Come join your host DigiTiki as the record lazily spins on the phonograph and we sip mai tais in our own private palm tree oasis.
Welcome to the Quiet Village - All Things Tiki
Robert Drasnin Passes
For those of you who are regulars at the Quiet Village you know all bout the Exotic sounds of Robert Drasnin. Mr. Drasnin's claim to Tiki fame is that he penned one of THE most iconic albums of the original Tiki era, "Voodoo". The sounds are still as fresh to day as they were way back in 1959 when the album was released on Tops records as an answer to the growing Martin Denny craze.
But what most villagers may not know is the Bob Drasnin was the Music Director at CBS Television for years. He scored countless TV shows and movies in is long carreer At CBS he scored the incidental music for such iconic shows at "Wild, Wild West", "Lost In Space", "The Twilight Zone", "The Man Frum U.N.C.L.E." and many many more. Around 2008, Bob found himself in the middle of Tiki music revival when he was tapped to perform at Tiki themed events. That's where I first met Bob.
I had volunteered to help out the artists for Hukilau several years ago. Bob Drasnin was one of the artist and I was charged with finding the musicians and orchestra instruments in Florida to meet his music's requirements. I remember having dinner at the Mai Kai in Ft. Lauderdale with Bob, his lovely wife, Jeff Chenault and some of the musicians who were going to perform with him. It was a sublime moment when I stopped sipping my delicious cocktail from a coconut husk and took in the fack that I was having dinner at the Mai Kai with one of the greats of Exotica. I worked with Bob several more times and got to experience that same Tiki nervana of having dinner with an Exotica great in the Kon Tiki in Tucson.
Robert Drasnin passed on May 13th. He was a gracious, kind and very talented man that I am so happy I got to know and work with. Aloha Mr. Drasnin. As my good friend Jeff Chenault quipped, "Heaven just got a little more exotic."
If you have not yet, I strongly urge you to pick up a copy of Robert Drasnin's "Voodoo" and is 2007 followup album "Voodoo II".
As America's original Tiki movement continues to fade into the history books, we are in that crux of time where the past begins to take on the sweet patina of distance and yet still has the closeness to make it very tangible for those who choose to really look for it. Today we (the tiki ohana) revel in the past, celebrate it; collect it; idealize it; pretend we are living in it. That is why it is all the more special when you find something, and more precious of all, someone from that era who is still with us. There are precious few.
Now, there is one less. Ernie Menehune was the classic entertainer from the America's mid-century club scene. He was the Hawaiian guy out there performing in Las Vegas, Phoenix, Scottsdale, Tucson and elsewhere in the Southwest in the 60's and on thru until 2015. Yes that's right, up until April of 2015, Ernie Menehune could still be seen, albeit much more rarely, performing his music/comedy stage act. Menehune was born Ernie Rivera in Hawaii. A man of small stature, his stage name was Ernie Menehune, a name he had legally changed. His brother was Larry Rivera, the famous Hawaiian crooner who is still living and performing on The Islands today. Ernie performed at every major Vegas hotel in the 60's and often was in the small lounge opposite Sinatra, Dean Martin and the rest of the biggies of the era. He was also a huge draw at the Spanish Trail Hotel in Tucson. The shell of the hotel is still there, decaying as a skeleton in the desert sun.
Ernie's stage show was pure Tiki, with hula dancers, Hawaiian classics crooned by the master vocalist and the occasional comedy bits thrown in for good measure. He was enormously popular on the club circuit. Ernie produced 6+ LP's--most of which can still be seen occasionally listed on Ebay, and most are autographed. His voice was a lilting instrument that he could take to a smooth Hawaiian falsetto effortlessly.
I was fortunate enough to, not only see Ernie perform at the Kon Tiki in Tucson, but I got to attend his annual Luau at his ranch outside Tucson and got to meet and interview him for the Quiet Village. He was a gracious host, and a person whom you could only describe as "full of life." In 2009, I witnessed him perform at his Luau in front of a large crowd of friends and invited guests for well over an hour. He never lost a beat.
If you want to hear about Ernie in his own words, check out episode 27 of the Quiet Village. The show features my 2009 interview with Ernie.
Episode 72 is a tribute show to Ernie.
Aloha Oe. 'Til we meet again Ernie.
