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Spectropop V#0398

  • From: The Spectropop Group
  • Date: 03/25/00

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       Volume #0398                          March 26, 2000   
                      Stereo has Come of Age                  
    Subject:     Spector Xmas and Ronettes on 4 track
    Received:    03/25/00 6:01 am
    From:        WASE RADIO
    To:          Spectropop!
    To Jamie LePage:
    In your mention about the Stan Ross quote concerning that 
    the Spector Xmas and Ronettes material was recorded on 4 
    track, I thought some instances might lend some credence 
    to this. On "Walking in the Rain" heard in stereo, the 
    thunderstorm effects is first heard left then pans quickly
    to the right when the music starts on the left. The 
    background vocals are heard on the right then Ronnie's 
    voice is heard right. Now here is the scoop. On the 
    playout of the song you hear the rhythm section on the 
    left channel, Her ooohh oh vocal in the center and 
    background vocals on the right-and at the same time you 
    hear the thunderstorm effect start on the left then pans 
    to the right. You are hearing four tracks of sound on that
    passage. Some of the other Ronettes songs have the 
    background vocals on the right-on "Walking in the Rain", 
    "Do I Love You?", "The Best Part of Breaking Up". On the 
    songs "Be My Baby" and "Baby I Love You" the background 
    vocals are heard in the center with the lead with the 
    majestic Jack Nitszche strings taking up the right channel. 
    Could it be a three or four track project on those 
    aforemtioned songs? There were a couple of Ronettes songs 
    that were not recorded at Gold Star-"When I Saw You" and 
    "So Young". According to the Phil Spector box set, these 
    cuts were recorded at United Studios, also in 
    Hollywood-possibly on four tracks.
    Also your part about the technique of bouncing vocal 
    tracks on the 1958 Teddy Bears recordings, brings back a 
    memory of reading something in Mark Ribowsky's somewhat 
    scathing book on Spector. One day Phil experimented with 
    having the back track to play through the speakers as he 
    was recording his vocal. In other words he was allowing 
    that playback to be recorded into the mike he was singing 
    into. It suposedly created an echo effect.
    More later. Got get to get back to work 
    Michael G. Marvin
    WASE radio
    --------------------[ archived by Spectropop ]--------------------
    Subject:     I&TT/Gold Star
    Received:    03/25/00 6:01 am
    From:        Phil Chapman
    To:          Spectropop!
    Jamie asks:
    > Finally, does anyone know if the I&TT album on A&M was
    > mixed in stereo at Gold Star or A&M, and how many tracks
    > were used for these recordings?
    The 1966 UK album "River Deep - Mountan High" was issued 
    in stereo(SHU 8298)and contains more or less the same 
    mixes as the later A&M release. They are probably 4-track:
    Rhythm, orchestral, lead, backgrounds. The Checkmates Ltd 
    album however sounds 8 track to me, possibly: 1. Drums, 
    bass, percussion (still too early for a stereo drumkit)
    2. Keyboards, guitars
    3 & 4. Strings & Brass in stereo
    5 & 6. Background vocals in stereo
    7. Lead Vocal
    8. Solo instrument
    Although there is no credit, I can't see why it wouldn't 
    have been recorded & mixed at Gold Star. As far as I can 
    ascertain, the leading studios went 8-track around 1967 
    and progressed thru 16-track to 24-track by around 1973.
    --------------------[ archived by Spectropop ]--------------------
    Subject:     three 24 tracks when Gold Star closed
    Received:    03/25/00 6:01 am
    From:        WASE RADIO
    To:          Spectropop!
    Hi Jamie:
    I don't know when Gold Star has added on more tracks, but 
    I do know that when the facility was closed down in March 
    1984, they had three studios all with 24 tracks. I have 
    somewheres a letter from Johnette at Gold Star that I 
    received in March 1983. If I can find it, I like to post 
    Happy listening to everyone:):):):):)
    Michael G. Marvin
    WASE radio
    --------------------[ archived by Spectropop ]--------------------
    Subject:     Re: Bruce Botnick
    Received:    03/24/00 8:00 am
    From:        Stewart Mason
    To:          Spectropop!
