Thursday, April 02, 2009

Primitive Sound System, Bill Dolan and Joe Raaen at D.C.'s Tavern - Thursday April 2nd - 9PM to closing

Hello Y'all,
60 years old and just as alluring as ever. I can only hope to be so desired at 60. There is no other material possession that intrigues me more. The thought of acquiring more 45's is just as exciting today as it was when I bought my first one. Speaking of, after stumbling on the wonderful Dust and Grooves photo blog and making suggestions to Eilon about other collectors, as well as passing along his information to people I thought he should document, I was asked if I would participate in his project. It took some convincing but I did agree to allow Eilon and his "soul stealer" to enter my vinyl enriched lair. The goings on were a bit bumpy at first but when my son Hank wandered into my studio things became far more relaxed. I am really glad I got involved and I am very pleased with the photos. I think in all Eilon took about one thousand photos and ask me about a hundred questions. His choices that make up the final presentation are perfect. I happened to click on one of the images on the blog and was jumped out to Eilon's flickr pages which contain tons of great photos of collectors as well. I think this is my favorite un-used photo, a collectors butt classic - There is even a mix that I did for the entry but you need to scroll up to Melvin Van Peebles / Jimmy McGriff track to start from the beginning. Hopefully you enjoy the words as much as the images but I can't seem to get passed Hank's photos.

Pat James Longo - Jersey City N.J. -
Dust & Grooves -
Dust & Grooves Photo Stream -

Eilon Paz Photography -

- pat.

Primitive Sound System
"Audio Visual Triumphs and Disasters" -

Primitive Sound System, Bill Dolan & Joe Raaen and of course Larry The Hunter will be our mixologist
Thursday April 2nd 9PM to Closing
D.C.'s Tavern
505 8th Street
Between Jefferson and Madison
Hoboken, New Jersey
PH: 201-792-5550


These records sing the body electric...

Fast 3 - "Brown Bag" b/w "Pig Feet N' Greens" (Soul Grocery cat. SG45001 (Soul Grocery a division of Soul Cookers dedicated to Soul Jazz)

Dave Wilkinson - Guitar
Phil Wilkinson - Organ
Caspar St. Charles - Drums

There is a huge difference between listening to a record at home and playing it out at a bar or club. Records you listen to at home don't necessarily have to effect anyone but yourself. This could mean you jump up from your seat and flail yourself about your studio like a demented monkey or you could just be kicking back with your drink of choice immersing yourself in the sounds as they fill your environment, your ears and your mind. Organ based instrumentals satisfy both of these actions and needs for me. I first saw this explosive piece of wax listed on the wonderful website and then jumped as fast and as far as I could to the site to give a listen. What I found made me JUMP from my seat and flail myself about like a demented monkey. Side one is a cover of the Boogaloo Joe Jones classic "Brown Bag." The original also features the unmatched and always brilliant Bernard "Pretty" Purdie. That is of course unless you are the Fast 3. These gentlemen take the original to task and do it justice. The playing is sharp, expressive, aggressive and real. Dave Wilkinson seems to toss off the super fast pace guitar lines as if they were as second nature as breathing. The drums are grooving hard and are so precise it could be a loop but the live, "we nailed that shit in one take" feel and his obvious connection to the guitarist and organ are apparent as the band moves as one. After Mr. St. Charles proves his worth we are treated to a break that acts as the organ's introduction. I picture a giant key winding up the organ, after the spring is coiled off we go into equally blinding playing. This is when the organ engulfs you and claims its rightful place at the top of the list of most soulful of instruments. The band falls back into the theme with grace that is usually the result of an extended jam and many, many nights of getting it right. Did I mention this isn't even my favorite side? With a title like "Pig Feet N' Greens" can you really go wrong? Mmmm... this is tasty. The band digs deep into the cookbook and comes up with a four star feast. Equally filled with attitude and cool the band struts through the room shaking hands, dancing with the ladies and eventually sittin' down to a big ol' plate of soul jazz with some funk on the side. The guitar and drums set the pace and from the first soft roll the head starts bobbing. The guitar is not just a side dish. This is one of those delicious appetizers that forces the rest of the meal to step up and impress. And impress the organ does. It would be too easy to toss off the names of the Godfathers, the masters, the geniuses and the giants but why bother? Our man has stepped up to the challenge and is making his self known, Phil Wilkinson, that's who. This is definitely more funk than soul jazz but when the lines get blurred that is when things are really interesting. Oh yeah, and it is limited to 400 copies so the collector / home listener in me was intrigued and satisfied. This goes great with a Dale's Pale Ale or if you find yourself on the dance floor grab a partner.

