are there albums where the covers are worth more than the records?

HERE’S ANOTHER QUESTION ABOUT VINYL on Quora that distracted me from various writing projects! The question is, “What vinyl album cover empty is worth more than a mint vinyl album without the cover?” Or, as I have worded it in this article’s title: Are there albums with covers that are worth more than the records? [Continue reading]

Donovan SunshineSuperman Taiwan record 600

the cheesiest semi-legal records in the world!

I MOVED TO CALIFORNIA from Pennsylvania in June 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. There were still a lot of hand-painted Victorian houses and a few hip coffee shops and bookstores.

[Continue reading]
GeneClark Colombe PS 1500 crop color2

why the hell isn’t gene clark in the hall of fame? (gene clark part 4)

ONCE UPON A TIME, it looked like the Byrds had a long, successful, productive career in front of them. In 1965, they had two #1 hits, Mr. Tambourine Man and Turn! Turn! Turn!, that effectively defined the recently coined term folk-rock. Their two albums were pivotal in the transition of rock musicians from being primarily singles-oriented to being primarily album-oriented. [Continue reading]

Mothers FreakOut Zappa studio 1500x1000

a Freak Out labelography and price guide

THIS IS A LABELOGRAPHY and price guide for the initial pressings of the Mothers of Invention’s 1966 two-record album FREAK OUT! It is intended as a complementary piece to the article “What Was the First Rock Double-Album of the ’60s?” Whereas that piece was for a general readership, this article is intended for collectors (although many of those general readers can enjoy the photos and some of the history). [Continue reading]

Beatles Rishikesh Ashram Sajish 2 1500 crop

sgt. pepper on blue jay way (beatles ’68 part 1)

THE BEATLES AS A GROUPas a rock & roll-based pop band—are an example of a gestalt, as the abilities and the accomplishments of the group far outstrip what could be expected of the four members knowing their individual skills and talents. This is not belittling their skills, which are many, but as their solo careers made too evident, each on his own wasn’t even close to what he had been as a Beatle. [Continue reading]

JulieLondon 1956 close up 1500 crop

yummy yummy yummy julie london’s got love in her tummy

ANYTHING WITH “BEATLES” on it was hot property in the ’60s. Artists across the gamut of musical genres recorded Lennon-McCartney songs. This included the occasional country and folk artist and even jazz singers delved into the Fab Four’s songbook looking for hits. Few of these non-rock artists enjoyed any notable commercial success with these attempts. [Continue reading]

CosmicEye art 1500

the day I uncovered the secret of the universe (and then forgot it)

I CAN TRULY SAY that I knew it all—The Secret of the Universe. Once. Briefly. I can also say that this essay has little to do with record collecting, but it does touch on psychedelic music of the ’60s, so here it is (instead of on my other, eponymous blog). [Continue reading]

dbl header FO2 1500

what was the first “rock” double-album of the ’60s?

 IT IS ACCEPTED “FACT” that two seminal works of popular music—the Beach Boys’ PET SOUNDS and Bob Dylan’s BLONDE ON BLONDE—were released on the same day, May 16, 1966. And there was a second reason to celebrate that date: BLONDE ON BLONDE was also the first rock double-album of all-new studio recordings, beating the Mothers of Invention’s FREAK OUT! [Continue reading]

RollingStones 1967 GeredMankowitz 1500 crop

between the buttons and the dandelion, we love you!

GREAT SINGLES IN 1967 by established artists that should have been BIG hits but weren’t were common. For example, Buffalo Springfield’s Mr. Soul, the Byrds’ Lady Friend, and the Hollies’ King Midas In Reverse (and I could go on but that’s grist for another mill). But perhaps the biggest disappointment was the Rolling Stones second single of the year, We Love You / Dandelion. [Continue reading]