the cheesiest semi-legal records in the world?

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I MOVED TO CALIFORNIA from my na­tive North­eastern Penn­syl­vania in June of 1978. I naively be­lieved I would find some sem­blance of “the six­ties” hidden away in San Fran­cisco. But in only a few years, most of it had been blotted out. Oh, there were still a lot of hand-painted Vic­to­rian houses and a few hip coffee shops and book­stores.

Long­hairs still walked the streets and played in the parks.


where was the “vinyl rapture” before the “vinylgeddon”?

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WHILE THE PURPOSE OF THIS BLOG is to ad­dress the records that were re­leased decades be­fore most of the people who spend the most time on the in­ternet were even born, I can look at a cur­rent topic every now and again. I sup­pose my fas­ci­na­tion with the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in not es­tab­lishing some ob­jec­tive stan­dards for el­i­gi­bility and the equally ob­sti­nate Wikipedia in in­sisting on “sources” but not on hiring ed­i­tors to fact-check those sources. READ MORE

wikipedia really messed up “music recording certification”

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I LEFT WIKIPEDIA ALONE for the past few months, even though cri­tiquing their en­tries is like shooting fish in a barrel. When it comes to “de­f­i­n­i­tions” of per­sons and terms re­garding pop­ular music, Wikipedia’s theme song seems to be a well-known song by Elvis: “If you’re looking for trouble, you’ve come to the right place. “Sub­sti­tute “bone­headed state­ments” for “trouble” and you’ve got Wikipedia nailed. READ MORE

talkin’ ’bout the bleeding heart liberal petition blues

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I HAVE A FACEBOOK PAGE ti­tled Bleeding Heart Lib­eral Pe­ti­tions. Most days, I re­ceive a slew of emails with pe­ti­tions for var­ious causes such as saving an en­dan­gered species, urging my rep­re­sen­ta­tives in state and fed­eral gov­ern­ment to vote for or against a par­tic­ular bill, protest an in­jus­tice, etc. I read them all, sign most of them, and add a few to the Face­book page. READ MORE

the expense and inconvenience of collecting vinyl today

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MY OLD (OLD) BUDDY, Jerichau St. John, posted a car­toon on my Face­book page. It struck an im­me­diate chord in my record col­lec­tor’s soul. I left a com­mented for JSJ and then went looking for the image on­line. I found it and I am sharing it here with my readers. The car­toon is by Alex Gre­gory and was pub­lished in The New Yorker on May 25, 2015. READ MORE

what is a sex kitten and where have they all gone?

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WHILE TWEAKING AN ARTICLE for pub­li­ca­tion on my Tell It Like It Was pub­li­ca­tion on Medium, I no­ticed that I had re­ferred to lead singer Diana Ross’s soft, whis­pery vo­cals on all three of the Supremes’ #1 hits of 1964 as “sex kit­tenish.” They cer­tainly were coyly flir­ta­tious and the an­tithesis of most soul singers of the ’60s. READ MORE

rutherford chang wants to buy your white album (and yours and yours)

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IN NOVEMBER 1968, the Bea­tles re­leased their long-awaited new album. It had been eigh­teen months since the re­lease of their land­mark Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band, an un­heard of pe­riod of time be­tween al­bums in the ’60s. Un­like the over-the-top pre­sen­ta­tion of the ear­lier album, the new album did not have a clever title or an ex­ces­sively busy and col­orful jacket.