Christopher Komeda - Music from the Motion Picture Rosemary's Baby, Waxwork Records , WW002, 2014 I'm not a soundtrack collector, as a rule, but when I really love a film, or the music is exceptional (which tend to go together) I often do find I get a lot of out listening to the music as music not just as "background." From both sides. That's the case with the Wicker Man, as I've mentioned here before, and it's true of Rosemary's Baby which is by almost every measure my favorite film. And the soundtrack, by the legendary Polish jazz composer Krzysztof Komeda is simply stunning. Listening to it "disembodied" is quite interesting. The creepy bits are far more intense, but the surprising part is the whimsical quality of much of this incidental music, which is so skillfully used in the film that its presence is felt more than perceived. At least for me. I think it's a work of genuine genius, quite apart from the film (which is also a work of genius.) This is a rather elaborate and quite gorgeously mastered 2014 boutique release of the full soundtrack, on Waxwork Records, on frosted clear 180g vinyl with a heavy stock gatefold cover and an "art print" insert. The unusually informative liner notes, by Scott Bettencourt, say this: "Although an LP of Rosemary's Baby was released in 1968, it did not feature the actual music as recorded for the film. This album marks the original soundtrack's premiere release on vinyl." This made me wonder what the original LP release consisted of, so I looked for it on YouTube and it's true. The familiar stuff sounds like a lot of the same basic tracks but all fancied up. Not unpleasantly so, I have to say, but in comparison to the original soundtrack it comes off as rather kitschy, like swingin' 60s lounge "bachelor pad" pastiche. Which, don't get me wrong, I like. But of course I prefer the real thing, which simultaneously has more simplicity and depth. There's also an unexpected rock pop song that pops up on side B of the 1968 LP, which, if I'm construing the track listing correctly is called "Rosemary's Party." It's not bad, very '68, vocal heavy soft-psych LA sound, like a less druggy Strawberry Alarm Clock. Total surprise to me. Who was the band? Discogs is silent on this matter, and there's no credit on the label of the LP either. Was this song written (performed?) by Komeda as well? I would be surprised. A bit of idle googling turned up nothing on this. Needless to say, I'm now in the market for the original soundtrack on Dot Records. (And while I'm at it with the Rosemary's Baby questions, the main title song, called "Rosemary's Lullaby" is sung "la la la" fashion by Mia Farrow in the film and on the soundtrack, but there are Komeda-composed lyrics. If a version with lyrics was ever recorded with Mia Farrow singing I haven't been able to find it and I'd love to hear it.) Krzysztof Komeda would no doubt have had a bright future ahead of him in America after the success of Rosemary's Baby in 1968, but as it happens in 1969 he suffered head injuries from a fall during a drunken ramble in the Hollywood hills - according to the liner notes his drunk friends picked him up but then kept dropping him and he died shortly thereafter. Probably needed some better friends. RIP, man. Your music lives on. UPDATE: Michael forwards a link which seems to contain the answer to the "Rosemary's Party" question: https://www.avforums.com/review/rosemary-s-baby-music-from-the-motion-picture-soundtrack-review.4824?fbclid=IwAR0g6GdXL34uClZ_hSCT4JfHJe7Bjc3v3B_n0YTFO2TI1ifrZuEBE8PIoFQ ""As an evocative reminder of the outside world and its hippy ethics, Komeda serenades the sun with the awesome sugar-pop Track 9, Rosemary’s Party, which he wrote with songsmith Hal Blair, and had Jimmie Haskell arrange and conduct. This is pure nostalgia and a superb slice of irresistible 60’s pizzazz. Actually entitled “Moment in Time”, this can also be heard in the Source Cue 34, with a piano solo.... Very catchy and boasting that essential hip-swaying, hair-tossing, ever-smiling vibe of flowers, flares and freedom. Tambourine, twanging guitar and madcap, fuzzy-chinned male vocals really capture the bygone euphoria of 1968..." notes: -- Music from the Motion Picture, Waxwork Records 2014: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wce3FBUmIBo -- discogs for 2014 release: https://www.discogs.com/Christopher-Komeda-Rosemarys-Baby-Music-From-The-Motion-Picture/release/5431364 -- original 1968 "soundtrack" album on Dot Records: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LOl_A9SOQXc -- discogs for 1968 release: https://www.discogs.com/Christopher-Komeda-Rosemarys-Baby-Music-From-The-Motion-Picture-Score/release/1123505 -- "Rosemary's Lullaby" lyrics: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rosemary's_Lullaby -- Krzysztof Komeda on wikipedia: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Krzysztof_Komeda #music #vinylcollector #records #soundtracks #minds

