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Spectropop V#0291

  • From: The Spectropop Group
  • Date: 07/11/99

  • __________________________________________________________
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       Volume #0291                           July 11, 1999   
       "Enthralled by the whole idea of Polynesian culture"   
    Subject:     Re: Eden Ahbez?
    Received:    07/11/99 11:10 am
    From:        Brad Elliott,
    To:          Spectropop List,
    Tobias wrote:
    >Sorry for my ignorance but who is Eden Ahbez?
    I had this bookmarked, and it answers your question 
    probably better than I could. It's from a review of the CD
    reissue (on Del-Fi) of his EDEN'S ISLAND album that 
    appeared in the Memphis Flyer several years ago.
    [ "There was a boy, a very strange enchanted boy..." And 
    so begins the lyric to modern primitive Eden Ahbez's 
    primary claim to fame - a very unusual composition titled 
    "Nature Boy." When black song stylist Nat King Cole took 
    Ahbez's idyllic plea for tolerance, love, and tranquillity
    to Number One across the Billboard charts in 1948, a number
    of related interesting events followed. The immediate 
    result was the crossover success of Cole to a white pop 
    audience. A more lasting impression was made upon the 
    audience itself, which surprisingly embraced a song about 
    simple acceptance for all as sung by a man whose own race 
    was finding it increasingly difficult to be considered at 
    But the most intriguing development that occurred was that
    the spotlight was turned on the song's unusual composer, 
    the modern-day mystic Eden Ahbez. Recognized as "The Yogi"
    or "The Hermit" in Hollywood, Ahbez shook the square-ass 
    conventions of the day by wearing his hair and beard 
    scandalously long and living what would later be 
    considered a "hippie" lifestyle. To be so bold in such a 
    controlled climate - openly farting in the face of 
    accepted authority - took the sensibility of either a 
    madman or a genius, and Ahbez appears to have been an 
    amalgam of both.
    In the 1950's, America was enthralled by the whole idea of
    Polynesian culture, and swinging adults across the land 
    hula danced with cheap totems and tikis for decoration. 
    Whether we ever had any true understanding of the actual 
    culture being emulated doesn't really matter - what does 
    count is that we assimilated this "created" culture of our
    own into consciousness as exotica. Eden's Island takes this
    concept one step further into the realm of Ahbez's sincere 
    personal philosophies and beliefs.
    Recorded in 1960, Eden's Island finds our revolutionary 
    hero 12 years after the success of "Nature Boy." Ahbez's 
    version of "Nature Boy" isn't found on Eden's Island, but 
    what can be discovered is a heady mix of island rhythms 
    and jazzy instrumentation, organic sound effects and 
    quasi-beat monologues. Eden's Island should be fully 
    considered as part of the "exotica" genre that 
    then-contemporary artists such as Martin Denny, Les Baxter, 
    and Esquivel had defined through popular recordings by 
    that time, but there's an air of authenticity to Ahbez's 
    efforts that still transcend the form some 35 years after 
    the fact.
    While this compact disc reissue of Eden's Island was in 
    preparation earlier this year, Ahbez entered the next 
    realm at the ripe old age of 86. He apparently remained in
    good health until the end by adhering to his strict 
    vegetarian beliefs and practices, as his passing was due 
    to the result of head injuries sustained in an automobile 
    Ahbez described himself in his Last Will and Testament as 
    "a man possessed of the universal and cosmic vision of the
    Miracle of Nature." Ahbez was indeed a man "possessed," one
    who was truly New Age (in its most positive connotations) 
    long before it was fashionable. Eden's Island still 
    retains the power to transport the listener to Ahbez's 
    private world, making Paradise Lost found once again.]
    >Oh, btw, Brad, while I'm already asking you: I got the
    >impression from a Japanese listee on PSML that the 'new'
    >Pet Sounds CD-reissue has been remastered once again: i.e.
    >it's not the same master as on the Pet Sounds Box..?? Just
    >trying to find out if it's worth buying the new reissue if
    >you already have the box :-)
    Hmmm ... that's a call you'll have to make. Yes, the CD 
    has been remastered -- both the mono and stereo mixes. But
    the same master tapes were used as for the PET SOUNDS box, 
    so the primary difference is simply going to be that 
    between two different engineers -- Mark Linett (on the box)
    and Andrew Sandoval (on the CD reissue). (Actually, 
    neither Linett or Sandoval did the actual mastering 
    themselves, but rather supervised the process on their 
    respective releases.)
