Monday, April 16, 2018

Carof and the Boys with a Folk-Song-Poem Single

I have a rather unusual release for you today, unusual for a few different reasons.

The record was released on the Inner-Glo label, a label which existed primarily for the purpose of housing songs written by Edith Hopkins. Edith Hopkins may be my favorite writer from the song-poem world, having written more than a half-dozen songs that I really love.

At some point, Ms. Hopkins may a go of it as an actual, prospective writer of hit songs, and a few non-song-poem (although not successful) artists recorded her work on the Carellen label, which seems to (maybe) have been a legit/song-poem hybrid. 

At some point, however, she moved on to her own Inner-Glo label. And many, if not most, of the records I've heard and seen on Inner-Glo came from the Globe song-poem factory, with such stalwarts as Sammy Marshall and Kris Arden. And they tend to sound very much like Globe releases, even when they are far above average, as with Sammy's great double-A side "I'll Do It For You" / "Nothing Ventured, Nothing Gained".

The story behind today's record, though, is not so clear, and I find it kind of fascinating. First, there is the artist credit, to "David, Paul and Carof". I've done some searches just now, and I can't find any reference to "Carof" being a first name. It also appears that this record (from 1964) is the only one ever released bearing this artist credit.

And on top of that, the song's genre is one rarely heard on song-poem records - folk music, very much in the relatively simple vein of Peter, Paul and Mary or the Kingston Trio (although not in the wheelhouse of the more adept and musically excellent groups such as The Weavers, The Limeliters or The Chad Mitchell Trio). I can barely think of another song-poem that sounds quite like this.

The song on this side is by far the better of the two, to my ears, "The Love of a Woman" (although I wish they'd bothered to get all the instruments in tune with each other), and yes, the record really does end like that.

Download: David, Paul and Carof - The Love of a Woman

The flip side is the more musically complex "A Rose Can't Grow", but it's also quite a bit more ponderous, and is the sort of thing that often tries my patience, despite my being a huge fan of the music of the folk revival of this era. It sounds to me like the vocal gymnastics required by the arrangement are a bit beyond these guys.

Download: David, Paul and Carof - A Rose Can't Grow


Stu Shea said...

Side a is certainly more chipper and more interesting. ASPMA database says 1964, which sounds about right...



Sammy Reed said...

This record was most-likely made at an RCA Victor pressing plant. I found a couple of pages that mention date codes for records pressed by RCA.
In this case, the R in "R4KM" means 1964, and the 4 being placed after the R means it was made sometime in the 2nd half of the year.

Darryl Bullock said...

Does anyone else hear Rodd Keith here? That lead voice could easily be him, and Rodd did record several sides for Inner-Glo...

Sammy Reed said...

Y'know, it could dang-well be a triple-tracked Rodd.

Sammy Reed said...

Oddly enough, there's a listing for this 45 on E-Bay, with the date of "5-64" written on the label.

Sammy Reed said...

Looking at the 2nd site I listed more carefully - If the 4 is before the K (not the R), it means Jan-June.
Breaking it down:
R is the year code meaning 1964
4 means custom rerecorded from a furnished tape.
K means 45 RPM.
M means mono.