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Spectropop V#0144

  • From: The Spectropop Group
  • Date: 09/10/98

  • _______________________________________________________
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    _______      S  P  E  C  T  R  O  P  O  P       _______
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       Volume #0144                   September 11, 1998   
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       an effective means of ensuring groove cleanliness   
    
    
    
    
    
    Subject:     Jeff Barry His Own Man
    Sent:        09/09/98 10:19 pm
    Received:    09/10/98 3:11 am
    From:        Jack Madani, Jack_MadXXXX@XXX12.nj.us
    To:          Spectropop List, spectroXXXX@XXXties.com
    
    I was thinking the other day about how much I like Jeff Barry's 
    production style. Not his attempts to mimic Spector (which I also 
    like, btw), but rather the lively, sparse folky style that he 
    applied to Neil Diamond, the Monkees, and the Archies, for three 
    examples. Instrumentation seems to consist almost exclusively of 
    strummed acoustic guitars, tambourine and handclap percussion (and
    possibly not even any other drums than just that), some sort of 
    synthy keyboard (clavinet maybe, or light organ), and a jumping 
    bass that's mixed bright and upfront as if it were a lead 
    instrument.
    
    Examples that come to mind would be:
    
    Neil Diamond: Cherry Cherry; You Got To Me; Thank The Lord For The
    Nighttime Monkees: A Little Bit Me, A Little Bit You; I'm A Believer
    Archies: Sugar, Sugar
    
    Overall, I can only describe JB's production style as: "way groovy."
    
    I suppose it's no coincidence that those Monkee songs I mention 
    were also written by Diamond.
    
    jack "seems the more I gave, the less I got" madani
    
    ------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Jack Madani - Princeton Day School, The Great Road,
       Princeton, NJ  08540   Jack_MadXXXX@XXX12.nj.us
    "It is when the gods hate a man with uncommon abhorrence that they
     drive him into the profession of a schoolmaster." --Seneca, 64 A.D.
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    
    
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    Subject:     Non-Interventionist Producers
    Sent:        09/10/98 5:55 am
    Received:    09/10/98 7:19 am
    From:        David Feldman, feldXXXX@XXXderables.com
    To:          Spectropop List, spectroXXXX@XXXties.com
    
    Paul Mac says:
    
    >you can argue that point with him, well you can't, but...). The 
    >reason why Dorn was able to take this type of approach, according 
    >to him, was because the talent he had was so good, that he didn't 
    >need to do much. Let's face it, with Roland Kirk all you really 
    >have to do is document.
    
    One Spectropop producer who I think is woefully neglected but 
    follows the above pattern is Luther Dixon. No, he doesn't offer 
    the pristine arrangements of Bacharach or Bell (just contrast 
    Tommy Hunt's version of "I Don't Know What To Do With Myself" with
    Dionne Warwick's), but he had such wonderful vocal talent in the 
    Scepter stable. Dixon was able to coddle some of the smaller 
    voices (like one of my faves, Maxine Brown) and let the belters 
    (like Chuck Jackson) fly.
    
    Dave
    Dave Feldman
    
    CD of the Week:  The Very Best of Crowded House
    Herb of the Week:  fresh sage
    Annoyance of the Month:  Humidity
    Best Time Killer of the 90's:  Filling out the UPDATED gender survey at
      "http://www.imponderables.com"
    
    
    --------------------[ archived by Spectropop ]--------------------
    
    
    Subject:     PJ Proby/Len Barry
    Sent:        09/10/98 7:41 am
    Received:    09/11/98 12:15 am
    From:        Jack Madani, Jack_MadXXXX@XXX12.nj.us
    To:          Spectropop List, spectroXXXX@XXXties.com
    
    >[P.J. Proby] had success (at least in the UK and Australia) with 
    >"Maria" and "Tonight" from West Side Story....
    
