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Archive for the ‘Glen Campbell’ Category

Morello Label Rescues Rare Glen Campbell with Bobbie Gentry and Anne Murray, Brings Helen Schneider to CD

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The Morello imprint of Cherry Red Records has kept busy of late. Following its initial slate of country releases from George Jones, Marty Robbins and Lacy J. Dalton, the Morello team reintroduced gems to the catalogue from Crystal Gayle and Dan Seals, respectively Crystal Gayle / Somebody Loves You, and Rage On / Rebel Heart. Though Dan was England Dan in the pop duo England Dan and John Ford Coley, Rage On and Rebel Heart were both excursions into pure country. For its latest two releases, however, Morello is diversifying. A most exciting addition to the label’s slate is the two-fer pairing 1977 and 1978 albums from New York-born chanteuse Helen Schneider, while Morello reaffirms its country commitment by premiering on CD two very hard-to-find albums from the legendary Glen Campbell.

Though she’s found her greatest success in Germany, singer/actress Helen Schneider is a native of Brooklyn, New York. She’s found tremendous acclaim singing the cabaret songs of Kurt Weill as well as the big Broadway ballads of Andrew Lloyd Webber. But long before Schneider appeared as Norma Desmond in Lord Lloyd-Webber’s Sunset Boulevard, she recorded a pair of pop albums in the late seventies with two very well-known producers. These two rare LPs are back on one CD from Morello.

1977’s So Close teamed an expressive if tremulous-voiced Schneider with Ron Dante, then in the midst of a string of successes as co-producer of Barry Manilow’s hit albums. Dante and engineer Michael DeLugg (also a Manilow veteran) selected the crème of the pop crop for Schneider’s debut, pairing her with top arrangers including Charlie Calello (of Four Seasons fame) and a “Who’s Who” of songwriters. The title track was a Jake Holmes tune. Neil Sedaka contributed “Trying to Say Goodbye” with Phil Cody and “Sad Eyes” with Howard Greenfield. Dennis Wilson of the Beach Boys and Daryl Dragon, the Captain with Tennille, offered “Cuddle Up.” Ron Dante brought his own “How I Miss You” to the table, and two songs he had already recorded with Manilow: Barry and Marty Panzer’s heartfelt “All the Time” and the up-tempo rocker “Why Don’t We Live Together.” Laura Nyro was tapped for “I Never Meant to Hurt You,” already recorded by artists including Barbra Streisand. Dante even anticipates Schneider’s future work in musical theatre with the offbeat cabaret take on Mose Allison’s “Your Mind is on Vacation.” This classy collection of big pop ballads so distinctively sung by a youthful Schneider has long been ripe for rediscovery, and makes for one of the most enjoyably unexpected reissues of the year. But that’s not all.

So Close has been paired with Schneider’s 1978 follow-up Let It Be Now, in which Tony Camillo took the producer’s chair. The R&B-oriented Camillo had his biggest success co-producing Gladys Knight and the Pips’ “Midnight Train to Georgia,” but also worked with artists including Dionne Warwick, The Ebonys, Freda Payne and Millie Jackson. Camillo, recording in New York, didn’t stray too far from the orchestral template of the first album, and strings enhanced a number of the songs including David Gates’ “Someday.” Gates is just one of the top-tier songwriters represented on this album, including David Pomeranz, Paul Williams and Kenny Ascher, and Tom Snow. Musicians included Ascher, Funk Brother Bob Babbitt and future David Letterman bandleader Paul Shaffer. Schneider cut loose on the disco-flecked “Every Step of the Way,” and the wailing “Rock Me and Caress Me,” while she taps into the melancholy of Williams and Ascher’s “Loneliness.” Kudos to Morello for rescuing these two different, but ultimately complementary, albums.

After the jump: we revisit two duets albums from Glen Campbell! Plus: track listings for all titles plus order links!

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Written by Joe Marchese

December 5, 2012 at 12:03

Still On The Line: Glen Campbell’s “American Treasure” Box Set Arrives This Month

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Glen Campbell American Treasure boxWay back on August 6, we confirmed a delay to Surfdog Records’ box set An American Treasure, a limited edition box and gift set dedicated to the life and career of Glen Campbell.  We’re happy to report that this 3-CD/1-DVD limited edition of 1,000 units is finally available for pre-order, with delivery guaranteed before Christmas for domestic purchasers.

To bring you up to date: An American Treasure will mark only the second box set to be devoted to the entirety of Campbell’s career; the first, Capitol’s The Legacy: 1961-2002, is long out-of-print and selling in the three-figure range on the secondhand market. The Legacy offered four CDs, three of studio material and one of live performances, whereas American Treasure consists of three CDs and one DVD. The first two CDs are billed as “fully loaded with songs that span Glen’s legendary career including the hits,” and although both hits and rarities are indeed present, some notable songs are absent including “Honey Come Back” and “Dreams of the Everyday Housewife.”  There are some new-to-CD tracks, however, and Campbell’s many label associations have been represented.