Alika Lyman Group Nominated for Hawaiian Academy of Recording Arts, Best Jazz Album of 2015
Congratulations to the Alika Lyman Group. The band's album has been nominated for the Na Hoku Hanohano Award for the Best Hawaiian Jazz Album of 2015. The Na Hoku Awards are given out each year by the Hawaiian Academy of Recording Arts. I am so happy to have been a part of this project. The Na Hoku Awards are announced in May of 2015.
Alika Lyman Group headlining HUKILAU June, 2015
THIS IS THE ONLY SCHEDULED MAINLAND PERFORMANCE FOR 2015!!!
The Alika Lyman Group will perform for the Hukilau's Friday Night main event and then a special intimate performance INSIDE THE MAI-KAI ITESLF!! Come see the ONLY scheduled mainland performance of the Alika Lyman Group. And this is the ONLY chance to see the Alika Lyman Group performing cool exotica and jazz in the ultimate Tiki setting of the Mai-Kai.
Stories from Honolulu: Paul Conrad visit the Quiet Village
Every once in a while this show affords me the priviledge of hearing some really amazing stories. I'm reminded of my wonderful visit with Diana Lai, the first hostess at Disneyland's Enchanted Tiki Room to name a few. Everyone has a unique story. I'm fascinated by every individual's story. And behind every record and every song, there are stories.
Episode 70 of the Quiet Village features an interview with Paul Conrad. His name might not be the foremost in your mind, but I bet his work in the world of Exotica and Hawaiian music. Paul was the original piano player in the Gene Rains Group as well as the cheif arranger for thier first LP "Lotus Land." I bet you didn't also know that Paul helped his friend Arthur Lyman with the charts and was present for his first LP recording, "Taboo." Conrad also worked with Ethel Azama, Alfred Apaka, Webley Edwards from Hawaii Calls, Anita O'Day, and a very young Bette Midler, just to name a few.
If you love the personal stories of people who were "there" and were part of "it", then you will love this new episode. I invite you to take a journey with me as Paul Conrad takes us back in time.
Gene Rains Compilation CD!
For years I've been spinning the records of the Gene Rains Group from Hawaii. Released in the late 50's, Rains' only produced 3 LP's but each one was a classic example Exotica. All that time I've been lementing that fact that we have seen Martin Denny, Arthur Lyman and a score of other Exotica artists from America's Mid-century released digitally, but no Rains. Finally the Rains came! Now Real Gone Music has come out with a compilation of Gene Rains that is truly something wonderful. Nineteen tracks alltogether drawing from all three of his classic LPs.
If it sounds like I'm fawning over this release, you are right. The folks a Real Gone contacted me to help with the production of the release. So I am thrilled that Gene Rains is seeing an official CD release AND that I've been a part of it.
On my show I always let listeners know the quality of a release. I want to let everyone know off the bat, that this Gene Rains compilation is sourced from vinyl--my vinyl to be exact. The fols at Real Gone Music made very effort to locate the master tapes. As it turns out Universal Music now owns the Decca catalog. As it tuns out, Universal claims all the Gene Rains master tapes were destroyed in a fire. There is a notorius archive fire decades ago that in fact did wipe out a sizeable portion of the catalog from several smaller labels like ABC and Dot Records as well as several master prints of movies. It is possible that the Rains tapes were in that blaze. However, it is also possible that Universal just didn't want to be bothered with finding the tapes. My mind goes back to the story that Robert Drasnin once told me about his own 1959 Voodoo reissue. Dionysus records was in the process of reissuing "Voodoo" when the rights holding company told Drasnin himslef that his master tapes were destroyed. Immediately after the Dionysus CD was reissued, the company miraculously found them and a second "Voodoo" was released with hi resolution digital transfers of the original master tapes. Who knows. Only time will tell. The best news of all is that the folks at Real Gone are not ruling out the possibility of future releases of each of the Rains albums in their entirety.
In the mean time we have the great compilation mastered from my very clean LP's, all of which are stereo copies. Enjoy
Alika Lyman Releases Landmark Tribute Album To His Great Uncle Arthur Lyman!