    This reminds me of Len Barry's cover of "There's A Place For Us," 
    which I rather liked. Len's "1-2-3" is a personal favorite in the 
    category of "songs that WOGL only seems to play in the 'lost hit' 
    slot." It's like he was trying for a Spectorian feel but his 
    drummer was so limited that he had to settle for a mid-tempo 
    groove and leave it go at that. Years ago I found a scratchy vinyl
    copy of the "1-2-3" lp, and discovered an unintentionally hilarious
    attempt at a follow-up hit, called "I-O-U." You know how the melody
    moves UP on the numbers "one two three?" Well guess what the genius
    songwriter has Len do on the letters "eye oh ewe."
    
    Still, "1-2-3" is a great track as far as I'm concerned, and I 
    also liked his wailing West Side Story track. Len Barry, ladies 
    and gentlemen.
    
    jack "ya hear the hippy with the backbeat" madani
    
    ------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Jack Madani - Princeton Day School, The Great Road,
       Princeton, NJ  08540   Jack_MadXXXX@XXX12.nj.us
    "It is when the gods hate a man with uncommon abhorrence that they
     drive him into the profession of a schoolmaster." --Seneca, 64 A.D.
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    
    
    --------------------[ archived by Spectropop ]--------------------
    
    
    Subject:     Soupy & "leaks"
    Sent:        09/10/98 8:52 pm
    Received:    09/11/98 12:16 am
    From:        Mark Landwehr, mslXXXX@XXXbs.com
    To:          Spectropop List, SpectroXXXX@XXXties.com
    
    To Robert....
    
    >  Mark and John (and others) we need to find if there are 
    > copies of the old Clay Cole and Soupy Sales shows on TV 
    > where the Ronettes appeared...
    >
    The Ronettes on Soupy Sales???? Wish I'd known that 19 years ago, 
    Robert...Soupy used to visit our radio station every time he came 
    into town - I coulda asked him about Ronnie! Arrrggh!!! Hope she 
    wasn't in any pie fights...
    
    The tale of the Philles "leaks" continues....I don't really think 
    ONE person is responsible for all of this, and, as you have 
    pointed out, it could be any one of many - I can't remember if it 
    was in the Rob Finnis book, the Richard Williams book, or a 
    Rolling Stone article, but it was theorized that somewhere in a 
    warehouse in L.A. there just might be a ton of unreleased Spector 
    stuff just lying around (like 1000's of copies of Bonnie Jo 
    Mason)!!! Ahhh, the stuff dreams are made of....
    
    Mark (Philles Phanatic)
    
    
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    Subject:     Burt & Dionne
    Sent:        09/10/98 5:17 am
    Received:    09/10/98 7:19 am
    From:        David Feldman, feldXXXX@XXXderables.com
    To:          Spectropop List, spectroXXXX@XXXties.com
    
    Ron,
    
    >Just watched a tape of the B. Bacharach tribute last night (thanks,
    >Frank!) & couldn't help but notice Dionne's seeming indifference. 
    >She obviously wanted to be elsewhere.
    
    I agree completely.  Her performance was a travesty, especially 
    because she was closing the show. As weak as his voice is, I'd 
    rather hear Burt sing "Alfie" than hear Dionne give 10% of her 
    ability.
    
    Dave
    Dave Feldman
    
    CD of the Week:  The Very Best of Crowded House
    Herb of the Week:  fresh sage
    Annoyance of the Month:  Humidity
    Best Time Killer of the 90's:  Filling out the UPDATED gender survey at
      "http://www.imponderables.com"
    
    
    --------------------[ archived by Spectropop ]--------------------
    
    
    Subject:     Evaluating Dionne
    Sent:        09/10/98 1:45 pm
    Received:    09/11/98 12:15 am
    From:        Frank Youngwerth, FMXXXX@XXXom
    To:          Spectropop List, spectroXXXX@XXXties.com
    
    <<maybe I'm the only one who thinks although her biggest hits came 
    from her two writers, she wasn't always suited to perform them.>>
    
    Warwick sang some Bacharach-David songs definitively (my 
    nominations would include "Here I Am," "Alfie," "San Jose," 
    "Promises, Promises," "Paper Mache"), but why should it then have 
    to follow that she always did the best version of a B-D song? 
    Sometimes, you don't even have to be Dusty or Sandy or Scott 
    Walker to out-do Dionne (e.g. Herb Alpert "This Guy's..."). 
    Incidentally, I've always loved Warwick's 1982 Bee Gees-written 
    hit "Heartbreaker."
    
