The Second Disc

Expanded and Remastered Music News

Archive for the ‘Tom Jones’ Category

Slaves to the Rhythm: ZTT Celebrates 30 Years with New Two-Disc Compilation (UPDATED 9/17)

leave a comment »

ZTT Organization of PopTo mark their three wild, wonderful decades on the bleeding edge of U.K. pop and rock, ZTT Records will release a new two-disc compilation in October.

The Organization of Pop: Music from the First Thirty Years of ZTT Records collects 28 tracks that run the gamut of ZTT’s influence, from Frankie Goes to Hollywood to Propaganda, 808 State to The Buggles, Grace Jones to Seal, The Art of Noise to The Frames. The huge hits – Seal’s “Kiss from a Rose,” Frankie’s “Relax,” The Art of Noise’s “Moments in Love” – come together on the first disc, while some of the lesser known cuts and buried treasures (The Buggles’ “We Can Fly from Here,” later covered by Yes in 2011, and The Frames’ “Say It to Me Now,” later re-recorded by band frontman Glen Hansard for the soundtrack to the acclaimed Once, in which he starred in 2007) appear on the second. That disc also includes three unreleased tracks by Nasty Rox, Inc., Das Psycho Rangers and The Art of Noise with guest raps by acclaimed MC Rakim.

The Organization of Pop, for now, is actually exclusive to the U.S., making it one of the first ZTT titles released in the States under their new licensing deal with Razor & Tie. A “London version,” entitled (what else?) The Organisation of Pop, has been promised by the label in 2014, along with another volume of The Art of the 12″ and a CD/DVD edition of the Frankie Goes to Hollywood compilation Frankie Said.

Expect The Organization of Pop in stores October 15. The Amazon U.S. link and track list (courtesy of Slicing Up Eyeballs) are after the jump.

Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Mike Duquette

September 17, 2013 at 12:30

Review: Paul Anka, “Duets”

leave a comment »

Paul Anka - DuetsWhether you prefer your “My Way” by Sinatra or Sid (Vicious, that is), you have Paul Anka to thank.  It was Anka who took the melody to the chanson “Comme d’habitude” and crafted the ultimate anthem of survival and tenacity with his English-language lyrics.  When Sinatra recorded the song, a gift to him from Anka, he was just 53 years of age yet could still ring true when singing of that “final curtain.”  Today, Paul Anka is 71, and his new memoir is entitled, what else, My Way.  Thankfully, the end seems far from near for the entertainer, who has kept busy not only with the book, but with an album from Legacy Recordings.  Duets (88765 48489 2) is a blend of new and old tracks with one thing in common: the unmistakable voice of Paul Anka.  (He also wrote or co-wrote all but two of its songs.)

The Ottawa-born pop star scored his first hit at the ripe old age of 15 with 1957’s “Diana.”  It earned him a No. 1 in the U.S. Best Sellers in Stores and R&B charts, as well as No. 1 in the U.K., Canada and Australia. But overnight sensation Anka was a teen idol with a difference: he was a true singer/songwriter, writing both music and lyrics for his own songs. By the age of 20, Anka was reportedly raking in $1.5 million a year and selling some 20 million records, but he knew that he had to take himself to the next level. The singer poised himself for a reinvention for the adult market with more mature material aimed at the supper club crowd.  Throughout his chart career, Anka has successfully balanced contemporary pop with timeless showbiz tradition.

To its credit, Duets isn’t a rehash of the formula enjoyed by so many superstars, from Frank Sinatra to Tony Bennett, of remaking “greatest hits” with familiar partners.  There’s no “Puppy Love,” no “Times of Your Life” or “One Woman Man/One Man Woman.”  Nor is Duets a career retrospective, per se, as the only vintage tracks are drawn from 1998’s A Body of Work.  In many ways, Duets is an update of that Epic release.  A Body of Work included seven duets among its eleven tracks, and four of those have been reprised on Duets.  (That album also included a posthumous duet with Sinatra on “My Way.”  Frank and the song are here, too, but in a newly-created recording.)  None of Anka’s hit seventies duets with Odia Coates like “One Woman Man” or “You’re Having My Baby” are heard here.  Though Jay-Z reportedly denied Anka’s invitation to participate, a number of top talents did show up to celebrate Anka’s 55 years in entertainment, including Dolly Parton, Leon Russell, Willie Nelson and Michael Bublé.

