday night for a new Broadway production in New Orleans.
"Lawdy Miss Clawdy -- The Musical" is the life story of local music legend Lloyd Price and the true origin of rock and roll. It was the sound created in the petri dish of funk and cultivated by legendary bandmaster and composer Dave Bartholomew. It was Bartholomew who discovered the incomparable Fats Domino. In 1952, Bartholomew and Domino collaborated on the sound for Price and "Lawdy Miss Clawdy," and the rest is history.
"'Lawdy Miss Clawdy' was the first million-selling record that ever was sold by a teenager, and that teenager was me, Lloyd Price, from Kenner, La., first kid to sell a million records," Price said. Now comes the musical, an entertainment piece to set the record straight about the origin of rock and roll.
"It's an educational piece, and it's going to be one of the greatest entertainment pieces," said Mike Shepperd, the director of the Louisiana Music Hall of Fame. "They can have the Jersey Boys; they can have Abba; they can have all this stuff. Now we're going to bring them Louisiana."
"Lawdy Miss Clawdy" has been recorded by 169 artists, among them Paul McCartney, Elvis Presley and Little Richard. What we're doing now today is to recreate this great music in terms of a musical, the 'Lawdy Miss Clawdy' musical," Price said.
Casting for the musical in New Orleans is tentatively planned for February and March 2011.
The show is expected to debut at the Mahalia Jackson Theater around Thanksgiving 2011.

