Showing posts with label 1968. Show all posts
Showing posts with label 1968. Show all posts

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

My Albums Were Fair and Had Pink Sun in Their Hair

Previously, in my blog entries of May 16 and May 31, I have discussed my experiment of trying to listen to all the rock and R&B albums released in the calendar year 1968 in the order, as best as I can determine, in which they were released. I'll refer readers to the earlier blogs for an explanation of the motivation for such an unusual (and self-indulgent) project. At any rate, it occurred to me this morning that I hadn’t posted July’s listening schedule, which can be found below. As I’ve stated before, I cannot claim that my list is infallible, but I continue to work on it and to try and improve it. What I've discovered is that there were dozens of albums released during the months of July and August--more so in terms of numbers of releases in a single month than in any previous month--so as you can see, July’s list is rather long (assuming the information I've come across is accurate). First up is The Band’s classic Music From Big Pink, released forty years ago today, on July 1, 1968. Here's what I have put together for July:

The Band, Music From Big Pink 7/1
Creedence Clearwater Revival, Creedence Clearwater Revival 7/5
Tyrannosaurus Rex, My People Were Fair and Had Sky in Their Hair... 7/5
The Nice, The Thoughts of Emerlist Davjack
The Doors, Waiting for the Sun 7/11
Buffalo Springfield, Last Time Around
Family, Music in a Doll’s House
Nilsson, Aerial Ballet
Phil Ochs, Tape From California
The International Submarine Band, Safe At Home
The Grateful Dead, Anthem of the Sun
Bloomfield-Kooper-Stills, Super Session 7/22
The Moody Blues, In Search of the Lost Chord 7/26
The Byrds, Sweetheart of the Rodeo 7/29
Cream, Wheels of Fire 7/29

As you can see, a number of historically significant records were issued in July 1968. As usual, corrections and additions are welcome.

List emended 7/22/08

Saturday, May 31, 2008

Time, Peace, And A Saucerful of Friends

In my blog entry of May 16 I discussed my experiment of trying to listen to all the rock and R&B albums released in the year of 1968 in the order, as best as I could determine, in which they were released. Why 1968? I'll refer readers to the earlier blog for an explanation of the motivation for such an unusual project. At any rate, I promised I would post a June listening schedule, which can be found below. Since posting that earlier blog entry, however, I've discovered additional information which has prompted me to emend that earlier list, both adding and removing albums to more accurately reflect the current state of my knowledge. For instance, I'd listed Nilsson's Aerial Ballet as being released in March--at the time, an educated guess on my part. Information in the liner notes to the 2-CD BMG/Camden Deluxe 2000 reissue indicate July as the release date, which I accept as accurate, so I removed the album from the March set of albums and will include it as part of the July list. I still cannot claim that my list is infallible, but I continue to work on it. What I've found is that there were dozens of albums released in July and August, so those months' lists will be rather long (assuming the information I've come across is accurate). Perhaps record companies heavily slated album releases for the summer months, or, alternatively, some of the albums many sources indicate as being released in July were in fact released a bit earlier, that is, June. At any rate, here is what I currently have on tap for June, if anyone would care to listen along:

The Rascals, Time Peace: The Rascals’ Greatest Hits
The New York Rock & Roll Ensemble, The New York Rock & Roll Ensemble
The Beach Boys, Friends
Pink Floyd, A Saucerful of Secrets
Fairport Convention, Fairport Convention
Manfred Mann, Mighty Garvey! (6/28)
Otis Redding, The Immortal Otis Redding
Vanilla Fudge, Renaissance

List emended 7/22/68

Friday, May 16, 2008

Lumpy Pandemonium Ballet

At the beginning of this year I embarked on a peculiar, perhaps grossly self-indulgent experiment of trying to listen to all the rock and R&B albums released in the year of 1968--forty years ago--in the order, as best as I could determine, in which they were released. Why 1968? Because it was the year I seriously began to collect albums. I cannot claim that the following list of albums is exhaustive; rather, it consists of those albums I either had or I could easily get my hands on (eBay therefore came in handy on occasion). As might be expected, the experiment prompted me to fill in some gaps in my collection. I sat down over my Christmas break and compiled as comprehensive a list as I could make, then determined which albums I already owned (on vinyl LP or compact disc) and which I would need to acquire. As it turns out, I had a good number of them, although I purchased a few on CD because I wanted the liner notes and bonus tracks.