Come join us after the jump! Read the rest of this entry »

He Did It His Way: Paul Anka Joins Friends For “Duets”, New CD Features Michael Jackson, Frank Sinatra, Leon Russell and More

leave a comment »

Paul Anka - DuetsDo you remember the times of your life?

Paul Anka posed that musical question in 1975, taking Roger Nichols and Bill Lane’s onetime Kodak film jingle all the way to the Top 10 Billboard pop chart and No. 1 Easy Listening.  At that point, Anka could rightfully reflect on the times of his own storied life, nearly two decades in the music business.  But could he have imagined that he would still be going strong almost forty years after “Times of Your Life” hit?  The Canadian-born singer, songwriter, producer and manager is celebrating 55 years in the music business with the release on April 9 of Duets, a 14-track collection of vocal pairings both old and new.  The Legacy Recordings album coincides with the same day’s debut of his autobiography, naturally entitled My Way after the song he co-wrote for Frank Sinatra.

Ottawa-born Anka had his first hit with 1957’s “Diana.”  When the song was released, Anka was just shy of 16 years old, and it earned him a No. 1 in the U.S. Best Sellers in Stores and R&B charts, as well as No. 1 in the U.K., Canada and Australia.  But overnight sensation Anka was a teen idol with a difference: he was a true singer/songwriter, writing both music and lyrics for his own songs.  In 1962, Anka departed his home of ABC-Paramount for the more lucrative pastures of RCA Victor, which is now under the same corporate umbrella of Sony Music Entertainment as Legacy Recordings.  Anka followed up his ABC hits like “You Are My Destiny,” “Lonely Boy,” “Puppy Love” and “Put Your Head on My Shoulders” with a string of charting pop singles (“A Steel Guitar and a Glass of Wine,” “Remember Diana,” “Goodnight, My Love”) that continued through 1964 when The British Invasion threatened to cut short the careers of artists like Anka and his RCA Victor compatriot Neil Sedaka.

Of course, Paul Anka bounced back.  Hit the jump for the rest of the story, plus the full track listing, pre-order link and more about Duets! Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Joe Marchese

March 5, 2013 at 15:09

Reissue Theory: “James Bond 007: The Ultimate Collection”

with 12 comments

Welcome to another installment of Reissue Theory, where we focus on classic music and the reissues they may someday see. With 50 years of on-screen action and a new film in theaters, the name is Bond…James Bond, and the music is plentiful!

What else is left to say about Ian Fleming’s blunt, British secret agent James Bond? Our 007, licensed to kill, is an international icon of print and, since Sean Connery suavely stepped into Bond’s tuxedo in 1962’s Dr. No, the big screen. Today, the 23rd Bond film, Skyfall – the third to star Daniel Craig as a rougher-hewn 007 and, by nearly all accounts, one of the greatest films in the series – opens in American theaters, guaranteeing the legacy that film producers Harry Saltzman and Albert R. Broccoli created a half-century ago remains as shaken (not stirred) as ever.

Bond soundtrack fans have had much to enjoy in that time period. From Monty Norman and His Orchestra’s brassy, immortal main theme (punctuated by session guitarist Vic Flick’s staccato electric guitar licks), to lush scores by John Barry, Marvin Hamlisch, Bill Conti, Michael Kamen, David Arnold and Thomas Newman, to name a few, to the 23 title themes of varying quality but with boundless cultural currency, music is as vital a part of the Bond experience as martinis, girls, cars and guns. And fans have been lucky: in the 1990s, Rykodisc acquired the rights to much of the Bond soundtrack catalogue (in most cases, controlled by Capitol/EMI). In the 2000s, Capitol itself expanded and/or remastered many of those albums anew. And compilations, from 1992’s rarity-packed double-disc The Best of James Bond 30th Anniversary Collection to this year’s Bond…James Bond: 50 Years, 50 Tracks, have been plentiful as well.

