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Spectropop - Digest Number 14

                  ***Gary Zekley at Spectropop****
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There are 8 messages in this issue #14.

Topics in this digest:

      1. Rock and roll and high fidelity
           From: "WASE RADIO" 
      2. rock and roll and high fidelity again
           From: "WASE RADIO" 
      3. Carpenters From the Top
           From: FMYou
      4. Ronnie sings Spector (or not)
           From: "Spector Collector" 
      5. Re: Tommy James unfairly overlooked
           From: Jason tecmofiend
      6. Memory Lane is where it's at
           From: Frank 
      7. Gary Zekley
           From: Glenn Sadin 
      8. Re: Yellow Balloon
           From: Michael Gessner 

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Message: 1
   Date: Thu, 03 Aug 2000 00:07:28 -0400
   From: "WASE RADIO" 
Subject: Rock and roll and high fidelity

Pekka :

Rock and roll was never meant to be a high fidelity
medium.  A lot of rock and roll were meant to be
recorded as hot (meaning distorted) as possible to add
to the spontaneity of the music.  In other words record
your song quick fast and in a hurry.  Who cares if the
guitarist hits a few bum notes-and who cares if you're
recording in the red.  I personally don't care for the
Motown box because all the tracks are in mono. However
"Fingertips Part 2" sounds like a lot cleaner on this
anthology-in spite of the loud screams and all other
chaos.  The other redeeming values is that it contains
the original 45 version of Marvin Gaye's "What's Going
On?"  The difference between the 45 version and album
versions are: there is no talking at the start on the 45.
It starts off with the music.  The mono mix is more
dense and echoey than on the stereo album mix-plus the
45 has a false fade. Otherwise the Motown box set is hit
or miss.  The boxset is only for those who want to hear
the original 45 mixes.  And yes the sound quality could
be improved.  For example there is an awful electronic
buzz on the introduction of "Just My Imagination". Also
several of the tracks are hissy, especially on the intro.

Michael G. Marvin WASE radio

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Message: 2
   Date: Thu, 03 Aug 2000 00:17:48 -0400
   From: "WASE RADIO" 
Subject: rock and roll and high fidelity again

Hi Pekka again:

Phil Spector was never a great believer in high
fidelity-let alone stereo. As you may have noticed by the
red button with the letters "Back to Mono".  Phil's
recording philosophy was that the "cloudier and fuzzier"
a song sounds,the more "guts" it has.  Often times when
Phil would record, he would have the meters "pegging"
well into the red, obviously pushing the distortion quite

I got the Reparata and the Delrons song on the new Girl
Group cd on Varese Sarabende. This disc compiled by Dick
Bartley has the song in true stereo, but sounds distorted.
At least it does not  have the badly chopped ending. I
know it is frustrating to listen to imperfectly mastered
on state of the art equipment  But again rock and roll
was never a high fidelity art form. One rock artist (his
or name escapes me right now) was quoted that rock and
roll was meant to be played on a five dollar record
player-preferably with a dirty needle.

                  Michael G. Marvin
                   WASE radio

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Message: 3
   Date: Thu, 03 Aug 2000 01:50:35 EDT
   From: FMYou
Subject: Carpenters From the Top

The most fascinating track for me on this box is the
elaborately produced 1966 demo "Parting of Our Ways,"
which reminds me of the Left Banke. If not for the muddy
sound, it would truly shine on any mid-60s California
girl group comp. The first part of disc 1 earnestly
documents Richard and Karen's early years (one
instrumental jazz performance features Rich and Karen
jamming out in the company of a virtuoso tuba player) and
if nothing else, proves that Karen was an accomplished
drummer almost from the start. Richard's songs and ideas
during this period didn't always pan out, though. All in
all, it's an interesting but not quite great set. Like,
why put in so much Christmas music, and leave out the
Spike Jones version they did for TV of "Close to You"?
Also, Richard says in the notes that "Close to You" was
attempted several times before they got the final version.
It would have been interesting to hear how the
arrangement and production of their first big hit
evolved--at least as interesting as most of the stuff
leading up to it on the set.