    The one thing that the CD reissue will give you that's not
    on the box is the version of "Hang On to Your Ego" on which
    Brian sings the entire lead vocal. It originally appeared 
    on the 1990 PET SOUNDS single CD, but wasn't included on 
    the box for some reason. Of course, that 1990 CD was 
    processed through the "No Noise" system, so it suffers 
    greatly in comparison to the PS box and the new reissue. 
    If you want to hear that version of "Ego" in its 
    remastered glory, the only place you can do that is on the
    new CD.
    Also worth mentioning here is that Capitol has pressed the
    stereo mix of PET SOUNDS on 180-gram vinyl. It's a limited 
    run and probably won't be available for too long. I highly
    recommend it for vinyl fanatics, as it sounds great!
    >And do you think you'll put up your liner notes for it on 
    >the 'net as you did with EH?
    Probably. The details are still being worked out, but I 
    feel certain it will happen. When it does (within the next
    week or so), I'll post a notice here.
    Surf's up!
    --------------------[ archived by Spectropop ]--------------------
    Subject:     AMC POP
    Received:    07/11/99 11:10 am
    From:        Paul MacArthur,
    To:          Spectropop List,
    I don't know how many of you get American Movie Classics, 
    but last week they showed the Girls on the Beach as part 
    of their AMC POP series. Here's the rest of the month's 
    Saturday, July 10 10:00 PM  Pajama Party
    Saturday, July 17 10:05 PM  The Endless Summer
    Saturday, July 24 10:00 PM  Easy Come, Easy Go
    Saturday, July 31 10:05 PM  Tickle Me
    Right up the Spectropop Alley!
    - Paul
    --------------------[ archived by Spectropop ]--------------------
    Subject:     Bob Alcivar & 5D's "There Never Was A Day"
    Received:    07/11/99 11:10 am
    From:        Barrington Womble,
    To:          Spectropop List,
    I just wanted to say how great it is that Bob Alcivar has 
    signed onto this list! In one of those global coincidental
    twists, I've had your arrangement of the 5th Dimension "
    There Never Was A Day" in my head for a couple of days, 
    and I wrote a string arrangement for one of my songs with 
    the 5D arrangement in mind the same day that you signed on
    ! Spooky, eh? :-) My track didn't come out like what you 
    did on that song but it was still the main influence. I 
    particularly love the ending with the female vocal melody 
    being repeated by first flutes and then strings. Pure 
    --------------------[ archived by Spectropop ]--------------------
    Received:    07/11/99 11:10 am
    From:        Bob Alcivar,
    To:          Spectropop List,
    So sorry I missed out on The 5th Dimension and Association
    discussion. That would have been my kind of thing. The era 
    became a good chunk of my music - creative life, education,
    as well as being some very exciting years. I will be 
    happy to engage in that subject, or practically any other 
    discussion about music that come up. I've been given 
    assignments and participated in a substantial and varied 
    amount of producing, composing, and arranging during the 
    70s, 80s and now the 90s. I've got a lot of stories, 
    enough to fill a book...which sounds like a good idea.
    In answer to your question: Yes, I started out as a jazz 
    pianist in Seattle, went to Cornish College there and 
    started arranging and touring with my jazz-rooted group. 
    'The Signatures'. After several years on the road, 
    recording and performing with The Sigs, we finally 
    disbanded and settled in Las Vegas. (Lots of music work 
    there during the early 60s). This was the first period of 
    'adjustment' for me as an arranger, and the transition was
    quite difficult. All I knew was how to write for five 
    voices, within jazz style. When I tried writing for the 
    more commercial, lounge vocal groups, I got rejected 
    before I started. They knew about me and my jazz roots, 
    and were rather wary.. By some accident I joined up as 
    pianist with a Korean girl trio, 'The Kim Sisters'. This 
    was my first attempt at something in a pop vein. It worked,
    and I stayed with the girls throughout their many Ed 
    Sullivan appearances, as well as posh clubs throughout the
    country, including The Desert Inn and Stardust in Vegas. I 
    felt as though I was going to school there. I was getting 
    a 'hands on' musical education in Las Vegas. I began 
    writing for small bands, as well as orchestras during 
    during that period.
