Saturday, January 10, 2009
Friday, January 9, 2009
Don Bowman was an obscure "country comedian" and also a musician who gained some moderate fame thanks to a boost from RCA Vice President Chet Atkins. Bowman had already released four previous LPs of novelty country music, sorta in the tradition of Homer and Jethro. This was his stab at a concept album and, for the first time on a Bowman album, contains a great deal of spoken word, recorded in front of a small live audience featuring members of Nashville's showbiz elite (and a glimpse into the prevalent marijuana use in late sixties Nashville). Bowman was well respected as a straight songwriter around Nashville (and contributed some stuff later for the Waylon & Willie album) and appeared in country music drive-in pictures like Hillbillys in a Haunted House (1967). Bowman is still alive and has a myspace page and is currently convalescing from a stroke he suffered last year.
This 1967 comedy record was a take-off on Herb Alpert and The Tijuana Brass, although a lot of the satire doesn't make a lot of sense since that group consisted of white guys doing what was Mexican flavored music as opposed to an actual Mexican band. But this was the old days and making fun of those south of the border was always good for some cheap larfs. The best moments on this record are the songs and the spoofs of the music itself - the rest is what it is. Mildly offensive and not particularly hilarious, but still an interesting and - for nerds like me - often fascinating little obscurity - with a surprising amount of pot humour.
Thursday, January 8, 2009
I'm reading a book by Knowlton Nash right now, so I'm in the mood for infusing some classic CanCon (that's Canadian Content for our American visitors, which is most of you) into the site today.
Six weeks prior to his death, Malcom X was in Toronto for an appearance on Canada's longest running game show.
Wednesday, January 7, 2009
Pete Barbutti was/is a really funny guy and like Jack Sheldon and Steve Allen (and in one horrific instance, Eddie Harris) was simultaneously a comedian and jazz musician and great at both. This is a surprisingly hard to find LP.
I get a big kick out of the ol' B-movie genre of "Mountiexploitation." This one is especially enjoyable as our singing RCMP officer doesn't just croon about getting his man, but about barbecue sauce as well. Highly entertaining.
Tuesday, January 6, 2009
Monday, January 5, 2009
Sunday, January 4, 2009
This bizarre album was the first attempt by Mae West for a showbiz comeback. That's the poster insert that is included with the album that I'm holding. Despite being an extremely talented playwright and acerbic comic actress, Mae West's final attempt at showbiz triumph was not to be. This album featured West covering The Beatles, The Guess Who and Percy Sledge among others. Some of it is surprisingly listenable although it is naturally a novelty album and little else. West's next two projects, motion picture duds Myra Breckinridge (1970) and Sextette (1978), are also considered camp classics.
Treat Him Right
When a Man Loves a Woman
You Turn Me On
Shakin All Over
If You Gotta Go
Lover, Please Don't Fight
Twist and Shout