Wizard- The Original

I have a few records that I must track down in my lifetime.  And although I doubt I will find them at a yard sale or thrift store, I refuse to spend a lot of money on them.  I am willing to part with a few bucks to obtain these holy grails of mine but there is no way I would pay hundreds of dollars for them.  This record was one of my grails.  And although I did pay a bit (around $50) it was well worth it.

Every collector has a few records on their list that they absolutely need.  I have been lucky enough to track down four "must-haves" in Value Villages, Salvation Army Stores and yard sales.  Reign Ghost, Blind Ravage, Warpig and Bent Wind are all worth LOTS of cash and I scored them for pennies...literally.  So there is always hope for the hard working digger.

This LP from Wizard did not disappoint.  Heavy fuzzed out psych from 1971.  This album is why vinyl will always beat any other format.  Deep bass riffs sound deep.  Sharp drum beats sound sharp.  This album had me playing air guitar like an idiot for the first couple of listens. A total score... even if I paid $50 bones for it. Give it a listen below!

Artist: Wizard
Title: The Original
Label: Peon
Matrix: P-1069
Year: 1971
Size: 12"
Speed: 33.3


Weird Wax Podcast #7

So, I have been jamming out to a lot of late 60's- early 70's psych rock recently.  Bands like Bent Wind, Blue Cheer and Warpig are on heavy rotation.  Some of these records are my most valuable.  A solid copy of "Sussex" by Bent Wind can earn you a solid $3000-4000.  I recently added a NM/EX+ copy of Wizard- The Original on Peon Records (I will be talking about it very soon on this very blog) so I decided that I might try to throw down an all psych mixtape.  Download it for free HERE or click on the podcast button at the top.  In this installment of the weekly mixtape you will hear from the bands mentioned above as well as Captain Foam, Tangerine Zoo, The Growing Concern, Troyka and other early psych bands.  I also tossed in a few newer tracks from today's psych torch bearers like Black Mountain and Oneida.  Enjoy!


Jean Pierre Ferland- Les Grands Succes Barclay Vol. 5

Jean Pierre Ferland was born in 1932 in Montreal, Quebec.  He started his musical career at the CBC as a clerk but soon learned guitar and began his life as a crooner.  Now, I had never heard of JPF until buying this record at a flea market.  I presumed he was some sort of Leonard Cohen/ Jacques Brel type and I was pretty close. 

I am not a huge fan of this record but it does draw up certain emotions in me.  While listening to this double LP I feel like hanging out at a Montreal cafe, smoking (even though I don't smoke), drinking some sort of coffee-based drink I cannot pronounce while looking down my pretentious nose at passersby.  Listening to this album makes me feel snooty and superior to every human ever.  This record is a middle-age hipster masturbation soundtrack... if that middle-aged hipster bothered to masturbate.

I am not sure what this record is worth.  I haven't seen many around.  But others in the Barclay's series such as Brel, Robert Charlebois and Alain Berriere sell for around $15-25.  The series was quite popular and featured artists from Quebec and Europe. 

Artist: Jean Pierre Ferland
Title: Les Grands Succes Barclay
Label: Barclay
Matrix: M8-75005
Year: 1972
Size: 12"
Speed: 33.3

Jim Sturgis- Sunrun

When I first found this record (for a measly 25 cents!) I figured it would likely be some sort of private press space folk album.  I really wasn't far off.  I would say its closer to some sort of intergalactic soft prog rock. Almost like if John Tesh did some acid.  When I first listened to it I felt like I was watching The Great Space Coaster but with a sprinkle of melancholy.  Picture an episode where one of the kids on the show had a close relative die.  And then by the end of the show, the kid realized that death was just a part of life and felt a whole lot better.

There isn't much information kicking around about Jim Sturgis or this LP for that matter.  It seems he autographed most of his records.  My copy was signed "To Sue. May all your dreams come true. All my love, Jim Sturgis" He may not have been the most talented recording artist in the world but he was certainly a sweetheart! I have seen a few of these kicking around over the years but its certainly a rare and collectible record with prices normally hovering around the $20-40 range.  Not retirement money but definitely worth more than the quarter I parted with to get my mitts on it.  A solid score.