    When arriving in LA in 1967, I found my Las Vegas credits 
    to be rather useless so far as record companies were 
    concerned. However, a member of The New Christy Minstrels,
    Larry Ramos, came to the rescue. We had become good friends
    after I vocal arranged 3 of the Christy's albums when I was
    still living in Vegas. After he joined The Association, he 
    eventually pulled me in as arranger for the 'Birthday' 
    album... We co-wrote "Like Always". That song with my 
    arrangement, plus a chart for "Everything That Touches You" 
    (comp.Terry Kirkman), got me in pretty solid with that 
    group, and since Bones was producing The 5th, he pulled me
    in to arrange for them as well. 
    Addressing your question more specifically, I would have 
    to say that my jazz-rooted Signatures expreience was more 
    than useful when writing for both Association and the 5th 
    (along with a lot of other groups). Of course, I adjusted 
    to fit their musical style and particularly their songs, 
    but my voicings for singers remained basically within my 
    own style and taste. The groups obviously liked what I did,
    especially after 9 or so albums for the 5th. And I have 
    continued to write for The Association, various singles, 
    movie score charts and more recently symphonic 
    orchestrations for some of their concerts. 
    Working with The 5th Dimension, then going onto the 
    Manhattan Transfer, was not a great a departure. I did a 
    jazz-like chart for The Transfer, "Of Thee I Sing", and I 
    probably arranged more freely and 'Signatures-like' with 
    that one. Alan and Tim discovered my 'Signatures' albums 
    in New York, loved the group, so expected some of that 
    kind of voicing, which I gave them.
    The methods for working with any of these groups is built
    within very similar foundations. Researching, getting to 
    know the singers and their vocal qualities-strengths, 
    writing sketch arrangements, rehearsing, adjusting notes, 
    coaching, and then continuing on by directing them as they
    Hope I've answered your questions.
    Bob Alcivar
    --------------------[ archived by Spectropop ]--------------------
    Subject:     Home Of The Brave
    Received:    07/11/99 11:10 am
    From:        john rausch,
    To:          Spectropop List,
    Sorry Will
    Don`t know an of any Ronettes versions being "leaked out" 
    ...yet anyway. Who knows what will pop up; there has been 
    a lot of Spectorbilia popping up lately so who knows? 
    Interestingly tho, on my 70`s UK issue of Home Of The Brave 
    on PSI label, it states very clearly "produced by Phil Spector 
    and the wall of sound orchestra" HMMM. 
    It can be seen on Mark`s Phil Spector Record Label 
    John Rausch
    Presenting The Fabulous 
    --------------------[ archived by Spectropop ]--------------------
    Subject:     Nancy Wilson
    Received:    07/11/99 11:10 am
    From:        Carol Kaye,
    To:          Spectropop List,
    Bob Hanes, thanks for your message, yes I think you 
    outlined it about Brian....hopefully someone will do a docu
    based on the truth of the way he was in the studios someday.
    >Just read a press release on Nancy Wilson that said 
    >during the mid-sixties (no exact dates given) that Nancy 
    >Wilson was the second best selling artist on Capitol 
    >Records behind only the Beatles and that she was ahead of 
    >the Beach Boys. Can anyone provide evidence to support or 
    >refute this? Thanks, Paul MacArthur
    Paul, I was recording w/Nancy Wilson (on bass) the latter 
    part of the 60s and did what the co. said was her hottest 
    selling record: "Peace Of Mind" (with Shelly Manne on 
    She was hot on the charts always back then. Don't know 
    exactly what the figures were, but Peace of Mind was in 
    the upper 10s on the charts as a pop number. She was great
    to record for, a fine pro but was going through a divorce, 
    yet sung great -- I enjoyed our chats at Capitol. 
    Carol Kaye
    --------------------[ archived by Spectropop ]--------------------
    Subject:     Re: Calling Capitol Experts - RE: Nancy Wilson
    Received:    07/11/99 11:10 am
    From:        Marc
    To:          Spectropop List,
    Paul MacArthur  said on the Spectropop list:
    > Just read a press release on Nancy Wilson that said during
    > the mid-sixties (no exact dates given) that Nancy Wilson
    > was the second best selling artist on Capitol Records
    > behind only the Beatles and that she was ahead of the
    > Beach Boys. Can anyone provide evidence to support or
    > refute this?
