Just a bit more than a week after the arrival of autumn, Real Gone music will deliver a slate of releases that might put you in an appropriately reflective mood. On September 30, two late vocal legends, Patti Page and Perry Como, get the Real Gone treatment complete with numerous previously unissued performances. A bona fide rock and R&B legend, Billy Preston, sees an early classic reissued alongside another concert rescued from the Grateful Dead’s vault. And the batch is rounded out by not one, not two, but three albums from The Lords of the New Church – the post-punk group featuring members of The Dead Boys, The Damned, The Barracudas and Sham 69.
Without a doubt, it’s going to be a Real Gone fall. Hit the jump for the full details including the label’s press release, pre-order links and more!
LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA – With the passing of Patti Page on New Year’s Day of this year, America lost one of its most distinctive and distinguished musical voices, the #1-selling female artist of the ’50s and a remarkably versatile singer equally at home in the pop and country genres. Virtually all Page retrospectives have concentrated on her ’50s recordings for the Mercury label, but she had a very successful second act to her career while recording during the ’60s for the Columbia label, where she scored a dozen chart hits. Now, to honor her singular talent and enduring recording legacy, Real Gone Music is training its collector’s eye on Patti Page’s Columbia recordings with two essential anthologies. The first, the 2-CD set The Complete Columbia Singles 1962-1970, includes all 50 single sides she released on the Columbia label, featuring 12 hits (most prominently ”Hush, Hush, Sweet Charlotte,” here in its hit single and bonus German version) and many impossible-to-find non-album tracks previously only available on 45 rpm vinyl. The second, From Nashville to L.A. – Lost Columbia Masters 1963-1969 serves up a full 24 previously unreleased tracks including a number of country-flavored tracks she recorded in Nashville. Both packages are annotated by long-time Page friend and fan Alan Eichler, and include plenty of photos supplied by the Page estate, with remastering by Vic Anesini at Sony’s own Battery Studios. [JM: Lost Columbia Masters offers a selection of familiar pop, R&B and rock-and-roll classics rendered in Page’s inimitable style including “Teach Me Tonight,” “Hallejulah, I Love Him So,” “Then You Can Tell Me Goodbye” and “Raining in My Heart,” as well as “To Wait for Love.” The latter may be the Burt Bacharach/Hal David song introduced by Jay and the Americans in 1964 and recorded the same year by Paul Anka, Tom Jones, and Tony Orlando. Hal David is said to have maintained that it was a woman’s lyric, and Jackie DeShannon duly recorded it. But perhaps Patti’s version would have met greater success had it not been shelved?]
Perry Como [JM: a favorite of both Real Gone Music and The Second Disc!] was hardly the first pop vocalist to add country to his sound, but he might have been the most accomplished — recorded with Nashville producer-picker Chet Atkins, his 1975 album Just Out of Reach capped a three decade run of charting albums for the crooner, peaking at #142 in December of that year. But the ten tracks from that album – which has never appeared on CD anywhere in the world – are only the beginning of Just Out of Reach – Rarities from Nashville Produced by Chet Atkins, a 23-track treasure trove of sides that Como recorded with Atkins in Nashville during the ’70s. Also included are six unreleased outtakes from the album sessions for Just Out of Reach and Como’s 1973 album And I Love You So, five non-LP singles new to CD, and Spanish language versions of Perry’s hit recordings of ”And I Love You So” and ”I Want To Give.” Como connoisseur Jim Ritz adds notes along with photos. The pairing (Perry-ing?) of Como with Atkins wasn’t just a meeting of RCA label giants; these two legends really made musical magic together.
Phrases don’t get much more oxymoronic than ”punk supergroup,” but there’s no getting around it: The Lords of the New Church had a pedigree no punk band could match. Lead singer Stiv Bators had spearheaded the Dead Boys, one of America’s preeminent young, loud and snotty outfits, while guitarist Brian James was the guitarist for the Damned, who, along with the Pistols and the Clash, were in the first wave and first rank of Britain’s punk groups. The rest of the band were no slouches, either; bassist Dave Tregugna and drummer Nick Turner hailed from Sham 69 and the Barracudas, respectively, two acts not quite as hallowed but each highly-esteemed. Anticipation was high among the leather jacket and Mohawk set, therefore, when their debut album came out in 1982, but the Lords, secure in their punk bona-fides, brought a highly stylized look and a new melodic polish to the music, which alienated some followers but brought a whole new element into their fan base. Furthermore, what the music lacked in fury, the band made up for with incendiary live shows which often ended up with Bators doing physical harm to himself (and reputedly being clinically dead for several minutes after one gig). Now, Real Gone Music is reissuing the first three albums – The Lords of the New Church, Is Nothing Sacred? and The Method to Our Madness – from this seminal post-punk group, complete with notes by Scott Schinder. All three records have been out of print for years – [it’s] time to fill a gaping hole in your post-punk collection.
Many folks only became aware of Billy Preston in the late ’60s through his work as a Beatles sideman and his signing to their Apple Records label as a solo artist. But Preston had actually been recording for many years before that, and his first big break came courtesy of none other than Sam Cooke. Preston – then still in high school – was hired to play on Cooke’s 1963 album Night Beat, and Cooke was so impressed with the teenager that he signed him to the Derby imprint of his SAR Records label, and got him in the studio right away to record 16-Yr. Old Soul. The album features a cookin’ batch of instrumentals propelled by Preston’s funky organ and piano licks leading two tasty combos, one composed of the legendary Earl Palmer on drums, Gene Edwards on guitar and Clifford Hils on bass, the other [composed of] Hils, guitarist Tommy Tedesco [of the Wrecking Crew] and drummer Milt Turner. This CD debut – yours courtesy of Real Gone Music and ABKCO Music & Records – adds a couple of bonus tracks, ”Sweet Thing” and ”Win Your Love for Me,” with sound overseen by ABKCO’s Chief Audio Engineer Teri Landi and notes by Bill Dahl.
Though 1985 is reckoned as one of the better years for Grateful Dead tours in the ’80s, Dick’s Picks Vol. 21 – Richmond, Virginia 11/1/85 presents the only show from that year to see an official release. And it’s no wonder that the producers of the series selected this date; it offers an unusual song selection and strong performances throughout. ”Stagger Lee,” ”Comes a Time” and Dylan’s ”She Belongs to Me” are all seldom-heard revivals peculiar to 1985 and receive sterling renditions, and Bob Weir’s rave-up on the rarely-performed ”Gloria” caps the show in grand fashion. Collector types will also note that this 3-CD set provides the only instance of ”Lost Sailor” and ”Saint of Circumstance” being separated from each other in a set. Disc Three adds nearly 40 minutes of bonus material from a September 2, 1980 show at the Community War Memorial in Rochester, NY, and all 40 minutes are devoted to a sublime medley of ”Space”/”Iko Iko”/”Morning Dew”/”Sugar Magnolia.” Late-period Dead at its best!
Full track listings can be found at all links, below.
Available on September 30:
Patti Page, The Complete Columbia Singles 1962-1970 (2-CD Set)
Patti Page, From Nashville to L.A. – Lost Columbia Masters 1963-1969
Perry Como, Just Out of Reach – Rarities from Nashville Produced by Chet Atkins
The Lords of the New Church, The Lords of the New Church
The Lords of the New Church, Is Nothing Sacred?
The Lords of the New Church, The Method to Our Madness
Billy Preston, 16-Yr. Old Soul
Grateful Dead, Dick’s Picks Vol. 21 – Richmond, Virginia 11/1/85 (3-CD Set)