An Introduction to Rather Rare Records

MY FIRST "POST" was with the Wyoming Val­ley West High School news­pa­per, where I was the nerd who got the gig of re­view­ing records. That was 1969 and, like most nerds with su­per cool record col­lec­tions, I wrote con­de­scend­ing re­views of records that all my non-nerd class­mates bought. 1 I re­mem­ber damn­ing Glen Camp­bell (in the '60s, teens ac­tu­ally bought Glen Camp­bell al­bums and were still cool) and dis­miss­ing Cream's last al­bum, GOOD­BYE. Then, every­thing changed. In 1970, I found Paul Williams's book Out­law Blues, a col­lec­tion of his writ­ings from Craw­daddy mag­a­zine. Williams didn't write neg­a­tive reviews—he wrote… Con­tinue Read­ing An In­tro­duc­tion to Rather Rare Records

on brian wilson and SMiLE (a convoluted conversation part 1)

WAS THE LEG­ENDARY "SMiLE" AL­BUM based on Brian Wilson's ex­pe­ri­ences with LSD? Did Brian con­sciously or un­con­sciously in­cor­po­rate as­pects of Zen Bud­dhism into SMiLE? Who was Arthur Koestler and what did he have to do with SMiLE? What the hell is 'biso­ci­a­tion' and why is it a part of a con­ver­sa­tion on Six­ties rock mu­sic? Did the other Beach Boys re­ally hate his new mu­sic of Brian's, or just Mike Love? Read "Con­vo­luted Con­ver­sa­tion Part 1" on Brian Wilson and SMiLE and learn. This ar­ti­cle was com­piled from a se­ries of con­ver­sa­tions be­tween William To­bel­man and me. It was sup­posed to be about Bill's… Con­tinue Read­ing on brian wilson and SMiLE (a con­vo­luted con­ver­sa­tion part 1)

on brian wilson and SMiLE (a convoluted conversation part 2)

THIS AR­TI­CLE AD­DRESSES BRIAN WILSON and the in­spi­ra­tion for his leg­endary SMiLE al­bum. It bears the un­wieldy ti­tle of "On Brian Wilson And SMiLE (A Con­vo­luted Con­ver­sa­tion Part 2)," be­cause it is the sec­ond of a three-part ar­ti­cle. Please find Part 1, which is an in­tro­duc­tion to Arthur Koestler, and read it be­fore con­tin­u­ing with this ar­ti­cle.   This is the cover for Capi­tol DT-2580, the Beach Boys SMILE. It was sched­uled or re­lease in Au­gust or Sep­tem­ber 1966. Not only was the al­bum not ready for re­lease at that time, but the fea­tured sin­gle Good Vi­bra­tions wasn't ready!… Con­tinue Read­ing on brian wilson and SMiLE (a con­vo­luted con­ver­sa­tion part 2)

on brian wilson and SMiLE (a convoluted conversation part 3)

THIS AR­TI­CLE AD­DRESSES BRIAN WILSON and the in­spi­ra­tion for his leg­endary SMiLE al­bum. It bears the un­wieldy ti­tle of "On Brian Wilson And SMiLE (A Con­vo­luted Con­ver­sa­tion Part 3)," be­cause it is the sec­ond of a three part ar­ti­cle. Please find Parts 1 and 2 and read them be­fore con­tin­u­ing with this ar­ti­cle.     This is the cover for Capi­tol DT-2580, the Beach Boys SMILE. It was sched­uled or re­lease in Au­gust or Sep­tem­ber 1966. Not only was the al­bum not ready for re­lease at that time, but the fea­tured sin­gle Good Vi­bra­tions wasn't ready! Nonethe­less, slicks for the jacket… Con­tinue Read­ing on brian wilson and SMiLE (a con­vo­luted con­ver­sa­tion part 3)

the history of rock & roll in a nutshell (300 words or less)

THE NUT­SHELL IS THIS: Rock & roll has had two golden eras, both times when the artists took con­trol of the mu­sic and its di­rec­tion and led the way. But that's not the norm for pop­u­lar mu­sic: the norm is for busi­ness­men in the form of own­ers, Artists & Reper­toire (A&R) men, and other "bean-counters" to say what's so. In the be­gin­ning, a bunch of old white men in the A&R de­part­ments of the ma­jor record com­pa­nies dic­tated what was recorded and what was played on the ra­dio based on their idea of what middle-aged white women wanted to hear. The ma­jor com­pa­nies (Columbia and RCA Vic­tor were the… Con­tinue Read­ing the his­tory of rock & roll in a nut­shell (300 words or less)

bravi bravata and the south they all ignore!

IF YOU'RE ON FACE­BOOK, you've re­ceived re­quests from friends to “like” a page of theirs. These "likes" are the surest way to have your page “shared” and cir­cu­lated on that so­cial me­dia plat­form. I re­ceive a few each week, and I al­ways have a look at these new pages—so it was that I dis­cov­ered Bra­vata. Peo­ple launch these to dis­play their phở­tog­ra­phy, their hobby, their culi­nary cre­ations, and of course their pets. The most com­mon re­quest I re­ceive is to like a new page from a band. Many of these bands are new, the mu­si­cians young, and Face­book is a free… Con­tinue Read­ing bravi bra­vata and the south they all ig­nore!

the transfiguration of young man mose allison

DUR­ING THE BRITISH IN­VA­SION OF 1964–1966, 'se­ri­ous' in­for­ma­tion on the British groups—in fact, on rock & roll artists in general—was very hard to come by for we Amer­i­can fans. Fans had to turn to the teeny­bop­per fan mags of the era for any trans­fig­u­ra­tion of their tastes from the or­di­nary to the ex­tra­or­di­nary. The dearth of mean­ing­ful data was the op­po­site of the overkill of info that has been the hall­mark of pub­li­ca­tions in the cur­rent “celebrity cul­ture,” which has been made even worse by the In­ter­net. Fifty years ago, there were the trade pub­li­ca­tions Bill­board, Cash Box, Record World,… Con­tinue Read­ing the trans­fig­u­ra­tion of young man mose al­lison

poor boys and pilgrims are going to graceland

THE WEB­SITE FOR GRACE­LAND posted a con­densed ver­sion of my ar­ti­cle, "Elvis Presley’s ’68 Come­back – Bur­bank to Grace­land." This was done to com­mem­o­rate the an­niver­sary of the orig­i­nal broad­cast of the NBC-TV Spe­cial on De­cem­ber 3, 1968. This post­ing on Elvis Presley's "of­fi­cial" web­site has sent tens of thou­sands of in­ter­ested read­ers to the Best Clas­sic Band's Face­book page to find the com­plete, orig­i­nal ar­ti­cle. (For more in­for­ma­tion, see the pre­vi­ous post on this site.) So, now more peo­ple have read this ar­ti­cle in one week­end than have read all the ar­ti­cles on my own Elvis site in three years. That's all the ar­ti­cles com­bined! A close-up of Elvis… Con­tinue Read­ing poor boys and pil­grims are go­ing to grace­land