Starday SLP 404. Here’s another old compilation LP, and it’s pretty fantastic, not a lame tune in the bunch. These are all truckin’ – themed songs, except for Minnie Pearl’s ” What Is An American? “, which is as accurate today as it was when it was released.
1. George Morgan : ” Shiny Red Automobile “
1. George Morgan : ” Shiny Red Automobile ”
2. Johnny Bond : ” The Hijacker “
2. Johnny Bond : ” The Hijacker ”
3. The Willis Brothers : ” Drivin’s In My Blood “
3. The Willis Brothers : ” Drivin’s In My Blood ”
4. Minnie Pearl : ” What Is An American? “
4. Minnie Pearl : ” What Is An American? ”
5. Tommy Hill & Pete Drake : ” Gear Shiftin’ “
5. Tommy Hill & Pete Drake : ” Gear Shiftin’ ”
6. Red Sovine & Johnny Bond : ” The Gearjammer & The Hobo “
6. Red Sovine & Johnny Bond : ” The Gearjammer & The Hobo ”
7. Dave Dudley : ” Six Days On The Road “
7. Dave Dudley : ” Six Days On The Road ”
8. Red Sovine : ” Big Joe & The Phantom 309 “
8. Red Sovine : ” Big Joe & The Phantom 309 ”
9. The Willis Brothers : ” The End Of The Road “
9. The Willis Brothers : ” The End Of The Road ”
10. Johnny Bond : ” Gears “
10. Johnny Bond : ” Gears ”
11. Red Sovine : ” Payload Daddy “
11. Red Sovine : ” Payload Daddy ”
12. George Morgan : ” The Man Behind The Wheel “
12. George Morgan : ” The Man Behind The Wheel ”
Vinyl Solution Records V/S 004. I guess what they were going for with the cover art for this 1980 New Orleans punk compilation LP was the city post-apocalypse, or maybe they were trying to illustrate the explosive rock n’ roll power contained within. All I know is that right now is the riskiest part of hurricane season, and this picture of a destroyed Superdome and toppled streetcar makes me distinctly uncomfortable. Here’s the entire album.
Red Rockers : ” Dead Heroes “
1. Red Rockers : ” Dead Heroes ”
Red Rockers : ” Red Star “
2. Red Rockers : ” Red Star ”
Aces 88 : ” Character “
3. Aces 88 : ” Character ”
RZA : ” Can’t Never “
4. RZA : ” Can’t Never ”
The Hostages : ” Time To Change “
5. The Hostages : ” Time To Change ”
The Models : ” Fire Patrol “
6. The Models : ” Fire Patrol ”
The Models : ” Intimate Love “
7. The Models : ” Intimate Love ”
The Wayward Youth : ” Thinkin’ Bout You
8. The Wayward Youth : ” Thinkin’ Bout You
David Oh! : ” Preparation X “
9. David Oh! : ” Preparation X ”
The Fugitives : ” Mystery Girl “
10. The Fugitives : ” Mystery Girl ”
Mandeville Mike : ” Me “
11. Mandeville Mike : ” Me ”
The Swingin’ Millionaires : ” The Cannibals Next Door “
12. The Swingin’ Millionaires : ” The Cannibals Next Door ”
The Cheaters : ” A Little Too Much “
13. The Cheaters : ” A Little Too Much ”
The Manic Depressives : ” Not Worth The Time “
14. The Manic Depressives : ” Not Worth The Time ”
The Manic Depressives : ” Think For Yourself “
15. The Manic Depressives : ” Think For Yourself ”
Bonus! I recently picked up an old vinyl copy of the Red Rockers’ 1981 album Condition Red. Here’s the LP version of ” Dead Heroes “, which is more hi-fi but retains the urgent power-punk feel of the earlier version from the compilation.
Red Rockers : ” Dead Heroes ” ( album )
Red Rockers : ” Dead Heroes ” ( album )
|August 21, 2009 | Gear
I’m pretty sure this is the last pawn shop deal I’ll ever get, now that ” old ” means ” expensive ” and every junk dealer in the world is positive that their crappy vintage trash is worth a fortune. This is probably a Silvertone S1429 or S1454, a model made in the 1960s by the Harmony guitar company for Sears & Roebuck, but it might have been sold under any number of brand names. I have a real soft spot for Harmony instruments because the very first guitar I ever bought ( 12 years old, south side of Chicago ) was a Harmony Stratotone, very much like this one – a real piece of junk with a big crack in the side and moth eggs in the tone knob, but your first love is your first love. Here’s a photo of Brian Jones playing a Stratotone in the Rolling Stones.