Sidenote: I am going to be hitting up a big church sale this Thursday so be prepared for a slew of new reviews about terrible records.

Artist: Jim Sturgis
Title: Sunrun
Label: J.J.P. Records
Matrix: LB-17699
Year: ???
Size: 12"
Speed: 33.3


Weird Wax Podcast #6

Hey everyone.  This week's installment of our weekly digital mixtape is available for download HERE for free.  Numero Six in this series features Link Wray, Surfer Blood, Sonic Youth, Joy Division, Talking Heads, Vampire Weekend, Bare Wires and more.  Tell all your friends and if you don't have any friends, tell someone who looks like they have terrible taste in music.  This might save their life.  You can always download previous digital mixtapes in the podcasts link at the top of the page.



Babla & Kanchan- Kuchh Gadbad Hai

Ahhhh... Bollywood!  This entire genre  has been completely overlooked by those of us in the west. And for the most part, ignoring this genre has been a good thing.  That is not the case with this Indian monster.  This album is catchier than malaria in Calcutta.

Side A  has some pretty sweet instrumentation from Babla and his orchestra.  Not sure what types of synths they are using but these are some hot jams.  Side B starts out with "Tum Itna Na Piyo" which has a sequence where Kanchan sings a duet with what sounds like a Hindu chipmunk.  I love it.  The second track on the B-Side is even better.  It starts out with this funky dance jam but littered throughout the track are samples of elephants, cats, donkeys, lasers and laser donkeys.

This is a fairly sought after record that can sell for as high as $50.  I can see why.  Who wouldn't want to own this record!  I cannot recommend this LP enough.  On the scale of one to ten this album scores nine laser donkeys.

(You can almost see me snapping the pic of this record reflected in the shrink wrap... ooops)

Artist: Babla & Kanchan
Title: Kuchh Gadbad Hai
Label: Rohit
Matrix: STEREO-021
Year: 1984
Size: 12"
Speed: 33.3

Giak- Inside You

Nothing gets me hotter than Italian disco music from 1983.  This is common knowledge.  I am sure it is the same for most people.  This record here is some serious baby making music.  The title alone screams sexy! 

The cover art by James Fieramosca looks vaguely like a penis and/or vagina and/or creepy banana.  I'm not really sure.  But whatever the case, it totally fits the album.

I couldn't find out much information on this record other than the dude was from Italy and likely wore a gold chain, silk shirts and a poofy mullet.

When listening to this I felt like I was in some 80's movie montage where I was gearing up for the big fight scene.  My girlfriend thought it made her feel like she was also in some feminist power/ enlightenment montage.  No man was gonna hold her back!

I grabbed this record off of eBay for a solid 99 cents.  It seems to sell for anywhere around $20-40 on most sites so it was certainly a profitable score but I may have to keep this one in the collection for awhile simply for the raw animal sexuality it stirs up inside me...

(You see what I did there? Ended the review with a little play on the album title?  That is why when you need insightful and witty reviews on absolutely terrible records, you come here...)

Artist: Giak
Title: Inside You
Label: Tanga
Matrix: TL 001
Year: 1983
Size: 12"
Speed: 33.3


The Rockets- Rocket Rock/ Stardust

This is another 45 that seems to be a bit of a mystery.  I have searched high and low for information about it to no avail.  I can't even remember where I picked up this gem but I am sure I didn't pay much (or anything) for it.  I wish I could find some info on this band because this 7" is a total instrumental rockabilly classic.

"Rockets Rock" is a total ripper while the B-Side, "Stardust" is a little more subdued.  I am floored that the internet has nothing on this record.  I am sure its just a rare/ obscure record on a rare/ obscure label but songs this good seem to find a way onto sites like Waxidermy, Soul Strut and even Discogs.

Over the years, there have been many bands with the same name but it seems this incarnation of the band called The Rockets is a total enigma.  There have also been a few labels that are/ were called Saturn Records but none seem to be THIS Saturn Records.

If anyone has any information pertaining to this record, I would love to hear it.  Hopefully, I will be able to update this blurb in the near future and let everyone know a little more about a killer 45 that deserves more attention than it seems to have garnered since its release.