The third disc, however, is the most tantalizing, as it contains “hits and gems that Glen played on as one of the all-time session guitarists.” This will be the first such compilation of its kind, and reflects the eclectic nature of Campbell’s work as a premier L.A. “Wrecking Crew” guitarist. During this period, he played on hit records for everybody from The Beach Boys to Frank Sinatra, and both of those artists are represented on the collection, along with The Monkees, Nancy Sinatra, The Righteous Brothers, Gene Clark and Jan and Dean, among others.   (This disc opens with The Champs’ “Tequila,” long rumored to have featured Campbell on guitar; however, many have disputed that he played on the 45.)  Finally, a DVD includes never-before-released performances from The Glen Campbell Goodtime Hour television program, which aired on CBS-TV between 1969 and 1972.  Among the guests who shared the stage with genial host Glen: Tony Bennett, Stevie Wonder, Ray Charles, Cher, Sarah Vaughan, Dionne Warwick and even some unexpected stars like Goldie Hawn, Andy Griffith, Lucille Ball, Steve Martin and Campbell’s True Grit co-star, John Wayne.

After the jump, we have more on the box, including the complete track listing with discography! Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Joe Marchese

December 3, 2012 at 10:52

Release Round-Up: Weeks of October 30 and November 6

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Election Day is upon us today!  But if you’re looking to cast your vote for some music, too, we might be able to help!  Though we were able to keep the lights on each day at The Second Disc, Hurricane Sandy kept us from publishing a Release Round-Up last week.  So without further ado, here’s the best of the best for the weeks of October 30 and November 6!

Louis Armstrong, The Complete OKeh, Columbia and RCA Victor Recordings 1925-1933 (OKeh/Columbia/RCA/Legacy) (10 CDs) / Charlie Christian, The Genius of the Electric Guitar (Columbia/ Legacy) (4 CDs) / Duke Ellington, The Complete Columbia Studio Albums Collection 1951-1958 (Columbia/ Legacy) (9 CDs) / Bessie Smith, The Complete Columbia Recordings (Columbia/ Legacy) (10 CDs)

Four titans of jazz are celebrated with comprehensive box sets from Legacy Recordings!  Full details on each box can be found here!

Glen Campbell, Try a Little Kindness / The Glen Campbell Goodtime Album / The Last Time I Saw Her (BGO)

Three long-out-of-print albums from the country and pop legend arrive on two CDs from BGO!  Campbell’s renditions of “MacArthur Park,” “Honey, Come Back,” “Try a Little Kindness,” “Just Another Piece of Paper,” “Bridge Over Troubled Water” and “Help Me Make It Through the Night” are among the great songs you’ll hear here!

Creedence Clearwater Revival, Ultimate Creedence Clearwater Revival: Greatest Hits & All-Time Classics (Fantasy, 2012)

You’ll find 3 CDs of hits, deep cuts and live tracks here from the Bay Area swamp-rock legends!  Full track listing and more can be found here.

El Topo Soundtrack (LP & CD)/ David Peel & the Lower East Side, Have a Marijuana / Perry Como, Complete RCA Christmas Collection / Doris Day, The Complete Christmas Collection / SSgt. Barry Sadler, Ballads of the Green Berets

Real Gone Music’s October 30 slate included a counterculture classic from David Peel, a lost Apple Records soundtrack, two Christmas collections from beloved vocalists and an expanded reissue of SSgt. Barry Sadler’s Ballads of the Green Berets!  Full details are here!

Bert Jansch, Heartbreak: 30th Anniversary Edition (Omnivore) (CD / LP)

The great guitarist, singer and songwriter’s 1982 album arrives in an expanded edition on both CD and LP from Omnivore Recordings!  Track listing and all details are here.

Jethro Tull, Thick as a Brick: 40th Anniversary Edition (Chrysalis) (CD/DVD Box and 2-LP Edition)

Extra!  Extra!  Jethro Tull’s 1971 album is celebrated in a CD/DVD box set and as a 2-LP vinyl edition!  Read all about it here.

Barbara Lewis, The Complete Atlantic Singles / Johnny Mathis, This Is Love/Olé / Johnny Mathis, The Sweetheart Tree/The Shadow of Your Smile

For November 6, Real Gone has released a 2-CD set of soulful singles from the “Baby, I’m Yours” singer, plus another two of Johnny Mathis’ long-unavailable Mercury Records albums! Full details are here!

