__________________________________________________________ __________ __________ __________ __________ __________ S P E C T R O P O P __________ __________ __________ __________________________________________________________ Volume #0333 October 16, 1999 __________________________________________________________ Stereo Workshop Series Subject: Johnny Franz Received: 10/15/99 10:20 pm From: Alec Palao, xxxxxus.com To: Spectropop List, spectxxxxxities.com >>Who produced that stuff - was it Wally Stott? > >I've seen that name somewhere but can't place it.....the >person who produced the Walker Brothers was, according to >the CD liner notes, John Franz, who I haven't heard of >before. Johnny Franz is one of the unsung heroes of 60s pop in my opinion, if for nothing more than his totally sympathetic direction of the Walkers' (group and solo) and Dusty Springfield's, Madeline Bell's, Kiki Dee's etc recordings for Philips. Indeed Scott Walker has admitted that his best work came from the collaborative efforts of himself, Franz and the various arrangers such as the aforementioned Wally Stott, Ivor Raymonde, Peter Knight etc. Kudos also to Peter J. Olliff, staff engineer at Philips' Marble Arch Studio, who no doubt also had a hand in creating the faux-Spector sonic majesty of the Walker Brothers records, and of course Dusty's exemplary 1960s canon. I could embark on a lengthy discourse regarding the genius of these records but I suspect I'd be preaching to the converted... Archivally yours, ALEC --------------------[ archived by Spectropop ]-------------------- Subject: Re: Scott Walker & Brazilian stuff Received: 10/15/99 10:20 pm From: Larry Koch, xxxxxrlog.com To: Spectropop List, spectxxxxxities.com >>Who produced that stuff - was it Wally Stott? > >I've seen that name somewhere but can't place it.....the >person who produced the Walker Brothers was, according to >the CD liner notes, John Franz, who I haven't heard of >before. Aha. Stott did the Scott solo albums. Rediscovered a great old quote the other day. "The truth is, I don't like white music. Scott's white and he sounds it." - Jack Nitzsche >> has there ever been any discussion of Creed >>Taylor on this list? > >Not as far as I know. Who is he? Jazz producer, mostly associated with Verve and Astrud G. --------------------[ archived by Spectropop ]-------------------- Subject: Sunshine Company Received: 10/15/99 10:20 pm From: Kingsley Abbott, kinxxxxxa.freeserve.co.uk To: Spectropop List, spectxxxxxities.com It's good to see that Spectropop knows about the Sunshine Company CD that I compiled for Joe Foster at the wonderfully eclectic Revola label. It was fun doing it, as I have been enjoying their particular brand of soft summer pop since 1967 when it was not in any way hip in Britain. Was it ever? Joe and I hope that it will help to spread the word ( if not the apostrophes! - Sad case of vanishing punctuation on some of the sleeve notes!) Why don't fellow Spectropoppers put up suggestions for other possible Revola projects that we could get our teeth into. Please bear in mind that single albums are difficult. Two plus possibly maketh an album... By the way, Joey Stec of the Millennium used to hang out a little with The Sunshine Company. He told me JUST after I had finished the notes!!! Such is life! Kingsley Abbott --------------------[ archived by Spectropop ]-------------------- Subject: Soft Pop/Walkers Received: 10/15/99 10:20 pm From: Joe Foster, joe.fxxxxxtion.co.uk To: Spectropop List, spectxxxxxities.com Hello All! Some interesting postings on both these subjects.....Johnny Franz was head of A&R at Phillips records in London, and was in overall charge of most important sessions....Ivor Raymonde was arranger and producer on most of the Walkers early sessions (as with Dusty Springfield), Franz took over the supervision of the sessions and Scott effectively became the co-producer, a relationship which continued on Scott's solo albums, Scott leant heavily on Franz's experience as a real old-school early '50's type producer to produce the movie-type soundscapes of his imagination...that Franz put so much energy and enthusiasm into Scott's vision when an easy ride supervising MOR and soundtracks from the comfort of his office beckoned, is a tribute to an often overlooked producer...Wally Stott was an arranger on many Phillips dates, and was by all accounts a fairly Bizarre character, and as can be heard, a great arranger!....On Mike's article , I think he is right to refer to modern day bands...there has been an enormous