I got this guitar at a Mexican pawn shop ( many beautiful accordions in there, one of about 200 instruments I wish I could play ) in Echo Park, Los Angeles in 2002. It cost me $60, but for another 10 bucks they threw in an original Vox case, which is probably worth more than the guitar is. Back in the 1950s and 60s, ” deluxe ” often meant cramming as many pickups and as much wiring into a guitar as could fit ( I still don’t understand what’s up with all those switches and knobs on Fender Jaguars and certain Gretsch models ), and this was a 3-pickup model, with an on-off switch and volume and tone pots for each pickup.
Whoever owned this thing before me did a lot of modifications to it. The neck is non-original – I don’t know where it’s from, but it’s actually much nicer than the one the guitar would have come with, with a good ebony fingerboard and very pretty abalone inlays, although the tuners were the plastic kind you find on cheap nylon-string classical guitars. The knobs were from Radio Shack. The kicker was that the entire body had been coated with glue and glitter — red on the front and back, and green on the sides, giving the guitar a sort of festive Christmas look. I found the idea of ” La guitarra de Navidad ” to be hilarious, so I added a couple of sparkly stickers of candy canes, Santas, and Christmas trees.
The guitar sounds great, thanks to the original DeArmond pickups, but the middle pickup, which was located exactly where you would strum the guitar, really impeded comfortably playing it without adding much in the way of tonal variety. There’s millions of these things out there and this guitar certainly doesn’t have any collector value, so I decided to get rid of all the unnecessary stuff and make a basic, playable instrument out of it. I enlisted the help of my friend Johnny Hotwheels, who plays guitar in Rock City Morgue and restores classic cars by day. I thought about stripping the body down to bare wood, and Johnny is a wizard with a spraygun and a pinstripe brush so I considered those options as well, but in the end I asked him to just get the glue off. The result is a kind of ” stripped car ” look, showing some of the original ” redburst ” finish and some surprisingly nice flamed wood. This was not an expensive guitar and probably wasn’t built by who you’d call master luthiers, but the revealed made-in-the-U.S.A. quality in the the cutting, joining, and inlay work really surprised us.
In reassembling the guitar, I decided to go as simple as possible – I ditched the middle pickup, on-off switches, multiple knobs, and a good couple of feet of wiring in favor of a 2-pickup, 1 volume pot, 1 tone pot setup, which I put together with a new pickup selector switch, 250k pots, and wire that I ordered from Stewart-MacDonald ( hint : this is the same place instrument repair shops get their parts, so the next time you’re getting a guitar fixed you can save some money by ordering parts yourself and bringing them with you ).
The tuners I installed are vintage Klusons that came from a Magnatone lap steel I got as part of a pretty grey ” mother of toilet seat ” set similar to this one – I sold the amp after severely shocking myself with it twice, and I don’t know anyone, not even super hot-shit guitar players, who can play lap steel well ( I certainly can’t ), so I stole the tuners and the pickup off of mine. An interesting thing came to light when I opened the lap steel up : there’s a label inside that says ” Made In American Sector – Occupied Berlin ” and it turns out that the thing is made of walnut, which is not usually a material associated with musical instruments. I can’t find much on the internet about the Magnatone company right after World War II, but in asking myself about what the Nazis used walnut for, and so much of it that there might be a large surplus — plus a dormant factory that an enterprising American might repurpose to make musical equipment, the answer that comes to me is this. The knobs are Gibson ” witch hats “, which came from a 1962 Les Paul Jr.
Here’s a recording I made the other night ( 8.04.09 ) at the Hi-Ho Lounge in New Orleans – this is the What Cheer? Brigade, a 19-piece brass band from Providence, RI, doing their high-energy Jewish wedding version of Slayer’s ” Raining Blood “. You can hear how fun the show was, I just wish I could’ve filmed the guy in skull makeup running around on top of the bar playing Sousaphone.
The What Cheer? Brigade : Raining Blood ( Live )
The What Cheer? Brigade : ” Raining Blood ” ( Live )
Photo by Vrettakos Alexandros