But short of another, even more comprehensive pass at expanding the soundtrack albums to completion (one that seems increasingly like a pipe dream, thanks to the climate of the industry and the varying physical and financial statuses of the scores themselves), one could certainly find worth in a multi-disc box set that would provide the definitive dossier on Bond music. With that in mind, Second Disc HQ’s latest mission file is just that – and you can expect us to talk after the jump!

Read the rest of this entry »

Nobody Does It Better: James Bond Turns 50, Capitol Celebrates with New CD Anthology

with 10 comments

When Sean Connery first uttered the immortal words “Bond…James Bond” fifty years ago in the film Dr. No, the template for the long-running movie series was already set.  That soon-to-be-signature phrase was joined in the film by a piece of music that would quickly rival those three words for familiarity.  John Barry’s arrangement of “The James Bond Theme” not only helped cement the silver screen icon of 007 but virtually became a genre unto itself, that of spy music.  The spy film craze may have hit its peak in the swinging sixties, but Ian Fleming’s immortal character of the debonair Bond has endured over some 23 “official” films (including this year’s upcoming Skyfall), plus a couple of unofficial ones.  He has been portrayed by six actors in those 23 films, from Connery to Daniel Craig.  Since Dr. No, James Bond and music have been closely intertwined, and the film franchise continues to attract the very best: it’s been all but confirmed that record-breaking artist Adele will mark her return to music with the recently-leaked Skyfall theme.  Now, 50 years of Bond music is being compiled by Capitol Records as Best of Bond…James Bond, set for an October 9 release in both standard and deluxe editions.  It joins the recent DVD/BD box set, Bond 50, which contains each and every official Bond film to date!

While similar (and similarly-titled!) compilations have arrived on a periodic basis in the CD era, the new set in its deluxe two-disc form is the most comprehensive collection of Bond-related music yet with 50 tracks.  Both versions stand as a tribute to John Barry, the late composer who will forever be associated with the film series.  The disc opens with his original arrangement of “The James Bond Theme.”  Though credited to Monty Norman, Barry long maintained in and out of the courtroom that the composition was, in fact, his own.  (The confusion stems from the fact that Barry was presented with Norman’s theme, and rearranged it in the style of his previous instrumental “Bea’s Knees,” almost wholly transforming the music along the way.  He was reportedly paid under $1,000.00 for his troubles!)  Barry went on to score eleven of the films between 1963’s From Russia with Love through 1987’s The Living Daylights, ceding movies along the way to George Martin, Marvin Hamlisch and Bill Conti.  Since Barry’s retirement from the Bond franchise, the longest-standing composer has been David Arnold, with five films under his belt between 1997’s Tomorrow Never Dies and 2008’s Quantum of Solace.  (The score to Skyfall has been crafted by director Sam Mendes’ frequent collaborator Thomas Newman.)  Either consciously or subconsciously, however, every composer has been influenced by the template set by John Barry.  Indeed, his famous arrangement of the Norman theme has been quoted in each film’s score.  Best of Bond also is a reminder of the gargantuan talents of two other contributors, both of whom passed away in 2012: Marvin Hamlisch (The Spy Who Loved Me) and Hal David (On Her Majesty’s Secret Service.)

The first CD (also available as a stand-alone disc) features 23 tracks: the theme to every one of the films from 1962’s Dr. No through 2008’s Quantum of Solace, plus the “secondary” theme to On Her Majesty’s Secret Service (1969), Louis Armstrong’s “We Have All the Time in the World.”  This CD includes Chris Cornell’s “You Know My Name” from Casino Royale (2006), the first main Bond theme to not appear on the movie’s soundtrack album.  Other highlights include the very first vocal Bond theme, Lionel Bart’s “From Russia with Love” as performed by Matt Monro; Leslie Bricusse, Anthony Newley and John Barry’s “Goldfinger” from the iconic Dame Shirley Bassey; Barry and Don Black’s booming “Thunderball” from Tom Jones; Paul and Linda McCartney’s Wings-performed “Live and Let Die;” Carole Bayer Sager and Marvin Hamlisch’s “Nobody Does It Better” (from The Spy Who Loved Me); Barry and Duran Duran’s “A View to a Kill;” and Barry and Pål Waaktaar’s “The Living Daylights,” performed by Waaktaar’s band a-ha.

