Saturday, July 30, 2011

One More Song For You

The Imperials are an American Christian music group that has been around for over 47 years since their inception in 1964. As you can imagine there have been several line up changes through the years. Now homercat is not a religious cat in the normal sense of the word. I have my own faith and spirituality and I'm not a fan of any sort of organized religion. Having said that, I'm a huge fan of The Imperials because when I listen to their music, something happens inside of me that lifts and soothes my heart.  Don't ask me why.

The Imperials really started getting recognition when during the years between 1966 and 71 they recorded a lot with Elvis Presley and appeared  on his last two grammy award winning albums. In 1969 Elvis was embarking on his Vegas years and The Jordanaires who usually sang back up for the King didn't want to stray far from Nashville because of their studio work. Elvis hired The Imperials to be his backup singers, so from 1969 to 1972 these guys toured with Elvis. They finally had to part ways in 72 because of scheduling conflicts.

In Early 1976, the group hired baritone David Will, who would stay on for 23 years with the group, and soulful belter Russ Taff as their new lead vocalist. It was with the Taff-led outfit that the group found their biggest success, both with awards and on the charts. Mrs. homercat introduced me to these guys

[Mrs. Homercat interjects] [I saw The Imperials in Calgary at the Jubilee Auditorium in 1982 with my brother, sister-in-law, and sister.  My sister brought a second date to this concert and he was absolutely blown away ... between the horn section and the words of each song it was so beyond amazing.  I was heart-broken when Russ Taff left to pursue a solo career. The happy part of this is that I had several of their albums on vinyl ... though they spent several years in my parents basement. When mom & dad brought my record collection to us last year I rediscovered them and was so happy to introduce hubster to them.  I encouraged Homercat to listen to them, & one day he broke them out to rip them and this was the first one he ripped.]

By the end of the album I was hooked. The music On One More Song for You is in the soft pop rock vein and this Grammy nominated masterpiece is listed among CCM Magazine's best 100 Christian albums of all time. For very good reason as it really is a five star album. Highlights are I'm Forgiven, Eagle Song and the title cut. Since ripping their albums we listen to them a lot and I gotta thank the missus for making me listen to them. Check it out, you might be surprised. Don't let the cheesy looking album cover scare you away.

I'm Forgiven
Eagle Song
Buy It

Funny Toon

Monday, July 25, 2011

Hooked on Classics

K-Tel didn't always do compilation albums. Although that's what they mainly did, occasionally they would issue original material. The most notable of which were the Hooked on Classics series of classical recordings with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra. The original Hooked On Classics album came out in 1981 toward the end of the disco era's peak in popularity. Louis Clark, former arranger for Electric Light Orchestra, conducted the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra playing a collection of very recognizable extracts from classical music pieces played over a continuous beat, much like the Stars On group. While classical purists might bemoan the fact that their beloved classical pieces were put to a disco beat, the album did bring classical music to the masses and the first Hooked on Classics album became K-Tel's biggest all time selling album, selling over 10 million copies. A little side note is that while the compilation albums were released on the K-Tel International Label, this particular K-Tel release came out on RCA Victor. For a K-Tel album this is as near a mint condition vinyl album as I'll probably ever find. I've listed just the main titles for the songs here. In the file is a text document with the breakdown of which classical pieces were included in each cut.

320 kbps

Hooked on Classics Parts 1 & 2
Hooked On Romance
Hooked On Classics Part 3
Hooked On Bach
Hooked On Tchaikovsky
Hooked On A Song
Hooked On Mozart
Hooked On Mendelssohn
Hooked On A Can Can

Copy and Paste this link into your browser to download

Funny Toon

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Electric Warrior

Straight from my sweet 180 gram vinyl release comes Electric Warrior, the sixth album by T Rex released in 1971. Widely considered to one of the best, or in my opinion the best glam rock album ever released. Electric Warrior still stands the test of time after all these years. Should be against the law for someone to not own this record. I'm sure most of you have it but I just had to share the sweet sound of this 180 gram vinyl. This is one of those rare albums, like Rubber Soul, in which every song is superb.  This album completes T. Rex's transformation from hippie folk-rockers into flamboyant avatars of trashy rock & roll. There are a few vestiges of those early days remaining in the acoustic-driven ballads, but Electric Warrior spends most of its time in a swinging, hip-shaking groove powered by Marc Bolan's warm electric guitar. Don't get much better than this.

Get it On
Life's a Gas
Buy It

Funny Toon