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Oval Records Singles 1974-1987

PostPosted: Tue Oct 11, 2016 10:35 pm
by john poole
Coming Soon (28th November) from Ace Records - "Rhythm on the Radio"
https://acerecords.co.uk/rhythm-on-the- ... -1974-1987

Re: Oval Records Singles 1974-1987

PostPosted: Wed Oct 12, 2016 1:02 pm
by Adam Blake
Oh that looks like fun! Pete Fowler - look out! Also my old friend Kevin Armstrong's Local Heroes get an outing. That will please him (he's currently in South America touring with Iggy Pop. Alright for some...)

Re: Oval Records Singles 1974-1987

PostPosted: Wed Oct 12, 2016 4:25 pm
by NormanD
Here's a taster - the other side of Pete Fowler's 45, "The Miners' Strike" (not featured on the comp, sadly).
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W4OsRUqgFJo

Re: Oval Records Singles 1974-1987

PostPosted: Fri Nov 25, 2016 11:38 am
by john poole

Re: Oval Records Singles 1974-1987

PostPosted: Fri Nov 25, 2016 3:04 pm
by Alan Balfour
...and we must not forget CG the book reviewer. Here he tells it like it is. I couldn't resist posting. If not appropriate then please remove.

Record Mirror, 23 August 1969

Charlie Gillett reviews two books on music:
Pop by Nik Cohn, and The Story of The Blues by Paul Oliver

POP HAS huge ears, a long memory and no conscience.

Pop is fake feelings, done up like the real thing.

Pop is industrialised happiness. Pop makes people happy.

Pop is music for as many people as can be conned into liking it. Pop is what people like.

Pop is the drug that stops revolution. Pop is revolution.

Pop is a book by Nik Cohn. Its full title is Pop; From The Beginning, it's dedicated to Jet Powers, Dean Angel and Johnny Ace, and it's published by Weidenfeld and Nicholson, 238 pages for 36s. It's the best and most irritating book about pop I've read.

The book has all the qualities of pop, which has to be a compliment, but it means that it has the same effect as Radio One at keeping its audience on the brink of turning off, but coming up with something good just often enough to promise better things.

Nik Cohn get genuinely excited by pop (or communicates the impression that he does), and has some effective descriptions of the rock and roll acts that have been over here. It's hard to argue his conclusion that the most exciting people to watch on stage are Little Richard and Tina Turner.

NEVER BORING

The book seems to have been written at one go, which is in the best pop tradition; it means there is some confusion in its organisation, but very few awkward theories or subordinate clauses to hinder the reader's race across its pages. It doesn't aim to provide a lot of information, or at least won't have much to tell anybody who reads a pop music paper. The author has told his story, named the people he likes and why he likes them (and in a few cases, why he dislikes somebody) and named a couple of records they made.

He's almost never boring, and when writing about the music and singers of California he seems to find a subject which absolutely suits his style, so that images of Lou Adler, Johnny Rivers, the Beach Boys and Sonny and Cher suddenly find focus. But there are times when that style jars, with its magpie thieving of bright words from too many cultures, so that we're told Tina Turner's arse is "cosmic", and people makes strikes, wipe out, and boss things. But that's pop.

The blues, Paul Oliver could tell you, isn't pop. Or it wasn't. His book The Story Of The Blues came out a month ago, 175 huge picture-packed pages for 60s., published by Barrie and Rockcliff. It makes about as much reference to pop as Nik Cohn's book does to the blues, a single disparaging paragraph. If Nik Cohn sees no relevance in the fact that three quarters of the people he likes are singing a version of the blues, Paul Oliver seems to find it sad that black people don't still sing the same way they did before the war.

HOSTILITY

Paul Oliver's refusal to consider the value of contemporary music is particularly strange in view of his own criticism at the beginning of this book of the people who were interested in Negro music when the blues was first being developed. Instead of attending to the blues, those researchers busied themselves with collecting folk-songs that predated the blues. "Occasional verses and fragments were noted but generally the collectors looked upon the blues with hostility, regarding it as a degeneration of the folk-lore they were anxious to save." Yet this describes Paul Oliver's own reaction as he contemplates soul in the last part of the book. So he leaves out perhaps never listened to Sam Cooke's 'A Change Is Gonna Come', Bobby Patterson and The Mustangs' 'Good Ol' Days' and Tyrone Davis' 'Can I Change My Mind', three songs which express as much as any blues song, keeping close to the blues tradition of expressing a personal feeling in a style which drew from the singer's culture, using words and rhythms that met the taste of the audience at the time.

Of course, this failure to consider the present does not seriously affect the value of The Story Of The Blues as a collection of pictures and information which has no rival. The narrative which runs through the book is perhaps less exciting than LeRoi Jones' Blues People or Charles Keil's Urban Blues, but it is far more reliable, and will provide exactly the right kind of background a reader needs in order to be able to tackle the complicated theories of Jones and Keil.

Paul Oliver's previous books, Blues Fell This Morning, Conversations With The Blues and Screening The Blues have proposed the importance of the blues as a kind of documentary recording of black people's reactions to their culture; the reader has been frustrated by not knowing how important to their contemporary audiences some of the songs and singers were. The Story Of The Blues at last provides a coherent order, tracing the simultaneous developments of various styles in various places, managing to keep an interesting commentary running through the straight information like date and place of birth, influence, style, success and subsequent fate. The pictures of Northern cities and Southern prisons, road-side juke joints and billboard posters reinforce the message of the commentary, and the photographs of singers arouse curiosity and lead the reader into the text what did he do?