Gary Lewis and the Playboys, (You Don’t Have To) Paint Me a Picture / New Directions / Now! (BGO)

Three albums circa 1967-1968 arrive on CD from the sixties’ pop sensations, including New Directions with its line-up of songs from the “Happy Together” team of Bonner and Gordon; and Now! with its Playboys takes on pop hits such as “Windy” and “I Wonder What She’s Doing Tonight.”  You’ll also find contributions on this new 2-CD set from the young Leon Russell.

The Rolling Stones, Charlie is My Darling (Super Deluxe Box Set) (ABKCO, 2012)

The documentary Charlie is My Darling chronicles the early days of The Rolling Stones, and it’s arrived in a DVD/BD/CD/LP box set from ABKCO!  Track listing and full details are here.

James Taylor, James Taylor at Christmas (UMe)

JT’s 2004 Christmas collection arrives, with an altered track listing and a couple of newly-compiled tracks, in a new iteration from Universal!  Watch this space for full details!

Various Artists, Now That’s What I Call Disney (Sony/Universal/EMI/Walt Disney)

This 20-track collection reaches back as far as Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs and brings the Disney legacy up to date with songs from more recent classics like Toy Story and Tangled.  The title is derived from a 2011 3-CD compilation that arrived in the United Kingdom.

Various Artists, Rodgers & Hammerstein: The Complete Broadway Musicals (Masterworks Broadway, 2012)

Oh, what a beautiful box set!  This impressive 12-CD box set brings together one recording of each of Richard Rodgers and Oscar Hammerstein II’s groundbreaking Broadway musicals!  Full details are here.

The Velvet Underground and Nico: 45th Anniversary Deluxe Edition (Verve/UMe, 2012)

The Velvets’ debut album goes Super Deluxe in this 6-CD set.  Read more here!

Dionne Warwick, Now (Blue Horizon)

The legendary singer returns with an all-new studio set revisiting classics from Burt Bacharach and Hal David.  The Phil Ramone-produced album includes four songs (two penned by Bacharach and two by David) which Warwick had never previously recorded.  The whole story is here!

The Who, Live at Hull 1970 (Geffen/UMe)

The incendiary 2-CD concert from Pete, Roger, John and Keith arrives for the first time as a stand-alone edition; it was previously available as part of the 2010 Live at Leeds box set.  You’ll find the track listing here.

Bill Withers, The Complete Sussex and Columbia Masters (Columbia/Legacy)

You can rediscover the entire album catalogue of the “Ain’t No Sunshine”/Lean on Me” man with this 9-CD box set from Legacy Recordings!  Full track listing and more can be found here!

Frank Zappa, 11 catalogue reissues (UMe/Zappa Records)

Another round of Official Releases from the Frank Zappa camp has arrived, from 1984’s Francesco Zappa through 1991’s Make a Jazz Noise Here.  Plus: the 2012 compilation Understanding America makes its debut.  Read the full rundown with order links here!

Review: Glen Campbell and Jimmy Webb, “In Session”

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What drew together the son of a sharecropper from Delight, Arkansas and the minister’s boy from Eld City, Oklahoma?  They were separated by a decade; one conservative, one liberal; one singer, one songwriter; one an establishment country star, the other a long-haired pop wunderkind – the paths of Glen Campbell and Jimmy Webb first crossed when Campbell chose to record Webb’s “By the Time I Get to Phoenix” in 1967.  The Oklahoma kid had written the song as a young staff songwriter at Motown’s Jobete arm, where it was recorded by a most atypical Motor City artist (Paul Petersen, of The Donna Reed Show) and promptly shelved.  Johnny Rivers, an early champion of Webb’s, recorded the song, and it came to Campbell’s attention.  The rising country star had recently scored with John Hartford’s “Gentle on My Mind” after a prosperous career as a session musician and briefly, as a Beach Boy.  “Phoenix” bested “Gentle” on the Hot 100 and Easy Listening charts, netting Campbell two Grammy Awards for his vocals; the album of the same name became the first-ever country album to win Album of the Year at the Grammys.  The Webb/Campbell team was off and running, kicking off a string of hit songs including “Wichita Lineman,” “Galveston,” “Where’s the Playground Susie,” “Honey, Come Back” and more.  Fantasy Records’ new CD/DVD set Glen Campbell and Jimmy Webb – In Session (Fantasy FAN-34070-00, 2012) offers rich insight into the relationship between these two talented gentlemen, both behind the scenes and in front of the microphone.