DigiTiki productions has teamed up with Great Nephew of Exotica music legend Arthur Lyman for an historic tribute album. The album is appropriately entitled "Leis of Jazz, Volume 2" and is an exotic/jazz tribute to the jazz album by Arthur Lyman of the same name, released in 1959. The 13 songs of "Leis of Jazz, Vol. 2" span the gamut of swing combo jazz to deep exotica--complete with bird calls. It is a fitting tribute to Alika's "Uncle Ata." The CD even sports an amazing cover photo by the multi-talented Kari Hendler that pays homage to the original "Leis of Jazz" album cover.
You can be the first to own this landmark CD release. The official release date is May 20th. But you can pre-order NOW at a discount and FREE SHIPPING (withing the US).
And see the Alika Lyman Group's West Coast debut at Tiki Caliente, May 17th in Palm Springs. We will be performing songs from our new album for the first time. I will be on vibes and piano. You will have a chance to see the band in an intimate Tiki setting and schmooze with the band afterwards.
Alika Lyman Group limited edition
Take A South Seas Adventure at Home
In September of 2012, I was fortunate enough to see the one and only showing of the 1958 Cinermam film "South Seas Adventure" in its original Cinerama format in a Cinerama equipped theater. The film is the last of the Cinerama travelogues and is visually stunning. Now the film has been released on Blu-Ray disc in ful 1080p high definition format for your home viewing pleasure.
Cinerama was a process where by 3 70mm format (twice the size of standard theater 35mm film) movie cameras were synchronized in an array to capture a paramic image. For theatrical viewing, special theaters were designed with 3 70mm projectors, synchronized to project a single 146 degree curving image. The result was spectacular.
Help the Quiet Village stay on the air by purchasing South Seas Adventure from Amazon.com through this web site. Mahalo[ Buy Blu-Ray ]
What To Mix For The Zombie Apocolypse
Mrs. Howell was always tyring to find the perfect outfit to wear for every event on the Island. Its just as important to have the appropriate cockail for every situation. The Zombie cocktail is THE perfect drink for Halloween. In episode 62 of the Quiet Village show, Jeff "Beachbum" Berry talks with us about the Zombie cocktail. The Bum also talks about his newest book "Potions of the Caribbean". A compendium that traces 500 years of booze history in the Caribbean. In addition, Eric October, Manuel and I mix up no less than 8 different vintage Zombie recipes and talk about the taste profiles for each....yes, our livers are still recovering.
Most of us have never really tasted a true Zombie until Jeff Berry's sippin' sleuth work uncovered the original recipe dating back to 1934. A real Zombie cocktail is an incredibly complex and incredibly strong libation that will have most people feeling undead after just one.
In addition to the various recipes of Zombies mixed in Episode 62, Eric and Manuel shared their own Zombie cocktail recipe, which they call "Queen of the Zombies" becuase it has quince syrup. So here we have the original drink that literally started it all - the 1934 Zombie from Don the Beachcomber's and the Queen of the Zombies cocktail by Eric October and Manuel. Cheers.
Extended Tiki Magazine article by Darren Long
In one of the final issues of Tiki Magazine with founder Nick Camara at the helm, writer, musician and artist Darren Long was tasked with writing about me and the Quiet Village Podcast. The article that showed up in the issue of Tiki Magazine was great, but truncated from the original. Here is the expanded version of the article on me and the Quiet Village. Many thanks to Darren Long for providing this text.
Click Here to read the expanded article.
Quiet Village Radio is a BIG Hit.
Quiet Village radio is now almost 2 months old and is a big hit. Listeners are tuning in from all over the world--literally. People are tuning in from Germany, Brazil, Malaysia, UK, Mexico, Japan, South Korea, Russia, as well as all over the US at an average rate of 18 new listeners an hour! THAT is amazing. Thank you all for listening! Visit the Quiet Village now here.
And stay tuned for more exciting shows in the works, exclusively on Quiet Village Radio.
Its been a long fun road since Episode one of the Quiet Village debuted. Last month, the Quiet Village Podcast surpassed 4,000 subscribers. What is even more amazing is that another 6,000 people have accessed the most recent episode (listened to it outside of subscription). Admittedly, Exotica is a niche genre. I am humbled by the number of people who listen to each episode of the Podcast. I want to thank everyone who listens and writes in.
DigiTiki.com Under Attack
If anyone has visited this site recently, you will have notices a recent "Suspended" notice. I just wanted to keep you all posted on what exactly was going on. Digitiki.com is not going away, I am still here and planning to be for quite some time. The problem was that my site was the victim of a "denial of service" attack. A piece of malicious code called a "bot" was attempting to download random images and files from my site it extraordinary high numbers. As a result, my web host service shut down the site. I am back up and running.
