Archive for Jazz

Fred Shannon & The Clubmen – Coconut Grove Bank – Private Press

Posted in Gold with tags , , , on October 19, 2017 by xxx
As always, the download is located at the bottom of the page…

This post deals with more than just music. It’s about a time and place as told through the rise and fall of a beautiful building. It’s a story that takes place in my backyard, in the historic pioneer settlement, turned bohemian sailing community, turned condo-row called Coconut Grove. It’s also a story about a very rare record, found in the overflow boxes of my local record shop. I’ve held off on writing this post for over a year, but faced with the daily onslaught of sounds coming from the demolition of the Historic Coconut Grove Bank Building, it seems that putting this post together is the best way for me to cope.

IMG_4335

Miami is a strange, yet rewarding city, and it gets stranger and more rewarding the more you pour into it. Unlike cities whose roots run deeper, Miami’s cultural mythology is still being developed. For those of us who prefer to look to the past for a deeper sense of meaning, I feel that some of the greatest cultural totems of our city are still out there in the dusty bins, bookshelfs and filing cabinets, lying in wait for some lucky soul to uncover them. It’s on us to get out there, find them, preserve them and share them.

IMG_4337

 

I chanced upon such a find one afternoon while thumbing through the overflow boxes of the Easy Listening section in Yesterday and Today Records. After some quick sifting, I noticed a record with a lushly illustrated cover of a tuxedoed, mid-century styled man and woman dancing to a brass band on a painted pastel background. At the top of the cover, there’s a small illustration of a modernist building that caught my eye. On the back cover in text, “Let’s Dance” by Fred Shannon and the Clubmen Orchestra, “Limited Edition — Not For Sale”, further down, “The Grove’s Golden Era”, down in the corner “Coconut Grove Bank, South Bayshore Drive & 27th Avenue, Coconut Grove, Florida”. Basically my home address. Best of all, the price tag: $4.99.

IMG_4339

As I sit to write this, the beautiful Grove Bank building is being torn down. After a few weeks of demolition, all that remains is a blown out corner and some beautiful baby blue, navy and white mosaic tile shades, that made up the main feature of the building’s facade. The Robert Law Weed designed bank building was a crown jewel of the neighborhood and a key example of Miami-Modern (MiMo) architecture. It will be replaced with one of three massive towers of the Park Grove condominium development. A few years back, the City of Miami historic preservation folks determined that the building didn’t qualify for historic designation, due to some spurious claim that it was designed by one of Weed’s understudies and was not actually his work. It all reeked of your classic Miami backroom deal and just like that, we knew the building’s days were numbered.

IMG_4340

When I took the record home, I read the liner notes and found that the album was privately pressed by the bank to commemorate the unveiling of their beautiful new headquarters building. As it turns out, the Vice President of the bank in those days, one Fred Shannon, was “the world’s only banker-dance band maestro”. That’s right, the recordings herein are of the then Vice President of Coconut Grove Bank’s hobby big band, The Clubmen Orchestra. The Orchestra works through all the popular dance hits including Chattanooga Choo-Choo, Fools Rush In, My Blue Heaven, Green Dolphin Street and I Could Write A Book. The recording is absolutely beautiful, if Mr. Shannon was as good at banking as he was at band-leading, I’d imagine the Coconut Grove Bank did fairly well under his vice-presidency.

This is a great mid-century big-band record with a nice mix of classics and contemporary popular songs. I particularly like the way the medleys work together. In a live setting I could see a nice medley being an older iteration of the smoothly executed DJ mix. I’d suggest listening to it when setting the dinner table with someone you love or when your favorite demolished building.

Download Here!

Liner notes:

Turn down the lights, turn up the record player, roll back the carpet… and let’s dance! 

This album is for lovers of the “big band” sound in dance music. The kind of music those of us who were teenagers in the 30’s and 40’s sometimes smugly, and often nostalgically, refer to as “our kind of music.” We may be reconciled to the fact taht times, tastes, and tunes change, but we still get a charge out of hearing a band that can play this kind of music “the way it really was”.