The singer and the songwriter met on December 9, 1988 at the studios of Canada’s CHCH-TV for two segments of the interview-and-song program In Session, from which this new release is derived.  The joint appearance occurred just months after the release of Light Years, Campbell’s 44th album, which contained eight Webb compositions out of ten songs.  The DVD preserves the entirety of both segments, while the CD offers all of the musical performances, save a couple of brief fragments.  The format of In Session is a simple one, with both artists offering commentary and then illustrating with a performance.  Webb often speaks directly to the camera, and then he and Campbell will banter and offer tidbits about a particular song’s origin before performing it.  For the musical portions, Webb takes the piano and leads a small band, while Campbell holds the stage on guitar and vocals.  The easy rapport of the two men is very much in evidence as they run through their greatest hits as well as some less expected choices.  Naturally, the entire set takes on added poignancy with the knowledge that Campbell is currently fighting Alzheimer’s disease, even as he continues to perform his pop and country hits to adoring audiences on his current Goodbye Tour.

Perhaps ironically, that initial collaboration “By the Time I Get to Phoenix” is absent, save for a brief snatch as Webb discusses it on the DVD.  Its follow-up, “Wichita Lineman,” is heard in a lovely, spare rendition, a reminder of just how serendipitous a commercial assignment can be: Campbell sought out Webb to craft a follow-up to “Phoenix” with a similar geographical bent. “Wichita Lineman” was inspiration borne from necessity, and overshadowed its predecessor; the album built around the song went to No. 1 on both the country and pop charts, while the single went all the way to No. 1 Country and AC, and No. 3 Pop.  (Not wanting to end a good thing, Webb soon provided Campbell with “Galveston.”  It, too, went to No. 1 Country and AC, No. 3 Pop!)

In the program, Webb recalls him and Campbell first meeting on the set of a Chevrolet commercial, existing “on the opposite end of the political spectrum,” but “as time went on, [they] became very, very close.”  Webb tapped into something in Campbell’s persona that allowed him to write such deeply personal songs, so frequently infused with strains of melancholy, yearning and reflection.  Even the songs not written for Campbell, like “Phoenix,” found a successful interpreter in him.  Webb and Campbell preface a performance of Light Years’ “If These Walls Could Speak” with the revelation that the song was written for Waylon Jennings.  When Jennings declined to record it, Campbell stepped in, cottoning to it from the demo recording.  He shares the experience with the television audience of translating Webb’s tricky chord progressions from piano to guitar.  Campbell’s playful side is also on display as he pokes fun at Waylon and Don Ho with spot-on impressions.

As illuminating as the spoken contributions from both men are, the songs naturally speak volumes themselves.  Just hit the jump for more! Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Joe Marchese

October 10, 2012 at 15:17

Posted in Glen Campbell, Jimmy Webb, Reviews

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Release Round-Up: Week of October 9

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The Beach Boys, 2012 Remasters / Greatest Hits Greatest Hits: Fifty Big Ones (Capitol/EMI)

The summer gets a little more endless with a new compilation (in two formats) and remasters of nearly all of the band’s ’60s albums. (A full breakdown of those albums is here, and a full review is coming up from Joe today!)

The Beatles, Magical Mystery Tour (Apple/EMI)

The Fab Four’s kooky film is making its Blu-Ray debut in standard and deluxe box formats.

Deep Purple, Machine Head: 40th Anniversary Edition (EMI)

A five-disc box set devoted to this classic rock LP, featuring various different mixes of the album (including quad and 5.1 mixes) and other goodies.

Barbra Streisand, Release Me (Columbia)

The incomparable Barbra’s newest album is actually an offering of entirely unreleased performances from the vaults. Lots of great discoveries herein!

B.B. King, Ladies and Gentlemen…Mr B.B. King (Hip-O/UMe)

Available in four-disc and Amazon-exclusive 10-disc formats, these box sets are the latest way to honor one of the greatest living blues legends.

The Supremes, I Hear a Symphony: Expanded Edition (Hip-O Select/Motown)

Another Supremes classic expanded to two discs, featuring the original album in mono and stereo and a host of live and studio treasures from the vault.

David Ruffin, David: The Unreleased LP and More (Hip-O Select/Motown)

Out of print for years, Hip-O Select reissues this compilation of the Temptation’s unissued 1971 album and a host of outtakes from the album sessions.

Various Artists, The Best of Bond…James Bond: 50 Years, 50 Tracks (Capitol/EMI)

It’s been 50 years since Dr. No hit theaters and it’s only a few weeks until Skyfall is released, so it’s time for a new 007 compilation that features all the classic title themes on one disc and a sampling of other tracks from the Bond films on the other.

Level 42, Running in the Family: 25th Anniversary Deluxe Edition (Polydor/UMC)

This ’80s hit is available from the U.K. as a double-disc expansion or four-disc, extras-packed box set.

The Who, Live in Texas 1975 (Eagle Rock)

Their latest at the time was The Who by Numbers, but this newly-restored show, on DVD in its first official release, is anything but.

