Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Otherworldly Sounds

Okay, this one is weird on several levels. As I've documented here (in posts which are, unfortunately, not currently able to play sound), the Cinema label and it's generic band "The Real Pros", started off as what appears to have been a one man band with one of those early '70's living room organs which would play the rhythm and chords for you, while you soloed (whoever this person was, he made some of my all time favorite song-poems - thanks, dude!).

Then, early in the label's existence, they transitioned over to the crew that were also making records for MSR - Rodd Keith, Dick Kent, Bobbi Blake, etc. The first of these records appear perhaps halfway through the 1972 run of records (Cinema's record numbers indicate the year they were made). Some feature the one man band on one side and the MSR crew on the other.

This one falls within that time period, but I have no idea who is singing - perhaps someone out there does. That's one element of the weirdness. The much bigger element is the sound of the thing.

The first song, "The Daydream of a Girl", is fairly straightforward, with lyrics full of pain, not unlike a hundred others, although they are, to my ears, a bit more effective than a lot of "you hurt me" song-poems. But what's with this arrangement? The guitar starts us off, but the track is dominated by a wah-wah'd organ - probably the same one the one man band used, based on the other settings used for coloring of the piece. But I find the whole thing has just a strange feel.

Download: The Real Pros: The Daydream of a Girl

But "Daydream" is downright mainstream compared to its flip side. "Lonesome Sad and Blue", features more of that wah-wah organ, a badly strummed guitar and otherworldly production. I picture this being recorded in a cave, a mile from anyone other living souls. It has an acutely lonely sound, and this is one of those sessions I would LOVE to have been at. It's creepy and amazing at the same time.

That said, the performance is half-assed on virtually everyone's part (sort of like if those on "The Basement Tapes" were just learning to play their instruments and to sing), and the lyrics are painfully direct and tell a sad story with little style. With all of that said, the melody and chord changes resonate with me. And I think that's because a significant parts of the melody are lifted almost directly from "Spanish is the Loving Tongue", at least in the tune sung in my favorite version, by Ronnie Gilbert, which you can hear here.

Download: The Real Pros: Lonesome Sad and Blue


Stu Shea said...

What a weird concatenation of odd sounds! The world-weary singer, the goofy melodica, the combo of church organ and wah-wah Farfisa, the almost ukelele-ish guitar...such a bizarre 45! Doesn't sound that different, in some ways, from stuff like "Deep Freeze Mama" and "Teenage Queen." Maybe it's that guy's winsome 22-year-old girlfriend singing here. :)

Timmy said...

These are REAL PROS... I especially enjoy the first side here. Both is cool, though. You mentioned, Bob, that the 2nd. side sounds like it was recorded in a cave, well, yes, an ICE cave! I also hear similarities of certain aspects of "Spanish Is The Loving Tongue", and if there was anyone responsible around today, there could even be a law suit brought up against these folks... I still prefer Dylan's version, released on his "Self Portrait" LP. ~~~ Adios, Mi Corazon ~~~

Timmy said...

Whooops, I was incorrect, after pulling out the LP, it was NOT "Self Portrait", it was "the LP titled: "Dylan", released in '73.

Sammy Reed said...

A couple of probabilities are in my brain as to who this might be. They both have the same chance of being WRONG, I know, but I thought I'd put them out-there:

1. The singer misnamed "Dick Kent" on the label of "Do You Think of Me?", who was established by a few comments to be Debbie Davies
2. VERY early Kay Weaver

She sounds somewhere in-bewteen them to me.

Sammy Reed said...

That's "WILL You Think of Me?". I wish we could edit the comments we make.

Sammy Reed said...

The more I hear this, the more convinced I am that it's Kay Weaver.
Coincidentally, "Daydream of a Girl" is in the same key as "Astrouniverse".