    Sounds like a lot of PR hype to me. It's true, Nancy 
    Wilson had 34 U.S. charted albums over three decades, but 
    none of them even went Gold, let alone Platinum. She also 
    had 14 singles, but only two of them made the Top 40 on 
    the Pop charts (and seven Top 40 hits on the R&B charts). 
    No Gold or Platinum singles, either.
    Compare that to The Beach Boys during the 1960s: 26 Top 40
    hits (and two million-sellers), plus 19 charted albums -- 
    10 of which went Gold, and three of those eventually went 
    No comparison. [And note I'm not trying to compare talent 
    -- just commercial sales.]
    -= Marc Wielage      |   "The computerized authority     =-
    -= MusicTrax, LLC    |       on rock, pop, & soul."      =-
    -= Chatsworth, CA    |         =-
    --------------------[ archived by Spectropop ]--------------------
    Subject:     To: Will Stos  From: Diane Renay
    Received:    07/11/99 11:10 am
    From:        Diane Renay, CEIIxxxxxcom
    To:          Spectropop List,
    Dear Will:
    It just so happens that back in 1987 I was talked into 
    doing a remake of "Navy Blue," by a friend of mine, who 
    is a successful record producer, writer and singer. At 
    first I thought it was kind of crazy to do, but my friend 
    persuaded me into doing a dance version. Well, it did turn
    out pretty good to my surprise, and was released for dance 
    club music. I guess I had some fun with it, but it is 
    never like the first time!
    As far as whether or not I would be upset if I had a group,
    who decided to remake our old hits without me, well....I
    haven't had the personal experience of having been in a 
    group. So, I really don't know what my reaction might be. 
    I guess it is not hard to imagine that one who was once 
    part of a group, might feel slighted, if they were not 
    included in the remake of a hit song that they were a part
    Diane <[:>)
    --------------------[ archived by Spectropop ]--------------------
    Subject:     To Ian Chapman, and Spectropoppers
    Received:    07/11/99 11:10 am
    From:        Jimmy Cresitelli, Jimxxxxxcom
    To:          Spectropop List,
    Thanks, Ian! I appreciate that, and loved your info re 
    Darlene Love: my supreme vocal goddess of all time. 
    Speaking of things Spector, I've got photographs of you 
    and Carol and Ronnie somewhere... posed In England, I 
    think. I believe Ronnie's wearing a black hat. Ian, my 
    regards to Mick Patrick and the rest. Hear that, gang? 
    Xerox copies of PSAS stuff now available. You can email me 
    at Jimxxxxxcom; I'll try and put together an index 
    one of these days for you all to reference.
    P.S. Anybody know the value of Spector's "Today's Hits" 
    LP? Can never seem  to find it in record price guides.
    --------------------[ archived by Spectropop ]--------------------
    Subject:     VDP (Correction) and WB Loss Leaders
    Received:    07/11/99 11:10 am
    From:        Don Richardson,
    To:          Spectropop List,
    Sorry to confuse those who noted the discrepancy with my 
    numbering in a recent list of Van Dyke Parks singles. The 
    following is a corrected version.
    For those that don't know, WB issued about 30 Promotional 
    Samplers between 1969 and the early 1980s. They usually 
    had about 30 Warner/Reprise artists on each one and the 
    songs were normally unreleased or newly released singles 
    for their camp of artists. They are terrific compilations 
    and are not real hard to find in a used record store. They
    were nicknamed "Loss Leaders" because the experimental 
    style of many of the current WB/Reprise musicians they had
    in the stable were requiring a lot of red ink in the 
    balance sheets.. In the early '70s, the compilations and 
    liner notes were created by Barry Hansen, who you may 
    recognize better as Dr. Demento.
    About two years ago, I asked Bob Merlis, Vice President at
    WB, if they had ever considered re-issuing some of the 
    early samplers. His response was that it would take to 
    much time and effort to track down licensing and 
    copyrights to make it worthwhile to the company. Too bad, 
    because they are all pretty interesting.
