Monday, March 5, 2018

Best of 2017

Here are my favorite ten piece of vinyl I accrued in 2017 from all the heaps I dug through and the smaller heaps I actually purchased.  These are not in any particular order.

Return To Forever - 30-Minute Radio Special

I bought this on discogs, and I got it largely for collection purposes.  But it is actually really interesting.  It is mostly a one sided interview with Chick interspersed with bits of music.  He has a really relaxing way about him and its nice to listen to and he does share some cool insights about the band.

I got this at Goodwill in Dyer Indiana.  I have found a lot of great stuff there and this was yet another huge surprise.  I really wasn't 100% positive what the hell it was until I got it home and put it on, well it is comedy as I suspected.  It would be classified as 'blue' and it even has some of that kind of racial humor that is legitimately racist because it is so nonchalant about it.  It is dated in a good way, it screams of an era from a long time ago that is only in TV shows and history books.  One of a kind.

I found this in Goodwill in Plainfield Indiana.  This is a like poor mans Bossa Nova.  I don't feel like the band is super tight and the arrangements aren't amazing.  It only makes it more endearing, like the toilet paper quality card stock they used for the jacket.  This is a great score.

Possibly the biggest find of the year.  Got this on Record Store Day at a new store I had never been to called Record Wonderland in Roselle, down the street from my parents house.  I had been looking for this for a while and I not only found it, it is a promo and it is in beautiful condition.  Best of all the owner told me it came from his uncle's collection which he inherited or something and put into the store's inventory.

I had already been to Bel-Aire (which closed in 2017, RIP) but on my second visit I really got grimy and started digging deep.  I found a few of this 7" and I was glad to grab it.  I was already aware of the artist and the LP this came from.  I wanted the LP badly because I had no idea there was a single with the two songs I wanted most (Englebert made both famous, amongst many other artists).  I have since grabbed the OTHER LP and I'm still on the lookout for this one.

I swore I'd never find this, I almost swore it did not exist even though I had seen the cover before.  I found it on ebay, I think I only paid about $10 and somehow by the grace of god another one came up a few weeks later, so I grabbed that one too.  I am pretty sure that I own the largest collection of barbershop vinyl in the world (I welcome all comers who want to try and steal my crown, with evidence) and this is a gem.  One of the most celebrated quartets of all time, performing with a band, with arrangements by Brian Beck.  I still can't believe I own it.

Another piece of barbershop vinyl I wasn't sure I'd ever see.  I've seen the CD a few times and I started to doubt the vinyl existed.  Got this one on ebay also.  I found the Harrington Brothers vinyl in a thrift store in Wisconsin a long time ago, it is nice to come full circle and grab this LP from some of the fam many years later.

Hard to believe this was in 2017.    I earned this one by giving a 'talk' at a record fair about how I have built my record shelving.  The guy who invited me gave me $20 credit at a booth and I found this pretty quickly (I think it was $15).  I am pretty sure it was my first Blue Note vinyl (I've gotten a couple since) and I have given it a couple spins.  I had a few Jimmy Smith LPs before this and I've grabbed a couple more since.

I've listened to a bunch of Versatones a little bit but only a couple a lot.  I bought this on vinyl and CD at Bel Aire on separate trips and I've listened to it a few times in the truck just in the past week of me writing this.  "Hey Pretty Girl" is such a great example of Chicago Push to anyone who wants to know more about the genre and "Left Handed Oberek" swings so hard it's like getting hit with a baseball bat.  Great, great album.

I got this one as a gift - just as I got Volume 1 as a gift a few years before, both times from my girlfriend for Christmas (maybe Volume 1 was for my birthday?).  I've been cranking these since they came out on mp3, I read an article about them in the early 00s and downloaded the mp3s illegally many moons ago on Audiogalaxy (ever heard of that one?).  Highly recommended.

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