John Lee Hooker – I’m John Lee Hooker (Vee-Jay LP 1007) (1959) and You’re Leavin’ Me, Baby (673005) (1961)

SAM_0736As it happens, this weekend was a good one for me to have the blues. That is to say, it was a good weekend for me to have all the VG condish, quality 1960s blues records I could find in Folkestone for a pound a piece!

SAM_0735His raggedy style was pretty well established by this point, but, as with Monk’s post-Blue Note Riverside and Prestige sides, John Lee Hooker’s post-Modern Records approach was still idiosyncratic enough, even in early maturity, to effectively be a sub-genre unto itself. His trademark fluid regard to measure counting certainly baffled his sidemen, who had great difficulty following the great man’s changes.

You’re Leavin’ Me, Baby, also available as That’s My Story – John Lee Hooker Sings the Blues, is particularly interesting as it features our hero in ‘authentic’ acoustic mode. At least, that’s how producer, and Riverside boss, Orrin Keepnews reckoned The Hook should be heard.

In fact, JLH sounds like JLH no matter the setting: you could char-broil that shizzle and it would still sound like JLH.

Published in: on July 6, 2015 at 8:28 pm  Leave a Comment  

Various Artists – The Blues – Volumes 1-5 (Pye International R&B Series) (1963-65)

SAM_0733Mercifully, my sense of order (so offended by the missing fourth volume and the change in art direction for the latter in the series [including the absent number four]) did not overwhelm my sense of pleasure at the purchase this weekend, for one pound each, of these excellent compendia of top-drawer 1950s blues. Culled from the mighty Chess Records archives, these early 60s releases were no doubt both product of and inspiration for that decade’s ‘blues boom’, particularly in the UK, where these editions were issued.SAM_0734The physical quality of all four are VG/VG+, after a good wash. Beautiful.

Published in: on July 6, 2015 at 6:42 am  Leave a Comment  

The Royals – Israel Be Wise (UAG 30206) (1978)

SAM_0727Solid late-entry in the roots reggae stakes recorded and mixed at Channel One (‘the baddest studio’), Roy Cousins’ Royals are still not the JA outfit I would have expected to receive deluxe, textured gatefold treatment from United Artists (via their Ballistic Records imprint). While relatively slick, this is in no way a commercial move–really, how could it be given Cousins’ eccentric vocals.

Even more unlikely, I got this the day before at Pilgrim’s Hospice in Folkestone, when, overcome with virtually tropical heat, I was actually looking for some reggae.SAM_0728This is the Royals third Lp. I haven’t heard the second, but rate the first, Pick Up the Pieces, an excellent compilation of early singles, which is currently available on quality UK reggae re-issue label Pressure Sounds.

Published in: on July 3, 2015 at 8:59 am  Leave a Comment  

Ramsay Lewis – Wade In the Water (Cadet774) (1966)

SAM_0724A bonā fidē Mod classic, I bought this specimen last week at the Goodwill thrift store on N. High Street in Columbus, Ohio for $2. Sometimes Lewis can be too literal in his interpretations, but he generally hits the mark here, even on lesser material like ‘Day Tripper’. The definition of soul-jazz, the tambourine features strongly on the two and four beats.

I'd be happy to find most of the records featured on Wade's inner sleeve chazzing.

I’d be happy to find most of the records featured on Wade’s inner sleeve chazzing.

Published in: on July 2, 2015 at 10:51 am  Leave a Comment  

Haynes Boys – ‘Maryhaven Family’ b/w ‘Out of This World’ (WR002) (1994)

SAM_0700Ultra-rare piece of 90s 7″ vinyl Americana. Not thrifted, but part of my collection. In fact, I was responsible for this single’s bass playing and sleeve. I post this, not merely to blow my own trumpet (or, indeed, pluck my own bass), but to announce a short hiatus from Thrifty V while I go over to the States to play a few shows in celebration of (and to shift a few units of) the vinyl re-issue of the Haynes Boys’ debut Lp, previously only available on cd. The physical album is released on 23rd June and will also be there for the taking on iTunes (not that Thrifty Vinyl readers care about that sort of thing).SAM_0701

Any Thrifty readers in Columbus, Ohio next week are encouraged to check us out. International types are encouraged to like ‘n’ share details on the Facebooks:

Liner notes for the Lp are here:

End of commercial.

Published in: on June 17, 2015 at 8:16 am  Leave a Comment  

Ornette Coleman – Skies of America (KC31562) (1972)

RIP Ornette.

Thrifty Vinyl

Thrifty Vinyl, at least the Prince Asbo branch of the triumverate, will be on vacation to US of Frickin’ A for the next three weeks. In commemoration, I am posting this “difficult” orchestral Ornette Coleman Lp which I bought on the green in Hythe last spring. Suffice to say I much prefer his small group Atlantic material.

I’ll be checking in here, but unlikely to post while abroad. I’m on a seriously tight budget that might even preclude Stateside thrifting! Perhaps others can pick up the slack in my absence.

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Published in: on June 11, 2015 at 5:54 pm  Leave a Comment  

Etienne De Crecy ‎– ‘Prix Choc (Mixes)’ (SLD 011) (1998)

SAM_0697Etienne De Crecy’s ambient house masterpiece Super Discount was one of those game changers for me. And it still holds up. This white label promo of ‘Prix Choc’, featuring different mixes by La Funk Mob and De Crecy himself, is nowhere near as essential, but still makes for lovely chilled listening. The former (‘Ultrabright Mix’) is almost unrecognisable while the latter (‘Ultradark Mix’) relies even more heavily than the Lp version on a Bob Marley sample for its groove. £2 at Pilgrim’s Hospice in Canterbury today.

Published in: on June 8, 2015 at 4:02 pm  Leave a Comment  

Eric Salzman – The Nude Paper Sermon (Nonesuch 2590 003)

SAM_0695If this odd Lp, subtitled ‘Tropes for Actor, Renaissance Consort, Chorus and Electronics’, has any precedent, it is John Cage’s Indeterminacy.  As with that earlier album, random bursts of strident, prepared electronic racket pepper the proceedings to exhilarating effect. However, Salzman (along with Nonesuch mainstay Joshua Rifkin) takes things further than Cage (who simply intoned laconic, sometimes whimsical, koans and bits of autobiography) by arranging a surreal narrated provocation (by Stacy Keach) to weave in and out of cod madrigals and other Renaissance-style folderol. It’s the kind of thing I love to hear on Radio 3 late Friday and Saturday nights when things get weird. One pound last week in Hythe. Perfick.

Published in: on June 7, 2015 at 7:47 pm  Leave a Comment  

George Martin & His Orchestra – Off The Beatle Track (PMCO 1227) (1964)

SAM_0692John wrote some droll liners and admits, apparently honestly, that ‘us Beatles are genuinely flattered that a “real musician”…should turn his talents to arranging an Lp of our songs’.  He was a bit harsher in later years. I believe the appalling title was under consideration for an actual Beatles record (maybe the first one), before Martin snaffled it.

By dint of their producer’s involvement, the represents one of the more legitimate Fab cash-ins; however, string heavy, with hints of middle-brow jazz, it’s simply too straight to be of more than passing interest to a non-Beatles collector. To be kind, it might find favour in the supermarkets and elevators of 1960s America. SAM_0694This cost me £2 today in Hythe. The sleeve of this rare Australian issue is a bit knackered but vinyl plays VG+.

Published in: on May 18, 2015 at 6:22 pm  Leave a Comment  

Mykall Roze – ‘Bad Boy’ X-Act Remix b/w ‘Cold Girls’, ‘Bad Boy’ Yard Mix (E111)

SAM_0680Despite last weekend’s RSD profligacy, I visited several Ashford chazzas after dropping Asbo elder off at the train station this morning and was rewarded with this tasty dubbed up twelve from former Black Uhuru lynchpin Michael Rose and ubiquitous producers Sly & Robbie on their TAXI imprint for one quid at Oxfam. More X-Terminator than Trojan, but well worth it, as I would tell you.

Published in: on April 23, 2015 at 3:07 pm  Leave a Comment