Friday, November 22, 2013

Yellow Pages

Don Reno, Bill Harrell and the Tennessee Cutups

Yellow Pages

Jim Goodman-Jerry Fender
Brownboro Pub. Co. SESAC

 Derby Town SR 34/35

Produced by Ray Allen


Bluegrass banjo player Don Reno began a new partnership with singer/multi-instrumentalist Bill Harrell in late 1966 and it continued for a decade, a period which coincided with resurgence in public interest in bluegrass as a result of a growing festival circuit.

They have bought into Derby Town Records and Cuzz Publishing Co. and added Don Reno-Bill Harrell Enteprises to the corporation for booking purposes and handling personal management of artists. Derby Town Records and Cuzz Publishing were operated by Kenny Sowder, whose main claim to fame is to have co-written "Lonely Street", a classic country song, first recorded by Carl Belew, an artist whom he managed.

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Sugar Daddy

with Kai-Ray and Crew

Richard A. Caire, Lingua-Musica BMI

Lodestar 74-62

This is the flipside of "Limbo, Limbo" by Kai-Ray and Crew which was a minor hit on KUTT, Fargo, North Dakota and KXLW, St. Louis, Missouri in 1962.

Minneapolis-based Trashmen, of “Surfin’ Bird” fame, took their name from Kai-Ray’s first release on Lodestar ("Trashman's Blues).  

Richard A. Caire, or Kai-Ray or Shane Kai-Ray or Tony Caire came from Wichita, Kansas. He and his band played for some time at the Five Spot bar in Fargo, North Dakota before moving to Minneapolis.  He played lead guitar for several other Minnesota groups, most notably The Bandits and King Krusher & The Turkeynecks.  He was the first in the Twin Cities to have a fuzztone on his guitar (1964). He was also a songwriter, producer and small-time label owner (Kairay label).

A Kai-Ray discography can be found here.  The earliest Kai-Ray known record is on Lodestar in 1961, but I've found a song penned by Richard A. Caire and copyrighted in November 1958, titled "It's Called The Blues".

 Lodestar trademark
The label name was taken from the Lockheed Lodestar 
twin engine aircraft that was produced in the late 1930s.

Clarence B. Brown had started his first label, Pleasant Peasant (old time "oompah" music), in 1958. He was living in Seattle at the time.  In January 1959 he moved to Minnesota. The center of his activity was New Ulm, Minnesota. with a close connection to Brown's Music Store, owned by an uncle of C.B.Brown.   

The Lodestar label was started in as an outlet for pop music, with one brief Country/Western album. Even though address of Pleasant Peasant and Lodestar was listed as Minneapolis, it was actually Bloomington, Mn, a southern suburb of Minneapolis and about a 90 mile drive from New Ulm.

Most of the recordings were performed at Kay Bank Studios in Minneapolis.

Monday, November 11, 2013

The idea of progress

Interesting design for this California label founded early 1963 by L.A. saxophonist and band leader Zeke Strong. 

The idea of progress, that relentless technical progress improving the human condition, is here illustrated by four means of transportation.

However, uncertainty come out because of the opposite directions that the vehicules are taking. Where is the future?
  • Towards the right, like the old wagon and old car seems to be moving?.  
  • Towards the left, like the modern car and the airplane seems to go?
No matter what, as, paraphrasing the great french philosopher Pierre Dac : "On a l'avenir devant soi, mais quand on fait demi-tour, on l'a dans le dos" which can be translated like that :" The future is in front of us, but each time we make a U-turn, it's on our  back ".

 Pioneer  Days

 Roaring 20's

 Gay 50's

Featuristic 60's

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Cold Hearted Lover

Billy Valentine

Armo-Big Star BMI

Federal Records
His last?

Read Billy Valentine story HERE

NEW YORK, July 1949—This is one of those show business success stories. It's about a young Fort Worth pianist-singer, Billy Valentine.
Johnny Moore's Three Blazers, a hot group in the blues-and-rhythm market for several years, received a tough blow at the box office when singer-pianist Charles Brown decided to go out on his own some months ago. A replacement, Lee Barnes, proved totally inadequate.
Two weeks ago the Blazers were due for a series of recording dates with the Victor company. Desperate for a singer-pianist replacement, the remainder of the group, Johnny Moore, Oscar Moore and Johnny Miller, headed out on the road in different directions in search of a "new Charles Brown."
In Washington, leader Johnny Moore was told of a pianist-singer in Fort Worth who, the informer claimed, "would make them cats forget Charlie Brown." So Johnny placed a person-to-person call to Fort Worth and had the prospect sing for him over the phone. The youngster was told to hop a plane for New York.
The Fort Worth product was in New York the next evening and auditioned an hour later. Milton Ebbins, group's manager, hired him on the spot and two days later sliced wax with the group.

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

That's The Way It's Gonna Be

 Billy Lee

Carrie 1515
Box 7763, Detroit 7, Mich.

September 1962

This is William Levise Jr. later known as Mitch Ryder, front man for one of the most raucuous "blue-eyed soul" bands of the 1960s, the Detroit Wheels.  Writer is the Reverend James Hendrix, owner of Carrie Records. This is the very first Mitch Ryder recording.