On a site note: the length of time it took me to get Digitiki.com back up and running was due to terrible, terrible customer service from my hosting company. I don't like to use this page as a soapbox to bitch about things, but this company (which shall remain nameless) was THE worst. Their lack of security on their servers essentially held the door open for this "bot" to attack my site and anyone else hosting with them. Bad host-no no! Now that my rant is over, I need a drink.
ON THE AIR ! ! ! ! !
Quiet Village radio is now ON THE AIR.
Compatible with: iPhone, iPad, Android, Blackberry, Mac, PC, iTunes, WinAmp, RealPlayer, Windows Medai Player
Listen to TIKI 24/7 - Listen NOW
Check out the newest edition to the Quiet Village Gift Shop!
Now you can show the world what village you like to visit with these T-shirts sporting the new Quiet Village logo tiki by Eric October.
Available in dark chocolate with deep orange logo--unique, earthy and simple. The shirts are made of extra soft 100% pre-shrunk cotton; a modern fitting, unisex look. Looks great on kanes and wahines alike.
Available in M, L, XL, 2XL
$12.00 + shipping (.5 lb)
And as always, the proceeds go straight to the Quiet Village to keep the podcast and Quiet Village Radio on the air.
Digitiki.com teams up with Amazon For You, The Collector
I'm proud to announce that DigiTiki.com is now part of the Amazon Associate Program. What does that mean? Well, it means that I can now put purchase links directly on DigiTiki.com for music that I play on the Quiet Village podcast. Many of you write in asking about where to find some of the tunes I play on the show. Now you can purchase it from Amazon directly from this web site.
How did I deside to do this? Well, its quite simple. I am constantly trying to make the podcast and this web site a place that will help those who are looking to collect this type of music. I find most of the new releases by searching Amazon myself. So its a natural to link up so you, the collector, can find this stuff easily before it goes out of print again AND help the show at the same time. Its a win win.
For every purchase you make at Amazon by clicking the link at DigiTiki.com first, I get a small percentage (typically 1-2 cents). These links are independant of the Quiet Village Gift Shop, which is my own store and not part of Amazon at all.
It has never been, and never will be my goal to make the Quiet Village Podcast and DigiTiki.com retail vehicles. The show and the upcoming Quiet Village Radio that I hope to launch soon will continue to be labors of love and 100% free. All the proceeds from the Gift Shop products and the Amazon Associate Program will go exclusively into keeping the show and the web site on the air.
Bye Bye Bahooka
There are tons of stories of the Tiki temples from days gone by that simply are no more. Now we can put another one down in the dusty book of "What Once Was." On March 19th, 2013, the Bahooka Restaurant in Rosemead, California closed its 50 year old doors for good.
The Bahooka was a comfortable family tiki restaurant that was decked out in almost anything possible. Countless lucite chunk lamps, wood barrel lamps and plastic parrots hung from the ceiling. The walls were covered with just about any type of "stuff" you could imagine. The Bahooka was known for its ribs and heartly American fare. The drinks, although not as impeccable as Trader Vic's, were lively and strong. The Grenade was a pink, blended drink that could be served "With The Pin Pulled" (not on the menu) which meant that it came with a shot of 151 added. Every single drink came to your fishtake-lined booth set ablaze. The restaurant's mascot was Rufus, an enormous Paku fish that loved to eat carrots.
I could spend hundreds of words here describing the Bahooka and how nice it was to just sit in a booth and watch the fish gaze at us from one of the more than 100 fish tanks. But it, like every single other lost Tiki establishment from yesteryear, is best served up in your mind. If you never got a chance to experience the place, you certainly missed something with a great deal of charater. If you were fortunate to have visited the place or live close enough to frequent it, you are most certainly imagining the sounds, sights and smells of the place in your memory.
It was recetly announced that the entire contents of the Bahooka's interior have been purchased and will be used to outfit the interior of the upcoming Clifton's South Seas room in downtown Los Ageles. If you have the Book of Tiki, you can see a photo of the original Cliftons South Seas cafateria from the 1940's. It is still sadly unclear what has happened to Rufus and the hundres of other fish.
Aloha Bahooka. We will miss you.