    Frank Youngwerth  
    
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    Subject:     Dionne and Producers
    Sent:        09/10/98 5:55 am
    Received:    09/10/98 7:19 am
    From:        David Feldman, feldXXXX@XXXderables.com
    To:          Spectropop List, spectroXXXX@XXXties.com
    
    Paul said, in part...
    
    >Anyway, Dorn told me that his a job as producer was to make the 
    >performer feel as comfortable in the studio as possible and let 
    >them basically do what the do. He basically started with the 
    >performer and built from there. This is pretty much the opposite 
    >of what Spector did, as Spector built the record and then inserted
    >the appropriate performer (this is Doc Pomus' assessment BTW, so 
    >you can argue that point with him, well you can't, but...). The 
    >reason Dorn was able to take this type of approach, according 
    >to him, was because the talent he had was so good, that he didn't 
    >need to do much. Let's face it, with Roland Kirk all you really 
    >have to do is document.
    >
    This kind of dichotomy is so interesting in dicussion of record 
    producers and movie directors. Somehow, the kind of artist that 
    imposes his or her view on performers seems to get more notoriety 
    than than the "documenter." I think producers like Tony Asher tend
    to be undervalued for this reason.
    
    I agree with you about Spector. And about another of my favorite 
    producers, Thom Bell. Both of them had musical vision so distinct 
    that I think some of their artists were stifled. Occasionally, the
    clashes were fascinating documents that to some extent buried the 
    singer (I think of "I'm Coming Home," Bell's amazing attempt to do
    an R&B album with Johnny Mathis, and I'm sure folks will violently 
    disagree, but I feel the same way about "River Deep, Mountain 
    High").
    
    >With Dionne, you're dealing with the type of artist who needs 
    >great songs - she's not the type of singer who can take a fair 
    >song and make it great. That's not a 'dis' on Dionne. She requires
    >good material to shine.
    
    I would have disagreed with you except that there is so much 
    evidence to the contrary <g>. Dionne's covers in her early albums 
    are exceptionally good, so I'm not sure if this isn't more a 
    matter of DW's deterioration as an artist then it is her inability
    to transform mediocre material.
    
    >When the B&D/Dionne split happened, it didn't surprise me she went 
    >downhill. Bacharach is an underrated composer and he knew how to 
    >write for her. Her subsequent albums showed that most people didn't.
    
    Underrated? I guess he is. Although in my book, he's second only 
    to Brian Wilson. And Hal David might be my favorite lyricist. To 
    me, he's the true unrecognized genius of the Spectropop period. 
    When you add Burt's brilliant arranging and producing
    capabilities, he's a true giant. I'm wishin' and hopin' that the 
    Burt/Elvis CD will be a killer.
    
    Dave
    Dave Feldman
    
    CD of the Week:  The Very Best of Crowded House
    Herb of the Week:  fresh sage
    Annoyance of the Month:  Humidity
    Best Time Killer of the 90's:  Filling out the UPDATED gender survey at
      "http://www.imponderables.com"
    
    
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    Subject:     Dionne and her 'Psychic Friend?'
    Sent:        09/10/98 4:48 am
    Received:    09/10/98 7:19 am
    From:        CHARLES  THOMPSON, CHAZTHOMPXXXX@XXXgy.net
    To:          Spectropop List, spectroXXXX@XXXties.com
    
    I too have always enjoyed Dionne Warwick's 60's recordings with 
    Bacharach, but when she became the spokesperson for the Psychic 
    Friends Network' I was totally turned off. A puzzling question I 
    do have is .........Now that the Psychic Network has gone bankrupt
    and folded, why didn't any of these Psychic Friends' foresee that 
    coming? and furthermore, why didn't these so-called 'Friends' tell
    Dionne her career was over? (that was just plain cruel) Hmmmmmm....
    