Old 97’s, Too Far to Care: Deluxe Edition (Omnivore)

A demo-packed reissue of the 1997 country-rocker.

Various Artists, Athens, GA – Inside Out (Omnivore)

A nice deluxe set featuring both the classic documentary on the colorful Athens, GA music scene in the 1980s on DVD (with new special features) and the expanded soundtrack on CD.

Vince Guaraldi Trio, A Charlie Brown Christmas: Original Sound Track from the CBS Television Special (Fantasy)

The classic holiday album gets a brand new remaster with three bonus tracks. Full review coming later today!

Glen Campbell and Jimmy Webb, In Session (Fantasy)

Two legends collaborate on this live performance from 1983, newly released as a CD/DVD set.

Adam AntDestiny’s Child, Shawn ColvinAlan Jackson, Waylon Jennings & Willie Nelson, George Jones & Tammy Wynette, Carole KingTaj MahalRicky Martin, Johnny Mathis, Meat Loaf, Laura Nyro, Collin Raye, Starship, Porter Wagoner & Dolly PartonPlaylist (Legacy)

A surprisingly strong batch of Playlist titles includes a few neat surprises, too, from brand-new compilations for Destiny’s Child and Ricky Martin to rare and unreleased tracks on the Meat Loaf, Starship and Laura Nyro sets.

The Chipmunks, Christmas Collection (Capitol)

Because it wouldn’t be the holidays without some squeaky-voiced renditions of holiday classics, plus the immortal “Christmas Don’t Be Late.”

Edie Adams, The Edie Adams Christmas Album (Omnivore)

Another Christmas treat, sourced from rare kinescopes of Adams on television in the ’50s.

E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial: Anniversary Collector’s Edition (Universal Studios Home Video)

A timeless favorite at Second Disc HQ (in particular, Mike’s favorite movie!) comes home on Blu-Ray for the first time, featuring the restored original 1982 version of the film and a new retrospective consisting entirely of on-set footage shot by John Toll. Retail exclusives abound: Target’s offering a deluxe steelbook package (available internationally as a basic deluxe edition), Best Buy has a special book package with pages of full-color notes and artwork, Walmart throws in a free E.T. doll for the kids, and Amazon carried a limited deluxe package (now sold out) housed in a replica of E.T.’s spaceship.

Little Shop of Horrors: The Director’s Cut (Warner Home Video)

One of the most purely fun musicals of the past few decades, this loving musical adaptation of the Roger Corman cult classic features a killer, ’60s-flavored pop score from future Disney legends Alan Menken and Howard Ashman. For this special Blu-Ray release, the hilarious, 20-minute alternate ending (seen only on a quickly-recalled, highly-collectible DVD) has been fully restored and added to the end of the picture, and other great special features abound, too!

Release Round-Up: Week of September 25

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Glen Campbell and Jimmy Webb, In Session (Concord)

The legendary songwriter and equally legendary country superstar join forces for two 1988 television broadcasts, joined together on one DVD and accompanied by a CD of the programs’ musical selections!  Campbell’s only recording of Webb’s “Sunshower” can be found here, among other gems.  For those of you anticipating the arrival of In Session today, it appears that this title has been delayed until October 9!  You can read more about it here.  Now, onto some titles actually arriving in stores today…

Aretha Franklin, Love All the Hurt Away / MFSB, Love is the Message / Platypus, Platypus / Lipps, Inc., Mouth to Mouth / Dionne Warwick, Heartbreaker (Big Break Records)

It’s another soul banquet from the good people at Big Break Records with expanded and remastered titles from the catalogues of Casablanca, Arista and Philadelphia International!  Watch for features and reviews on all of the above, coming soon!  These are out in the U.K. today, while a U.S. berth follows next week.

Dickie Goodman, Long Live the King/Moving Sidewalks, The Complete Collection (RockBeat)

RockBeat Records returns with two new releases: a single-disc compilation spanning the career of the “break-in record” king, Dickie Goodman, and a two-CD anthology of music from Billy Gibbons’ pre-ZZ Top band, The Moving Sidewalks!  Here’s the scoop on these titles and more from RockBeat.

Preservation Hall Jazz Band, The 50th Anniversary Collection (Columbia/Legacy)

The New Orleans institution turns 50, and celebrates the occasion with this deluxe box set of performances recorded between 1962 and 2010, including five previously unreleased tracks!  Read more here!

R.E.M., Document: 25th Anniversary Edition (EMI)

R.E.M.’s fifth studio album has turned 25!  Document was recorded by vocalist Michael Stipe, guitarist Peter Buck, bassist Mike Mills, and drummer Bill Berry, and was the band’s first album to achieve platinum sales.  The remastered album is joined by a previously unreleased 1987 concert, and it’s all packaged in a sturdy lift-top box with four postcards.  Read all about it here.

