Archive for the ‘Music’ Category

Orange Grove

January 13, 2013

It’s no secret…I grew up in Orange County, California.  I was even born and lived a few early years in a city named Orange.  Later, my family lived in Anaheim (also in Orange County).  As an adult, I moved back one more time to the city of Orange before finally leaving California for the southeast U.S.  The city of Orange is one of my favorite places in the world…very small-town.

There’s a reason there is a city in California named “Orange”.  Oranges were everywhere.  My dad has lived in Orange County since the 1950’s and has distinct memories of orange groves as far as you could see. Even for me, growing up in the 1970’s, the orange trees were ubiquitous.  There were trees on street corners, stands of trees along the road, in people’s yards, and huge groves of trees up hillsides.  The street I lived on in Anaheim backed up to a large grove of orange trees before they were all torn down to make way for new tract homes.

Going home to California earlier this month reminded me of how much I love the sight of an orange tree.  They were full of fruit (as they often are in winter months) during my visit, and it was a pleasant sight.

For the last 3 years, I have been formulating a song about the orange groves.  I wrestled with several ideas for the song’s style and production (as well as lyrics) for a long time before settling on an Everly Brothers-styled ballad.  I’m proud to roll out (no pun intended) a new demo recording of Orange Grove – a tribute to my memories of the orange trees of Southern California.  I hope you enjoy it…just click the picture below to visit my music website and check out Orange Grove.

Oranges

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Tinsel & Twang

November 21, 2012

It’s the most wonderful time of the year. Time for Christmas music!

My EP Tinsel & Twang is now available everywhere…really. It’s a collection of unique and retro-styled renditions of 7 holiday classics. Download it today at iTunes or Amazon MP3

Includes these tracks:

1. Jingle Bell Rock
2. Happy Holiday
3. Holly Jolly/Winter Wonderland
4. Mele Kalikimaka
5. Frosty the Snowman
6. The Christmas Waltz
7. Hawaiian Sleigh Ride

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Support Anaheim Historical Society

November 12, 2012

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Anaheim is my hometown, and I think it’s great! Home of Disneyland. Home of the Angels. The list of great Anaheim connections goes on.

During the month of November, you can support this organization and its worthy cause by purchasing my song Katella – a musical tribute to Anaheim and its best known street. It’s just $0.89!

Fifty percent of each purchase during November goes to the AHS.

Let’s step up for Anaheim!

I’m Like Criswell

October 30, 2012

You’ve been asking yourself, “Self, whatever happened to Lost Transmission?”

You’ve been thinking, “How have I survived the last ten months without a new post from that retro guy?”

You’ve been wondering, “What will it it take for my favorite blog to get back online?”

Yes, like the great Criswell, I can foresee the past and read your mind.

The good news is…I’m back. And what brought me up out of a big pile of mothballs to resurface now? Commercialism. It’s Halloween tomorrow, and we all know what that means. Time to get on with Christmas!

Click me!

To that end, check out my EP, “Tinsel & Twang”. This collection of seven instrumental Christmas classics is yours to download at iTunes and Amazon MP3 for less than $7.00! I can’t believe it either!

Get in the Christmas spirit early this year with some retro-styled tunes from yours truly. There’s something for everybody, here. It’s rock ‘n’ roll, surf, country, jazz and rockabilly all wrapped up in red and green like a great big present with your name on it under a pink aluminum Christmas tree. It’s your favorite seasonal songs smokin’ hot as a flaming yule log. It’s Tinsel meets Twang! Only 55 shopping days left until Christmas!

If you’re in an extra-sarcastic Christmas mood, download my song “Christmas at Wendy’s” at iTunes. While you’re at it, buy two…make it a gift!

Check back in again soon. I’ll try not to stay gone so long this next time!

 

 

Eureka!

January 1, 2012

Lately I’ve had some real groovy luck in my quest for cool records.  One day alone was like striking black gold (of the vinyl variety).  Let me share…

Maybe you thought $2 for Les Paul was cheap, but lay your peepers on this gem I picked up in a record shop in Alabama for $1.00!  The Rockats Live at the Ritz.  I felt like I righted a great wrong that day.  This baby was the Rockats debut album in 1981, and it’s in near mint condition…for a dollar!!   My father-in-law (who was with me) incredulously exclaimed, “How in the world do you hear about these bands?”  I just lead a charmed life, I guess.  What a great album!

But wait, there’s more!  Next I found a 1957 original in the same $1.00 bin as the Rockats.  Louis Prima’s classic album “The Wildest!”  This is 1950’s adult cool at its best.  The cover’s not in the best shape, but I think it gives it character.  Whoever bought this item in ’57 played it, and it still sounds great today!  Also check out the cool ’50’s Las Vegas graphics from the flipside cover.

 

But this ain’t over by a long shot.  Next up is a rockabilly band even I had never heard of, but just spotting the cover of this platter was all I needed to know I was hot on the trail of another tasty rock and roll morsel.  Kevin Fayte and Rocket 8.  What?!  On Nervous Records from 1985.  Wasn’t sure this looked too promising.  This album had 20 songs on it!  I figured, how good could this be?  Know what?  It’s not bad!  I was pleasantly surprised.  For $5.95, I picked up an ’80’s rockabilly band I’d never heard of on a near-mint original LP, and enjoyed some good rockabilly to boot!

