RAY MAXWELL, Misirlou, 1962Posted: January 21, 2011
Over the years I have more or less accidentally come accross each of these three releases of the German Heliodor label. Heliodor was a sub-label of Polydor that pressed smaller quantities of mostly US rock´n´roll releases. They were also sold cheaper than the regular Polydor record. At the time the label was especially popular among German rock´n´roll kids. This is a German Heliodor pressing of a record originally released by the small indedependent Moonglow label from Los Angeles.
Ray Maxwell, the founder of Moonglow Records , was born Rene Jan van Hoogten, brother of Alfred van Hoogten, the owner of the Belgian Ronnex label. Starting in 1951 Ronnex released many cool Jazz, Rock´n´Roll, Twist and Beat records. It was Alfred van Hoogten who discovered Jack Hammer and Corry Brokken. Ray Maxwell was initially sent to the USA by his brother to set up a subsidiary of Ronnex but the label soon took on a life of its own. Maxwells´s biggest success was discovering the Righteous Brothers in 1963. A very interesting account of the early years at Ray Maxwell´s Moonglow label can be found at the blog of Rhythm & Blues legend Daddy Dewdrop. Ray Maxwell seems to have been an exceptionally cool guy for a record label owner. A record collector and musician himself, he recorded this pretty snappy version of Misirlou:
after Dick Dale´s original rock´n´roll interpretation: