Tag Archives: Music

Record Music History – My Way

I just had a birthday.  According to the US antique standards, I am beyond antique. 

In the US, an item is considered antique at 50.  This is 2008.

Let’s think about this a minute.  Hmmmm…..recorded music.  Records, specifically. 

Many of the records I own have hit the 100 mark or are very close to it.

The age of rock and rock has hit 50.

Taking all that into consideration, I decided to abandon the “retro” looks that many have used as the theme for their websites, blogs and Ebay stores.

 

I say not!!

Think golden years and rich patinas inviting you into the shelves of recorded music history.

No red, black, chrome or flashing disco balls here. 

It’s on its way. 

You will really want to gosinta this, sit back and reminisce!

Diana, You Are My Destiny and Paul Anka

Take a walk down memory lane with me.  Paul Anka hit it big when I was in junior high and continued wowing us with his hits through my high school years.  Follow me back to the late 50’s and 60’s as we reminiscence our way through one of the great singer/songwriters in pop music history.  Some of my favorite songs were written and record by this Canadian who lives in the US and had his car towed away while in the US Immigration and Naturalization Service becoming a citizen in August of 1990. 

Paul Anka

Paul Anka

Record Sales of Over 100 Million Copies

He made his first public appearance at the age of 10 and, in 1953, earned $35 at an amateur talent contest impersonating Johnny Ray.  In September of the same year he proves his songwriting ability  – I Confesss old 3,000 copies.  Early 1957 found Anka in New York City who became very impressed with the city.  He borrows $100 from his father and returns from Ottawa to New York City with four songs he is going to tape.  During this visit ABC Records signs this rare breed of singer/songwriter to Paramount.

Diana becomes #1 in the UK a month after its release and sells over nine million copies worldwide, landing it in the top five best-selling singles of all time.  Diana is followed by You Are My Destiny (#7, 1958), Crazy Love ( #15, 1958), Lonely Boy (#1, 1959), Hello Young Lovers (#23, 1960), Put Your Head On My Shoulder (#2, 1959) and Puppy Love (#2, 1960).

In 1969 Frank Sinatra adopted My Way as his signature song.  Interestingly enough, David Bowie recorded the first version of the French Comme D’Habitude transposed to English by Anka. It went to #5 in the UK while Sintra’s version hit #27 in the US.

His first hit since 1959 was in 1974 almost four years after he signed with Buddah.  The very controversial (You’re) Having My Baby was a duet sung with Odia Coates, his protegee.  They went on to record a total of four hits together.  In 1976 Kodak used his song Solo Times Of Your Life in a television commercial sparking Paul Anka’s final Top Ten hit.

Although Paul Anka does not make the charts anymore, he continues to tour worldwide.  Please visit his official site: PaulAnka.com

My eBay store currently has three Paul Anka record albums for sale:

1)  Paul Anka’s 21 Golden Hits – 1963

2)  Paul Anka Self – Titled – 1974 (?)

4)  Feelings – 1975

Happy Days!

The Mills Brothers Laid the Foundation for Doo Wop

Mills Brothers

Mills Brothers

“Paper Doll” sold over 6 million copies in its first release.  Their total record sales are literally uncountable – tens of  millions.  The four brothers Herbert, Donald, Harry and John Mills, Jr started performing as teenagers in the 1920’s imitating instruments on the kazoo. They first started performing under the name “Four Boys and a Guitar.”

Well, the predictable happened……one night they Harry forgot his kazoo and, you know the story…..the rest is history.  The audience was totally amazed at the brothers as they cupped their hands over their mouth to produce muted horn sounds.  They worked on the act and the sound Of Harry as a trumpet, Johan as tuba, Donald as trombone and Herbert as second trumpet laid the foundation for doo wop. This novelty act quickly grew into the highly successful career that spanned over 4 decades!

1928 – Tiger Rag Released

Can you imagine the history of this group.  Their first hit “Tiger Rag” was released in 1928.  They had hits every year from 1935 – 1947 and the recordings continued into the 1990’s with the release of “Still….There’s You,” a compilation of hits throughout the years along with new releases.

Grammy for Lifetime Achievement Award

The Mills Brothers were honored in 1998 with the Grammy for Lifetime Achievement Award.  The four brothers learned their close-harmony first hand.  Dad, John owned a barbershop in Piqua, Ohio and started a barbershop quartet called the Four Kings of Harmony.  The group’s close harmony landed them a solid spot during the swing era.  Their ingenuity and vocal genius earned them the coveted spot of being a true pioneer doo wop. 

We honor them and will never forget their last number one hit in 1952: “Glow Worm.”  Thank you Mills Brothers for giving us your hearts and souls for the past seventy-five years.

Uncle Miltie, the Automat, Dr. Benjamin Spock and Levittown

Automat

Automat

Do you know?  I’d forgotten about the majority of this and didn’t even know about Levittown.  There were so many things that passed through the popularity zone during the “golden oldie years.”

What was there before McDonald’s?   What is that magic box with those strange aluminum branches doing in my living room? Did you hear what the Dodgers did?  What are they doing on Long Island?  Have you read Baby and Child Care yet? Have you heard who Joe is accusing now?

Not only did Doo Wop music have its pioneers, there were revolutionary changes taking place in our neighborhood that would forever change the face of America.  While the Mills Brothers, the Ames Brothers, the Andrews Sisters, the Ravens, the Soul Stirrers and the Orioles fought for the air waves, our country was taking on a completely different face after World War 11.

The Automat opened in New York City in 1912 – thus the birth of “fast food.”  It remained popular through the 1950’s and paved the way for our fast food society. In 1955, the first Golden Arches of McDonald’s  rose to be the major contender in providing meals for Americans on the go. 

Milton Berle

Milton Berle

1948 brought the beginning of the end of the family gathering itself every evening around the radio. We quickly  fell in love with the elastic face of Milton Berle whose voice on the radio made us laugh. Back then restaurants would close and movie theaters were empty on Tuesday evenings when the Texaco Star Theater brought Uncle Miltie to life on that funny new screen.

Soon after the end of World War II Levitt & Sons built more than 17,000 single-family “ranch” homes that sold at under $8,000.  Levitt provided a piece of that American dream for those who could afford the payments of less than $60 a month!  The potato fields of Long Island are now a thing of the past.  Housing developments and tract homes became sought after by those who desired suburban life.

The Brooklyn Dodgers took a chance in 1945.  They signed Jackie Robinson who had, until then, played for the Kansas City Royals in the American Negro League. That single event went down in the record books as the  most important change in sports world  history.

Dr. Benjamin Spock burst onto the scene in 1946 with his philosphy of more love and less discipline in child rearing.  He believe in mutual respect between parents and their children. This man was given the distinction of contributing to the influence of the 1960’s world of hippies and flower children.  Could he be held responsible for anything else?  He was against the war in Vietnam and the development of nuclear energy. 

Who could forget the Red Scare of the 1950’s?  Joe McCarthy rose to power in the Senate and started the crusade to uncover the hidden communists, many of whom were famous while America watched helplessly.  He single-handedly ruined the lives and careers of many before he was stopped in 1954.  His abuse of American can never be forgotten.  We must be involved in our government. American cannot stand by passively and let misguided power ruin what was built on the blood of committed patriots.

Sen Joseph McCarthy

Sen Joseph McCarthy

Yes, doo wop changed popular music forever.  But as you can see, music was not the only changing taking place.

The Beginning of Doo Wop

Wop wop a do wop, ba bang a dong ding/bome……..

 

The Marcels

The Marcels

We attribute the beat, the sound, the rhythm, and the emotion of Doo Wop with the 1950’s. We also liken it to one particular deejay  from New York City – “Cousin Brucie” Morrow.  This one person helped shape rock ‘n’ roll music almost as much as the groups who sang and danced their ways into our hearts and memories.  According to him “all the basic elements of music as we enjoy it today existed in African music over four-hundred years ago.”   Take that history steeped in the church pews of black America and stir it up with a dollop of the blues and what you have is what we fondly call Doo Wop.

Doo wop artists emerged out of the swing-jazz era.  Big bands became, quartets and quintets.  Many of these new artists borrowed songs that had been major hits for jazz artists – adding their particular spin to the classics.  “In The Still of the Night” (Five Satins and Billy Eckstine); “Blue Moon” (the Marcels and Glen Gray) and “Stormy Weather” (the Spaniels and Lena Horne) are just a few.  Over the next few weeks, we will be visiting some of my favorites.

Five Satins

Five Satins

Remember to sign up for my free newsletter.  It’s as easy as going to my store Gosinta and signing up. You’ll be getting advance notice of new products, coupons and opportunity to express your views plus a list of 26 oldie rock ‘n’ roll groups and their hits.

Where are You, Gosinta?

That question seems to be echoing through an empty canyon……..No, I haven’t disappered; just kinda was on hiatus.  Watch out, cuz she’s back!!!

News from the …com world!  Gosinta  is going through a total makeover.  Yes, I’ll still be old, but the look will be way new!  My eBay store Gosinta is going through a complete makeover – new colors, new look, new products and lots of cool stuff.  The biggest annoucement is Gosinta is launching a website!  This will include my WordPress blog and and opportunity to sign up for my newsletter. The newsletter will keep you informed of all the changes, new happenings, special newsletter subscriber only offers and discounts, early bird specials, discussion groups and contests.  Please sign up  for a free subscription to my newsletter when you visit my eBay store Gosinta.  I will send you a special alphabetical list  (26 total) of oldie artist/groups along with the names of the hottest hits.  Until later days……

Gosinta

Re-Birth of the Vinyl Record

I live in Oregon, the home of Fred Meyer one-stop shopping.  This company (now owned by Kroger) hit the national news last week all because an employee marked the wrong box while ordering the new REM album “Accelerate” – and that’s what he got…..vinyl record albums rather than CD’s.  The warehouse shipped the albums out and some of the stores put them on the shelves.  The rest is history, and you know it.  What happened before is happening again – albums sold and sold well. Fred Meyer is now really testing the market.  They are placing 20 different albums in 60 stores.  These albums range from The Beatles “Abbey Road” to the new Raconteurs 180 gram vinyl. The response thus far has been what some of us expected – they are selling.  The public loves records, always has and always will.

Being a child of the ’60’s, seeing this resurgence thrills me as I reminisce my way through decades of what is now musical history.  Both digital downloads and CD sales are experiencing a down turn.  Shoppers want to buy an experience.  Buying vinyl provides that sensory experience: sound, touch and feel and seeing that black vinyl spiining on the turntable. 

Visit my store Gosinta for vintage vinyl and wax plus a great selection of new Crosley turntables.