 

Well, that’s all for now.  I have a few more little items to share from this adventure.  All in good time.

Keep rockin’!

Capitol H416

December 3, 2011

Antique stores are a mixed bag.  Sometimes they’ve got junk at exorbitant prices.  Sometimes they’ve got treasures at dirt cheap prices.  This week I encountered the latter.

Check out Capitol Records EP H416, Les Paul and Mary Ford * The Hit Makers.  This record is vintage 1953 and the cover is in superb condition.  Awesome guitar and jukebox graphics on the reverse side and a rockin’ font type.

I snatched up this wax for $2.75.  The record has a crack through one side, but plays like a dream anyway.  The cover was worth the purchase alone.

It’s ok to drool, daddy-o.

 

Remembering Retro-style

September 11, 2010

As we remember 9/11/01 today with conciliatory speeches and politically-correct rhetoric, I’m reminded of the very non-politically-correct response of America after the 12/7/41 attack on Pearl Harbor.

I’m not making any kind of political statement here…just offering another bit of nostalgia in the spirit of looking back at the way America once was.

If you’ve never heard this little gem from 1942 called Remember Pearl Harbor, check it out…

CR 30123 MONO

September 7, 2010

There are lots and lots of advantages here in the digital age.  Anything – photos, music, video is available on demand at the click of a mouse.  Yet, I frequently find myself yearning for the days when buying music meant stopping in at a record store.

I miss browsing till my fingers were dirty through bins of hundreds of LP’s and 45’s, dozens of choice album covers lining the walls, the sound of an old doo-wop 45 playing over the store loudspeaker, and the air rich with the musty smell of cardboard record sleeves.

One of my favorite haunts was literally right behind my granny’s house in Garden Grove, CA.  There was an old drive-through Alta Dena milk stand and few shops in a parking lot on the corner of Chapman and Euclid – immediately over granny’s back fence.  The joint was called  Rock and Roll Rare Records, and I spent hours there.

One disadvantage of the old days was you had to buy whatever they had in the store or order through their giant paper catalog for delivery in 2-3 weeks.  Today, of course, it’s whatever CD you want to order (or simply download) or LP you pick up through eBay or some other online record vendor.

Such is the story of a record I’ve had in my collection for some 25 years.  It’s The Best of Sun Rockabilly Vol. 2.  Like I said, you had to buy whatever you found in the store back in them olden days of yore.  I remember buying it as a teenager and thinkin’, “Gee, it would be nice to find Vol. 1”.  Vol. 2 is a treasure, though, and is the record that introduced me to the great Sonny Burgess.

I had pretty much forgotten about it until I just stumbled on Vol. 1 on eBay the other day.  As providence would have it (assuming God really cares about my record collection), I had just enough left on an eBay gift card somebody gave me for my birthday.

Today I received The Best of Sun Rockabilly Vol. 1 in the mail!  The music is great and in beautiful monaural sound, too!  Check out these tracks:

Carl Perkins – Put Your Cat Clothes On

Harmonica Frank – Rockin’ Chair

Jack Earls – Slow Down

Roy Orbison – Domino

Ray Harris –  Come on Little Mama

Miller Sisters – Ten Cats Down

Warren Smith – Ubangi Stomp

Johnny Burgess – We Wanna  Boogie

Billy Riley – Rock With My Baby

Jerry Lee Lewis – Milkshake Mademoiselle

Slim Rhodes – Romp and Stomp

Gene Simmons – Drinking Wine

Malcolm Yelvington – Rockin’ with My Baby

Hayden Thompson – Love My Baby

Warren Smith – Red Cadillac and a Black Mustache

Warren Smith – Uranium Rock

What makes it extra cool is that the album covers are two halves of one picture of a guy and a gal dancing together in a soda shop.  Jerry Lee Lewis is combing his hair and standing by the jukebox.

I love old records, and I love real rock and roll!

Cool Vid

September 4, 2010

Ahh, 1980’s SoCal rockabilly.  Gotta love this.

Must-Have Vinyl?

August 26, 2010

Random post.  It’s not even very original, but who cares?

I’ve bought a few albums just because I love the cover art.   I think I’d take a pass on these…

OK, I’ll give you one guess:  who’s the lamest person in this picture?  It’s a dance party with three people…and the one up front looks like she has no rhythm at all.  Anybody who keeps time to a rock and roll record by holding both arms up and snapping on 1 and 3 is a square.  Hey, girlie…you’re boyfriend is dancing with the cool chick in the corner…

Nothing says Christmas like Colonel Sanders.  But wait, you mean he ain’t singin‘ any of these songs.  What’s the deal?

Okay, this guy looks like Kevin Costner’s character in JFK and Bing Crosby from Bells of St. Mary’s had a child.  I wonder how many parishioners bought this.

It’s Joyce!  The price tag on this one says it all.

This is my favorite.  It’s an album I saw on eBay.  It’s a Japanese import.  Notice anything wrong here?  Hmmm…first, Jerry Lee doesn’t play guitar.  Second, call me cynical, but I’d swear this is the Killer’s head superimposed over Buddy Holly’s body.