resurgence in soft pop, and it's influence is everywhere....on the new stuff by Guided By Voices, in the rising wave of pop bands across America, even in the odd soundscapes of many 'ambient dance' projects, many people involved in them are big fans of soft pop...a recent underground track by Future Pilot AKA (at one time the only other person I knew with a copy of "Begin") consists of loops of 'Prelude' by the Millennium with Kim Fowley telling a strange story along with it.... the genre is by no means dead..HOWEVER this does not mean that either myself, Mike, or any of the contributors mentioned are not focused on the historical aspect....re: Eternity's Children... Todd, I'm not suprised the Rev-ola release is five bucks more, the other one is a BOOTLEG!... The Rev-Ola one is 25 tracks from the original tapes which I had the mighty Bill Inglot search under floorboards for, God bless him, with extensive notes and rare photos...what with paying EMI and several publishers, it's amazing there is only $5 difference...I do have enough respect for soft pop artists to pay them royalties! Sorry, not getting at you, I've had to deal before with a similar question over prices, ironically I was in the midst of arranging legal action on behalf of Curt Boettcher's estate against the issuer of the 'cheaper' edition....ie the bootleg....rest assured the Sunshine Co. disc is well worth buying, I don't know about a rumoured 4th album, neither Bill nor I could find more than 2 songs not issued on tape....perhaps someone knows something?? beyond rumours?.....best to you all...Joe Foster --------------------[ archived by Spectropop ]-------------------- Subject: Pixies Three Live Received: 10/15/99 10:20 pm From: M. Helfinger/D. Grant, mhexxxxxrlog.com To: Spectropop List, spectxxxxxities.com Hi again everyone: This past Columbus Day (Canadian Thanksgiving) weekend, I finally extinguished 15 years of burning curiosity and made the trek from Toronto to Warren, OH (where they appeared at Packard Music Hall as part of a "Rock & Roll Spectacular") to catch the Pixies Three live. A bit of background here. I'm a late baby boomer who grew up with Pink Floyd and Led Zeppelin but discovered Girl Groups and early rock'n'roll during the 1980s. I sought refuge from the yuppie elevator music (a.k.a. "Adult Contemporary") and increasingly dreary and mechanical heavy metal that was dominating the airwaves at that time by locking into a nearby oldies' station. Its playlist included "442 Glenwood Avenue," a record whose unbridled joyous energy caught my attention as an ultimate antidote to the noise and mush covering the FM dial. It quickly established itself as one of my oldies favorites. This declaration has earned me some glowering stares from R&B purists as well as looks that say "he's lost it" from most friends my age, but I have continued to stand shoulder to shoulder with "Doc Rock" Kelly and others to proclaim the Pixies Three the most underrated of the early '60s Girl Groups. The show was worth every bit of the 300-mile drive. I'd encourage anyone with a serious interest in Girl Groups - even those who dismiss the Pixies' 1960s Mercury recordings as too cute - to check the ladies' website for a gig near them (just key "Pixies Three" into a search engine). The "party girls" have grown up and have developed an extensive and varied repertoire of R&B, pop and country (see volumes 306, 308 and 309 for a discussion of country-Girl Group linkages) tunes. The absolute highlight of the set was a positively kick-ass rendition of Ike & Tina Turner's "A Fool in Love." Debby (Swisher) Horn's voice has evolved from high-pitched and perky to smoky, sultry and powerful. She packs an awesome emotional punch as a ballad singer, as exemplified in the group's versions that evening of the Crystals' "There's No Other Like My Baby" and Brenda Lee's "Break It to Me Gently." However, the maturity and depth the ladies have developed over the years did not prevent them from performing "442" and "Birthday Party" with all the bounce-off-walls exuberance of their teenage years. Finally, I had the privilege of spending some time with the Pixies and their spouses in Warren, and it was wonderful to discover that nice music can be made by nice people. The ladies and their husbands were a very classy, hospitable and down-to-earth group, sharing a passion for music and a dry sense of humor. Michael Helfinger 111 Santa Barbara Rd. Willowdale, ON M2N 2C4 Canada --------------------[ archived by Spectropop ]-------------------- Subject: for once I have