Merl Saunders and Jerry Garcia, Keystone Companions: The Complete 1973 Fantasy Recordings (Fantasy/Concord)

Fantasy Records issues four CDs of prime live Garcia, in which the Grateful Dead leader is joined by Merl Saunders.  These remarkable Bay Area performances are packaged in a handsome box with copious notes and a bit of swag, too.  Watch for our review as part of our Holiday Gift Guide, coming soon!

Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin and Sammy Davis, Jr., Christmas with the Rat Pack (Capitol)

2012 is bringing another new version of Capitol’s Rat Pack holiday compilation, and it appears to have lost a few tracks since its original 2002 release (and subsequent 2006 reissue).  Still, this music simply can’t be beat, pallies.

Sex Pistols, Never Mind the Bollocks Here’s The Sex Pistols: Super Deluxe Edition (Universal U.K.)

Never mind the rest, the Sex Pistols have gone super-deluxe!  That means you’ll get a remastered version of the original album, a CD of outtakes and rarities (including previously unreleased tracks), a live CD, and a DVD, too, plus the requisite swag including a replica of the original A&M pressing of “God Save the Queen.”  This is available in the U.K. now, and in the U.S. next week!  If you don’t think this set is a load of bollocks, you’ll want to read more about it here!

Barbra Streisand, Release Me (Columbia)

La Streisand unlocks the vault doors for this first collection of previously-unreleased material recorded between 1967 and 2011, with songs by world-class composers like Jimmy Webb, Randy Newman, Paul Williams and Michel Legrand.  Word has it that future volumes might follow as Streisand kicks off her 50th year of recording for Columbia Records.  Release Me is out today on vinyl, while the CD release follows on October 9.

The John Wilson Orchestra, That’s Entertainment: A Celebration of the MGM Film Musical (EMI)

The John Wilson Orchestra’s 2009 BBC Prom concert, with guest stars Seth MacFarlane, Kim Criswell and Curtis Stigers singing reconstructed tunes from classic MGM musicals, receives an American release.  It’s available as a standard edition and a deluxe one, with the latter containing liner notes and session photos in a casebound, hardcover book plus a DVD containing a featurette and music videos.  A stand-alone DVD of the concert is also available.

Frank Zappa, 12 catalogue reissues (UMe/Zappa Records)

Twelve more Zappa classics arrive on CD, many in freshly-remastered editions. Full details and pre-order links for every title can be found in yesterday’s full rundown, or just click on the li’l fella, above, to order and jump headfirst into FZ Territory!

Warren Zevon, Mr. Bad Example/Mutineer (Friday Music)

The late Warren Zevon’s witty, mordant and moving oeuvre is celebrated on this two-fer from Friday Music, bringing together his 1991 and 1995 studio albums.

Original Soundtrack, Dirty Dancing: The Anniversary Edition (RCA/Legacy)

Will you have the time of your life with this deluxe version of the smash soundtrack album to the 1987 film?  Only the original 12 songs are present, but they’re joined in a commemorative package by six suitable-for-framing art cards and a bumper sticker.

And I Want You For All Time: Glen Campbell, Jimmy Webb Reunite For Vintage “Session”

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What makes for the perfect marriage of songwriter and singer?  The magic is nearly indefinable when composer and lyricist meet a voice to serve as a muse; when two or three people, each with an inimitable gift, find themselves on a perfect, sympathetic and transcendent wavelength to bring each other’s music to life.  There have been many such marriages across all genes of music: Dionne Warwick with Burt Bacharach and Hal David, Frank Sinatra with Sammy Cahn and Jimmy Van Heusen; Petula Clark with Tony Hatch; Meat Loaf with Jim Steinman.  Yet surely one of the most special is that of Glen Campbell with Jimmy Webb.  That enduring relationship is the subject of Fantasy Records’ upcoming CD/DVD set, In Session, due in stores on September 25.

Since Glen Campbell first recorded “By the Time I Get to Phoenix” in 1967, he became intimately acquainted with the words and music of Jimmy L. Webb.  Formerly a staff songwriter for Motown’s Jobete Music arm, Webb had placed songs with big names (The Supremes) and lesser-known talents (Danny Day, The Contessas) when he attracted the ear of Soul City’s Johnny Rivers.  The “Poor Side of Town” and “Memphis, Tennessee” man was the first to release a version of “Phoenix,” on his 1967 album Changes.  Within a year, he was enlisting Webb to write and produce an entire album for The 5th Dimension (with whom he had provided the multiple Grammy-winning hit “Up, Up and Away”) and was recording almost an entire all-Webb album himself.