    Chaz_T
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    Subject:     Dionne Debate
    Sent:        09/10/98 5:55 am
    Received:    09/10/98 7:19 am
    From:        David Feldman, feldXXXX@XXXderables.com
    To:          Spectropop List, spectroXXXX@XXXties.com
    
    Jamie said, in part...
    
    >Interesting. I was under the impression that Chris Andrews (for 
    >Sandie) and someone (Ivor Raymonde<?>for Dusty) picked up 
    >Bacharach/David songs off of Dionne album tracks and covered them.
    >I never really researched it, it was just a hunch based on the 
    >difference in production quality between the Dusty/Sandie singles 
    >and Dionne's versions. Are you saying that Bacharach/David penned 
    >the songs for Dusty/Sandie and then had Dionne cover them for LP 
    >tracks? Either way, I prefer the British productions.
    
    I think you are 100% correct. Sorry if I said anything that implied 
    otherwise.
    
    >>It just goes to show, IMO, how important producers and writers
    >>are to any singer.
    >
    >Especially to any singer's *records.*  
    
    Yes, although sometimes I wish there were directors, not just 
    musical directors, for live performances. How Aretha could have 
    used someone who had the power/gumption to say "no" to some of her
    ideas.
    
    >>Dionne's concerts  during her prime were sometimes spectacular, 
    >>although she showed traces of erratic behavior even then, and 
    >>occasionally a weird hostility to her audience) over the years.
    >
    >Well, I never saw her in concert and never consciously perceived 
    >any hostility, but I have always imagined Dionne to be difficult 
    >to work with. Having said I do think she sang wonderfully on her 
    >60's hits, something about her has always put me off. Maybe it is 
    >the tacky Scepter album jackets,
    
    Gee, as a teenager, I remember the "Make Way for Dionne Warwick" 
    album as anything but tacky <g>. Inspirational is more like it.
    
    [Off-topic musings] I think I might be unusual in that the image 
    of a group never mattered to me, nor did coolness quotient, and 
    I'm wondering how other members of the list feel about this. I'm 
    48, and "Rock Around the Clock" was the first record I ever bought. 
    I became a rock and roll fanatic at that moment. But it didn't 
    matter to me whether a song I liked was by Ernie K-Doe or Kathy 
    Linden or Jerry Lee Lewis. I was always driven by songs rather 
    than images, and remain so. This helped me a lot as a Beach Boy 
    fan <g>.
    
    Early in Dionne's career, she was marketed as Marlene Dietrich's 
    protege (who would ever think that Dietrich's protege's first hit 
    would be "Don't Make Me Over?"), as somehow more of a Streisand than 
    a soul queen.  But that didn't matter to me either, because if 
    Dietrich recorded something I liked as much as "Walk On By," I would 
    have been a Dietrich fan, too.
    
    Am I a mutant? For some reason, I never found myself identifying 
    with rock stars while easily emotionally engrossed in the songs. 
    Occasionally an act that I never otherwise like would release 
    something that I just loved (a couple of examples that leap to 
    mind: "Love Me for a Reason" by the Osmonds; "Foolish Heart" by 
    Steve Perry;). I just don't remember feeling that "Sixteen Tons" 
    was any less cool than "Blueberry Hill," and I'm not sure I do 
    now.]
    
    >I don't know. Sandie, Jackie, Ronnie...they all did something for 
    >me, in terms of "cool" for lack of a better term. Dionne always 
    >seemed so square, as if she didn't relate to her audience or 
    >appreciate the gems Bacharach and David bestowed on her.
    
    So I think she was promoted as "sophisticated" rather than 
    "square."  And in fact, to a large extent, the image was true.
    Warwick *was* a more seasoned musician than most young singers. I 
    think of Darlene Love in a similar vein, actually.
    
