There’s a lot of great LPs in the Crown catalogue of releases, from motorcycle instros, seminal blues & jazz, gospel, psychedelia & loads of country.
But there’s also loads of crap plus perfect examples of fads-gone-by such as polka, barrel house piano and easy listening. Hence another week of mostly crap in which I try to find a gem or two.
Mostly a reissue of Modern M7004 with identical side 1 and several substituted cuts on Side 2.
An early Crown release where an effort is made to create a professional LP product using thick cardboard covers and detailed notes on the back. However, there was no fold-over of the cardboard on the seams so they easily split (hence the tape) plus no credit was given to the the orchestra, arranger or orchestra leader. Liner notes also went uncredited.
George Liberace was Liberace’s older brother who was featured in Liberace’s 1950’s TV show as his silent sidekick who played violin. He ended up managing the Vegas Liberace Museum and lived in Palm Springs in a house owned by his brother. On Wikipedia: “In the 1960’s and 70’s, he was involved in George Liberace Songsmiths, Inc., a mail-order music publishing operation of somewhat dubious integrity.” Cover photo by Joseph Tauber & cover by Hobco Arts, as noted on the back.
The Crazy Guy was discussed in this previous posting. No photo credit for the racy cover but it again looks like the work of Playboy photographer Frank Bez. Another great tape job on the cover seams using old style shipping tape.
A swinging, suggestive cover photo by Gene Lesser-Hollywood with art direction & production credited to Bihari sister Florette. Phil Martin Orchestra performed the music.
Gene Lesser has gathered a variety of small credits in Hollywood over the years, as stage play writer, TV writer & still photographer on a low budget film. Crown may be his only LP cover work. You can find more about him on IMDB and here.
CLP5055 (2058 scratched out)/1958
There’s a great little history behind this polka record under its listing at the outstanding Both Sides Now Crown discography. Look up the LP by its number CLP5055. It’s a real lesson in the low budget record business.
Photo by Ron Vogel (discussed last week), cover photo by Tri Arts & conducting credit given to Thomas Maxwell Davis & Hans Hagen. Musical numbers by Lloyd Hanna & Irene Cummings.
Tri-Arts Studio was apparently a west coast ad agency or photo agency representing artists such as William Claxton and perhaps Vogel. Not much online about the performance artists here beyond their work with Crown. This music may have been recorded by the Biharis.