Saturday, August 07, 2010

The early 60s revisited: the top 10 as it should have been

20/20 hindsight is a wonderful thing. Most Woodies, being of a certain age, have fond memories of the late 50s and early 60s as the era when rock and roll, doo wop and R and B reached a peak of perfection. Soul was stirring and the music scene was red hot.
The world was changing and changing fast. Rock and roll was here to stay. Elvis wriggled his pelvis. Jerry Lee outraged 'decent' society. Classic hits came out almost daily. Or so it seems to us now.
Yet the reality was that there were never more than a handful of great records in the top 20 at any one time and by 1960 the revolution had apparently burned itself out. Raw rock and roll had been replaced by bland pop songs. The charts in the UK bore this out, dominated as they were by the likes of Adam, Cliff and the Shads, Shirley Bassey and Acker Bilk.
But of course the charts did not tell the whole story. Great music hadn't died at all. It had just gone underground.
Even as a thirteen year old I realised that the top 30 charts were mostly rubbish. And so in March 1960 I set up my own personal top ten, a list (don't we Woodies just love lists?) of my favourite records of the moment. I continued this once or twice a week for nearly six years, completing my 408th and final top ten in December 1965.
Access was a problem, reliant, as we all were in these days, on Radio Luxembourg. But although my top ten was far from perfect - some wonderful singles failed to appear - I like to think that it's a better representation of the music of the early sixties than the charts in the NME, Record Mirror and Melody Maker ever managed.
Looking back, I see that well over 90 per cent of all entries during the years that my top ten spanned were American. The only UK artist to appear regularly was Billy Fury, and even he disappeared when his records became increasingly pop-orientated.
My first number one was Sweet Nuthin's by Brenda Lee, and there were many entries during 1960 by Elvis, Fats Domino, Marv Johnson, Jimmy Jones, Eddie Cochran, Sam Cooke, Jackie Wilson, Bobby Vee, Neil Sedaka, Johnny Burnett and Roy Orbison.
Obscure (at the time) 45s by the likes of James Brown (Think), Ron Holden (Love Her so), the Ivy Three (Yogi), Shirley and Lee (Let The Good Times Roll), Mickey and Sylvia (Sweeter As The Day Goes By), Joe Jones (You Talk Too Much), Tracey Pendarvis (Is It Me?) and Paul Evans (Hushabye Little Guitar) also entered my top ten.
My top five hits for the year (based on ten points for number one down to one point for number ten) were:
Wonderful World - Sam Cooke
I just go for you - Jimmy Jones
Only the Lonely - Roy Orbison
You Gotta Move Two Mountains - Marv Johnson
Alley Oop - Hollywood Argylls
Of those, only Roy Orbison's Only the Lonely made it big (and I remember nagging my local record shop for weeks before I could get hold of a copy).
On to 1961, and my top ten was beginning to separate from the regular one still further. Entries included Angel Baby by Rosie and the Originals, Shop Around by the Miracles (a number one), Once in a While by the Chimes (my top record of the year), Gee Whiz by Carla Thomas, All In My Mind by Maxine Brown, Ernie K-Doe's Mother in Law (also a number one) and Te Ta Te Ta ta, Those Oldies but Goodies by Nino and the Ebbtides, I Like it Like That by Chris Kenner ( a number one), Nag by the Halos, Please Mr Postman by the Marvelettes and several by the likes of Dion and U S Bonds.
My top five for 1961 probably didn't reflect the diversity of the chart as a whole. Here it is:
Once in a While - The Chimes
2= Running Scared - Roy Orbison
2= Crying - Roy Orbison
4. Girls - Johnny Burnett
5. Sad Mood - Sam Cooke
In 1962 there was one UK record that made it into my top ten - the Beatles' Love me do reached number ten for one week in October - but apart from that it was very much a US dominated chart once again.
The Crystals, Del Shannon, the Shirelles, Chris Montez, Dion and my two top artists in terms of points scored over the six years - Sam Cooke and Roy Orbison - all scored big. And again there were number ones for less well known artists such as Benny Spellman (Lipstick Traces), Don and Juan (What's your name), the Showmen (It will stand) and the Cookies (Chains).
Other entries included Lee Dorsey's Do re mi, Barbara George's I know, If you gotta make a fool of somebody by James Ray, What's so good about goodbye by the Miracles, Clyde McPhatter's Lover please and Little bitty pretty one, Dr Feelgood's record of the same name, Down in the valley by Solomon Burke, Life's too short by the Lafayettes, Green Onions by Booker T and the MGs, Do you love me by the Contours, Chuck Jackson's I keep forgettin' and the Routers football chant Let's go.
Top five for the year were:
1. Nothing can change this love - Sam Cooke
2. Palisades Park - Freddy Cannon
3. Hey baby - Bruce Channel
4. Lipstick traces - Benny Spellman
5. Hey little girl - Del Shannon.
On to 1963 and musically things were picking up. Phil Spector was at his peak, surf music had arrived and Chuck and Bo had re-emerged. The real charts were dominated by UK beat groups, but not my alternative top ten.
Relative obscurities included That's life by Gabriel and the Angels, Wild weekend by the Rockin' Rebels, Let's stomp by Bobby Comstock, The Rocky Fellers' Killer Joe, Ronnie Hawkins great version of Who do you love, Ask me by Maxine Brown, Road Runner by the Count Victors, The Bird's the word by the Rivingtons, Shake a Tailfeather by the Five Du-Tones, Lonnie Mack's Memphis, Just one look by Doris Troy and Talk to me by Sunny and the Sunglows.
Top five for 1963 were:
1. Sandy - Dion
2. Da Doo ron ron - Crystals
3. He's sure the boy I love - Crystals
4. He's so fine - Chiffons
5. Little town flirt - Del Shannon
By 1964 the number of great records being released was huge. Soul music was taking off, via Detroit and Memphis, the blues was booming and classics abounded. Not that the mainstream charts reflected that of course.
Lesser known artists who made it into my top ten included Jerry Butler, Major Lance, the Impressions, the Tams, the Rivieras (California sun), Inez and Charlie Foxx, the Reflections (Just like Romeo and Juliet), Arthur Alexander, the Jelly Beans, Tony Clarke, Earl-Jean, Jackie Ross, Ronnie and the Daytonas, Don Covay, the Hondells, Bobby Parker (Watch your step), the Larks and Little Anthony and the Imperials.
Old favourites like Sam Cooke, Chuck Berry, Jerry Lee (Lewis Boogie) and James Brown continued to score well, as did many Tamla Motown artists and of course the Beach Boys.
Top five for 1964:
1. I get around - Beach Boys
2. Baby I need your loving - Four Tops
3. My guy - Mary Wells
4= Shoop shoop song - Betty Everett
4= When I grow up - Beach Boys
Finally to 1965, when my top ten sadly ended as other interests began to take up more of my time (and I started receiving free singles to review for the Croydon Advertiser). What a fantastic year 1965 was - absolutely littered with classic tracks. Among those that made it to number one in my chart were the Righteous Brothers' You've lost that loving feeling, Bobby Bland's Yield not to temptation, Sam Cooke's Shake, Voice your choice by the Radiants, two versions of My girl (the Temptations and Otis Redding), People get ready by the Impressions, It's wonderful to be in love by the Ovations, Arthur Prysock's It's too late baby and Treat her right by Roy Head.
Smaller hits included Twine time by Alvin Cash and the Crawlers, Baby baby baby by Anna King and Bobby Byrd, Don't mess up a good thing by Bobby McClure and Fontella Bass, Wilbert Harrison's Let's stick together, Little Milton's Blind man, Woolly Bully by Sam the Sham, Nothing can stop me by Gene Chandler, I do by the Marvelows, Go now by Bessie Banks and O V Wright's You're gonna make me cry.
Top ten for 1965 (it was such a good year):
1. Hold what you've got - Joe Tex
2. In the midnight hour - Wilson Pickett
3. People get ready - Impressions
4. Shake/A change is gonna come - Sam Cooke
5. Mr Pitiful - Otis Redding
6. Treat her right - Roy Head
7. Respect - Otis Redding
8. Voice your choice - Radiants
9. You've lost that loving feeling - Righteous Brothers
10. I can't help myself - Four Tops
In terms of points over the period covered by my top ten the winner by a mile was Sam Cooke, proving the consistency of his single releases up until his tragic death. The rest of the top ten point scorers (just to finish with one more list!) were:
Roy Orbison
Del Shannon
Everly Brothers
Elvis Presley
Freddy Cannon
Bobby Vee
Neil Sedaka

Thursday, August 05, 2010

More music deaths

Time to catch up on some of the artists who have passed away over the last month or so.
First, Bobby Hebb, who had a smash hit with his self-penned Sunny in 1966, has died in Nashville aged 72. Released on the Philips label in the UK, he followed it up with A Satisfied Mind and a series of country/soul singles, none of which were as big as his first hit, which has become a standard.
Also no more is Al Goodman, a member of The Moments, whose hits included Love On a One Way Street, and who later became Ray, Goodman and Brown. He was just 63.
A word too in memory of Louisiana bluesman Philip Walker (pictured), who has died aged 72. He worked with Lonesome Sundown, Rosco Gordon, Lonnie Brooks and Clifton Chenier, among others, and was second cousin to Clarence 'Gatemouth' Brown.
And finally Hank Cochran , who died aged 75 in Hendersonville, Tennessees. A gifted songwriter, he wrote many country hits including I Fall to Pieces, Make The World Go Away and A Little Bitty Tear. He was also half of the Cochran Brothers with Eddie Cochran, who he was not related to.