Artist: The Rockets
Title: Rockets Rock/ Stardust
Label: Saturn Records
Matrix: CT- 28078 (410-300)
Year: ?
Size: 7"
Speed: 45

Side note... This record was pressed in Canada.  "Rockets Rock" was written by Marcoux, Ducas & Boivin.  "Stardust" was written by Page, Lachaine, Vincent & Desalliers... if that helps anyone...

Update... It turns out this record was released by Les Rockets.  An earlier incarnation was Andre Marcoux and Les Rockets.  I still don't have any information on this particular record or the label but The Rockets did release an album in 1961 called "Going to the Dance Party"  I am thinking this record may be a private pressing on a label created by the band but I am far from certain.


Weird Wax Podcast #5

Hello, children.  This week's installment of the Weird Wax Digital Mixtape is available for free download now!  You can get it HERE!!!  It features tracks from bands like Les Mystics, Dog Day, The Jeff Beck Band, Them, King Khan & The BBQ Show, DB Buxton and The Super Friendz.  A nice little playlist for jogging, dancing, cooking chicken or looking at IKEA catalogs.

La Revolution Francaise- Quebecois/ Shoo-Doo-Bee-Do/ Chantons L'Ete

Les Sinners are one of my favourite bands to come out of the 60's Quebec garage scene.  When Francois Guy left the band to start La Revolution Francaise, he focused his musical energy on the Separatist movement of the day.  This 45 features the track "Quebecois," which sold over 100,000 copies in Quebec and became somewhat of a "national" anthem.

Politics aside, this 7" is a psych masterpiece.  You can really see the development in Guy's writing.  I am shocked that some hip hop act from Montreal hasn't sampled the A-Side.  The songwriting on this record is timeless.  It sounds as fresh today as when it was written in 1969.

I found this record at a garage sale for a nickel.  I am not too sure of the monetary value but I imagine it would be in the $25-30 region.  Surprisingly, a week after I scored this copy I found another at a Value Village for 99 cents.

I love the Quebec garage/ psych scene of this era and although I may not agree with the politics expressed on the record, I do appreciate the music.  This is a Canadian classic from a band that is rarely heard of outside Quebec.

Artist: La Revolution Francaise
Title:  Quebecois/ Shoo-Doo-Bee-Do/ Chantons L'Ete
Label: Revolution
Matrix: R-2010
Year: 1969
Size: 7"
Speed: 45

Dumka- Thought Music and Song Featuring Dumka

Now as many of you know, I am a HUGE Ukrainian folk music fan.  I just can't get enough.  That whole polka vibe can get a party started better than Black Eyed Peas ever could hope.  Dumka are like The Strokes of Ukrainian folk jams; young studs who can not only rock an accordian but move like Jagger too. 

Some of the tracks, although vodka chugging anthems, contain a certain amount of mystery.  "Do Not Go To Parties, Hritz"  and "It's Raining, Who Will Take  Me Home," are two examples.  Why can't Hritz go to parties?  Is he simply a bad drunk or is there a more sinister reason?  Are the Ukrainian mob, known for feeding people borscht until they die of beet poisoning, after him?  Who knows... And who will take me home?  A sexy Ukrainian model named Svetlana or once again, the Ukrainian mob, who will likely steal all your toilet paper and sell it on the Kiev black market.  We can only guess... I guess that's where the "Thought" in the title comes from... It sure has me thinking.

I scored this record in my girlfriend's parent's basement (for free) and what surprised me is that neither parent is Ukrainian.  They must love the jams as much as I do.  A solid record for back yard keggers or simply sitting around getting wasted by yourself of Stoli.

Artist: Dumka
Title: Thought Music and Song Featuring Dumka
Label: Heritage Records
Matrix: DMS-01
Year: ?
Size: 12"
Speed: 33.3

"Bald" Bill Hagan & His Trocaderons- Music To Strip By

If you have been to a strip club in the past you have probably had your fill of Nine Inch Nails and Nickelback and every other overplayed band used by strippers.  This is not a compilation of those audio hate crimes.

With titles like "Bumps And Grinds," G-String Twist," and "Girdles Aweigh" this album harkens back to the days when stripping meant leaving some clothes on so the audience could use their imagination.  Also, the girls didn't have bullet wounds and meth issues.