    Here is a link to a website that has the complete details 
    on the Warner/Reprise Samplers:
    Here is the correction to my previous post:
    1. Come to the Sunshine (Parks)/Farther Along (Hopi Indians) (Traditional
    Adapt. Parks) MGM-T-9982 (1966)
    2. Number Nine (Beethoven/Adapt. Arr. Parks)/Do What You Wanta
    (Parks/Hutton) MGM-1301 (1966)
    3. Donovan's Colours-Part 1 (Leitch/Adapt. Arr. Parks)/ Donovan's
    Colours-Part 2 (Leitch/Adapt. Arr. Parks) WB-7026 (1967)
    4. Music for a Datsun TV Commercial (Parks)
    5. Music for Ice Capades
    6. Out on a Rolling Sea (When Jesus Speaks to Me) (Joseph Spence)/The 
    and Me (Arlen/Harburg) WB-7409 (1970)
    7. Back on the Track (Parks) (1985)
    8. Amazing Grace (PD-Arr. Parks) (either 1975 or 1998)
    **Numbers 1A/B and 2A/B are not likely to be released 
    unless MGM is in a benevolent mood. Number 2B Has not 
    appeared anywhere to my knowledge
    **Number 3 appeared on his first album as well as 
    "Idiosyncratic Path:"
    **Number 4 appears on WB Promotional (Loss Leader) "The 
    1969 Warner/Reprise Songbook" (PRO 331, 1969) (Not likely 
    to be re-released because the rights are probably owned by
    **Number 5 appears on WB Promotional (Loss Leader) "The 
    1969 Warner/Reprise Record Show" (PRO 336, 1969) (Not 
    likely to be re-released because the rights are probably 
    owned by the "Ice Capades".)
    **Numbers 6A appears on "Looney Tunes & Merrie Melodies" (
    PRO 423, 1970)
    **Number 6A and 6B both are included on March, 1999's, 
    Rykodisc re-issues of Van Dyke's first 3 albums. 
    **Number 7 Was never recorded to my knowledge. It was 
    composed for the Japan Racing Society for a parade at 
    Disney, Tokyo.
    **Number 8 (Parts 1 & 2) are included on the March, 1999, 
    Rykodisc re-issues.
    WB Did an odd thing with his promo singles. Rather than 
    assign them a "PRO" number, they were all issued using the
    single's assigned number . Therefore, there are always 
    three versions of each 45. The actual single, a promo of 
    side A in stereo and mono, and a promo of side B in stereo
    and mono. This continued through "Clang of the Yankee 
    Reaper" (1975). The one exception may be Donovan's Colo(u)
    rs. He confirmed to me on the phone that the released 45 
    was Donovan's Colors Part 1 and Part 2. I don't know if a 
    promo was ever done, so I will only assume that a promo 
    was issued in the same manner. Regardless, it would have 
    never been heard by many if it hadn't been in a Jukebox in
    NYC and noticed by a Village Voice music critic who wrote 
    about the song.
    Incidentally, I'll have a website put up later this month 
    for Van Dyke's brother, Carson, who wrote the Sinatra duet
    hit "Somethin' Stupid" and the Mills Brothers "Cab Driver."
    I know it's not in the genre of Spectropop interest, but I 
    was shocked to learn of the songs "Somethin' Stupid" 
    knocked and blocked out of Billboard's #1 spot in the 
    spring of 1967.
    --------------------[ archived by Spectropop ]--------------------
    Subject:     Big L's Radio Legends - version new!
    Received:    07/11/99 11:10 am
    From:        Big L,
    To:          Spectropop List,
    This is a one time announcement.
    I have completely rebuilt my "Big L's Radio Legends"
    webpage. There is a new "eyeball friendly" background
    and font. All the links work now. I have added dozens
    of links to various sites around the web. Some info
    has been updated. There are new areas that I will be
    building and opening up soon. I have just established
    contact with Jay Lawrence, who I hope will give me
    some more info on WKYC. I have also found a contact
    that I hope will lead to Chuck Dann (aka Chuck Riley,
    Chuck Hanks.)
    The site will soon move to, where I will
    have enough room to finally post all those scans and
    sound files I've collected and built. Don't worry, my
    signature will always have a link to the site, no
    matter where it is.
    Thanks for your indulgence. Now, back to the business
    at hand.
    Big L                   Check out my Radio Legends pages at:
    --------------------[ archived by Spectropop ]--------------------

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