Glen Campbell’s recording of “By the Time I Get to Phoenix” scored the singer a No. 1 Country LP, with its title song hitting No. 2 Country, No. 12 AC and No. 26 Pop.  Before long, Campbell sought out Webb to craft a follow-up with a similar geographical bent.  “Wichita Lineman” was inspiration borne from necessity.  Even though Frank Sinatra famously called “Phoenix” “the greatest torch song ever written,” “Wichita Lineman” might be even better, a song of striking maturity for such a young songwriter.  Campbell’s reading perfectly captured its evocative mood, and the album of the same name hit No. 1 on both the country and pop charts.  “Wichita” the single went all the way to No. 1 Country and AC, and No. 3 Pop.  Glen Campbell was officially on his way, and Jimmy Webb was the hottest young songwriter on the planet.

Over the years, Campbell has recorded roughly forty of Webb’s songs, from the chart-topping “Galveston” (which repeated the placement of “Wichita” on all three singles charts!) to the recent ‘Wish You Were Here,” from Campbell’s last (final?) album Ghost on the Canvas.  Webb has been there every step of the way with his musical soul brother, even contributing songs during Campbell’s contemporary Christian period.

Hit the jump for all the details on In Session! Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Joe Marchese

August 15, 2012 at 13:51

Like a Rhinestone Cowboy: Glen Campbell “Live Anthology” Plagued by DVD Playback Problem, “American Treasure” Box Set Delayed [UPDATE 8/6]

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Even when faced with Alzheimer’s, you can’t keep a good rhinestone cowboy down.  Glen Campbell continues to make headlines on his Goodbye Tour, recently packing the Hollywood Bowl with a special show featuring Lucinda Williams, Jackson Browne, Kris Kristofferson, Jenny Lewis plus Dawes and the Dandy Warhols.  Yes, Glen Campbell’s music transcends all generational and genre lines, as his classic songs continue to invite record labels to repackage, reissue and anthologize the great man’s catalogue.  Three recent projects all take different looks at Glen Campbell’s legacy: Cleopatra’s Live Anthology 1972-2001; Readers’ Digest Music’s The Legendary Glen Campbell; and Surfdog’s An American Treasure box set.

Cleopatra’s 1-CD/1-DVD Live Anthology might be the most surprising of the three releases, as the label is often associated with budget titles and re-recordings from the days far past an artist’s prime.  But this compilation looks to be promising, with over 2 hours, 20 minutes of Campbell in his natural environment onstage in front of a live audience.  Though the track listing does differ on the CD and the DVD, both boast performances of Campbell’s most enduring hits including “Rhinestone Cowboy,” “By the Time I Get to Phoenix,” “Wichita Lineman,” “Galveston,” “Gentle on My Mind” and “Southern Nights.”  Interestingly, Cleopatra is promising “over 20 additional tracks” on the DVD as bonus material, featuring television duets with Wayne Newton, Anne Murray, Helen Reddy, Seals and Crofts, and other artists.  The label also indicates that the set will include a “shiny foil booklet,” which one hopes will provide the origin of each track.  In any event, Live Anthology is due on July 31 from Cleopatra.

UPDATE 8/6: Since this report was initially published on July 9, Live Anthology has been released.  The good news?  The DVD in this collection offers a staggering 46 performances.  In addition to the artists named above, Campbell duets with the stellar likes of songwriters Jimmy Webb and David Gates on an amazing array of material drawn mainly from BBC television programs.  We have the full track listing with the origin of each track after the jump.  The bad news?  Despite being labelled as a region-free DVD, this American release is apparently incompatible with standard U.S. DVD players!  (It will, however, play on most computers.)  Thanks to super-reader Rich Dudas for pointing this out before we had a chance to play our own copy; we have since personally experienced the playback problem, as have two purchasers over at Amazon.com.  We are attempting to contact Cleopatra/Goldenlane Records for comment and resolution.  Watch this space for more details!

Earlier this year, Readers’ Digest Music unveiled a 3-CD, 60-track compendium of its own.  The Legendary Glen Campbell differs from previous Readers’ Digest releases dedicated to Campbell, and brings the artist’s career up to date, with the inclusion of modern tracks like his cover of Green Day’s “Good Riddance (Time of Your Life)” from 2008’s Julian Raymond-produced Meet Glen Campbell.  Though all of the big hits are present, the set includes a number of rather rare singles such as Albert Hammond, Mike Hazelwood and Tony Macaulay’s “Oklahoma Sunday Morning” (1971), Joe Allen’s “Manhattan, Kansas” (1972), “Bring Back My Yesterday” and “Wherefore and Why” (both 1973), “God Must Have Blessed America” (1977) and “Another Fine Mess” (1978), written by Paul Williams.  The inclusion of these hard-to-find tracks might make this a worthwhile purchase for Campbell diehards.   Most of the tracks are from Campbell’s lengthy tenure at Capitol Records, though a few songs come from his MCA years.  (His Atlantic Records and contemporary Christian periods aren’t represented.)  The three discs are not presented in strict chronological order, and over 20 tracks here don’t appear on Capitol’s 2003 box set, The Legacy: 1961-2002The Legendary Glen Campbell is available now at Amazon.com.