That’s what this album is all about. A kind of magic carpet tour back into the golden era of dance music. A rare distillation of the best of the big-band sounds. In this album are tunes plucked note-for-note from the years that joined the Great Depression and World War II — the years of Edward’s abdication, nickel cigars, Amelia Earheart’s disappearance in the Pacific, Munich, wrong-way Corrigan, FDR, Pearl Harbor, and the start of pay-as-you-go income taxes. You can’t help recalling some of these when you hear such songs as “The Man I Love,” “I Could Write a Book,” and “Only Make Believe.”

Mixed in with these time-proved standards are some delightfully imaginative renditions of today’s more danceable melodies — but played, of course, in the golden-era style to which we big-band addicts are accustomed. You’ll get the happy message when you and your partner step out to “This is All I Ask,” “Till There Was You,” and “What Kind of Fool Am I?”

This is an album full of surprises, but probably the most surprising thing about it is the man behind the music. You’d expect Fred Shannon Smith to be an exponent of the big-band sound, and he is. He’s put together a numer of bands through the years, and has himself played with many of the greats.

But today Fred Smith dabbles in the world of music only as a hobby. His full time job is in the world of money — as Vice President of the Coconut Grove Bank, here in South Florida. As far as we can tell, he’s the world’s only banker-dance band maestro.

As this album eloquently attests, Fred demands perfection in his band. He chooses musicians diligently. He’s a slave driver in rehearsals. In the photos below, you see the band as it was actually making this album. A hard working, dedicated, shirtsleeved group with just one goal in mind: crisp, flawless execution… a sound that’s big, balanced, and — well, just beautiful. 

Orchestral arrangements were made by three outstanding musicians: Frederic Ashe, Don Muller , and Cliff Keller. Ashe is a professor of music at the University of Miami. Muller and Keller are former students of his. Fred Smith’s close relationship with the University dates back to his student days there, and his remarkable band is an outgrowth of those days. It’s no wonder that the clubmen are in demand whenever “special” music is wanted in the South Florida area. The band plays countless national and state conventions, country club affairs, charity balls, high school and collefge proms — you name it.

This very special band probably won’t change the trend of today’s teenage music — and whos to say we’d really want it to? Perhaps it’s best that we keep this heady big-band stuff around just for special occassions. At our age, we probably couldn’t stand the shock of hearing these great sounds every day. Still — wouldn’t it be fun if we could?

–HOWARD C. PETERSON, JR.

The sidebar:

Coconut Grove carries as its heritage a reflection of courage, determination, and vision.

The early 1800’s brought the settlement of this new land on the shores of Biscayne Bay. The late 1800’s brough the railroad, and caused this settlement to become one of Florida’s most famous areas.

Coconut Grove, with its outstanding beauty and tropic charm, has drawn many a visitor away from northern climes, to take up permanent residence within its village limits. 

In 1926 the Coconut Grove Bank opened its doors to this community. It has been doing business here ever since. It survived the Great Depression, it perservered through the lean World War II years and the tumultuous post-war era.

Coconut Grove has always retained the warm, friendly atmostphere of a small independent, yet quite cosmopolitan town. 

The atmostphere of Coconut Grove Bank has always mirrored the community itself.

Recorded at Dukoff Studios, Miami, Florida.

XPRO2053

#8 – Super Angels OST – Kitty Records

Posted in Gold with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on December 14, 2011 by xxx
As always, the download link is located near the bottom of the post.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

Here at Garbage and Gold we are not content with monotony. This is now the 8th record that has been offered up to the masses on this blog and I have decided to do something a little bit different this time. Don’t worry, an LP’s worth of great music is still headed your way, that much will never change. But being the sole contributor of this blog can be a lonesome affair, so for this post, I have asked some of my best friends to contribute their creative talents to the blog.