to disagree Received: 10/15/99 10:20 pm From: Frank, fxxxxxc.fr To: Spectropop List, spectxxxxxities.com Hello Carol, As always your posts are fascinating to read for all of us fans. But for once I have to disagree with you : >But getting back to Phil, we all knew he had that Midas >touch and damn, every one was a biggie for him until the >"River Deep" recording which took us all off-guard. > >But actually looking back, it was too much of a >party-scene during the recording of that, and maybe that >much distraction (altho' Phil loved people around him) >took his usual edge off in producing...maybe it could have >been better, who knows. I know the relation between the US public and "River Deep Mountain High" was somewhat "dodgy" As seen from Europe where, as you say, it was a major hit in the UK, this track definitely remains the greatest ever recorded. A sort of "Citizen Kane" of Rock Music. And whatever happened during the recording session, Phil certainly did not lose his edge on this one. Its failure certainly never had anything to do with its quality. As for myself, just to think that you were on this session makes my admiration for you and your work grow out of limits. Frank --------------------[ archived by Spectropop ]-------------------- Subject: Spector's "Chico's Girl" Received: 10/15/99 10:20 pm From: Ian Chapman, iaxxxxxalnet.co.uk To: Spectropop List, spectxxxxxities.com Following Francesc's post about the Spector tapes, I wrote: > But the revelation for me was that there exists a > Spector-produced verson of "Chico's Girl"! > >Can you tell us if it's by the Ronettes, Crystals or Darlene?? Francesc e-mailed me about this. He wasn't too sure about the vocalist, although he was fairly certain it wasn't Ronnie. Anyway, he kindly offered to play the track for me over the phone. It made fascinating listening!! Even over a long-distance line to Spain, I could hear Phil's studio directions quite clearly. The three takes Francesc has are track-only take, vocal take stereo, and vocal take mono - all unfinished, but still plenty of Spector sound in evidence. This version is rather slower than those by the Girls and Susan Barrett, and in this one, "Chico wears a jacket that says *tiger* on the back", rather than "rebel". I can say with certainty that the vocalist isn't Ronnie, Darlene or LaLa.....what I was hearing was relatively early Philles, and I'm 99.9% certain that this is an early Crystals track, circa "Uptown". I don't think it's Barbara on lead, however. I'm sure the same vocal nuances I was hearing are also on "Oh Yeah Maybe Baby" - so I'm gonna stick out my neck and say, therefore, that I think this is a Pat Wright-led Crystals track. Barbara, if you're out there, can you confirm/refute? Thanks again, Francesc!! Ian --------------------[ archived by Spectropop ]-------------------- Subject: Not Diamonds in the Rough, but Chunks of Coal Received: 10/15/99 12:56 am From: Don Richardson, drixxxxxs.com To: Spectropop List, spectxxxxxities.com A few weeks ago I stumbled across a CD that I had long ago forgot. I hadn't heard it in over 20 years, and picked it up because of one song that was contained on the CD. Sadly , the song wasn't a wonder hit of R&R, but rather one of the best of the worst. You know...the kind of song you only can play for friends near the end of the party when the keg of beer is beginning to float in the barrel of ice. The song that made me purchase the CD was from Dylan's " Nashville Skyline." It is a duet with Dylan and Johnny Cash. Only a duet with Mother Maybelle Carter and Minnie Pearl could have competed for this worst duet of the year. I'm certain others may disagree, but if you listen carefully I'd suggest neither of them knew all the words to the song. While this list focuses on the great songs of a great music era, I'm certain everyone also has that album or two they bought, only because it had a song that was so bad it was funny; at least near the end of the keg. Anyone want to contribute other duets that turned out to be ill-advised? --Don --------------------[ archived by Spectropop ]-------------------- ADMIN NOTE: Discussion of unauthorized releases of vintage recordings is appropriate as a list topic provided it is for non-commercial, educational purposes, i.e., posts offering to sell or commercially trade bootleg recordings violates list policy and will be deleted from the digest before dispatch. If a contributor is discussing a record of questionable origin, please indicate so. End
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