Burlesque also has an element of humour in the presentation.  It is not just women taking their clothes off.  There is usually a funny storyline behind the act.  The only funny thing you will see at a strip club today is the fact that guys will pay six bucks a beer to watch a crack-addled skeleton with four teeth sickly writhe around a stage to Christina Aguilera.

This record is certainly not something I would listen to on any regularity.  I am not really in to that raunchy jazz trumpet sound but its still far better than anything you would hear at a "gentleman's club" these days.  Plus its a fun record with a fun title that looks great in the collection.  Worth keeping simply for the novelty factor.

Artist: "Bald" Bill Hagan and his Trocaderons
Title: Music To Strip By
Label: Somerset
Matrix: SF-168
Year: 1966
Size: 12"
Speed: 33.3


Les Mystics- Je M'ses Bien, Je M'ses Mal/ Mon Pere Est Millionnaire

Les Mystics released one single.  This is it.  Every time I listen to it I am left somewhat speechless.  The single was "Je M'ses Bien. Je M'ses Mal," a french version of the Lewis & Clark Exhibition single, "I Feel Good, I Feel Bad." And this is a great cover.  There is no question.  But the reason this record is so sought after and valuable is the B-Side.  "Mon Pere Est Millionnaire" is a total psych ripper.  The vocals remind me a little of Strawberry Alarm Clock but the track feels a little heavier than that. 

There doesn't seem to be many of these 45s kicking around.  One sold on eBay awhile back for $50.  I found mine at a garage sale for 10 cents.  An older french lady, who took very good care of her collection, was unloading a ton of great 60's Quebecois garage rock.  A total steal!

The band was only together for about a year but gained a formidable reputation as one of the better live acts of the region.  They had a few originals mixed in with covers of bands as diverse as Billy Stewart, James Brown and Percy Sledge.  Its a shame this is the only audio artifact of such a talented, criminally unknown Canadian band.

Artist: Les Mystics
Title: Je M'ses Bien, Je M'ses Mal/ Mon Pere Est Millionnaire
Label: Vedettes/ Trans-Canada
Matrix: VD 3059
Year: 1967
Size: 7"
Speed: 45


Weird Wax Podcast #4

Hello, children.  You can download our weekly-ish digital mixtape, this week featuring the likes of The Cars, Husker Du, The Eyes, Nirvana, The Cure, Husband & Knife, Cloud Nothings and even Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers, HERE!!!!!  Its free and well, its free... That should be more than enough.


Marty Robbins- Gunfighter Ballads And Trail Songs

This record was destined for a landfill when some friends grabbed it (along with about 400 other albums) from a lady on Facebook.  Most of the lot was standard vinyl fare but there were a few keepers. 

This record, although not especially valuable monetarily, is certainly one to hold onto.  "Gunfighter Ballads and Trail Songs" is probably best known for "El Paso," Marty Robbins' biggest commercial success.  Although "El Paso" is a great song it is far from the only track worth listening to on the album.  The record starts off with "Big Iron" which is my favourite Robbins song.  The album is also a mainstay in every revision of the "1001 Albums You Must Hear Before You Die".

For those of you who are unfamiliar with Marty Robbins, I suggest you check out not only this album but his many others.  I am not usually a Country & Western fan but I do love the old stuff.  The crap that passes as "Country" music these days is basically Lady Gaga with fiddles.  This album has been called by the music site, AllMusic, "the single most influential album of Western songs in post-World War II American music."  I seriously doubt anything Carrie Underwood or Keith Urban will record will come anywhere near that well deserved praise.

Artist: Marty Robbins
Title: Gunfighter Ballads And Trail Songs
Label: Columbia
Matrix: CS 8158
Year: 1959
Size: 12"
Speed: 33.3


Anthony Green/ Barry Stagg- S/T

I came across this record in a thrift store for a buck.  At the time it was still sealed, even though the corner had been clipped.  I had never heard of Anthony Green but the name Barry Stagg did ring a bell.  I wasn't really sure where I had heard it but I knew I had heard it. 

It turns out that this record is somewhat sought after.  Its not a $400 record by any means but there are those out there that do look for it.  Sadly, this is the less collectible version pressed on United Artists and not the original Gamma Records release.  Whatever the version and whatever the market value, its a great record.