You can hear a field recording made at the Bahooka on The Quiet Village Podcast, Episode 56.
ps- please visit the Bahooka web site while it is still up for some great photos. It will most assuridly be coming down soon.
New Reissued Vintage Albums
Some new reissues of classic albums have just come out that you may be interested in.
• Martin Denny: "A Taste of India/Exotica Classica" - 2 Denny albums remastered onto a single CD from Vocalion Records out of the UK. [Get it at Amazon]
• "Exotica Today & Exotic Love" by Martin Denny - 2 more albums remastered onto a single CD from Vocalion. Pricey but worth it. [Get it at Amazon]
• "Beachcomber Serenade" by the South Seas Seranaders - this very rare 50's LP is one I never thought I'd see digitally. It is available as a digital download. Sound quality is equial to the original LP, which is to say it is so so, but it does sound like the album. At least its not worse. [ Get it at Amazon ]
• "South Seas Serenade" by Roy Smeck - This early 50's Hawaiian LP has been reissued as a digital download. Roy Smeck was the king of the steel in the early part of the 20th's century. His albums are increasingly rare and this one is a welcome site. Sound quality is very good considering its age. Mono of course as this was produced before the age of stereophonic sound. [Get it at Amazon]
• "Aloha Hawaii" by The Diamond Head Beachcombers - You probably have seen this album cover in many thrift store bins. Available as a digital download, this album features classic vintage Hawaiian music with a little orchestral strings thrown in for good measure. Most certainly a living room record for mainlanders. [ get this at Amazon]
The new Quiet Village Gift Shop Is Now OPEN!
The Quiet Village Mai Tai has been a big hit. But lets face it, the cocktails just don't taste as good unless you are drinking one out of the official Quiet Village Mai Tai glass!! This first offering from the Gift Shop is a beautiful glass, specifically made for your mai tai. The glass features hand drawn art by accomplished artist Eric October and printed in retro aqua. The design wraps completely around the glass and features the Quiet Village Podcast logo flanked by two large tikis holding iPods, listening to the show! On the back of the glass is the Quiet Village Mai Tai recipe. The design looks quite stunning with the glass filled with the dark rum of your mai tai.
These glasses are a limited run of only 100, so get yours right away. In fact, get a whole set! Now you can taste the island life with the proper glass.
set of 2 glasses: $14 +shipping
set of 4 glasses: $24 +shipping - click here to go to the Gift Shop
Finally, the Quiet Village podcast now comes to iTunes. I'm sure most of you reading this already are subscribers to the podcast. But now, if you wanna point friends to the show, now they can subscribe with one click directly from the iTunes store. As always, the show is still completely free. To visit the Village on iTunes, just click the link below
Like the Village on Facebook & other changes coming to the Island.
Now that we are still digesting our turkey, ham and pies from the Holidays, I just wanted to take a moment and let you all know that the Quiet Village is now on Facebook (took long enough huh?). Please take a moment and like the show and, if you are so inclined, leave a message or song request.
Also, I have some great things in the works for the Village. I am in process of using a few of the local natives to help me build the Quiet Village Marketplace. It will launch soon in this web site. It will ultimately be a place where you can get trinkets from many exotic ports 'o call. The first items will be the very first Quiet Village Mai Tai glass. Emblazoned with custom artwork by my friend and talented artist Eric October. There will only be 100 of them available. I also plan to offer CD's and art from other guests and friends of the Village--stuff that you can't get that easily. So I hope you enjoy.
In addition to the Facebook and Shop, I am lining up a plethora of new guests and topics for upcoming shows. And as always, I love to get your requests and comments!
Aloha and have a wonderful New Year!
Mele Kalikimaka everybody! That means Merry Christmas in Hawaiian. As the thermometer dips below 75 degrees, I wanna take this moment to wish all of you a tropical Holiday Season. 2013 is coming and I'm looking forward to many more exciting guests on the show!
In the mean time, enjoy episode 53 with my returning guest Eric October.
Quiet Village turns 50!
Well not really. But it is the 50th show!!! Available now, with special episode artwork by my dear friend and very talented artist, Eric October!
One chance to take a Sounth Seas Adventure
I had to tell you about an epic event...and I mean truly epic. On Sept. 29th at 12pm in Los Angeles, some lucky movie goers with a rare day off are gonna get a rare tropical treat. For that is the time of the ONLY showing of "South Seas Adventure"; one of the small group of Cinerama travelogues released in the late 50's.
