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Spectropop - Digest Number 9

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              The Teenager Records Made For The Hit Parade

There are 4 messages in this issue.

Topics in this digest:

      1. Re: Tommy James
           From: "Robb Lowe" 
      2. Re: Tommy James and the Shondells
           From: "WASE RADIO" 
      3. Re: Barry Mann LP "Lay it all out"
           From: Michael Gessner 
      4. Re: Carpenters box set
           From: "WASE RADIO" 

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Message: 1
   Date: Fri, 28 Jul 2000 11:53:24 -0400
   From: "Robb Lowe" 
Subject: Re: Tommy James

I dont have any special info on TJ, but "My Baby 
Does the Hanky Panky" was my favorite song from the 
ages of about 2-4 (so I am told) and served as
background music on the times I would embarrass my 
parents during times they were entertaining friends... 
see I would come into the living room (much past my 
bedtime) with mom's satin bloomers on my head, singing 
this ditty at the top of my lungs..Once a ham, always a 


D mirich writes:
> Is in there anyone who can write a few informative
> paragraphs about Tommy James?  

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Message: 2
   Date: Sun, 30 Jul 2000 00:08:36 -0400
   From: "WASE RADIO" 
Subject: Re: Tommy James and the Shondells

Dave Mirich:

Tommy James and the Shondells amassed top 40 hits between
1966 and 1969. "Hanky Panky" their first hit was recorded 
in a Michigan radio station in 1963. The song was 
initially a regional hit in Lower Michigan and Northern 
Indiana. What made the song a national hit was a 
Pittsburgh Pa dj found a stray copy of the record and 
played it either on the radio or at a teen dance (Reports 
vary as to where the song got its initial play). After 
that success Tommy James recruited a new group of 
Shondells (the Hanky Panky version of the Shondells gave 
up after their regional success) and moved to New York. The
Shondells cut most of their big songs like "I Think We're 
Alone Now", "Mirage", and "Mony "Mony" at Allegro Studios 
in New York. The eighth note bass pattern on "I Think 
We're Alone Now" was a percursor to the bubble gum music 
produced on Buddah Records by such groups as the "1910 
Fruitgum Company" and the "Ohio Express". "Mirage" is the 
same tune as "I Think We're Alone Now" but in reverse.
"Mony Mony" was inspired by a "Mutual of New York" sign and
to me is one of the ultimate party records of all times. In
late 1968 there was a magor change in sound plus a change 
in studios. The psychedelic "Crimson and Clover" recorded 
at Broadway recording studios (once owned by baseball 
great Whitey Ford) went on to sell 5 1/2 million copies. 
"Sweet Cherry Wine" was the follow up. In an interview 
Tommy James said it was the closest thing to a protest 
song. "Crystal Blue Persuasion" was another bit hit for 
the group. Some people construed it to be a drug song-it 
wasn't. It was one of a number of songs that pleaded for 
unity in this world. By 1970 Tommy James was exhausted and
got out of the business. He produced Alive and Kickin's top
10 hit "Tighter Tighter". In the summer of 1971, Tommy 
James came back on his own with "Draggin the Line". He had
one more solo hit on "Three Times In Love" in 1980.

Michael G, Marvin
WASE radio

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Message: 3
   Date: Sat, 29 Jul 2000 18:27:48 -0400
   From: Michael Gessner 
Subject: Re: Barry Mann LP "Lay it all out"

>The first album I want to mention is "Lay It All Out" by
>Barry Mann. Originally released on New Design (30876),
>this 1971 album is scheduled for CD release in Japan on
>August 23 through Dreamsville Records.
>The original album had the following 12 tracks:
>1. Too Many Mondays 
>2. When You Get Right Down to It 
>3. Lay It All Out 
>4. I Heard You Singing Your Song 
>5. Holy Rolling 
>6. You've Lost That Lovin' Feelin 
>7. On Broadway 
>8. Something Better 
>9. Sweet Ophelia 
>10. Don't Give up on Me 
>11. Ain't No Way to Go Home 
>12. Wild Eyed Indian 

I really liked this LP when it came out. Carole King is on
piano, BTW. "When you get right down to it" is one of my 
favorite Mann songs. His version is soft and beautiful 
(and better than the Delfonics). I think Carole King's 
"Tapestry" was the catalyst for getting this out. 

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Message: 4
   Date: Sun, 30 Jul 2000 00:15:31 -0400
   From: "WASE RADIO" 
Subject: Re: Carpenters box set

Ron Weekes:

 I do not have the box set. But I was told there were 
songs on there that had new keyboards overdubbed. I have 
the two disc set and these songs had new keyboards 
overdubbed. There are "Yesterday Once More", "Superstar" 
(sounds like a Prophet synthesizer was used her), "Bless 
The Beasts and Children", "We've Only Just Begun" and 
probably others. I was somewhat diappointed at this 
tampering. I found the original Carpenter's greatest hits 
cd, and at least the mixes were not tampered with-except 
for the musical transition between "Rainy Days and Mondays" 
and "Goodbye To Love".

             Michael G. Marvin
              WASE radio

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