What’s on Disc 2?  Hit the jump! Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Joe Marchese

September 27, 2012 at 09:49

Toast of the Town: The Rolling Stones Visit Ed Sullivan with Petula, Dusty, Ella, Tom, Louis and More

with 3 comments

Long before David Letterman called the former Hammerstein’s Theatre on 50th Street and Broadway in New York City home, the theatre was the showplace of the world, thanks to one Mr. Ed Sullivan.  The former gossip columnist on the Broadway beat might have been an unlikely visitor to American homes each Sunday night between 1949 and 1971, but it was thanks to Sullivan that viewers got their first or most significant taste of such performers across the entire spectrum of entertainment.  On the musical side, Elvis Presley, The Beatles, The Supremes and The Rolling Stones were all beneficiaries of Sullivan’s exposure, but so were comedians like Anne Meara and Jerry Stiller, Broadway musicals like Camelot, and even a little mouse named Topo Gigio.  Though Mick Jagger, Keith Richards, Bill Wyman, Charlie Watts and Brian Jones are ostensibly the main attraction of the new 2-DVD set, All 6 Ed Sullivan Shows Starring The Rolling Stones, these DVDs offer plenty even for those who don’t feel like being Stoned.  An abridged version of this set is also available, containing just four of the six programs.  It’s titled, appropriately, 4 Ed Sullivan Shows Starring The Rolling Stones, and drops the Stones’ first and last appearances from its line-up.

Both DVD sets feature full episodes of The Ed Sullivan Show, including original commercials.  Fans of television variety shows on DVD know that this often isn’t the case, with classics like The Dean Martin Show and The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour being forced to release highlights-only as a result of prohibitive licensing costs, usually involving musical performances.  Only the 6-show set includes the Rolling Stones’ first appearance on October 25, 1964, in which the band performed the little-known “Around and Around” as well as their hit cover of the Jerry Ragovoy-penned “Time Is On My Side.”  But viewers will also find a program that defines variety: comedians London Lee, Phyllis Diller and Stiller and Meara, plus the tap-dancing Peg Leg Bates (!), actor Laurence Harvey reciting “The Charge of the Light Brigade,” classical violinist Itzhak Perlman and even the acrobatic Berosinis!

The May 2, 1965 episode is included on both releases.  Four Stones songs are performed (including “The Last Time”) but the same show also presented Dusty Springfield and the smash hit “I Only Want to Be with You” plus Tom Jones with “Whatcha Gonna Do When Your Baby Leaves You,” Leslie Uggams with “Melancholy Baby” and of course, Senor Wences and Topo Gigio!  The Stones next appeared with Ed on February 13, 1966, and that program, too, appears on both versions.  The Stones kick off this episode with their titanic “(I Can’t Get No) Satisfaction,” and return for both “19th Nervous Breakdown” and the ballad “As Tears Go By.”  The Rolling Stones are the sole musical act for this bill, which also includes the still-active Hal Holbrook, applying his distinct tones to Abraham Lincoln’s second inaugural speech!

The Rolling Stones were back on September 13, 1966, opening the show with “Paint It Black” and later playing “Lady Jane” and “Have You Seen Your Mother, Baby, Standing in the Shadow?”  Red Skelton and Joan Rivers were the comedians du jour, while Robert Goulet musically contributed with “Once I Had a Heart” and Louis Armstrong brought along his famous trumpet for “Cabaret” from John Kander and Fred Ebb’s new Broadway musical of the same name!  Jim Henson’s Muppets are on hand for an early appearance with a rock-and-roll themed sketch.  Appropriate, no?

Next up was the band’s most controversial television appearance, ever.  Hit the jump for the full story, plus the track listing for all six episodes! Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Joe Marchese

November 14, 2011 at 10:24