First a word about the film "South Seas Adventure." The film is a cinematic ode to all things tropical. The film is a travelogue with some semi-fictional mini stories that help to humanize the exotic locales featured. For decades, the negatives to the film were thought to be utterly lost. There was rumor circulating that the negatives had been accidentally destroyed. Well, here we are with a restored print about to be shown in its original 3-strip Cinerama format.
Now a little bit about the film format. Cinerama was a production process developed in the 1950's that used 3 synchronized 35mm movie cameras to capture one panoramic picture. In the theaters (only Cinerama equipped theaters), the 3 film strips were projected from 3 separate synchronized projectors to create a large 146 degree arc image. There were drawbacks to the format, but the resulting vistas were breathtaking.
I don't know how long its been since the last Cinerama film was screened, but I can bet that most people reading this have never seen it in person. Well now is your one and only chance--not only to see a rare film format in its original intended theater designed specially for it, but to see a rare film, shot in that format, that was thought to be lost forever!
South Seas Adventure
For tickets, click here.
Episode 49 up and running!
Episode 49 is now available. This episode features an interview with pulp fiction authro Bill Raetz, direct from the World Espionage Bureau. Bill's new book "Voodoo Lodge" is a ply thriller in the classic tradition that centeres around a fictional tiki lounge.
DigiTiki interviewed on Jungle Deep podcast
Recently I had the fortune to be interviewed by a wonderful podcaster by the name of Ken Jones. Ken is the proprieter of several podcast shows, Jungle Deep being the newest title in his roster. The show highlihgts the tropical lifestyle with a heavy dose of rainforest conservation. Ken beleives that preserving our jungles and rainforests can be helped by exposing as many people to them as possible. I think he's right and I applaud his efforts. I invite you to listen to his show, especially the episode with me on it LOL.
New retelling of the landmark "Kon-Tiki" voyage hits international theaters
In 1947, explorer Thor Heyerdahl set out to prove a therory that Pre-Columbian era South American peoples were the mariners who originally settled Polynesia. His expedition set out to build a balsa wood ship and sail it from South America using only the technology available in the Pre-Columbian era. The ship was named Kon-Tiki.
He made it. His book about the journey went on to capture the hearts and imaginations of the entire world. IN 1950, a documentary film about the expedition became an interntational hit.
Now, in 2012, August, a Norwegian film company has released a new version of the epic voyage. The film is touted as the most expensive film in Norwegian cenima history. I certainly hope it comes to my island so I can see it. Below is the theatrical trailer.
4 new Martin Denny Albums Remastered on 2 CDs!
Four more classic Denny albums have been remastered from the master tapes and issed on 2 CDs! Vocalion label from the UK has released one CD containing Martin Denny's "A Taste of Honey," and "Another Taste of Honey" and another separate CD title containing "The Versetile Martin Denny," and "Latin Village." Until now each of the four albums except for "Latin Village" have never been released digitally. "Latin Village" was previously released only in Japan as a limited edition CD, and has long been out of print and commands high prices on the collector circuit.
Some Kind Words About The Quiet Villager Podcast
The Quiet Village Podcast turned 45 last month--45 episodes that is. And with it came some very kind emails from listeners about the show in general. I just wanted to thank all of you for writing in and share some of the wonderful words of praise that have washed ashore recently from other blogs and web sites out there.
The Quiet Village Podcast helps Rachel Ray Create A Luau
Some time ago a rep from Rachel Ray magazine, and a listener, asked me to help create a playlist for a backyard luau. The end result was two separate playlists - one for the dreamy luau sounds, the second is an up-tempo list for more heated partying. The result has just come out here on Rachel Ray's blog.
Here are the playlists I created for Rachel. I created these playlists out of music that IS available either on iTunes or Amazon. I didn't want add songs that were out of print. Afterall, how would anyone be able to get the songs if they weren't available to begin with.
POLYNESIAN DREAM PLAYLIST
What was that sound in the dark alley? Who was that masked man running from the cops? Crime Jazz comes to the Quiet Village. Epsiode 45 of the Quiet Village is dedicated to the music genre known as Crime Jazz. I looked all over the internet and I simply could not find anyone who endeavored to define Crime Jazz as a genre. So here goes: Crime Jazz is a mid-century nich music genre that musically brings the essence of cops, detectives and criminals, mobsters and even spies, within a mid-century urban setting.
