Tuesday, May 30, 2006

Show 5: Someone say spaghetti?

Well, it happens at least a couple of times a year. A few spaghetti western refugees make their way into the Mauna Loa Lounge and insist on hearing nothing but spaghetti western soundtracks. I spin a few tunes to keep Ringo, Sartana, and the rest of the boys happy until they git up and mosey on out...

All of the tracks on this week’s show are from a hard to find Japanese CD on the RCA label, simply called Italian Western Movie Themes. One of the first recordings I bought when I switched over to the popular CD format way back when...

A couple of these tracks used to be quite rare, until they recently started showing up on other spaghetti western compilations. Hope you especially enjoy the last track (it’s on the LuxuriaMusic playlist and will come up from time to time, in case you miss this particular episode of Thrifting for Tunes)... I think it may be my favorite piece of spaghetti western music.

Song 1 : : Per Il Gusto di Uccidere
Artist : : Orchestra di M. de Basi
Album : : Italian Western Movie Themes

Sounds like it was pulled straight off the film’s soundtrack. IMDB link

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Song 2 : : Hang ‘em High
Artist : : Hugo Montenegro, His Orchestra and Chorus
Album : : Italian Western Movie Themes

Domenic Frontiere’s theme to the American knock-off spaghetti western. IMDB link

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Song 3 : : All ‘Ombra di una Colt
Artist : : N. Fidenco
Album : : Italian Western Movie Themes

What lyrics! How dramatic can you get? I translated the gist of it all in my comments on the show. IMDB link

Tuesday, May 23, 2006

Show 4: Musique Noire

An exploration of the musical equivalent of film noir... “musique noire” perhaps? Not necessarily only music from film noir soundtracks but also music that conveys the primary moods of classic film noir. Kind of hard to cover this adequately in 15 minutes... but hey, it’s a start.

Song 1 : : Somewhere in the Dark
Artist : : Drywall
Album : : Barbeque Babylon

For complete info on Stan Ridgway’s Drywall project, please visit Stan’s website. A lot of Ridgway’s music... especially his earlier work... has been described as cinematic, hard-boiled, and film noir-inspired. But Ridgway, one of the most unique and talented popular singer / songwriter / composers of the last quarter century, also releases music in a variety of other styles that I encourage you to seek out and listen to.

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Song 2 : : Prison Break
Artist : : Irving Joseph
Album : : Crime Jazz – Murder in the Second Degree

This track is originally from a record called Murder Inc. A crime jazz cut from a coulda-been soundtrack sound-alike... but it’s not from any film at all. Goes to show you that it doesn’t have to be from film noir to sound like film noir. More on Irving Joseph at spaceagepop.com.

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Song 3 : : Chinatown
Artist : : Skip Heller
Album : : Fakebook

Real film noir music from a neo-film noir classic. Jerry Goldsmith’s theme to Roman Polanski’s Chinatown, as performed by Skip Heller, and featuring Robert Drasnin.

Tuesday, May 16, 2006

Show 3: Wiseguys

A couple of “business associates” rent out the Mauna Loa Lounge for their social club’s annual general meeting... So we get to sample some Italian-American exotica this week...
Write to me if you want to learn more about Don Mimi, Chucky Tripoli, and the Sons of Sicily...

Song 1 : : Italian Medley
Artist : : Johnny Puleo and his Harmonica Gang
Album : : Johnny Puleo and his Harmonica Gang

This first tune is not an exotica track but helps set the mood for my friends from the Sons of Sicily Defense League.
Johnny Puleo is a real kick! Somewhere in a photo album at my mom’s house is a picture from when Johnny Puleo came to Montreal for a performance in the late 50s. My mom... all 4 feet 11 inches of her... towers over Johnny, who makes a funny face while my dad can be seen cracking up in the background. Great picture... I’ll scan it and post it for you all one day. You can read Johnny Puleo’s biography here.

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Song 2 : : Return to Me
Artist : : Arthur Lyman
Album : : Bahia

A classic Italo-American hit (as popularized by Dino) performed here by an exotica great. No matter how exotic Lyman tries to make the tune, he can’t avoid using mandolins...

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Song 3 : : Strange Enchantment
Artist : : Vic Damone
Album : : Strange Enchantment

Gotta love Vic! You can read my complete review of this record on our Mai Tai Hi-Fi page.

Tuesday, May 9, 2006

Show 2: Rewired

The Mauna Loa Lounge gets re-wired by the Geek Squad... and I play some early electronic sounds to help them get their work done.

Song 1 : : Popcorn
Artist : : Hot Butter
Album : : Popcorn

The mega hit version of Gershon Kingsley’s song... I still have the K-Tel LP on which I first heard this song (circa 1972!). Everything you ever wanted to know about this phenomenal piece of music can be found on the Popcorn Song website.

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Song 2 : : Love Syndrome
Artist : : The Mind Expanders
Album : : What’s Happening!

Early electronica... but also quite psychedelic at the same time... by this studio band whose album includes electro-psychedelic adaptations of both classic and pop pieces.

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Song 3 : : Quiet Village
Artist : : Martin Denny
Album : : Exotic Moog

Not the version you all know and love but Denny’s electro-exotic adaptation of his own big hit. You can find some basic info about the record here and some very surprising info about the record on Dana Countryman’s site.

Tuesday, May 2, 2006

Show 1: Into to Thrifting for Tunes

Song 1 : : Don’t Go Breaking My Heart
Artist : : The Wondermints
Album : : Wonderful World of…

A respectful glance to the past by great sunshine pop band The Wondermints from their second record (which was, at the request of their Japanese record label, a covers album). Not your usual set of covers, however.
Some of the members of The Wondermints are part of Brian Wilson’s excellent band these days. They don’t have an official website but like you, me and everyone else on the planet, they do have a myspace page and an unofficial fan page.

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Song 2 : : Alla Luce Del Giorno
Artist : : Ennio Morricone
Album : : Mondo Morricone Revisted

Ah, maestro Morricone… This one is not the kind of stuff we usually hear from the maestro but it is typical Morricone nonetheless. This is from the soundtrack to the film Metti Una Sera A Cena. If you’re comfortable reading Italian, here is the maestro’s official website.

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Song 3: On the Beach at Waikiki
Artist: The Outriggers
Album: Captivation

Can’t really tell you anything about The Outriggers other than I really like this album. One of the many Hawaiian/exotica records out in the 50s/60s. Great cover featuring a couple dressed for a fancy night out embracing among the lush foliage of an exotic jungle. I used this version of On the Beach at Waikiki as the musical backdrop for one of my Mai Tai Videos (Mixology 101) which you can see by clicking over to this website’s WATCH page.