Thursday, 22 March 2012

The leader of the pack

The last few weeks have seen me revisiting a few childhood favourites when it comes to popular music .

For instance for a brief period in the mid sixties the Red Bird and Blue cat lables had some of hippest music around from a wide range of artists with a lot of close harmony girl groups such as the Dixie Cups. Unfortunately connected with the reasons the lable shut down, many of the final mixed down 'master tapes' ended going to various odd bods as payment for debts resulting many later release in both the lp and cd eras suffering.

Recently Real Gone Music out out a cd with 20 tracks called "The Red Bird Girls for the Very first time in STEREO" newly remixed from the session floor tapes in stereo offering a new and much cleaner two channel sound on tracks such as Bessie Banks, Go Now, The AdLibs The Boy from New York City and many more.

One of the most famous groups on the label was the unforgettable Shangr Ls's whose dark soap opera in two and a half minutes drama's such as Leader Of The Pack, I Can Never Go Home No More and Past, Present and Future really pushed the enveloped for what could be achieved by soundscapes.
Most of the cds of their hits suffer from poor sound quality but in 2002 Englands RPM records redid the good Myrmidoms of Melodrama compilation improving on the sound and finding stereo versions of several tracks including Remember (walking in the sand) and I recently picked up a copy.

As well as regular readers know I've always loved Bobby Vees music and finally picked up the Bobby Vee singles Collection, a the cd set issued by EMI UK in 2006 covering ever a and b side cut for Libery records by him from the late 50's thru 1978 most of which appear in top quality stereo.
It's the best compilation of his material out there I'd have to say being well worth the modest cost Amazon UK are currently charging for it.

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