The Alan Milman Sect - "Punk Rock Christmas" / "Stitches In My Head" / "I Wanna Kill Somebody" b/w "Teen Tour"
One of my favorite questions is "you don't have that?" It is all the way this question is asked that makes it so great. In one version it is a smug ego filled chest thump, "YOU, don't have that?" which obviously means they do and of course you are worthless because you do not. The other is a kind and gentle acknowledgment and then the usual feeling that the person is saddened you don't have it and they want to help you get it. "You don't... have that?" I have only DJ'd with Justin from a couple of times but he definitely comes from the latter. He specializes in insanely rare Punk records and because of his insanely focused collecting he comes across records we ALL need and then seems happy to get them into the right hands. once again I quote that miserable curmudgeon Robert Cohen of Finyl Vinyl, "records usually end up in the right hands." He should know, he watched it happen for over 20 years. At one of the times I watched Justin DJ he played "Stitches." I originally heard the Urge Overkill version on the "Stull" ep but over the years heard the original. Sadly I never came across one and WORSE yet I had no idea that Bag of Hammers Records had re-issued it. I asked and Justin replied, "You don't... have that?" So, while DJing a couple of months back Justin walked in and handed me a Bag of Hammers copy on yellow vinyl. Like so many records I own this is "one of my favorite records of all time." Spiraling guitar leads off this hammering Garage Punk classic. Milman's voice sounds like he just may have stitches in his throat. Can you really go wrong with a chorus of "I WANT YOU DEAD!" The band pounds away like they just may not know the song but then suddenly they snap to and come together in time for a very noticeable change. Milman spits and yells as he rattles off some famous killers and then declares how much he would like to kill somebody...JUST FOR FUN! This is goddamn punk perfection. This is music that can ignite that desire to run around and destroy things as a teen, though I must admit I still get that feeling even now. Thank you Justin.

Babs Gonzales - "We Ain't Got Integration" b/w "Lonely Me" (Prestige cat. 45-204)
I LOVE Babs Gonzales. I have his book, I have purchased every record I could find (both as a leader and a side man) but most of all I love his voice and his amazing ability to talk / sing and dramatically enhance even the simplest of words. This message may be a little dated but it will always be a reminder of how far we have come as a nation and sadly how low we have been (and still are). I have passed up copies of this over the years because of condition and the price has always been a bit prohibitive but this copy seems unplayed and the price was right. A bouncy sax reminiscent of Louis Jordon jumps out as Babs smiles his way through subject matter that in the hands of a lesser artist would have simply been a dirge and angry turning some listeners off. Babs technique draws the listener in and keeps things from getting preachy. He is very direct but through his style and poetry he gets in your face and you barely notice before you have actually learned something. This was cut in 1961 so Babs name checks the Freedom Riders and runs down the worst the Civil Rights movement was up against. A brilliant way to teach a subject so fueled with emotion. Rap on Babs, rap on.

NPR story on the 1961 Freedom Riders -


Here are a few reviews I wrote that didn't make it to the Dust and Grooves piece:

Herbie Hancock - Hot and Heavy (Star Jazz International LTD cat. SJAZZ 4)
I have a complete run of Herbie Hancock recordings up through 1976's Secrets. Making a connection with an artist or musician is a deep one. Since I was a kid I loved the song "Watermelon Man" and I always hum it when I am in a good mood. Hancock was a young star for Blue Note and grew to become one of the best Progressive Jazz artists ever. I can listen to a Herbie Hancock record everyday. If you have never heard this LP you are missing out on some of the coolest music he made outside of the Jazz genre. There are four of the grooviest rocked up lounge tunes ever and I always try to include at least one of them on mixed tapes just to get someone's reaction. Other favorite Herbie records are Inventions & Dimensions on Blue Note, Fat Albert Rotunda on Warner Brothers, and Thrush and Flood on Columbia. There is also a 7-inch of the song "Crossing" that didn't appear on the album of the same name. But honestly I can't really pick one or even ten, I love them all.

Frankie Stein and his Ghouls - Power Records presents Frankie Stein and his Ghouls - Ghoul Music (Power Records cat. 340)
I LOVE guitar instrumentals. I especially love guitar instrumentals with organ and have titles about monsters, space or vehicles of any kind. This is a similar obsession to food songs, versions of "People Make The World Go Round," "Summertime," "It's Your Thing," train songs and a few others. This LP has one of the best illustrations I have ever seen on a record cover. In Comic Book Confidential William Gaines talks about the cover that finally led to the censoring of comic books. It was a morning rush hour bus ride and everything in the scene looked totally normal until you noticed that one of the strap hangers is a severed hand still gripping the strap. No rider, just the severed hand. I can't imagine what they would have said about this one. Not every song is great but the ones that are have become some of my favorites. As an illustrator I am obviously drawn to LP's like this. I'll buy any record with art by Jack Davis, Don Martin, David Stone Martin, Coop, Charles Burns, Robt. Williams, etc on it. Obviously great designers have also had their way with the LP's jacket and packaging. Some that come to mind are Alex Steinweiss (credited with creating the record album), Milton Glaser, Reid Miles and Francis Wolfe for Blue Note, Barney Bubbles, and a host of others.

The Animated Egg (Alshire cat. SF-5104)
Alshire has the dubious distinction of being home to the 101 Strings LP's. But when they needed to mix it up a little and get a little current they called on the kids. The Animated Egg provided the back beat when needed. It would seem that some where along the line after the "Sounds of Today" release the members convinced the label to release an LP of their own music and damn, what a record it is. Crazy aggressive and a bit trippy too. Truly a great LP from a completely unexpected source.

Alshire Presents Songs of... Hank Williams - a return trip with Modern Sounds with exciting vocals (Alshire cat. S-5136)
Another gem from the vast Alshire catalog. When I first looked at the cover I didn't notice the woman's hand until looking the record over a few times. After I noticed that the young lady was dosing her horse a practically fainted. WINNER! There are some amazing moments on here like "Your Cheating Heart" which has become a regular spin for me. I assume the aforementioned Animated Egg may be behind the scene here. Thank you Kim's Video for nicely pricing this one.

There are a bunch more but I think I will save those for next month.