Front Cover

The LP that we are presenting today is called Japanese Super Angels, a musical record promising “120% Exciting Sounds”, “Fighting Stereo Recording” and “360 Degree Sound”. The songs contained are individualized Wrestler Theme Songs for fans of Women’s Wrestling All Japan or The Super Angels in the 1980s and 90s. It is a beautiful picture disc record that caught my eye one day misfiled in the Sound Effects section at Amoeba Music (Hollywood). I took it home expecting wrestling sound effects, I was pleasantly surprised. This record contains some of the grooviest 80s Rock-Jazz-Funk-Synth-Pop-Nintendo-Fusion jams that I have ever come across. They are driving, motivational and inspiring, perfect for the adolescent wrestling fans that this record was probably targeted toward. They are catchy as the flu, yet, I couldn’t find any other copies or digital versions of these songs anywhere! This is a perfect example of the type of record that I started this blog for. A hidden gem. Someone’s garbage sold for a couple dollars has become this record collector’s gold. When you download below, you can share my plunder. Go ahead, download it now. Throw it on. Then continue reading, we have a lot of good stuff for you!

Picture Disc

As I mentioned before, we have some great guest-writers that have contributed to this post. About half of the wrestlers profiled on this record have a short piece that accompany their information. In some cases this piece is a bio, in others the writers have taken their creative liberties to truly capture the essence of these modern gladiators.  Please take the time to download and read these pieces. The writers have worked hard on them so that you could get an extra laugh/cry as you enjoy this music, so please feel free to do so. I offer a sincere thank-you to these writers for taking the time to make this a better post. Further gratitude goes out to reddit users: EasternNinja (for so much information and real character bios) and dxn126 (for the song titles). I hope that you all enjoy the multimedia.

The Wrestlers

Here is a gallery of all the images of the wrestlers.

The Writings

Chigusa Nagayo by Mikey Bulanti

Jaguar Yokoda by Jason Katz

Lioness Asuka by Robert Sobel

Yukari Ohmori by Bunko Yamazaki (Anna Roth)

Yumi Ogura by Sam Eaton 

Dump Matsumoto by Greg Johnson

Devil Masami by Blake Gaines

Bull Nakano by Joey Halegua

Some Good Tag-Team Shit

The Music

Side 1:

  1. Super Angels
  2. Storm Rider (Chigusa Nagayo’s Theme)
  3. Explosion “Shinba! Yea! Asuka!” (Lioness Asuka’s Theme)
  4. Dirty Chains
  5. Magical Force (Yukari’s Ohmori’s Theme)
  6. Steel Heroine (Jaguar Yokoda’s Theme)

Side 2:

  1. Heat Up (Itsuki Yamazaki’s Theme)
  2. Prism Circus (Noriyo Tateno’s Theme)
  3. Sparkle (Yumi Ogura’s Theme)
  4. Purple Typhoon (Devil Masami’s Theme)
  5. Tower of Power (Jumbo Hori’s Theme)
  6. Lonely Eyes

Download Here

The Links

http://www.amyaction.com/ajw_promotion.html

Bull Nakano Interview

Excellent Puroresu Resource

#3 – Don Drummond – Greatest Hits

Posted in Gold with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on October 2, 2011 by xxx

As always, the download link is located at the bottom of the page.

Don Drummond

This is a great set of first-wave Ska instrumentals featuring legendary composer/trombonist, Don Drummond and The Skatalites. Drummond was a founding member of The Skatalites and composed many of their hits up until he was convicted of murdering his girlfriend and subsequently submitted to a mental asylum. Drummond died in the asylum a few years later. According to Wikipedia, some sources believe that Drummond was killed in the asylum for the murder he committed.

Cover

Despite the tragic events that capped his life, Don Drummond is remembered as a leading visionary in early Jamaican Ska music of the 1960s. His musical style has influenced generations of Ska and Reggae musicians and continues to do so today.

This album is a greatest hits compilation put out on the Treasure Isle/Sonic Sounds label. The jazzy improvisational trombone work on this album lend itself to repeated listens. These songs will never get old. So do yourself a favor, put on your dancing shoes and get down to these fantastic Ska jams. This is a great record to play at your next party or even just around the house. If you are used to listening/dancing to reggae music be prepared to dance to a faster beat, this music doesn’t lend itself to being completely stoned out, but a little buzz wouldn’t hurt. For those of you who don’t live in the tropics, throw this record on to be transported to a totally different time and place. That is what great music is all about, right? Enjoy. Download below.

Liner Notes

Download:

http://www.mediafire.com/?c8ic49jpzmryr6k