THE WASHBOARD BIRTHDAY SPECIAL

washboard-special-frontJust noticed that the last post was my 700th post since I started this blog in 2007. To celebrate all these wasted years,  here´s another flexible Birthday 78rpm postcard record, published by the London based Melody Cards company. These postcard records offer perfect copyright-friendly blog material: anonymous artists, no copyright noted, 50 plus years old and of course never reissued.

Plus, underneath the crackles and pops, a pretty silly song.

No washboard though….

 

 

The Washboard Birthday Special

 

Happy, Happy Birthday!

Happy, Happy Birthday!

On this anniversary of the day that you were born.

 

Let´s git goin´ down the track,

Once I´se there ain´t comin´ back,

Git those presents on the rack

Of the WASHBOARD BIRTHDAY SPECIAL

washboard-special-happy-birthdaywashboard-special-best-wishes-fromwashboard-special-backNote the Joe Brown haircut of the teenage boy in the center!

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PHIL TATE AND HIS ORCHESTRA, Countdown, 1959

O-9975-45O-9974-45Another Oriole 45 and it´s a rocker for a change. Somebody already posted Countdown on Youtube, but to my knowledge it´s not commercially available anywhere. There are a few nice comments about  how Phil Tate and his orchestra were regulars at the Streatham Locarno in south-east London.

Considering that Countdown was made by a regular big band for stuffy dance schools to teach teenagers how to dance the Jive, it´s pretty rockin´, in a Joe Meek kind of way.

PHIL TATE AND HIS ORCHESTRA, Countdown, 1959

Released in the “Strict Tempo Dance Series”: Tempo as laid down by the Official Board of Ballroom Dancing!

This is a Samba!

PHIL TATE AND HIS ORCHESTRA, Green Turtle, 1959


LEO MARTIN´S ORCHESTRA, Cleopatra, 1959

olmq-271-aolmq-271-bLeo Martin (1924 – 1993) was a Flemish comedian and musician, most famous for being one part of the comic duo Gaston & Leo.

In the late 50s Leo also recorded some  rock´n´roll songs. Strangely this one  about Cleopatra, sung together with actress Chris Sent (1922-1989), is neither in Flemish or French but German.

LEO MARTIN´S ORCHESTRA, Cleopatra, 1959

Now on the flip they don´t even sing in a real language. Or is it?

LEO MARTIN´S ORCHESTRA, Ou-A-Dou-Wa, 1959

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And then communication deteriorates even further…

Leo Martin in a short wordless sketch from the 1980s:

 

 


GROSSES TANZORCHESTER, Der verrückte Boogie

der-verrueckte-boogiegummi-mambo For many years, this record has been sitting in the attic at my brother´s house, where I still store some old stuff from when I was a teenager. It was on a visit to my brother last year, in that dusty attic, when I realized that I have been acquiring the same type of records that I present here since I was a child.

Like this Neckermann 45. In the mid 50s the Neckermann mail-order company tried to get a piece of the booming record market with their own short-lived budget label. Established in 1948,  Neckerman declared bankruptcy in 2012. Neckermann travel agency still operates today.

This record is perfect blog material: defunct budget label, anonymous band, 50 plus years old songs and never been reissued. Nobody knows this stuff exists. Nobody cares about it. I might as well claim to have created it.

The crazy Boogie…

GROSSES TANZORCHESTER, Der verrückte Boogie

German Version of Perez Prado´s Cherry Pink and Apple Blossom White. Teddy Kraft on trumpet.

GROSSES TANZORCHESTER, Gummi Mambo ( Das ist die Liebe im Vorrübergeh´n)


HANS KOLLER UND SEIN ORCHESTER, Tribut an SABA, 1959

trying to sell it on Ebay for 125 euros! Of course nobody will buy it. But why is a record that advertizes for the 1959/1960 SABA-Stereo Truhe, (a TV, a radio and a record player combined into a piece of furniture), considered to be so valuable?

Most probably because of the one song by Austrian jazz tenor saxophonist and bandleader one of the few  pure jazz musicians who managed to play his music after the Beatles dropped the bomb on jazz in the 60s. Most other German and Austrian jazz musicians either had to play Schlager or dropped out.

This record is also unique because it was one of the first releases produced by SABA, a German manufacturer of electronic equipment, before the company actually branched out into the SABA label. The note/fir tree symbol on the sleeve signifies the black forest where the company and the studio was located. In 1968 SABA, a variety label, was renamed to MPS, the first German label to exclusively release jazz. SABA issued three LPs by Hans Koller from 1963 to 1966. In this respect Koller´s “Tribute to SABA” , recorded in 1958 in Sandweiher near Baden-Baden, was a tribute ahead of time. 

