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Archive for the ‘Eartha Kitt’ Category

I’ll Have Popcorn With That: Eclectic New Compilation Offers Jerry Butler, Eartha Kitt, Johnny Nash, Frankie Laine

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Sweet n Salty PopcornWhat is Popcorn music?

Bob Stanley of the band St. Etienne and the new Croydon Municipal label wants to tell you.  “Popcorn is a genre after the fact, built by curation rather than creation,” the author of Yeah Yeah Yeah: The Story of Modern Pop (soon to be retitled The Story of Pop Music from Bill Haley to Beyonce for its upcoming U.S. edition) writes in the liner notes to his new release Sweet ‘n’ Salty Popcorn.  “Its narrative was formed by Belgians in the seventies from records made in the fifties and sixties – there was no such thing as a Popcorn artist because no one had set out to make a Popcorn record in the first place.  It was all in the rhythm, which had to suit the unusual ‘slow swing’ dance, and it could be Latin boogaloo, an orchestrated Italian ballad or an early Tamla Motown single.”

Despite sharing that atmospheric, “slow swing,” soulful rhythm, the twenty tracks selected by Stanley to introduce Popcorn to an audience outside of Belgium make for a diverse lot.  Popcorn could emerge from crooners (Tony Martin), theatrical vixens (Eartha Kitt), early rock and rollers (Jo Ann Campbell, Larry Hall), and bona fide soul men (Jerry Butler, Roy Hamilton).  Popcorn songs could hail from the pens of writers Burt Bacharach and Hal’s brother Mack David (Dean Barlow’s “Third Window from the Right”), Phil Spector (Johnny Nash’s “Some of Your Lovin’,” not the Goffin and King tune of the same name), Curtis Mayfield (Butler’s “Find Another Girl”), Billy Sherrill (future evangelist Jackie Weaver’s “The Tingle”) and the team of Doc Pomus and Mort Shuman (the offbeat “River in My Blood” sung by future “I Love New York” jingle writer Steve Karmen).  The earliest days of Motown even were incorporated into the Popcorn sound, as heard on Little Iva and Her Band’s recording of the “Continental Strut” co-written by Brian Holland.  In other words, the Popcorn genre is rather catholic; Stanley counts “gritty R&B…film themes, ska, tango, Spector-esque girl groups and loungey instrumentals” from the fifties and sixties among the tracks you might hear in a Popcorn club.

After the jump, we have more details on Sweet ‘n’ Salty Popcorn as well as the complete track listing and order links! Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Joe Marchese

February 26, 2014 at 10:32

Short Takes: Legacy’s New Essentials, Concord’s New Jazz Reissues and a Catalogue Score from Perserverance

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  • Legacy’s latest release schedule update promises three new titles in the Essential series: Paul Revere & The Raiders, Django Reinhardt and Eartha Kitt. All are going to be double disc sets, and specifically, the Raiders set (compiled by Bob Irwin of Sundazed Music) will feature some promo-only tracks and some mono single mixes. All are due on March 15.
  • Concord has four new reissues of classic jazz titles also planned for March 15. They are Monk’s Music (1958) by Thelonious Monk, Cal Tjader/Stan Getz Sextet (1958), Ugetsu (1963) by Art Blakey’s Jazz Messengers, and Ella Fitzerald and Oscar Peterson’s Ella and Oscar (1975). At least two of them will feature bonus tracks. Read here for some more info.
  • Perseverance Records, which scored a coup in the film score world by releasing the soundtracks to Red Sonja and Rain Man last year, have another victory on hand: the music to the 1989 sci-fi film Slipstream, composed by Elmer Bernstein. It’s due on an unspecified date in the future.