The Second Disc

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Archive for February 19th, 2013

“Do Ya” Want More Reissues From Electric Light Orchestra and Jeff Lynne? Three Titles Set for April

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ELO Live 2013April might as well be known as The Month of Electric Light Orchestra, as the group’s pioneering frontman, producer, arranger and songwriter Jeff Lynne has announced three new catalogue projects due in the U.S. on April 23 and in the U.K. on April 22.  We’ve updated our original post of October 5, 2012 with new information including full track listings and details on each of the three upcoming, bonus-packed releases!

UPDATED ORIGINAL POST OF 10/5/12: The wait is over.  Though Electric Light Orchestra’s leader, co-founder and overall studio wizard Jeff Lynne has busied himself in recent years producing hits for artists including Regina Spektor, Joe Walsh and his fellow Traveling Wilburys Tom Petty and the late George Harrison, he hasn’t released any new solo music since 1990’s Armchair Theatre.  On Tuesday, that will change, however, as the sunglass-wearing musical guru releases not one, but two, new albums.  Mr. Blue Sky: The Very Best of Electric Light Orchestra features new recordings written, produced and performed by Lynne, of eleven ELO favorites, plus one new song, “Point of No Return.”  In these renditions (frequently so close to the originals that even a diehard fan might have a hard time spotting the difference!), Lynne impressively plays lead guitar, rhythm guitar, piano, bass, drums, keyboards, vocoder and even cowbell, in addition to supplying the lead and background vocals.  Mr. Blue Sky is being joined by Long Wave, an 11-track salute to the songs that inspired him, from writers like Richard Rodgers and Oscar Hammerstein II (“If I Loved You”), Rodgers and Lorenz Hart (“Bewitched”), Charles Aznavour (“She”) and Don Covay (“Mercy, Mercy”).

What does this all have to do with the catalogue music world of The Second Disc, you might ask?  Inside the sturdy, hardback book-style packaging of Mr. Blue Sky, you’ll find an insert announcing three more projects coming soon from Lynne and Frontiers Records, and all are reissues of classic titles from Lynne and ELO.  Just hit the jump and we’ll fill you in on what to expect, plus a little background, too! Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Joe Marchese

February 19, 2013 at 15:29

An Apple A Day: Fifth Fab Volume of Apple Publishing Demos Arrives From RPM

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94 Baker Street Revisited

Those were the days, my friend.  In June 1967, The Beatles opened Apple Publishing in a one-room office on London’s Curzon Street, predating even the birth of Apple Records.  Soon, the publishing concern moved to new quarters at 94 Baker Street, and later to 3 Savile Row.  In that heady period when anything seemed possible, the Fab Four signed a multitude of talented young writers to Apple, many of them discovered by Terry Doran.  Doran, a 27-year old Liverpool native who had previously owned an auto dealership with Brian Epstein, was selected as Apple Publishing’s Managing Director.  The fruits of his labor have been revealed in an ongoing series courtesy of Cherry Red’s RPM label.  The most recent volume in the Apple Publishing collection, 94 Baker Street Revisited, has recently been released, and brings together another 22 rare slices of the Apple.

RPM’s series began with 2003’s release of 94 Baker Street: The Pop-Psych Sounds of the Apple Era 1967-1968.  That compilation was the first to present demos, singles and unreleased songs by artists signed by Apple Publishing (not necessarily by Apple Records) such as Focal Point, Grapefruit, Ways and Means, The Iveys (later to become Badfinger), Paintbox, and John Fitch and Associates.  Paul McCartney famously discovered Paul Tennant and David Rhodes in Hyde Park, leading to their signing as Focal Point.  The Beatles’ interest in the Apple-signed songwriters was variable, but a number of them had Fab connections.  Subsequent volumes of RPM’s series have included An Apple a Day: More Pop-Psych Sounds from the Apple Era, Treacle Toffee World: Further Adventures Into the Pop-Psych Sounds of the Apple Era, and Lovers from the Sky: Pop-Psych Sounds of the Apple Era 1968-1971.

Unlike Lovers from the Sky, which brought the Apple Publishing story up to 1971, 94 Baker Street Revisited does just that: it revisits the incredibly fertile 1967-1968 period.  All but three of the twenty-two tracks here have never been issued before.  Many Apple Publishing songs were written with the idea of being recorded by the artists themselves or groups “created” by Apple, such as Grapefruit.  Still others, though, were intended to be pitched to the day’s reigning pop stars.  So it’s not surprising that you might hear a song here that sounds like it should have been a hit for Cliff Richard or another that might have worked for the girl group (and supreme session singers) The Breakaways.

There’s plenty more after the jump! Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Joe Marchese

February 19, 2013 at 10:04

Release Round-Up: Week of February 19

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Herb Alpert - FandangoHerb Alpert, Fandango (Shout! Factory)

Alpert’s 1982 album, long unavailable on CD, is now back in print! (Amazon U.S. / Amazon U.K.)

Etta is Betta Than EvvahEtta James, Etta is Betta Than Evah! + Bonus Tracks (Kent)

Etta’s final album for Chess Records, released in 1976, is expanded with 10 extra tracks from other Etta projects from the mid-’70s. (Amazon U.S. / Amazon U.K.)

The Raw & The CookedFine Young Cannibals, Fine Young Cannibals: Deluxe Edition The Raw & The Cooked: Deluxe Edition (Edsel)

Both albums by the U.K. trio behind “She Drives Me Crazy” and “Good Thing” have been expanded as two-disc sets brimming with B-sides and remixes.

Fine Young Cannibals: Amazon U.S. / Amazon U.K.
The Raw & The CookedAmazon U.S. / Amazon U.K.

Five Star RemixFive Star, The Remix Anthology 1984-1991 (Cherry Pop)

The U.K. pop/R&B sibling act from the ’80s (just one of those existed, I think) get a two-disc set of their biggest 12″ dance mixes. (Amazon U.S. / Amazon U.K.)

Marcos Valle - Previsao do TempoMarcos Valle, Vento Sul Previsão do Tempo (Light in the Attic)

Closing the loop on the week’s release schedule, another jazz-fusion artist has two of his long-out-of-print LPs (from 1972 and 1973, respectively) revived on both CD and vinyl, with Vento Sul featuring one bonus track.

Vento Sul CD: Amazon U.S. / Amazon U.K. // Vinyl: Amazon U.S. / Amazon U.K.
Previsão do Tempo CD: Amazon U.S. / Amazon U.K. // Vinyl: Amazon U.S. / Amazon U.K.

Clive bookClive Davis with Anthony DeCurtis, The Soundtrack of My Life (Simon & Schuster)

And finally, no music enthusiast’s release schedule would be complete without the new autobiography of one of the most notable record men of the century, who speaks candidly about his collaborations with Whitney Houston, Barry Manilow, Aretha Franklin, Bruce Springsteen, Santana, Rod Stewart, Alicia Keys, Kelly Clarkson and a whole lot more! Copies purchased at Target retailers come with an exclusive CD featuring some of Clive’s favorite hits he oversaw, as well. (Amazon U.S. / Amazon U.K.)

Written by Mike Duquette

February 19, 2013 at 08:05