I must emphasize that this list is rather idiosyncratic, neither a "classic rock" list nor an attempt to listen to every pop album released that year. What follows is the order in which I have listened to the albums (with one exception, as indicated). This week, for instance, I have been listening to Frank Zappa's album Lumpy Gravy, which so far as I was able to determine, was released on LP on May 13, 1968--forty years ago this week. Next week I'll listen to Spooky Tooth's It's All About. Predictably, during the course of compiling this list I found that my memory was faulty: I mistakenly had albums released later in the year in the record bins earlier in the year (and vice versa). Happily, I must also admit to having discovered a few albums I'd overlooked all those years ago that have now become my favorites--Harry Nilsson's Aerial Ballet, for instance. In fact, I liked it so much I was motivated to acquire his previous album, Pandemonium Shadow Show (1967), which I learned was one of John Lennon's favorites and which has become, four decades late(r), one of mine. While I'd always very much liked Nilsson, I was most familiar with his later albums; I am delighted to have finally given these albums the careful listen they so richly deserve.

If any readers have the inclination to correct the information below, or suggest I acquire titles that I've so far overlooked, please don't hesitate to contact me. I'll periodically update the list and correct it, and of course add to it in future blogs. At the end of the month, if I remember, I'll post my June listening schedule. Consider it the aural equivalent of what book stores call a summer reading program. If there is a certain "classic" album missing from the following list, then you can be reasonably certain that it wasn't yet released by the end of May 1968 (e. g., Pink Floyd's A Saucerful of Secrets, released in June, or The Byrds' Sweetheart of the Rodeo, released in July).

Please note that some live albums, released two or three years after their original recording (or in some cases, decades later), have been reinserted into the proper sequence to reflect the time they were recorded. These titles are indicated in brackets [ ] after the group's name. Dates reflect US release unless indicated otherwise. Finally, some release dates were determined by the album's catalog number, admittedly not the best way to determine the release date, but a reasonably good indicator nonetheless.

Elvis Presley, Elvis’ Gold Records, Volume 4 - 1/2
The Byrds, The Notorious Byrd Brothers- 1/3
The Kinks, Live at Kelvin Hall - 1/12
The Bee Gees, Horizontal
Autosalvage, Autosalvage
Blue Cheer, Vincebus Eruptum
Steppenwolf, Steppenwolf
The Electric Prunes, Mass in F Minor
Canned Heat, Boogie with Canned Heat - 1/21
Aretha Franklin, Lady Soul - 1/22
Spirit, Spirit - 1/22
Van Dyke Parks, Song Cycle - 1/29

Mason Williams, The Mason Williams Phonograph Record
Blood, Sweat & Tears, Child is Father to the Man
Dr. John the Night Tripper, Gris-gris
Iron Butterfly, Heavy
Tomorrow, Tomorrow
Graham Gouldman, The Graham Gouldman Thing
The Rascals, Once Upon a Dream - 2/19
Otis Redding, The Dock of the Bay - 2/23
Fleetwood Mac, Fleetwood Mac - 2/24

Laura Nyro, Eli and the Thirteenth Confession - 3/3
The United States of America, The United States of America - 3/6
The Mothers of Invention, We're Only In It For the Money
Vanilla Fudge, The Beat Goes On
Cream, [Live Cream] [4/70]
The Move, Move [listened to out-of-sequence, just recently]
The Electric Flag, A Long Time Comin’
Joni Mitchell, Song For a Seagull
Incredible String Band, The Hangman’s Beautiful Daughter
The Association, Birthday
The Yardbirds, [Live Yardbirds: Featuring Jimmy Page] - 3/30 [5/71]

Simon & Garfunkel, Bookends - 4/3
Moby Grape, Wow/Grape Jam - 4/3
The Zombies, Odessey & Oracle - 4/9 [UK date]
Janis Joplin w/ Big Brother and the Holding Company, [Live at the Winterland ’68, 4/12-13] [1998]
Jimi Hendrix Experience, Smash Hits [UK date]
The Rose Garden, The Rose Garden
Scott Walker, Scott 2
The Monkees, The Birds, The Bees & The Monkees - 4/22
Stephen Stills, [Just Roll Tape, 4/26] [2007]
Sly & The Family Stone, Dance to the Music - 4/27
Scott Walker, Scott 2 - 4/27
The Mamas & Papas, The Papas & The Mamas - 4/29

Jefferson Airplane, [Live at the Fillmore East, 5/3-4] [1998]
The Collectors, The Collectors
Quicksilver Messenger Service, Quicksilver Messenger Service
Frank Zappa, Lumpy Gravy - 5/13
Spooky Tooth, It’s All About
The Small Faces, Ogden’s Nut Gone Flake - 5/24
Max Frost And The Troopers, Shape of Things to Come 5/29
[Faux band from AIP’s Wild in the Streets, released 5/29/68]

Again, corrections and/or emendations are welcome (please provide source of your information if you find my dating faulty). I'll try to post June's listening schedule before the end of the month.

List emended 8 September 2008