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Who was the first heavy metal band? A hard question to answer. Blue Cheer instantly pops into my mind. Here are some clips for an article about the band I find fascinating. https://www.loudersound.com/features/cult-heroes-blue-cheer-the-band-who-invented-heavy-metal “People thought we were just making noise,” says Dickie Peterson, from his home in Germany. “They thought we were a detriment to the scene. I just knew we wanted to be loud. I wanted our music to be physical. I wanted it to be more than just an audio experience. This is what we set out to try and do. We ended up being in a lot of trouble with other musicians of the time. I remember Mike Bloomfield came up to me at the Avalon Ballroom, and he says, ‘You can’t do that’. I said, ‘C’mon, Mike, you can do it, too. All you gotta do is turn this knob up to 10’. He hated me ever since. He was this great accomplished musician and I was this 18 year old smartass,” Dickie laughs. “We did have a bit of an arrogance, but it was nurtured by people like that criticising us.” “We were on American Bandstand,” Dickie remembers, “And Dick Clark [AB’s host] didn’t like us at all. My manager was a Hell’s Angel, and we were sitting there smoking a hash pipe, and Dick Clark comes in and says, ‘It’s people like you that give rock’n’roll a bad name’. We looked at him and smiled, and said, ‘Thanks a lot, Dick’. We did the Steve Allen show too, and that was a real kick in the ass. When they introduced us, Steve Allen said, ‘Ladies and gentlemen, Blue Cheer. Run for your life’.” “We were basically street kids,” Dickie explains. “We were never around the kind of money we were getting. There was a lot of financial mismanagement. All the songs I wrote, I lost my publishing for all of those. I didn’t know it when it happened. There was a lot of business – not just with us but with a lot of bands in the 60s – that was just slipshod.” 1968 was still in full-swing when Blue Cheer were marched back into the studio for their second album, and already there were signs of wear and tear in the band. Guitarist Leigh Stephens had quit, fearing deafness if he continued to play with the louder-than-God band. He was replaced by Randy Holden. Vincebus Eruptum was recorded in three days, with very little mixing. For their follow-up, the label demanded some actual production. This proved difficult. “We had never done a studio production,” Dickie explains. “It was all new to us. We couldn’t turn our amps up the way we wanted to and get the tones we wanted. So the record company rented a pier in New York Harbour, and so we went out there with a mobile unit and recorded all the basic tracks. And then we went back into the Record Factory and did all the sweetening – which was a lot.” The result was 1968’s blistering Outsideinside, perhaps the only album in existence recorded outside, in New York Harbour, because the band were too loud to play in a studio. “We knew we were doing something that no one had done before,” Dickie says. “We thought it was so absurd, we just had to do it. If that does not sound like a metal band I don't know what does. Vincebus Eruptum is 2007 repress https://www.discogs.com/Blue-Cheer-Vincebus-Eruptum/release/2152882 Outsideinside is an original US 1968 press https://www.discogs.com/Blue-Cheer-Outsideinside/release/1139784 Vincebus Eruptum https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9muMHqDiDfg Outsideinside https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S5UE5DDI09w&list=PL870204C20A866422 #vinylcollector

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Who was the first heavy metal band? A hard question to answer. Blue Cheer instantly pops into my mind. Here are some clips for an article about the band I find fascinating. https://www.loudersound.com/features/cult-heroes-blue-cheer-the-band-who-invented-heavy-metal “People thought we were just making noise,” says Dickie Peterson, from his home in Germany. “They thought we were a detriment to the scene. I just knew we wanted to be loud. I wanted our music to be physical. I wanted it to be more than just an audio experience. This is what we set out to try and do. We ended up being in a lot of trouble with other musicians of the time. I remember Mike Bloomfield came up to me at the Avalon Ballroom, and he says, ‘You can’t do that’. I said, ‘C’mon, Mike, you can do it, too. All you gotta do is turn this knob up to 10’. He hated me ever since. He was this great accomplished musician and I was this 18 year old smartass,” Dickie laughs. “We did have a bit of an arrogance, but it was nurtured by people like that criticising us.” “We were on American Bandstand,” Dickie remembers, “And Dick Clark [AB’s host] didn’t like us at all. My manager was a Hell’s Angel, and we were sitting there smoking a hash pipe, and Dick Clark comes in and says, ‘It’s people like you that give rock’n’roll a bad name’. We looked at him and smiled, and said, ‘Thanks a lot, Dick’. We did the Steve Allen show too, and that was a real kick in the ass. When they introduced us, Steve Allen said, ‘Ladies and gentlemen, Blue Cheer. Run for your life’.” “We were basically street kids,” Dickie explains. “We were never around the kind of money we were getting. There was a lot of financial mismanagement. All the songs I wrote, I lost my publishing for all of those. I didn’t know it when it happened. There was a lot of business – not just with us but with a lot of bands in the 60s – that was just slipshod.” 1968 was still in full-swing when Blue Cheer were marched back into the studio for their second album, and already there were signs of wear and tear in the band. Guitarist Leigh Stephens had quit, fearing deafness if he continued to play with the louder-than-God band. He was replaced by Randy Holden. Vincebus Eruptum was recorded in three days, with very little mixing. For their follow-up, the label demanded some actual production. This proved difficult. “We had never done a studio production,” Dickie explains. “It was all new to us. We couldn’t turn our amps up the way we wanted to and get the tones we wanted. So the record company rented a pier in New York Harbour, and so we went out there with a mobile unit and recorded all the basic tracks. And then we went back into the Record Factory and did all the sweetening – which was a lot.” The result was 1968’s blistering Outsideinside, perhaps the only album in existence recorded outside, in New York Harbour, because the band were too loud to play in a studio. “We knew we were doing something that no one had done before,” Dickie says. “We thought it was so absurd, we just had to do it. If that does not sound like a metal band I don't know what does. Vincebus Eruptum is 2007 repress https://www.discogs.com/Blue-Cheer-Vincebus-Eruptum/release/2152882 Outsideinside is an original US 1968 press https://www.discogs.com/Blue-Cheer-Outsideinside/release/1139784 Vincebus Eruptum https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9muMHqDiDfg Outsideinside https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S5UE5DDI09w&list=PL870204C20A866422 #vinylcollector

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