So join me as we walk the streets of the seedier side of the Island accompanied by our own soundtrack for the occasion. The Quiet Village dives into Crime Jazz. Episode 45 available now.
Keith Pawlak visits the Quiet Village
There was some seriously great music created in America during the 50's and 60's. Recently Capitol Records produced the voluminous "Ultra-Lounge" music series that focused primarily on mid-century kitch music from Capitol's vaults. Di you every wonder what happened to all the pieces that went into creating those wonderful albums? What happened to the scored,master tapes, photos, cue sheets, etc.? Well, Keith Pawlak, a professor at the University of Arizona, Tucson has the really cool job of curating the archives of some of the artists who created some of that classic American mid-century music. Keith is also an avid collector of Capitol Records recordings. His collection is impressive and includes pristine recordings by Les Baxter, Jackie Gleason and other top Capitol Records artists. In 2008, Pawlak pulled some of Les Baxter's classic Exotica scores and performed them, along with an impressively large orchestra. Some of the music selections had never been performed since they origianl recordings, some 50+ year prior. The evening was topped off with a rare performance by Robert Drasnin, composter of the classic Exotica album "Voodoo" (Tops Records, 1959). Read my original entry about that concert here.
Keith visits the Quiet Village for a very informative look inside the UofA's Music Archives as well as discussions about Les Baxter's music and the music of mid-century Capitol Records. This epsiode is a particularly informative one. Enjoy!
I collect...records, CD's, tiki mugs, way more stuff than I really have room for. But when collecting, its a quest to uncover a mystery--a true treasure hunt. To find the rare CD reissue treasures, you have to be part detective. I created the Beachcomber's Corner becuase its something that I wish I had a long time ag0--a resource of information about what has been reissued on CD or digitial download, so I know what I wanna start looking for.
Exotica LPs are rare, but the reissued CD's are even more rare. They are not advertised or talked about anywhere (except here and few other web sites). They are usually only pressed in 10,000 copies and then they're gone for good, with the exception of the digital downloads.
The Beachcomber's Corner is a database that serves as a one-stop resource for the geek collector like me. It shows that's in print, out of print, formats, country of origin, cover art, even a sample audio track. Check it out and enjoy!
The Beachcomber's Corner was programmed by a good friend of mine Mike who goes under the pseudonym Captain R.H. Fallernum (que the swashbuckling music). His own site (a companion to the Beachcomber's Corner) contains a database that features LPs. Mine features reissues of LPs. The two together are a collector's dream. Visit the Captain's record collector page here.
As always, your comments are always welcome. Oh yea, you can even leave comments on each album's listing if you like!
The collection is just starting out, so not everything is listed here. But give it a little time. Eventually I hope to have everything listed here.
Enjoy. START BEACHCOMBING
Congratulations to the Buhens and the Tiki-Ti for keeping the torches burning brightly for 50 years. Mahalo!
A Must See Concert
As if it weren't enough to fauthfully recreate the sounds of Esquivel, some 50 years later, Mr. Ho has returned with a down-sized Exotica combo for his newest album "Third River Rangoo." This album is moody, deep Exotica for a dark bar at its best. Now you have the chance to experience Mr Ho's Orchestrotica LIVE!
For the first time ever, the space-age pop big band music of Esquivel will be performed live in NYC! Using a 22-pc ensemble, the band will present it’s acclaimed show comprised of transcriptions of the lost arrangements Esquivel made during the 1950s and 1960s on RCA Living Stereo albums such as "Other Worlds, Other Sounds", "Infinity in Sound" and the seminal "Latin-Esque." A short opening set by the Orchestrotica’s third-stream exotica quartet will be opening the evening. The CD release show in Boston on Jan 14th sold out so buy your tickets ahead!
Fri, 18 Mar 2011 at 8:00 PM ET
John Barry Passes
It was simply by chance that I was in the process of finishing the edits to the latest podcast episode which focused on the music of James Bond with Scott Mabbutt when I heard the news of Barry's passing. So I would like to dedicate this episode and the second part of it (which is coming up) to the memory of John Barry. A man who made adventure sound so good.
New episode (#36) up now. Enjoy.