Released in 1969, this record was certainly influenced by the hippie movement of the time.  A broad arrangement of instruments litter this folk (psychedelic folk?) album.  The opening track, "To Love Means To Be Free" sort of reminded me of "Listen To The Flower People" by Spinal Tap but in a good way.  It just led off the album with an airy, whimsical feeling that continued throughout the record.

Barry Stagg has gone on to record movie scores, musicals and even operas.  He now resides in North Carolina (via Montreal).  I couldn't find any information on Anthony Green.  If anyone knows anything about him or his whereabouts, please contact me. 

This is simply one of the best Canadian psych/ folk records from that era.  Period.  Worth every penny or worth every one hundred pennies.

Artist: Anthony Green & Barry Stagg
Title: Self Titled
Label: United Artists
Matrix: UAS 6756
Year: 1969
Size: 12"
Speed: 33.3


The Alex Fraser Combo- Live Sound

The Alex Fraser Combo hailed from Saskatchewan, Canada and from their sound, were likely quite popular in the Moose Jaw Regional Airport Lounge.  A cover band that added a swing factor to songs like "Kansas City" and "Rockin' Robin," they were actually pretty decent musicians.  I bet they had all the farmer's daughters' hearts a flutter in Saskatoon in the 1960's and 1970's. 

Plus, as you can see from the cover, they were fashionistas.  Pristine white jumpsuits, gold chains and a well-coiffed head of hair made Alex Fraser the sexiest man in Moosomin.  His backing band had expensive, tailored suit from the local Zellers.  Put the women and children to bed... These hunks are lookin' for dinner!

My copy, which was pilfered from a pile of records destined for a local landfill, is even signed by these Adonis'.  Just knowing that Tom Ellerington and Fred Gastonguay touched this record gives me sensual chills.  The girl who had it signed, Shannon, must have been one of their many groupies.  Their little message to her, "A Real Good Little Dancer," is likely an inside code of sorts.  Sexy Shannon...

I may have to resurrect the Alex Fraser fan club.  There is an address on the back cover.  I am going to mail them something and see if I get a reply.  I will keep you all posted.  I encourage all my readers, all 4 of you, to do the same. 

The Alex Fraser Combo
816 Mountain Street  (There are mountains in Saskatchewan???)
Moosomin, Sask.
S0G 3N0

Artist: The Alex Fraser Combo
Title: Live Sound
Label: Self Released
Matrix: AFC-703
Year: ?
Size: 12"
Speed: 33.3

Hear How... To Plan The Perfect Dinner Party

The Carlton Hear How Series of records was started in the late 50's and continued through the 60's.  Celebrities from different fields narrated these records discussing topics of all types.  Hear How To Skin Dive with Lloyd Bridges.  Hear How To Play Winning Bridge with Oswald Jacoby.  Hear How To Take Better Photographs with Ralph Morse. 

Hear How To Plan A Perfect Dinner Party has a "nationally known food columnist and his charming wife tell the secrets of preparing four gourmet dinners with supreme ease."  With recipes like Chicken Momi (???) and Veal Foyot (???) its easy to see how Gaynor and Dorothy became "nationally known." Yuuuummmmmy!

I found this record (still sealed) at a garage sale for a nickel.  I already had the Hear How To Be A Better Bowler with Billy Golembiewski and Hear How To Tell Your Children About The Facts of Life with Rebecca Liswood so I thought it would make a great addition to the collection.  I have yet to open it and give it a listen but since the liner notes have all the tasty recipes like Ruth Patterson's Carolina Macaroni and Cheese, I really have no need to listen.  All the magic is written right there for me to see.  My mouth is watering already.  Who doesn't love a nice big helping of Momi Stuffing!

Artist: Gaynor and Dorothy Maddox
Title: Hear How To Plan The Perfect Dinner Party
Label: Carlton
Matrix: CHH- 14
Year: 1961
Size: 12"
Speed: 33.3


Weird Wax Podcast #3

Here is the latest installment of the Weird Wax Weekly Mixtape.  This week features bands like B52's, Richard Hell & The Voidoids, Stephen Malkmus, The Gories and Son House. You can download it HERE!!!  You can also download previous podcasts above by clicking the podcast button.