Charles Boyer: Where Does Love Go

Charles sure looks glum, doesn’t he? Like he’s seriously thinking of throwing himself off that beautiful bridge into the Seine.

Boyer was a major star in movies for over 50  years – from the 20s to the 70s. Some of his more notable roles were as the rakish Pepe le Moko in Algiers (1938) and opposite Ingrid Bergman (trying to drive her mad) in Gaslight (1944).

Boyer speaks, rather than sings the lyrics of the songs in his heavily accented English (and occasionally in French). Songs include “What Now My Love”, “Autumn Leaves”, “La vie en rose”, “Hello Young Lovers”, and Elvis’ favourite “Softly, As I Leave You”. According to Bill Bixby who co-starred in Clambake (1967), Elvis was fascinated with this album and played “Softly” repeatedly on set.

Record Cover of the Week

February 26, 2011

John Cacavas: Airport 1975

Great cover art from the golden age of disaster films. The film starred Charlton Heston, George Kennedy, Efrem Zimbalist, Jr., Gloria Swanson (as herself, advocating against sugar), Helen Reddy, Linda Blair, Myrna Loy, Erik Estrada, Dana Andrews, and, of course, Karen Black as the head stewardess. Composer John Cacavas is mostly known for his television scores (Kojak, Hawaii Five-0). He also wrote the score for the next Airport sequel, Airport ’77.

Record Cover of the Week

February 4, 2011

Joey Heatherton: The Joey Heatherton Album

Heatherton was a Las Vegas and television variety show mainstay in the 1960s. She also toured with Bob Hope on his USO tours. In 1972 she had a radio hit with the Ferlin Husky song “Gone”. But to me, her most important cultural legacy is as partial inspiration for Catherine O’Hara’s most memorable SCTV character, Lola Heatherton.

A very awesome find at Value Village this week – three quadraphonic 8-track tapes (that’s four discreet channels of analog tape hiss) for 99¢ each!

Yes, I have a quad 8-track player with four speakers. It’s a cheap British-made Wynford Hall machine I bought at Goodwill a few years back for 30 bucks. It’s far from audiophile equipment but it does an adequate job.

101 Strings: Million Sellers From The Movies

This is the first tape I put in. It played for about half a song before tape started disgorging into the machine (I very gingerly extracted it from the mechanism). I’m not going to try to fix the tape because I have this album on vinyl (though not in quad).

As you can see, not all the songs that are on the LP made it to the 8-track (and the 8-track has three songs not on the vinyl)

Then I tried this tape:

101 Strings: Country Music Hall of Fame

I heard about three songs before it came to the end of the side. Then the splice that holds the endless loop together snapped (a common problem with 8-track tapes as they age and become brittle) and the tape disappeared into the cassette casing. I’d already heard enough to know that I didn’t need to hear the rest. It did make me fearful for the fate of the third 8-track though – the one I really wanted to hear:

Tony Mottola: Warm, Wild & Wonderful

Awesome cover and awesome “Now Sound” music. Apparently “The Groovies” are really The Free Design. There are two poptastic Free Design songs on the album – “I Found Love” and “Kites Are Fun”. So far nothing bad has happened – I’ve played it several times without disaster.

Record Cover of the Week

October 12, 2010

Claudine Longet: Let’s Spend The Night Together

The final LP by the wispy-voiced singer. Read Claudine’s fascinating story here.

Illustration and design by Dean O. Torrence who was not only half of Jan & Dean, but also a very talented graphic artist who designed many iconic record covers for an impressive roster of artists including Chicago, The Nitty Gritty Dirt Band, Nilsson, The Beach Boys, Linda Ronstadt, Steve Martin and Anne Murray. See his portfolio here.

Record Label of the Week

August 15, 2010

The John Milton Talking Book for the blind



Dean Martin: French Style

Ooh la la! Zut alors! Confiture de pamplemousse!

Eartha Kitt: Greatest Hits

Charlie Byrd: More Brazilian Byrd


Divine: Maid In England

Yet another altered Elvis, to go along with these: