Tag Archive for 'IA'

(Upcoming Show) California Guitar Trio at CSPS, Wednesday 8/3

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The last two times California Guitar Trio played CSPS they were heralding new eras for the venue. Their October 2008 show was the first show in CSPS since the Flood. They generously donated parts of the proceeds of the show to CSPS. Their 2012 show was after CSPS was re-opened following the substantial overhaul of the venue. So, it is certainly fitting that California Guitar Trio is back playing CSPS in 2016– the 125th year the venue has been in existence. Coincidentally, it is the 25th year of the Trio!

The band has been back in the studio working on a new album– their first since Masterworks, their 2011 album of classical music. The recording is complete, and mixing, mastering and the rest of the release process is left to do, so they’re going to do a Kickstarter to get that funded. Some of the perks from that Kickstarter include a DVD of rare video performances from the band’s archives!

The trio always sounds amazing in CSPS, so this is a show not-to-miss!

Wed Aug 3 2016 – 7:00 pm • CSPS Hall
$17 advance | $21 door

Details and to purchase tickets visit the Legion Arts website.

Expressions Trace A Template of Loss in Kalispell’s Printer’s Son

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Kalispell on the turntable, as The Multiple Cat looks on.

Kalispell is the side-project from Shane Leonard who, among other projects, is part of Field Report. He just released his second album under the Kalispell band name on Davenport, IA label Cartouche Records — home of recent releases by The Multiple Cat, Land of Blood and Sunshine, Brooks Strause, J.E. Sunde, and Daytrotter.com illustrator Johnnie Cluney’s band Bedroom Shrine. Fantastic releases all, and you should check them out, and be on the lookout from releases by Devin Frank (of Poison Control Center) and Chrash in July.

Printer’s Son is one of those rare records that is so completely imagined and executed that when you first listen to it, it seems to drop unexpectedly out of the ether. It’s a record that defies any convenient genre classification. Elements of ambience and folk and jazz come together to help deliver a grippingly emotional and personal album. The album reminds me another album that slips from the grasp of genre: David Sylvian’s 1987 landmark solo record Secrets of the Beehive. For his second release Sylvian took another step away from the New Wave-ish synthpop of his band Japan. He enlisted some Jazz artists including Ryuki Sakamoto and Mark Isham which gave that album a delicate ambience. Printer’s Son carries a similar jazz folk vibe. Additionally, the dry production of Leonard’s vocals suit the intimacy of the album.

Printer’s Son owes some of its woody atmospherics to the fact that it was partially recorded at Justin Vernon’s April Base Studios and was engineered and co-produced by Brian Joseph, who was on the boards for Bon Iver’s 2012 Grammy-winning album. Bon Iver is another album that similarly made beautiful soundscapes out of impressionistic personal stories and accounts. Leonard takes recent painful events and uses them as the basis for Printer’s Son. He talks about this on The Current show Radio Heartland:

I had this wildly unforseen year of just this radical change. I thought I had my path pretty set– music was going well and I was living in Chicago. All within this year, my dad was diagnosed with cancer, and his passing forced me– ultimately I think in a really important and helpful way even though very difficult– to reconsider a lot of assumptions I had. And, right after he passed our family dog died and then my dad’s father also passed. It was all at the same time and I was moving and also moving away from a relationship that I had been in a long time. So, it was like the world got turned over and then I just started thinking differently as a symptom of that.

Some albums have stories that we can identify with.  On Printer’s Son, I feel the sentiments, the memories, the connections. Leonard tells his stories and like a good book or film, they become part of the listener’s own fabric. I can picture that canyon climb with the banded walls in “Windfall.” I feel the ghost itch from the overgrowth scratching skin on the fading road in “Parting Ground.”

David Sylvian’s Secrets of the Beehive has become part of my permanent soundtrack. I feel that Kalispell’s timeless tapestry of folk and jazz in Printer’s Son is destined to be another album that I will hold onto.

Listen to Printer’s Son below and be sure to order yourself a copy from Cartouche.

(Upcoming Show) JC Brooks & The Uptown Sound Bring Their Powerhouse R&B Show to CSPS 11/13/15

JC-Brooks-&-The-Uptown-Sound

One of my favorite albums of 2013 was JC Brooks & The Uptown Sound‘s third album Howl. I was already a fan of the band and their cover of Wilco’s “I Am Trying to Break Your Heart” was a smart, if calculated play to get some attention from the Indie Rock crowd.

But for me, the more sparse, stripped down– both musically and emotionally– approach of Howl was eye-opening. The album is reminiscent of 80’s soul like Fine Young Cannibals or Terence Trent D’Arby and maybe a little like The Smiths at times (particularly the guitars). The video for “Rouse Yourself” is really great with Aubrey Plaza and Jake Johnson in it.

JC and band have been in the studio recently working on their fourth album. Brooks told me that they would be performing some of the new songs on their upcoming live dates, which includes a stop in Cedar Rapids at CSPS in New Bohemia on Friday night! This will be the first time I’m seeing the band live, and I can’t think of a better place to catch them. Beautiful, big, room with a cozy bar on the side with great beer on tap and wine. If you haven’t been to CSPS yet this would be a great first show!

Details at Legion Arts Website

Fri Nov 13 2015 – 8:00 pm • CSPS Hall
$16 advance | $19 door

(Upcoming Show) Nellie McKay at CSPS in Cedar Rapids Tuesday 4/28/15


Nellie McKay is in a lot of ways an artist from a different time. Compared to what is generally regarded as “pop music” currently, popular music from the 50’s/60’s and even the 70’s seemed to cut a much wider swath through genres. Jazz, Rock, Country, Folk and American Songbook. In that same spirit Nellie McKay has not been content staying in one genre– even per album in most cases.

For McKay’s sixth album titled My Weekly Reader, she opted to dive into the rich catalog of 60’s pop and rock and create an album of covers that demonstrates her incredible musical chops and catalog knowledge as well as presents the songs with her unique and smart sense of subtle irony and humor. While I really appreciate her original music more, the opportunity to see her dive into covers (as she did on her album of Doris Day covers Normal as Blueberry Pie) also reveals her influences.

And I haven’t even mentioned her stints on Broadway and film!

McKay is bringing her solo show back to Cedar Rapids on Tuesday, April 28th. She was here in September of 2012 (which is where the picture above was taken). Her shows are a lot of fun– she’s a great artist, musician and wonderful singer. Her adopted stage personae at first seems a little scatterbrained, but she uses that disarming “aw-shucks” delivery to make some sharp and thoughtful commentary about everything from veganism to feminism to current politics. When she performed last time, she improvised a cute song about Iowa.

She was interviewed recently on NBC 4 in New York City about her new album:

She is a performer who continues to impress me and we are fortunate that she chooses the big stage at CSPS to bring her show. Don’t sleep on this!

Tickets are $21 in advance and $26 at the door. The show is at 7PM. More information at the Legion Arts website!

(Upcoming Show) John Reilly and Friends at Codfish Hollow Barn on June 21st

John Reilly and Friends at Codfish Hollow Barn Poster

Continuing the trend of jaw-droppingly awesome shows at Codfish Hollow Barn in Maquoketa, this Friday, June 21st,  it will play host to actor John C. Reilly’s non-film music endeavor John Reilly and Friends.

For the past few years Reilly has been working with some musician friends of his to bring a revue of old country and folk music  of the likes of the Stanley Brothers, Porter Wagoner and Dolly Parton, The Everly Brothers, Claude Ely and the Delmore Brothers to name a few. With regular “Friends” sidekicks Becky Stark of Lavender Diamond and Tom Brosseau (solo and of Les Shelleys) Reilly cut two 7-inch singles on Jack White’s Third Man Records.

The band is doing a run of dates through the Midwest from June 13th to June 22nd, with a stop at the wonderful Codfish Hollow Barn in Maquoketa, IA– home of many Daytrotter.com Barnstormer shows as well as a few shows put on by the Biehls themselves. Joining Reilly, Stark and Brosseau will be Mt. Vernon, IA native Dan Bern (who headlined his own show in May), Willie Watson— formerly of Old Crow Medicine Show (OCMS’s “Wagon Wheel” has been covered by Darius Rucker and climbing the charts currently), and Sebastian Steinburg– formerly of Soul Coughing and these days a go-to bass sideman (Marc Ribot, Dixie Chicks, k. d. lang). That’ s one hell of a lineup with lots of varing backgrounds, so you can count on some pretty inspired performances!

According to Brosseau’s website, there will be copies of the Third Man Records 7-inches as well as “the official John Reilly and Friends teeshirt” at the merchandise table. Tiffany Biehl also told me about exclusive stickers with art done by Dan Bern and limited-edition posters done by the Biehl’s and sent me images of those:

john reilly sticker

John Reilly and Friends Codfish Hollow Barn Sticker

john reilly pitchfork poster

John Reilly and Friends Limited Edition Codfish Hollow Poster available at the show.

Opening the show will be Andru Bemis from New Mexico.

As usual, there will be camping available (with no service hookups), food vendors with soft beverages and just good old fashioned great times with other people who are there for the music. Coolers are welcome. Here is a list of what food will be available onsite:

Grilled chicken sandwiches
BBQ pulled pork sandwiches
All beef hotdogs
Brats and sauerkraut
Veggie dogs/brats
Nachos and cheese
Beef taco nachos
Chicken/pork nachos
Vegetarian bean nachos
Chips
Candy bars
POP- Mt.Dew Pepsi, Diet Pepsi,Sprite
Water

YUM!

At the time of this writing there are still tickets left, but you should expect that this show will sell out this week. Doors are at 6:30PM with the bands hitting the stage at 8PM. The tickets are $25 in advance (plus some minimal service charges).

Click Here for the Facebook Event and RSVP!

Click http://johnreillyandfriends.eventbrite.com/ to order your tickets!

I was interviewed in The Cedar Rapids Gazette Arts and Entertainment magazine Hoopla– click here!

Click Here to visit the Third Man Records page on John C. Reilly and purchase his two singles.

Tour Dates:

15 June 13: The Assembly at the Women’s Club of Minneapolis: Minneapolis
16 June 13: Miller Caves: Milwaukee
17 June 13: Muskegon Unity Church: Muskegon MI
18 June 13: Ramsdell Theater: Manistee MI
19 June 13: The Magic Bag: Ferndale MI
20 June 13: Radio Radio: Indianapolis
21 June 13: Codfish Hollow Barnstormers: Maquoketa
22 June 13: Old Town School of Folk: Chicago

 

Codfish Hollow Kicks off the 2013 Season with Bern in the Barn on May 4th

Bern in the Barn

The winter had overstayed its welcome in Eastern Iowa this year and with the frost finally succeeding and the bulbs pushing their greens up in anticipation of flowering, we can finally (hopefully) start looking forward to Spring and Summer and to the recent announcement by Codfish Hollow of the first show in the barn this year!

Last year we saw two really amazing events in the Codfish Hollow Barn stage even without an official Daytrotter Barnstormer show. July 4th brought  a mind-melting and body-dehydrating appearance by Counting Crows and their touring Outlaw Roadshow lineup for what would certainly be for the 650 people who saw it the best show they’ve ever seen. The laid-back and mellow atmosphere seemed to coax a normally grouchy Duritz to hang out with people outside the venue and pose for pictures and pause for autographs. The show inside the barn was electric and even with the failure of the stage electric fans the bands sweated their way through their sets and Counting Crows put forth an unprecedented 3 hours on stage! Codfish Hollow then put all their political chips on support of the Democratic Party with a chilly October show featuring a lineup headlined by Pieta Brown and Dave Zollo and the Body Electric.

On May 4th (May the Fourth Be With You!) Codfish Hollow returns with a show featuring Dan Bern! Called amusingly enough, “Bern in the Barn” the lineup also features Outlaw Roadshow veteran Field Report as a solo performance by Christopher Porterfield, 2013 Outlaw Roadshow act Daniel and the Lion, Cincinnati band Pomegranates, Athens, GA band Twin Tigers who have a sound somewhere between Lou Reed and Sonic Youth and maybe Barnstormer alums Suckers, and Iowa City guitar popsters Chasing Shade. You should check out Chasing Shade’s song “Sunburned Bones,” BTW.

So, click on all those links above to find out what these bands are about– but it’s looking like a wonderful evening of music for a very resonable $18 in advance. There will be the regular lineup of food vendors onsite, and the scattering of fire rings to keep warm– this barn is down in a hollow for gosh’s sakes, and the sun quickly ascends the road out of there in the evening, and 10 degree temp drops are not uncommon– so pack a sweater, kids!

These shows at Codfish Hollow are always wonderful and are special shows for bands and fans alike and are really a must-see for anyone who can make it. Much  love, respect and gratitude is due Tiff and Shawn Biehl for continually bringing the magic to their barn.

The food vendors will be providing Grilled chicken sandwiches, BBQ pulled pork sandwiches, Hot dogs, Veggie dogs, Nachos and cheese, Chicken/pork nachos, Vegetarian Bean Nachos, Chips, Giant Dill pickles, Candy bars, POP- Mt.Dew Pepsi, Diet Pepsi,Sprite, Bottled water, Coolers are welcome. That means bring your own booze if you want it!

For more information, you can follow the Codfish Hollow Facebook page, and the Facebook event invitation.

To order tickets for Bern in the Barn, you can go to the Eventbrite ticket ordering page— tickets are $18 in advance and $22 at the day of the show.

(Upcoming Show) Counting Crows Bring Tour to Codfish Hollow Barn for 4th of July!

Codfish Hollow Barn in Maquoketa, IA Ready to Be Stormed

As many things do any more, it all started with a tweet.

Around the time that Dawes played the “Barn on the Fourth” show in Maquoketa, IA at Codfish Hollow in 2010, Adam Duritz of the Counting Crows tweeted that he wanted to play in a barn. Last month it was announced that Counting Crows would be performing in Cedar Rapids as part of their RAGBRAI event. At that time, I speculated that it would have been a good time to do a Daytrotter Barnstormer show and mentioned it to Tiffany Biehl (Tiffany and her husband organize the Barnstormer shows on their farm) on Facebook, and she responded with “I wish.”

For the last couple of weeks Daytrotter has been featuring some of the notable sessions from the previous Barnstormer shows, so when Codfish Hollow posted to Facebook yesterday about some big news coming up, I figured it was going to be a Barnstormer announcement since Codfish Hollow has had the distinction of being the home base for these shows.

Wishes apparently come true! This morning Counting Crows sent out an e-mail to their fans about their decision to release their newest album of covers Underwater Sunshine for free via BitTorrent. Included in this e-mail was an update about their upcoming Outlaw Roadshow summer tour, which included this:

The first leg (Featuring Counting Crows, Good Old War, Foreign Fields, and Filligar) has already been onsale for a week. It starts in Asbury Park and heads north through Connecticut and upstate NY to Ontario then criss-crosses down through the Great Lake States and the Shenandoah Valley, passing back & forth through Ohio, Michigan, Kentucky, Indiana, and Virginia before traveling down south to Alabama, South Carolina, and Mississippi just west of the Tennessee state line. It ends in Maquoketa, Iowa and Rock Island, Illinois where all the bands will celebrate Independence Day at Codfish Hollow Barn playing a Barnstormer show and then retire to Rock Island to record Daytrotter Sessions. (emphasis mine)

The details for this show are only just finalizing right now, so there isn’t any information about tickets yet, but considering that the venue (also known as a “barn”) has a reasonable capacity of around 500, these tickets will be as rare as hen’s teeth, as they say. I’ll update this post with any information that I get.

What a wonderful opportunity for Eastern Iowa!

You should consider signing up for a subscription to Daytrotter— a fantastic deal at $2 per month for some amazing sessions and other perks.

Click Here to listen to Counting Crows last Daytrotter Session.

Upcoming Show : Jeffrey Foucault at Legion Arts/CSPS 12/9/11

Somewhere between Milwaukee, Rockford, IL and Chicago sits Whitewater, WI. Whitewater is home of the University of Wisconsin, Whitewater (alma mater of John Belushi if you believe Wikipedia) as well as folk/country/Americana singer-songwriter Jeffrey Foucault.

Foucault has been spinning his particular yarns into song for going on ten years and has performed in support of complimentary artists like Greg Brown, Todd Snider and Chris Smither. His 2006 album Ghost Repeater was produced by Bo Ramsey and included a few of his regular sidemen– Rick Cicalo on bass, Steve Hayes on drums, as well as Nate Basinger from the Diplomats of Solid Sound, and Dave Moore guesting. Eric Heywood from Son Volt provided pedal steel guitar.

Foucault’s latest album Horse Latitudes came out in May to critical acclaim, also has some notable sidemen– Heywood returns on pedal steel and Van Dyke Parks provides keys! Horse Latitudes is the first album I’ve heard from Foucault, but his vibe recalls some of the great songwriters of our time– here and there I hear drops of Neil Young’s early work around Harvest, Springsteen and Gordon Lightfoot. An impressive work from beginning to end.

Foucault will be performing at Legion Arts/CSPS in Cedar Rapids, IA on Friday night at 8PM. Tickets are $14 in advance and $18 at the door.

More information at the Legion Arts Website.

Watch Jeffrey Foucault on Sound Pass

Click Here to listen to “Horse Latitudes” from Horse Latitudes.

Click Here to listen to “Pretty Girl In A Small Town” from Horse Latitudes.

Click Here to listen to “Goners Most” from Horse Latitudes.

Catch Jeffrey Foucault on Tour (from his website):

12.09.11 Cedar Rapids, IA CSPS
12.13.11 Marshfield, WI Vox Concert Series Hayward Williams opens
12.14.11 Fort Atkinson, WI Cafe Carpe Redbird
12.15.11 Fort Atkinson, WI Cafe Carpe Redbird
12.16.11 Fort Atkinson, WI Cafe Carpe Redbird
01.01.12 Shelburne Falls, MA Memorial Hall Redbird
01.06.12 Baltimore, MD Cellar Stage With Mark Erelli
01.07.12 Newtown Square, PA Burlap and Bean With Mark Erelli
01.08.12 Stony Brook, NY University Cafe At Stony Brook University with Mark Erelli
01.13.12 Pittsburgh, PA Club Cafe
01.14.12 State College, PA Acoustic Brew Concert Series
01.20.12 Marblehead, MA Me & Thee With John Fullbright
02.17.12 Minneapolis, MN Cedar Cultural Center Support to The Pines
02.18.12 LaCrosse, WI The Root Note
02.25.12 Stoughton, WI Stoughton Opera House
03.2-4.12 Ashfield, MA The Mighty Albert A Guitar/Songwriting Workshop Weekend
03.03.12 Ashfield, MA Elmer’s Store Concert
03.16.12 Syracuse, NY Folkus Project
03.31.12 Cambridge, MA Club Passim
04.27.12 Fairmount, IL Sleepy Creek Vineyards
04.28.12 Springfield, IL Hoogland Center for the Arts
05.12.12 Pomfret, CT The Vanilla Bean

Upcoming Release: Mazurek’s Starlicker Trio Brings “Double Demon” on 5/17/11 and Tour

On a snowy night in January I had an opportunity to see Rob Mazurek’s newest band in an incredibly intimate setting at Monk’s Kaffee Pub in Dubuque, IA of all places. Starlicker is a trio made up of cornet player Mazurek, Jason Adasiewicz on vibes and John Herndon on drums. The trio played a dynamic set of improvised jazz punctuated by frenetic and muscular solos by each. I had my appetite whetted for their eventual release titled Double Demon, which is due out on 5/17 on seminal jazz and blues label Delmark.

Starlicker Live at Monk's Koffee Pub

Double Demon represents another title in Delmark’s recent re-entry into the world of vinyl– Mazurek’s last release with his band Exploding Star Orchestra (of which Adasiewicz and Herndon are also members) Stars Have Shapes was part of Delmark’s first two releases, so it’s clear that they want to take advantage of Mazurek’s following, who may know of him from his Thrill Jockey releases as Chicago Underground and Isotope 217.

In conjunction with the release, the trio is heading out for a few dates in the Midwest and East Coast in May, with another stop in Dubuque on May 20th for Dubuquefest– a free arts festival.

Double Demon Tracklisting:
1. Double Demon (6:13)
2. Vodou Cinque (6:22)
3. Orange Blossom (4:07)
4. Andromeda (5:40)
5. Triple Hex (9:22)
6. Skull Cave (6:33)

Here is some video I shot at Monk’s of an unreleased (or possibly renamed?) track called “Horseshoes”

I also recorded the full show with my handheld recorder and Rob gave me permission to post a track. This is an mp3 of “Triple Hex” live at Monk’s Kaffee Pub, January 18, 2011.

Triple Hex Live at Monk’s Kaffee Pub 1-18-11


B-Sides in the Bins #52 – Half-Price Books Cedar Rapids 1/22/11

I was out running a bunch of errands today and ended up at Half-Price Books. When I arrived I didn’t find anything in the used vinyl bins that I absolutely needed– they had a couple of new Donna’s LP’s which was interesting, but I’m not familiar with their music enough for me to jump in. I was just about out the door when Claire– the girl who is the most knowledgeable about the vinyl– happened to be bringing a pile of newly-priced records to the bins to put away. Thankfully I stayed! I found the King Crimson LP from the pile she brought over and the Queen LP– she brought some other interesting pieces, but most of them were in pretty ratty condition– the first Doors record (stereo), a 13, The Who’s Tommy on Decca, Katy Lied by Steely Dan. She said that she had a Dark Side of the Moon behind the counter she was going to put out and asked if I wanted to see it. I don’t really need another Dark Side, but I know enough people who need one that I always look.

I didn’t end up picking up the Dark Side of the Moon, but I ended up picking up some other really great pieces!

Pink Floyd – Atom Heart Mother (LP, Harvest/Capitol SKAO 382, 1970) ($7.00) According to the matrix information this is a second issue done in Jacksonville, IL. The vinyl is in really great shape, but the cover got wet– hence the cheaper price. This is an album that I’ve never listened to– I tend to favor Wish You Were Here, Animals and Dark Side of the Moon. The “Atom Heart Mother” Suite which takes up side one is listenable, but still emblematic of the psych snobbery that I was glad they moved away from. I really like side 2 though. “Fat Old Sun” is a great song. I may keep an eye out for a new cover for this one since the vinyl is so clean.

New York Dolls (LP, Mercury SRM.1.675, 1973)($10.00) The landmark first album from New York Dolls– produced by then-guitarist for The Nazz Todd Rundgren! After watching the documentary about the reunion of the New York Dolls in 2006 called New York Doll, I had a new interest in this seminal proto-punk/glam band. The vinyl is in really great shape although it has a slight warp. The cover is clean, but has a spit at the bottom. The inner sleeve is intact and features a pencil sketch of a girl bent at the waist in a skirt with her behind pointing at the viewer. The album is great! I’m really happy to have this in my collection. A note: Ryan Adams quotes the opening of “Looking For A Kiss” on “Beautiful Sorta”: “When I say L-U-V, you best believe me L-U-V.” Apparently the New York Dolls are quoting The Shangri-La’s, but I’m sure Adams is quoting the Dolls.

King Crimson – Red (LP, Atlantic SD 18110, 1974)($2.98) This is my absolutely favorite King Crimson album. My foray into King Crimson started with the 1980’s releases Beat, Three of a Perfect Pair and Discipline that featured Adrian Belew on guitars and vocals based on a co-worker’s advice. I started digging into the catalog of King Crimson, and the next albums would be Lark’s Tongues in Aspic, Starless and Bible Black, and Red. Red is the final release from the King Crimson lineup that would include Bill Bruford (from Yes) and John Wetton (from Asia). According to the Wiki article on the album, Red was released after the band was disbanded by leader Robert Fripp. The album ends up being a compilation of the band’s studio work as well as their live improvisational abilities. The title track and “One More Red Nightmare” are both really heavy tracks especially for 1973-1974 and are cited as influential by many musicians (surprisingly including Kurt Cobain). The track “Providence” is an edit of an extended live improvisation. The copy at HPB had a water-damaged cover that was separating, but the vinyl was in really good condition, so I picked it up. I think it sounds very good.

Queen – A Night At The Opera (LP, Elektra 7E-1053, 1975)($5.00) When the HPB lady put this out, I knew I had to buy this as it is an album that is very influential in my wife Sherry’s life. Rock music was not allowed at her strict Baptist household, so she would get her dose of Rock music from her best friend when she visited. Queen was the first rock music she was exposed to and continues to be a favorite of hers to this day. I was familiar with a few of the songs on Opera, but had never listened to the whole thing before. It’s a classic for good reason– a really balanced album with writing done by the whole band. My second vinyl LP from Queen and a good start to a collection.

Jefferson Airplane – Surrealistic Pillow (LP, RCA AYL1-3738, 1967)($5.00) This is a “Best Buy Series” budget release of the album done sometime in the early 1980’s. The Best Buy Series are generally derided by most collectors and in almost every case RCA chose to make dramatic changes to the packaging and in some cases the track listings to achieve this budget line. In the case of this particular release, there is an ugly “Best Buy Series” logo on the cover art, but it is the normal track listing. Surrealistic Pillow was the Airplane’s second album, but their best known as it has three of their biggest hits on it: “Somebody To Love,” “White Rabbit,” and “Today.” Growing up, we had a cassette of The Worst of Jefferson Airplane the 1971 compilation that had four tracks from Surrealistic Pillow, so I was very familiar with this album as I listened to that a lot. Dave Donovan, who taught Spanish at my high school let me borrow his LP of Surrealistic Pillow as well as his copy of The Beatles White Album, which I thought was pretty cool at the time. There is a lot of debate about the various pressings of Surrealistic Pillow online, but from what I can tell almost every stereo pressing is considered to be thin-sounding, and I would judge this particular pressing the same. Interestingly, the matrix information on my pressing has “AYL1 3738 A 29” stamped on side A, and “AFL1 -3766B-2” scratched out and “AYL1 3738B” hand written on side 2. AFL1 3766 is the late 70’s (maybe 1978?) reissue catalog number. This correction on side 2 would indicate that the plates for this pressing were probably cut from the master tapes used for the late 70’s pressing. It doesn’t make it particularly notable, but provides an interesting view into how labels deal with cutting plates.

All-in-all a really good trip to Half Price Books! Since I spent over $25, they gave me an HPB calendar with the 5% coupons, and they used the first coupon on this order so I actually paid less than the prices listed above. On my way home I called my friend Andrew and told him about the Dark Side of the Moon I saw. He called and had them hold it– it was $7!

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