Ryder's father looked for ways to encourage the son's talent.   One of his coworker belonged to a church presided over by Rev. James Hendrix, a part-time music producer who owned Carrie Records, a small independant label which distributed a handful of modest gospel recordings.   "That's The Way" was an attempt by the reverend to expand his gospel label into more popular directions. "James looked around and saw Elvis and Bobby Rydell, all these white boys", Ryder said. "He thought there was a fortune to be made."

On left, William Levise (Billy Lee)
 Rev. James Hendrix (center bottom )
The Arabians
Edward Hamilton
Cornell Blakely (right bottom )

Monday, November 4, 2013

I'm Your Daddy-O

Dick D'Agostin

 Dick D'Agostin, Sound Music BMI

Ac'cent AC-1046

September 1956

His first, also issued on Moonglow Records (see below).  Not listed in his Rockin' Country Style discography HERE

Richard Earl "Dick" D'Agostin, is best known for touring with Eddie Cochran.  Dick was a dance champion and editor of dance columns for two of the first teen magazines, Dig and Modern Teen.  He was with Judi Stein the 1955 winner of Al Jarvis' TV show contest "Make Believe Ballroom"
The show worked this way: every day 25 teen-age couples from Southern California schools are invited to compete in a jazz dance contest at the American Broadcasting Company's Television Center, Prospect Wk. and Talmadge Ave., Hollywood. Winners selected from each day's competition are invited back to compete for monthly dance championship honors and prizes of television sets, phonographs and radios. All monthly winners return for the annual runoff.
D'Agostin sang and played piano and guitar as the front man for The Swingers, composed of drummer Gene Riggio, saxophonist Paul Kaufman, and D'Agostin's brother Larry D'Agostin on guitar.

The history of Moonglow Records goes back to the 1950s in Belgium, although most know Moonglow as a 1960s Los Angeles-based label. Albert van Hoogten was owner of Ronnex Records in Belgium, and sent his brother, Rene Jan van Hoogten, to the United States in the mid-1950s to set up a label here. The first version of Moonglow Records was run out of Woodside, New York.
Source :

Saturday, November 2, 2013

Too Much For Granted

Adrienne Lawner

Too Much For Granted
Towns and Craft, Craft Music

Rapid Records

In May 1956, it was announced that Adrienne Lawner, whose basic job was "taking dictation from Larry Uttal of Monument Music" is trying her hand with a couple of R'n'R for Rapid Records. Larry Uttal, not yet owner of Madison Records or head of the Amy/Bell/Mala family of labels, had just bought out Bill Buchanan's interest in Monument Music and Dover Music (both BMI) dissolving a partnership of several years.  Chris Towns and Morty Craft had certainly their part in the production of this record.

Another of her record was later also cut by Larry Uttal.  "Please Buy My Record" was recorded on Friday, March 7, Larry Uttal edited it over the weekend, and made his deal on Monday, March 10. On Wednesday, March 12, (George)  Goldner (of End Records)  had strike-offs in the hands of local deejays.

Adrienne Lawner/Addie Lee discography

As Adrienne Lawner
56 Rapid 1001: Too Much For Granted  / Quarter Past Nine
As Addie Lee
57 Roulette 4004: One Little Kiss / Cumba Tumba Nika (Orch. conducted By Marty Gold)
57 Glory 267:   Buzzin' Around / Burnin' With Love  (Abie Baker Orchestra)
58 End 1018: C'mon Home / Please Buy My Record
59 Kapp 269 : Love Guaranteed  / Seek And Ye Shall Find 


It's my understanding, based on an article published by The Sun Sentinel (Hollywood, Florida) in 2001, that Addie Lee also starred as Adrienne Barrett in 1953 in Dementia, a  film directed by John Parker (the movie was retitled Daughter of Horror in 1955),  perhaps one of the strangest films ever offered for theatrical release. 
Floating somewhere in the netherworld of B-movie exploitation and art house psychodrama, John Parker's ambitious dream film of a schizophrenic's nightmarish existence is nothing if not unique. For years only available in the altered version Daughter of Horror, this unique bit of Freudian horror has been something of a holy grail for cult film buffs. Kino has uncovered the original cut and restored it to near-pristine condition. Shot entirely without dialogue or narration and filled with suggestive violence and psychosexual imagery, it's like a skid row expressionist thriller following the nocturnal prowling of a young woman haunted by homicidal guilt. Parker can't quite match his lofty ambitions with gripping drama, but he makes up for it with sheer audacity, from home-life flashbacks staged among the gravestones of a misty cemetery to the creepy faceless crowds that follow our tortured heroine through the city. Imaginative sets and vivid effects belie its starvation budget and create a strikingly austere urban mindscape and the eerie score by composer George Antheil (with wordless vocals provided by Marni Nixon) sets an unnerving mood. Handsomely shot by William C. Thompson (Ed Wood's regular cinematographer--say what you will, Wood's pictures look good), it's like nothing else from the 1950s. (Amazon)

Adrienne Barrett
 = Adrienne Lawner = Addie Lee ?