Beefheart and More

It’s been a productive weekend for crate digging.  I started off at a local estate sale where I found a 1957 Harman Kardon PC-200 “Prelude” mono amplifier.

Harman Kardon Prelude PC-200

With the amp they let me throw in a few records, so I took home a Kraftwerk compilation called Exceller 8 and an early Hanna Barbera LP.  Exceller 8 features selections from the first four Kraftwerk albums, including the 3:09 edit of Autobahn which was popular on the radio at the time.  (The full version of Autobahn runs 22:30 as side 1 of the album of the same name.)  I already have the Autobahn and Radioactivity LPs, so this will serve as a nice intro to their earlier work.

Kraftwerk - Exceller 8

The Hanna Barbera album turned out to be among their first four records each released back in 1959 and the very first to feature the Quick Draw McGraw character.  The disc is titled Quick Draw McGraw and Huckleberry Hound – TV’s Favorite Cartoon Stars.  A mint copy has a Goldmine value of $150.

Quick Draw McGraw and Huckleberry Hound LP

The next morning at the local flea market I found an excellent copy of Steve Reich’s most famous record – Music For 18 Musicians.  Sadly, I was about a dollar fifty short of the $5 price tag, so I’ll have to pick it up the next time I find a copy.

Sunday I went to the antique mall and came across a number of discs I would have liked to have purchased.  First there was a double LP from Donovan I had not seen before, and then one of the few Leon Redbone discs I don’t already have – titled No Regrets.    My $2 instead went to Captain Beefheart’s Mirror Man LP.

Captain Beefheart - Mirror Man

In the last year I’ve passed up opportunities to buy original pressings of Beefheart’s Unconditionally Guaranteed and Strictly Personal albums.  I’ve also held all three volumes (6 LPs which never occupy the same room) of the Grow Fins collection in my hands but didn’t buy them, either.  So even though I had half of Mirror Man’s tracks on the Music in Sea Minor 10″ I couldn’t say no this time.

Captain Beefheart - Music In Sea Minor
I picked this one up in New York last year with an original copy of Trout Mask Replica

For images and detailed information about the 3 volume Grow Fins set on vinyl, visit the Captain Beefheart Radar Station here.  If you piece together the set online, it should run you just under $200.00.

Pre-Birthday Crate Digging

I’ve been cooling my record-buying jets a bit as my birthday approaches, but I finally made it back out to the local Antique Mall and community garage sale and brought home some fun finds.

The Dutch progressive rock band, Focus is best known for their song “Hocus Pocus,” replete with yodeling, whistling, scatting, and more.  The best version of the song was the Midnight Special performance from ’73.   The original album version is noticeably slower and doesn’t pack the punch of the live recording.  Thankfully, I found a copy of Focus – Live at the Rainbow (also from ’73) which culminates with a performance of “Hocus Pocus” that is almost on par with this Midnight Special clip.

Focus - Live at the Rainbow
For those who haven’t seen it, check it out below.

Next I found a vintage moog record I’d seen online a dozen times over the years but had never came across it in person.  Complete with kitschy cover art, here’s Hugo Montenegro’s Moog Power.

Kneel before Zod!

There are only a few novelty moog records missing from my collection (at least that I’d like to acquire), such as Gershon Kingsley’s Music to Moog By.

Gershon Kingsly - Music to Moog By
Nothing gets young lovers in the mood like moog music and nipple flowers.

At the same table of records, I found three Tom Lehrer albums, each in excellent shape.  For those not familiar with Tom, he’s a staple of the Doctor Demento show.  Lehrer was an instructor from MIT and Harvard University and wrote popular songs like, “the Elements,” “New Math,” and his most famous, “Poisoning Pigeons in the Park.”

I had previously purchased three of his albums and had the good Doctor autograph the 10″ version of his debut record from 1953 (pictured below.)

Tom Lehrer - Songs By Tom Lehrer (1953 10in autographed)

Tom Lehrer - An Evening Wasted with Tom Lehrer

And from the sale I brought home the following additional Lehrer records…

Tom Lehrer - Songs by Tom Lehrer (1953 12in)

Tom Lehrer - More of Tom Lehrer (1959)

Tom Lehrer - Songs by Tom Lehrer (1952-53)

Here’s Tom Lehrer’s “The Elements.”  (Also on Youtube is a most impressive video of this same song sung by a four year old entirely from memory!)

More still from the same table, I found Leon Redbone’s Champagne Charlie.  Now I have his first three LPs on vinyl (which are by far his best.)  Leon has been described as a “walking 78 record.”  His performances transport the listener to the Mississippi Delta sometime around 1925.  I will never get tired of his sound.  Hell, I even love the Mr. Belvedere theme.

Leon Redbone - Champagne Charlie
Below you’ll find Leon performing one of my favorite tracks, “Ditty Wah Diddy.”  (Advance the video to 2:00 for the song.)

I also found a James Brown LP that I didn’t already own.  It’s the soundtrack to the 70s blaxploitation film, Black Caesar.   Lyn Collins supplied vocals on “Mama Feelgood” and Fred Wesley and the JBs lent their horny horns throughout the album.

James Brown - Black Caesar

Before leaving the Antique Mall I snatched up one more disc – the motion picture soundtrack to Little Shop of Horrors.

Little Shop of Horrors - Motion Picture Soundtrack

The disc comes in a gatefold sleeve with photos from the film.  Fans have criticized this album for being incomplete, and so I made sure to get the expanded 46 track bootleg version as well.  The 80s movie soundtrack section of my collection is growing and this was a fun surprise to find in town.  I’ve also seen a rare soundtrack for They Live posted to; something I might pursue in the future.

That’s it for now.  The next time you hear from me I’ll be thirty years old.  Still not sure how I feel about that…