Hit the jump for details on the upcoming box set dedicated to Glen Campbell, An American Treasure, plus track listings with discographies, where available! Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Joe Marchese

August 6, 2012 at 13:07

California Feelin’: The Beach Boys’ Al Jardine Reissues and Expands “Postcard From California”

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Dennis Wilson did it in 1977.  Carl Wilson did it in 1981.  So did Mike Love.  Brian Wilson waited until 1988.  But it wasn’t until 2010 that Al Jardine released his first solo studio album.  Entitled A Postcard from California, Jardine had to content himself with a limited release via Amazon’s MOD (Made on Demand) system.  Now, with the surviving Beach Boys reuniting for a hotly-anticipated 50th anniversary tour beginning later this month and gearing up for the band’s first studio album since 1996, Jardine has finally gotten a wide release for Postcard via Robo Records and Fontana Distribution.  The pressed CD version of Postcard has been expanded by three additional tracks, and arrived in stores this past Tuesday, April 2.

Jardine’s Postcard was signed by many of California rock’s greatest statesmen.  Filled with nostalgic lyrics (including some cheeky Ringo Starr-esque references to past hits!) and goodtime rock-and-roll riffs, the album includes both original songs and Beach Boys favorites.  Glen Campbell appears on the title song, while three-quarters of CSNY – Neil Young, David Crosby and Stephen Stills – lend their voices to a reworking of Jardine’s “California Saga,” first recorded on The Beach Boys’ 1973 album Holland.  Steve Miller and The Red Hot Chili Peppers’ Flea joins Jardine on a new “Help Me, Rhonda” while Gerry Beckley and Dewey Bunnell of America are heard on two Jardine originals, “San Simeon” and “Drivin’.”  But where would an Al Jardine solo album be without the participation of his fellow Beach Boys?

Brian Wilson adds harmonies both to “Drivin’” and a revival of “Honkin’ Down the Highway” from 1977’s Beach Boys Love You.  Founding Beach Boy David Marks adds a guitar solo to “Drivin’.”  But most notably, Brian Wilson joined Al, Mike Love, Bruce Johnston and even the late Carl Wilson on “Don’t Fight the Sea,” the centerpiece track on Postcard.  Co-written by Jardine and Terry Jacks (the vocalist of “Seasons in the Sun”), the song marked the first full-fledged Beach Boys reunion prior to the current 50th anniversary activities, and is a worthy addition to the group’s canon.  The Brian Wilson/Steve Kalinich “California Feelin’” is covered here, as well, and Kalinich contributes a poem, “Tidepool Interlude,” recited by Alec Baldwin over Scott Slaughter’s musical setting.

Hit the jump for details on the bonus tracks and more, plus the full track listing and an order link! Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Joe Marchese

April 5, 2012 at 11:35

Short Takes: “Meet Glen Campbell” and “Matter of Time” Reissued, A Rare Earth Curio and More From Impulse!

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  • The legendary Glen Campbell has seen a number of his classic albums reissued this year by labels including BGO, Real Gone Music and New Haven.  Our friends at Rockbeat Records have lined up the next Campbell release, revisiting his 1985 LP for the Atlantic label, It’s Just a Matter of Time.  Produced by Harold Shedd, the album found Campbell revisiting some of his past triumphs.  Longtime collaborator and friend Jimmy Webb contributed three songs: the oft-covered “Do What You Gotta Do,” “Shattered,” and “Cowboy Hall of Fame.”  Al DeLory, the producer of Campbell’s “Wichita Lineman” and “By the Time I Get to Phoenix,” was enlisted to conduct the latter.  Bergen White, another familiar face, arranged four songs, and Webb provided the arrangements not only for his own songs but for two others on the LP.  It’s Just a Matter of Time was the third of Campbell’s Atlantic records, following Old Home Town (1982) and Letter to Home (1984).  Rockbeat’s reissue, with the original 10-track lineup, arrives on January 31.  But that’s not all for the legendary guitar-picker.  Hit the jump for news of Glen’s next reissue, plus you’ll also rediscover a Motown lost treasure and peruse the latest jazz reissues from the legendary Impulse! label! Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Joe Marchese

January 25, 2012 at 15:01