The Velvet Underground & Nico (V6-5008) (1967)

SAM_0123CORONERS UNSURE IF LOU REED ACTUALLY DEAD Cadaverous Appearance, Mute Grimace Unchanged Over Last Decade, Making It Hard To Tell

(New York City) – New York City Coroners are still running tests to determine whether initial reports of Lou Reed’s demise are correct. Early indications suggested that the legendary Velvet Underground singer-songwriter was merely in a funk of some sort as he stared  stonily at friends during a luncheon at his Blairstown, New Jersey home yesterday. However, forensic scientists say this may have been evidence of early onset death.

Reed remained mute throughout the party, which at least one guest attributed to his wife’s fawning allusion to the host’s groundbreaking band. “Lou’s easily pissed off and doesn’t appreciate someone trying to blow smoke up his ass,” recalled neighbour Max Unger. “So when Carole [Unger] said something about the Velvet’s first Lp capturing the zeitgeist of 60s bohemian New York much better than Midnight Cowboy, and Lou just sat there, I assumed he was just, you know, being crotchety, but it’s possible he was dead.”

Confusion has also arisen due to Reed’s pale, drawn appearance of late. “He’s been looking especially careworn and cadaverous during the past ten years,” a spokesman for New York’s Chief Medical Examiner reported. “So it’s not unthinkable that Mr. Reed has been deceased since the early 2000s.”

Others have refused to speculate on the notoriously difficult interviewee’s hold on life until Reed’s next album: “I’m content to wait until Lou releases some new music before deciding whether he’s dead or not,” said one New York fan this morning. “If it’s just, like, complete silence, then I think a case can be made for his passing on.”

Adding, “Of course, even that could be a Metal Machine Music-style art prank.”



SAM_0124Editor’s Note: The above copy of VU’s first album was given to me by my Aunt Kerry who bought it when it came out; cool or what?SAM_0126

Albums Compact Discs Electronical

Radiohead – Kid A (2000) and Amnesiac (2001)


(London) –  Social media sites went into world-wide meltdown yesterday with news of a December release date for Radiohead’s ninth studio record. The British band announced on its website that the forthcoming album will be made up of nothing but bonus tracks.

The official press notice read: “Normally when producing an album, we ‘over-record’ and file away those songs we believe aren’t quite ‘up to snuff’ onto b-sides, hidden songs, charity CDs, free downloads, bonus tracks, etc. In the present case, we felt that none of the 22 numbers completed during sessions for our new album were good enough to go on a proper Radiohead release, so we have chosen to append all of them as bonus tracks.” Fans were quick to praise the alternative group’s “generous spirit” online, with amnesia_kid’s Twitter assessment that, “rhead let’s [sic] fans see there [sic] inner workings–wotta band!!!” typical of most responses.

The as-yet-untitled no track 2CD/3Lp record has been called by the band, “probably our most sonically adventurous album to date” and comes available in a deluxe, box-set version shaped like a decommissioned nuclear power station featuring eight bonus bonus tracks of Phil Selway drum loops not used on the regular bonus tracks.


Editor’s note: I got these two “experimental” Radiohead CDs for 50p a pop at Wincheap bootfair in the same batch as the Gorillaz discs. I’ve never been too hot on Radiohead, but one of my children was playing “Everything In Its Right Place” and something else and I was pleasantly surprised to find how much I enjoyed it. Whether I bother with any more R’head is another matter.

Compact Discs Reggae

Charlie Chaplin – Ras Portraits (RAS 3318) (1997)

SAM_0119THE THRIFTY VINYL NAME GAME                                       True Stories of Stars’ Names and How They Came To Be

The story goes that, shortly after the singer was born, a dyslexic administrator entered Morrissey’s details incorrectly into the Salford hospital’s computer, not realising that Stephen-Patrick was the well-to-do vocalist’s double-barrelled surname and Morrissey his Christian name. According to his just released autobiography, Autobiography, he became known as “Morrissey” because he was so-called by masters at the posh private school he attended in the wealthy Stand area of Manchester during the 1970s. “I became one of those rarefied few popstars known only by their first name,” he quipped, “like Madonna or Jesus.”