    >>I think of Jackie DeShannon and especially Sandie Shaw as 
    >>relatively minor singers, and Dusty Springfield...effective 
    >>singer with a relatively limited instrument.
    >
    >I believe that's a fair judgment.
    >>
    >>Dionne, on the other hand, had an extraordinary vocal AND expressive
    >>range. I just can't think of many singers, male or female, who have 
    >>both the emotional and technical range of Dionne.
    >
    >I never really felt any
    >attachment to her as an artist, despite loving her Bacharach/David era
    >records. Maybe it's because I have never placed much importance on 
    >technical proficiency. For instance, I like Mary Weiss's vocals more 
    >than Dionne, despite Mary's amateurish sound, and I doubt any of us 
    >here would deny that Mary and the Shangs spoke volumes about teenage 
    >cool. 
    
    I know exactly what you're talking about, Jamie.  Neil Young and 
    James Taylor are like that for me.  I *love* the way their voices 
    sound, and their vocals affect me emotionally. I don't think anyone 
    would argue that Neil Young has a great instrument (unless it's a 
    guitar).
    
    >Thanks for the comments, David. 
    
    I just love being a part of a group that is willing to talk about 
    Dionne Warwick with actual interest. Thanks.
    Dave Feldman
    
    CD of the Week:  The Very Best of Crowded House
    Herb of the Week:  fresh sage
    Annoyance of the Month:  Humidity
    Best Time Killer of the 90's:  Filling out the UPDATED gender survey at
      "http://www.imponderables.com"
    
    
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    Subject:     Re: Il Ragazzo della Via Gluck
    Sent:        09/10/98 3:07 pm
    Received:    09/11/98 12:15 am
    From:        Francesc Sole, fsXXXX@XXXes
    To:          Spectropop List, spectroXXXX@XXXties.com
    
    Jim wrote
    
    >Francesc...yes, that would have to be the same song...the first verse
    >runs: "the town that I came from is quite and small /we played in 
    >the meadows where the grass grew so tall/ in summer the lilacs 
    >grew everywhere/the laughter of children, it flowed in the air." 
    >Does that sound like it? 
    
    Absolutely. We're talking about the same song. 
    
    Best,
    francesc
    
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    Subject:     Oldies Radio
    Sent:        09/10/98 4:20 am
    Received:    09/10/98 7:19 am
    From:        Billy G. Spradlin, bilXXXX@XXXre.net
    To:          Spectropop List, spectroXXXX@XXXties.com
    
    My favorite Oldies Station is KOMA-AM/FM out of Oklahoma City. I 
    grew up listening to this station during its Top 40 era in the 
    1970's in Oklahoma, so thats probably why I'm biased! They play 
    the regular "Stock" oldies but throw in obscure hits, songs that 
    were regional favorites, and MOR (Even some crossover Country) 
    hits that most oldies stations ignore. I wished they had a Real 
    Audio feed on Broadcast.com, but they still have a great 50,000 
    nighttime signal (AM 1520) in the Southwest.
    
    I was driving home to East Texas after my labor day vacation on I-
    35 through Oklahoma and heard Nat King Cole. How many oldies 
    stations play Nat King Cole or Frank Sinatra? I have also heard on
    KOMA the Hollies "I Cant Let Go", The Mindbenders "Ashes To Ashes",
    and Lesley Gore's "The Look of Love" which is a fantastic record. I
    doubt most music directors who run oldies stations have forgotten 
    about these songs, dont have them on thier Goldisc Oldies CD 
    library. never heard them because they're too young, or thier 
    consultants/owners/program directors forbid them from playing them
    
    Also KTXQ in Dallas has just swtiched to a "Jammin' Oldies" R&B 
    format. Right now they are playing the Jacksons...
    
    Billy G.
    
    Billy G. Spradlin                           E-mail: bilXXXX@XXXre.net 
    29 Rim Road                    Homepage: http://www.tyler.net/wildbill
    
    Kilgore,
    Texas 75662     IRC Chat: Wild`Bill at #Bob's_Tavern (Effnet) 
    
    
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