    Jamie LePage says:
    >Bruce Botnick's name on the Expecting to Fly credits do
    >indicate that the side was not cut at Gold Star. To the
    >best of my knowledge, Botnick did not regularly work at
    >Gold Star. It is important to note that Dave Gold custom
    >built Gold Star's board and (at least to a certain extent)
    >an engineer would have to be familiar with Gold's
    >equipment to be able to comfortably work there.
    >Consequently, the studio's in-house engineers are the
    >names we most often associate with Gold Star recordings.
    >Does anyone know of Botnick working at Gold Star? Steve
    >Kurutz writes at AMG: "After landing a gig at L.A.'s
    >Sunset Sound in 1963, Botnick found himself engineering
    >at a time when the West Coast was exploding onto the
    >national consciousness." Can anyone confirm whether or
    >not Botnick was a staff producer for Elektra in the late
    In FOLLOW THE MUSIC (FirstMedia, 1998), Jac Holzman's 
    combination autobiography/oral history of Elektra Records,
    Jac talks about meeting Bruce Botnick while he was looking 
    for a studio to record Love's debut in: "We had heard good
    things about Sunset Sound....I decided to check out the 
    facilities early, look into the mixing board, four-track 
    Ampexes, available mikes and schmooze with the engineer 
    assigned to Mark Abramson and me. I sauntered in and saw 
    this kid, whom I took to be no more than 19, deftly moving
    his fingers over the console and generally looking like he 
    knew what he was doing. He told me his name was Bruce 
    Actually, in the accompanying picture of Bruce at the 
    Sunset Sound console in 1966, he looks *maybe* 16! 
    Definitely Mr. Babyface!
    Elsewhere in the book, when talking about engineering the 
    Doors' sessions at Sunset Sound under Paul Rothchild, 
    Bruce says that Sunset Sound "was built basically to do 
    Disney records, which [studio owner] Tutti Camarata was 
    head of. So we'd be doing Mickey and Minnie and Cinderella
    in the daytime, and in the afternoon and night doing the 
    Doors. It was really Disney's house, and to have a little 
    madness in there kind of made things uncomfortable for 
    This suggests that at least through early '67, it was the 
    folks at Sunset Sound who signed Bruce Botnick's checks, 
    not Elektra, which makes it unlikely that he did much work
    at other studios during this period. The question is, when 
    exactly was "Expecting To Fly" recorded?
    Later in the book, Botnick talks about outfitting 
    Elektra's new studio on La Cienega Boulevard and going to 
    Ann Arbor with Jac to meet and record the MC5, so 
    apparently Botnick was on Elektra's payroll by at least 
    This reminds me. I realize that "Jac" is short for "Jacob," 
    but is it pronounced "Jake" or "Jack"?
    Jamie and JimmyC also mention: 
    >n.p. Billy Spradlin's Girlpop @ - Great!!!!!
    I also recommend Billy's other Live365 station, Jangle 
    Radio, if you like more contemporary guitar pop. And if I 
    may be so immodest, my own live365 station, "The Craig 
    Torso Show" (obscure Bonzo Dog Band ref) might pique some 
    folks' interest. Focusing mostly on contemporary pop music
    obscure even by the standards of folks who go looking for 
    obscure pop music on the net, the playlist also ranges 
    from Sidney Bechet to John Cage. Not terribly 
    Spectropoppish, but I like it.
    NP: Linda Perhacs -- Parallelograms (acid chamber folk 
    from 1970, a beautiful, crystalline, and extremely odd 
    --------------------[ archived by Spectropop ]--------------------
    Subject:     Come Dancin' !!!
    Received:    03/25/00 6:01 am
    From:        Jimmy Cresitelli
    To:          Spectropop!
    Just heard the Popsicles' "Baby I Miss You" on Mr. 