Morrissey’s revelation put us at Thrifty Vinyl to mind of the popular musicians who’ve changed their names and the many strange and amusing stories behind these noms du rock. Here are just a few:

  • Marc Bolan wanted to be called Bernie Schwartz in homage to his favourite actor Tony Curtis. But producer Tony Visconti nixed the name, calling it “still too Jewish” for the singer born Mark Feld, and withheld the master tapes from his début album Jeepstar until the elfin Glam Rocker plumped for the slightly more goy-sounding “Bolan”.
  • 90s Reggae DJ Charlie Chaplin was not named for the famous silent film actor/director/producer, rather as a tribute to a local pharmacist in the parish of St. Ann’s, JA.
  • Coincidently, Bob Dylan chose his name because of a Hibbing, MN pharmacist also called Charlie Chaplin.
  • Reg Dwight, aka superstar Elton John, picked up his pseudonym from a young Ben Elton, for whom the struggling pianist worked as nanny, and the toilets (or “Johns”) where he regularly cottaged before marrying long-time boyfriend David Furnace.
  • The Viscount and Countess Gaga were dismayed when their rebel teenager renounced the family’s inherited title and changed names to plain old Stefani Joanne Angelina Germanotta. However, their joy knew no bounds when, at age 20 and settled down, their wayward offspring reclaimed the royal sobriquet we’ve come to know so well, Prince.
  • Cadbury scion and heir Marshall Mathers was given the nickname “M&M” because of the constant boasting in which he indulged about his family’s chocolate-funded wealth. He says he later legally changed his name by deed pole to a phonetic version of the famously un-melty candy “as a badge of honour.”
  • Gary Glitter recently released a song under his own name, Paul Gadd, fearing a public backlash. Funds from the “Old Enough To Bleed (Old Enough To Breed)” single, which scraped the UK Top 20 in August 2012, went to the much-misunderstood singer’s legal defence fund.
  • When Carl Palmer left ELP, Keith Emerson and Greg Lake tried and failed to hire Ian Paice as replacement so they wouldn’t have to change the office stationary. Later failing to convince both ELO’s Bev Bevan and Yes’ Bill Bruford to change their surnames to Pevan and Pruford respectively, they had to settle for cell-phone car-crash tragedy drummer Cozy Powell out of the Jeff Beck Group.
  • Born Ringo Starkey in 1940, the Beatles drummer is, of course, famously illiterate. As a result, Fabs manager Brian Epstein misread the sticksman’s poorly scrawled signature as “Starr” on the grossly unfair contract he made the band sign, and he was forever known as such.


Editor’s note: inspired by the 50p Ashford Pilgrim’s Hospice purchase of Chaplin’s 90s comp.

Albums Folk

Fairport Convention – Unhalfbricking (CGLP 4418) (1969)


(New York, New York) – Universal Music has announced its intention to make available special 10th Anniversary Deluxe vinyl re-issues of the 30th Anniversary Deluxe CD re-issues originally released during the early 2000s. The Lps, including the band’s seminal first five records, will feature none of the bonus tracks on the compact disc editions, nor will the records be remastered (digital or analogue) by producer Joe Boyd or original engineer John Wood. The records have been pressed using many-times recycled plastic on to special lightweight 80g vinyl. According to the press release, the original third generation master tapes used for the 1980 budget Carthage Records re-issue have been utilised for the 10th Anniversary vinyl re-issues of the 30th Anniversary CD re-issues. Universal’s Dick Schmoozely claims the use of crappy vinyl and well-worn masters give the disc “that highly prized thin, flat, almost muffled sound so beloved of late 70s and 80s re-issues.”

Albums Compact Discs Compilations Dance Electronical Hip Hop New Wave


Hey Hey We're the MonkeysThe CD fightback continues apace with this Sunday Wincheap bootfair purchased Gorillaz bonanza. I’ve always like G’z singles and so this lot will do for an unrivaled computer playlist. My younger son already has third Lp Plastic Beach. Included are albums Gorillaz, Demon Days as well as compilations G-Sides, D-Sides (2 CDs) and Spacemonkeyz versus Gorillaz’ Laika Come Home.  I also got Albarn’s Chinese Monkey opera. All for 50p a pop.

But what’s the deal with the simian thing?

12 inchers Reggae

Janet Kay – “You Bring the Sun Out” b/w Instrumental (TT3) (1981)

SAM_1724Ultra smoove Lovers Rock Randy Crawford cover from British reggae icon Kay, produced and arranged by top flight keyboardist, Jackie Mittoo. I could do with it being a bit more rootsy sounding, but in 1981 that wasn’t the point and anyways there’s still bassweight aplenty. In fact, this is pretty good stuff, Kay is an excellent singer and the aficiando-pleasing dubwise extended A-side knocks socks and other footwear off the straightforward instrument on the flip. A Cats’ Protection heist from yesterday afternoon.SAM_1725When you’re a JA studio legend, you too may have your own logo.

Courtesy our good friend, Dr. Johnny Bongo.