Now you probably know by now that I´m not a jazz expert. In fact I don´t care for most of what has passed for jazz in the past 60 years. I like jazz that you cannot stand still to:  dance music.

Well, this is still sufficiently swingin`…

HANS KOLLER UND SEIN ORCHESTER, Tribut an SABA, 1958

If you like this you might want to check out an EP by Zoot Sims and Hans Koller from roughly the same time on the German Brunswick label, that Boogieman posted in April. That one really makes you wanna move!


GRADY MARTIN AND THE SLEW FOOT FIVE, Side By Side, 1953

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Grady Martin (January 17, 1929 – December 3, 2001) is in the Rockabilly Hall Of Fame. As a session guitarist he worked with anyone who had a name in the country and rock´n´roll field. Today he´s mostly known for the recordings he did with  Johnny Burnette. It´s actually his guitar playing that can be heard on most of the recordings of Johnny Burnette´s Rock´n´Roll Trio.

But Grady Martin´s own instrumental records with the Slew Foot Five were equally excellent. Side By Side, with vocals by Dottie Dillard and Jack Shook, was originally recorded in 1953 in Nashville. This German EP from 1958 collects four tracks that also appeared on Martin´s Jukebox Jamboree LP (1956).

Surprisingly the song has never been re-released in digital format and can currently not be purchased anywhere.

Enjoy!

GRADY MARTIN AND THE SLEW FOOT FIVE, Side By Side, 1953

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LUCY ROBERTS, Great Gosh, Mr. Willerkins, 1956

G4PW-2891Great Gosh, indeed!  What a great swingin´ tune! Lucy Roberts recorded another 45 for Vik in 1956 (Leap Year Red/Supper On The Table) but that´s about all I could find out about her.

Great Gosh  found its way on a Belgium bootleg compilation LP called “Rock´n´Roll Collection Vol. 15″ in 1986. The generic cover of the series simply donned a Confederate Flag indicating to what type of listeners the bootleggers had in mind. Apart from this appearance the song has never been reissued legally and hence is not to be found digitally anywhere either.

After 57  years it´s about time…

LUCY ROBERTS, Great Gosh, Mr. Willerkins, 1956

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RIO GREGORY – HIS PIANO AND HIS RHYTHM, International Piano Medley, 1955

varieton-pop-13pop-13-1pop-13-2 This  record has puzzled me for years. Who was this guy with the colorful name ? Only recently a German Wikipedia article appeared that cleared things up. This is my translation of the German article:

Rio De Gregori  (* September 22,  1919 in Zürich; † May 22, 1987 in Munich) was a Swiss jazz pianist and singer.

De Gregori learned to play the piano at age 7 and at fourteen started to collect jazz records by the likes of Duke Ellington and others. Although his parents wanted him to become a classical pianist, he started to perform professionally as a jazz musician. He worked with Willie Mac Allen (1939-40),  James Boucher (1940- 41), Jo Grandjean (1942) and up until September 1944 with René Weiss and his orchestra. Then he got a job in  Fred Böhler´s big band and stayed with them until 1945. The same year he founded his own big band,  that included some of the  best Swiss jazz musician like Stuff Combe, Bob Jaquillard, Jean Pierre Dupuis, Luc Hoffmann, Raoul Schmassmann, Kurt Weil and guest soloist Glyn Paque.  After the breakup of his band he continued to work in a trio and as a soloist and also managed a bar in Ascona, Switzerland. He then settled in Munich, opened a night club and henceforth called himself Rio Gregory. He named the club Bar Ascona.  Later he discovered pop singer Suzanne Doucet at Bar Ascona.

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Rio Gregory recorded another four EPs worth of material for the Varieton label and some more records for Columbia, Elite and Harlekin. Despite the Wikipedia article, not one of  them has ever been reissued.

Simple but nicely designed one-sided plastic Varieton company sleeve and red vinyl for the jazz collectors of 1955!

Enjoy:

RIO GREGORY, International Piano Medley Side 1, Bacciami – Ich Hab Mich So An Dich Gewöhnt – Tant Je Suis Amoureux De Vous – We´ll Be Together Again – Ich Zahl Mir´s An Den Knöpfen Ab

RIO GREGORY, International Piano Medley Side 2, Tell Me Why – Trois Fois Merci – Avril au Portugal – Dreh Dich Noch Einmal Um – Sweet Georgia Brown

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