    Spradlin's fabulous Girlpop station, and I think I am 
    ready to join that angelic background chorus. As for the 
    rest of you, I haven't seen much in the way of girl group 
    moments here in a while, so... here's your Spring 
    Challenge: describe for me your ONE defining girl-group 
    musical moment. Not just a song, mind you: a piece of a 
    song would suffice... for me it's Darlene Love opening up 
    "A Fine, Fine Boy" with her spoken intro, putting just the
    right amount of oomph into "now there are boys, and there 
    are boys..." Come on, the rest of you... details! We need 
    to get dancing on here! 
    --------------------[ archived by Spectropop ]--------------------
    Subject:     Re: Isn't She Great - is Bacharach still great?
    Received:    03/26/00 8:00 pm
    From:        Frank N. Stein
    To:          Spectropop!
    David Ponak wrote:
    >I'm one of the biggest Bacharach fans out there, I love
    >the guy, however, it pains me to tell you that the "Isn't
    >She Great" soundtrack is just unlistenable. This isn't the
    >Bacharach of "Painted From Memory," it's sounds more like
    >the work of the man who wrote "On My Own" and "That's What
    >Friends Are For."
    I saw the track listing and it's at least good that it's a 
    proper soundtrack, with incidental music and a few songs 
    inbetween. Just like in the old days. The production aside, 
    how does the incidental music hold up to previous 
    soundtracks like After The Fox or What's New Pussycat, or 
    Arthur 2 for that matter? And the Dionne Warwick songs 
    written by Burt and Hal?
    >DX7 keyboard sounds abound. The whole thing is very 80's 
    So there aren't any orchestral, uh, orchestrations, with 
    strings, flutes, horns and such? Just keyboards and 
    >It makes me wonder if some of the great Bacharachisms of 
    "Painted From Memory" >may have been created (or at least 
    prompted) by Elvis Costello.
    Funny. Isn't this the same debate as the one which 
    sometimes pops up about Brian Wilson? That Brian's talents
    have diminished, that he can't write anything good on his 
    own, that his collaborators (Paley, VDP, Thomas, etc, etc)
    do most of the work? And at the same time, those 
    collaborators always say "no no, Brian is still great and 
    in charge, we just add a few things here and there"...
    Carol Kaye, did you only play on the released 1997 version
    of Brian's "Everything I Need" on the "The Wilsons" CD, or 
    did you also play on the unreleased original (from 1995?)?
    The song is quite something, don't you think?
    Anyway, I'm pretty sure a lot of the things on Painted 
    From Memory which sound like Bacharach were in fact 
    written by Costello. But it's ok, really. Bacharach is 
    over 70 years old. It'd be ridiculous to expect him to 
    come up with music as innovative and great as thirty years
    ago. If he does, brilliant, but it's not the end of the 
    world if he ends his career with a few misses. That's kind
    of how I feel about Brian too. 
    --------------------[ archived by Spectropop ]--------------------
    Subject:     Nilsson's Coconuts
    Received:    03/24/00 8:00 am
    From:        Sean Anglum
    To:          Spectropop!
    Greetings All,
    Hope this ques is in with everyones wavelengths on this 
    great list. I used to work at a NPR station that played 
    alternative and, to a much lesser extent, some good rock 
    and pop. One DJ, in particular, would occassionally plat a
    version of Harry Nilsson's "Coconuts" that I had never 
    heard before. What set it apart was the ending. During the
    elongated fade, Harry and band and chorus broke in a breif 
    version of "Flying", the instrumental from Magical Mystery
    Tour. Unfortunately the DJ was canned and must have taken 
    that particular track (off an LP?? 12" single?? Foreign 
    pressing??) with him. Please, please, please.....if anyone
    knows where I can find this gem e-mail me privately and 
    fill me in on how to secure a copy. Thanx!!
    Raised On records,
    Sean Anglum
    --------------------[ archived by Spectropop ]--------------------

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