Enjoying Vinyl – Redux

As a follow up from an older post about why I love finding and buying vinyl, I’ve gotten a lot of enjoyment out of my record player recently. I was able to go to Marley’s Music in Biloxi, MS a month ago and picked up a great score from their dollar bin. I got a whole bunch of records, including:

  • Chico Hamilton – Catwalk. I picked up his album Perigrinations at Marley’s the last time I was there!) – both great fusion records
  • Mother’s Finest – Another Mother Further. How could I resist the super man logo with a guitar in it for a cover. No idea what this band is about, but the cover drew me in for a buck. I haven’t listened to this one yet, but I intend to soon…
  • A Sound Spectacular! Music From The Galaxies. A sci-fi movie soundtrack compilation, and while I have a couple of those already, it has a few things I didn’t have like the Star Trek theme and the theme from Moonraker. It’s a cool compilation.
  • The Outlaws – Eye of the Storm. I don’t know anything about the Outlaws, other than the name. I’d heard of them. Again, for a buck it’s worth a listen. Greasy southern rock & roll.
  • And last but not least…

I’m sure I’ve heard this before at some point, either via a friend loaning the CD to me, the library or maybe streaming online, but how can you beat it for a buck? I love finding good stuff like this cheap. And by the way, it’s an awesome album. Super Session!

About Super Session

From the wikipedia entry:

Al Kooper and Mike Bloomfield had previously worked together on the sessions for the ground-breaking classic Highway 61 Revisited by Bob Dylan, as well as playing in support of his controversial appearance at the Newport Folk Festival in July 1965. Kooper had recently left Blood, Sweat & Tears after recording their debut album with them, and was now working as an A&R man for Columbia. Bloomfield was about to leave Electric Flag, and at relative loose ends. Kooper telephoned Bloomfield to see if he was free to come down to the studio and jam; Bloomfield agreed, leaving Kooper to handle the arrangements.[3]

Kooper booked two days of studio time at CBS Columbia Square in May 1968, and recruited keyboardist Barry Goldberg and bassist Harvey Brooks, both members of the Electric Flag, along with well-known session drummer “Fast” Eddie Hoh. On the first day, the quintet recorded a group of mostly blues-based instrumental tracks, including the modal excursion “His Holy Modal Majesty”, a tribute to the late John Coltrane that was also reminiscent of “East-West” from the second Butterfield Blues Band album. On the second day, with the tapes ready to roll, Bloomfield returned to his home in Mill Valley, California, alleging that he had been unable to sleep.[4]

Needing to have something to show for the second day of sessions, to sit in for Bloomfield, Kooper hastily called upon Stephen Stills, also in the process of leaving his band Buffalo Springfield. Regrouping behind Stills, Kooper’s session men cut mostly vocal tracks, including “It Takes a Lot to Laugh, It Takes a Train to Cry” from Highway 61 and a lengthy and atmospheric take of “Season of the Witch” by Donovan.[5] Although Harvey Brooks’s closing “Harvey’s Tune” includes overdubbed horns added in New York City while the album was being mixed, the album only cost $13,000 to complete.

The success of the album opened the door for the “supergroup” concept of the late 1960s and 1970s, as exemplified by the likes of Blind Faith and Crosby, Stills & Nash. Kooper forgave Bloomfield, and the two of them made several concert appearances after the album was released. The results of one of those became the album The Live Adventures of Mike Bloomfield and Al Kooper.[6]


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