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Message: 4
   Date: Thu, 03 Aug 2000 16:33:08 GMT
   From: "Spector Collector" 
Subject: Ronnie sings Spector (or not)

I'm confused about a topic that's been covered here a few
times lately: the alleged injunction Phil Spector has
against Ronnie's singing his songs in public. It seems
like I remember that the ban did not apply to her live
concerts, only to appearances in broadcast media. She's
coming here to Seattle on September 3, so I'll find out
soon enough for myself, but can anyone who's seen her
lately confirm that she's still doing these tunes live?
And how does she get away with doing "I Can Hear Music"
on the upcoming "Chapel of Love" PBS special? Because
she's duetting with Brian Wilson? And for that matter,
how was it possible for Kill Rock Stars to release her
(wonderful) live version of "I Wish I Never Saw the
Sunshine" on her recent "She Talks to Rainbows" EP?

Hoping that someone can shed some light in these dark
legal corners,

David A. Young

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Message: 5
   Date: Thu, 03 Aug 2000 14:01:39 EDT
   From: Jason tecmofiend
Subject: Re: Tommy James unfairly overlooked

Dave Mirich writes:

> I have the CD, and the Clique CD as well.  But I thirst
> for more!  I would love to have the intimate details on
> his relationship with Tommy James, for example, or
> details about his untimely death.  What do experts think
> about his legacy?  His influence on pop music?  And what
> is Tommy James doing nowadays?  Do music experts think
> of him as a crafter of catchy tunes only? Or is he known
> as an important, influential innovator and gifted
> songwriter? Thanks 

We just caught Tommy playing at State Street Fest here
in Chicago about a month ago.  He put on a great show! 
In terms of his legacy, I think only the Cellophane
Symphony lp and "Crystal Blue Persuasion" are regarded
today as "artistic", and even then more along the lines
of "Mike Nesmith artistic" instead of "Lennon &
McCartney artistic" (i.e. a few nuggets in a catalog of
mediocrity as opposed to pure genius.)  I believe these
opinions to be unfair regarding both Tommy and the
Monkees.  IMHO, it's time for someone to take a hard
revisionist look at rock history and give groups like
the Monkees, the Association, Tommy James, Gary Zekley
etc. their due.  (Do you hear me rock'n'roll hall of


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Message: 6
   Date: Fri, 04 Aug 00 09:40:39 +0100
   From: Frank 
Subject: Memory Lane is where it's at

Don't apologise, Martin, Memory Lane is where it's at :-)

And since we're strolling down and you seem to remember
these days could you tell me if my memory is right. I
remember that not too far from Picadilly circus and
Shaftsburry Avenue there was a small market place where I
used to buy a lot of records. There was a stand there
called Rock On, as far as I know it was before the Camden
Street shop. Do you know if this stand was the begining
of the Rock On story ?



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Message: 7
   Date: Thu, 03 Aug 2000 11:12:54 -0700
   From: Glenn Sadin 
Subject: Gary Zekley

With all this talk of Gary Zekley lately, I would like to
bring your attention to the Romulan/Dionysis LP,
"Surfer's Mood Vol II," compiled by my friend Domenic
Priore, which has an unreleased demo of Zekley 
performing "Here Comes the Rain" (dubbed from an acetate).
It's a beautiful performance, and far superior to Jan and
Dean's version.


   Glenn Sadin

Read about JAPANESE POP MUSIC from the 1950s thru the 1990s:

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Message: 8
   Date: Thu, 03 Aug 2000 21:09:13 -0400
   From: Michael Gessner 
Subject: Re: Yellow Balloon

I read that the original version of "Yellow Balloon" was
done by Jan & Dean. I looked through all my J& D LPs and
haven't found it. Is this true and if so, where can I
find it?


--------------------[ archived by Spectropop ]--------------------

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