NO DISCUSSION

One blues singer seems to have been almost ignored Jimmie Rodgers. Paul Oliver mentions that he toured with some other, black, blues singers with a medicine show in Texas, and that blues singers from the Mississippi Sheiks to Snooks Eaglin have used his material and even imitated his style. But there is no discussion of the inter-relationship between black and white cultures that these references suggest. But that's a small complaint about a marvellous book.

The contrast between the technique of Paul Oliver and Nik Cohn is fascinating, but it's a pity each could not have taken just a little from the style of the other, Paul Oliver to conjure the excitement which people like Bo Diddley and Screamin' Jay Hawkins create, and Nik Cohn to slow down just long enough to assemble a little information we couldn't get from The Daily Mail Book Of Golden Records. Two things I learned, one that 'Rock Around The Clock' was first recorded by Ivory Joe Hunter (did anybody else know that?), the other that on a pub lavatory wall in Gateshead there is the inscription, "Buddy Holly lives and rocks in Tijuana, Mexico."

Re: Oval Records Singles 1974-1987

PostPosted: Fri Nov 25, 2016 3:27 pm
by NormanD
(Paul Oliver) leaves out perhaps never listened to Sam Cooke's 'A Change Is Gonna Come', Bobby Patterson and The Mustangs' 'Good Ol' Days' and Tyrone Davis' 'Can I Change My Mind', three songs which express as much as any blues song, keeping close to the blues tradition of expressing a personal feeling in a style which drew from the singer's culture, using words and rhythms that met the taste of the audience at the time.

Here's one of them - the Bobby Patterson - which I never heard before, I admit.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CHOHgVfVGLU

I looked for a UK 45 release of this one, but couldn't see anything listed online. I suspect that very few people in the UK, not just Paul Oliver, had ever heard of this one at the time, unless they were avid soul listeners. Unlike Paul Oliver.

I didn't do any online research for 1969 photos to verify whether
Tina Turner's arse is "cosmic"
(N. Cohn).

As for your
If not appropriate then please remove
Alan - are you kidding? Keep 'em coming!

Re: Oval Records Singles 1974-1987

PostPosted: Fri Nov 25, 2016 9:00 pm
by john poole
NormanD wrote:Here's one of them - the Bobby Patterson - which I never heard before, I admit.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CHOHgVfVGLU

I looked for a UK 45 release of this one, but couldn't see anything listed online. I suspect that very few people in the UK, not just Paul Oliver, had ever heard of this one at the time, unless they were avid soul listeners.

It was one of five Bobby Patterson 45s released in the UK on the Pama label (more often a home for Jamaican recordings)
http://www.45cat.com/record/pm743

CG in 1969:-
"Two things I learned, one that 'Rock Around The Clock' was first recorded by Ivory Joe Hunter (did anybody else know that?)"

Probably nobody else knew that as it was not true (although I would not have been the only one unaware of that when I first read the book in 1969). This was the first recording
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pr_w3WPzyXA
I don't know that Ivory Joe Hunter ever recorded the song and if he did it was certainly not a "bit hit in the R&B charts" as Nik Cohn claimed.

Re: Oval Records Singles 1974-1987

PostPosted: Sun Nov 27, 2016 3:11 pm
by Adam Blake
Oh thank you, Alan. I thoroughly enjoyed reading those old Charlie book reviews. I read Cohn's book when I was 11 and I'm afraid it had, and continues to have, a lasting effect on me.

Re: Oval Records Singles 1974-1987

PostPosted: Sun Nov 27, 2016 4:43 pm
by uiwangmike
My copy of Nik Cohn's book (titled Awopbopaloobop Alopbamboom by the time I got it) disappeared a long time ago, but I see it's been retro-reviewed twice in the Guardian this year. Did he really compare Van Morrison (just starting out as a solo performer when the book was being written) unfavourably with Del Shannon?
https://www.theguardian.com/music/2016/ ... d-nik-cohn
https://www.theguardian.com/music/2016/ ... lopbamboom

Re: Oval Records Singles 1974-1987

PostPosted: Sun Nov 27, 2016 5:40 pm
by john poole
uiwangmike wrote:Did he really compare Van Morrison (just starting out as a solo performer when the book was being written) unfavourably with Del Shannon?
I sure Nik Cohn would have preferred Del Shannon ("he has always been one of my heavy heroes") to Van, but the latter did not get so much as a mention in the 1969 book as far as I can see. At the time the book was written 'Astral Weeks' would not have been released here yet (only available as an import).

Re: Oval Records Singles 1974-1987

PostPosted: Tue Nov 29, 2016 3:24 pm
by Adam Blake
Van Morrison doesn't register in Cohn-world.

Re: Oval Records Singles 1974-1987

PostPosted: Wed Nov 30, 2016 5:45 pm
by NormanD
I think Van would have been more favourably thought of if Cohn had known about the fix he was in over his attempts to get out of his BANG records contract and the heavies on his tail. But John's point is right - 'Astral Weeks' and 'Moon Dance' hadn't yet established him as a musical force. As much as I do like Del Shannon, and most of his work, the comparison is an unfair one.