Saturday, April 25, 2015

Record Store Day 2015

So Record Store Day has come and gone yet again. For the last several years I've participated in all of it's glory. For those not familiar with the day, it's always the third Saturday in April, and it is the closest thing record geeks get to a national holiday. In a perfect storm of limited pressings, colored wax, and novelties, it brings out the oddballs, outcasts, obsessive, and all around crazy record collectors.

The day also acts as sort of a gateway drug for the influx of new collectors. A way to get people out of their house and check out the shop down the street. From what I've gathered it acts as a frustrating yet fruitful day for store owners.

From my observations there are four camps in the Record Store Day mentality: (by no means a complete and definitive list)

Camp 1: The Collector. (Cromagus Collectus) This camp belongs to the record buyer who will do anything in their power to obtain just one more record. Generally they are never satisfied. They will buy anything and everything. Their taste in music is sometimes questionable. The main objective is to have stuff. Often identified by armpit sweat, BO, mouth breathing and always seeming to be in a hurry. Collectors hardly ever want to give up their records. All their record store day purchases will remain sealed and never played, mainly due to their "collectability and rarity."When they die their collection is often just thrown in the trash because their next of kin "can't be bothered lugging all these down to Goodwill." (see also: "Jethro Tull Stand Up man"*)

Camp 2: The Fan. (Fanaticus Turntablist) This camp belongs to your seasoned vinyl audiophile. They buy records, they love music, and are participating to engage in breaking bread with their fellow vinyl geeks. Buddy Holly glasses, tattoos, and a strong opinion of craft beer are often displayed but not always needed. It's good to make friends with these folks, they act a support system for your vinyl habit. The barter system is often the main source of commerce. They often shrug off bad deals knowing something better will always come around. (The Fan can graduate to Camp 1 generally once they hit their mid 40's after two decades of bad hygiene, bad eating, and all their friends move away.)   

Camp 3: The Flipper. (Dbaggus Friggus Diccus) This camp's main objective is to make money. The Flipper's buy low sell high mentality often leads to frustrating conversations. The Flipper comes up with record values on a non existent "book price." The book only exists between Flipper brethren. Economics is not their strongest attribute. The Flipper will often set his cost for a one to one transaction based on nonsensical one to multiple buyer transactions. (see also: "eBay completed listings"**) (Camp 1 and 4 are usually the Flipper's best customers.)

Camp 4: The Novice. (Crosleyest Firsttimest) This camp often shows up at the store the Sunday after Record Store Day and voices frustration to the clerk about how worthless the store is for not having any of the limited 100 regionally pressed exclusive records left. Frankly, they don't care it was only released in the UK why couldn't you guys get it. Generally buys records since "vinyls sound better," and plugged in the speakers from their parents old Gateway 2000 computer to the headphone jack because "it's louder than the built in speakers." The Novice's scratched up poorly taken care of records will show up in a Goodwill near you once they "get bored with playing vinyls." (It is possible for the Novice to graduate to Camp 2.)    

All joking aside I played both sides of the Record Store Day camps this year. I ended up flipping a few records on eBay because in the heat of the moment I purchased them with intentions of trading to other friends. Either they made their score already or they simply declined. They all worked in my favor so I'm not complaining.

This year I decided to not to look at the list until after I had hit up a few shops. I didn't wake up at the crack of dawn (or before it) and actually waited a few hours for the lines to die down. It made shopping more rewarding. I wasn't spending waking hours stressing about what I didn't get. The only thing not pictured below is the Grateful Dead Wake Up To Find Out. I saw multiple copies, mine is in the final stages of trade negotiations. I still haven't had a chance to listen to everything yet but I'll provide a brief description of each piece.  

 RSD 2015 exclusives LP's Pt1

Clockwise top left:
Various Artists "Darjeeling Limited OST" (RSD exclusive green vinyl 4900 copies) Tracks from the Kinks and Stones and original score.

Bob Dylan and the Band "The Basement Tape" (RSD limited 2500 hand stamped with Garth Hudson's signature) Super clean recording. This is the real deal, single LP, features all the original tracks without the overdubs, or the 8 "post basement" tracks tacked on to the 1975 release.

Rockabye Baby "Lullaby Renditions of Grateful Dead" (RSD limited 2000 purple vinyl) This is a fun record of Dead tunes played on xylophones, vibes, and glockenspiels. Nice and calming.

The Zombies "RIP" (RSD 5600 copies) This was to be the follow up to the Odessey And Oracle. It was declined by the label and never released. I haven't played it but I'm very excited to hear it.

RSD 2015 exclusives LP's Pt2

Clockwise top left: The (International) Noise Conspiracy "Live at Oslo Jazz Festival 2002" (RSD limited 500 copies red vinyl) This record holds the most sentimental value to me, mostly due the fact it was recorded only a few weeks prior to the first and only time I would see (I)nc live. (2002's Plea for Peace tour at Club Laga. Anti-Flag/Bouncing Souls/and (I)nc...I got tired just typing that.) This was released on CD about 10 years ago, but this was the first time it was released on vinyl.   
Tomorrow "Tomorrow" (RSD limited 2800 splatter vinyl) Tomorrow is the quintessential UK psych album. The guitarist went on to play in Yes. This was a big purchase glad to finally have a copy on vinyl.
Various Artists "When I Reach that Heavenly Shore Unearthly Black Gospel 1926-1936" (3 LP box set limited to 1200) I love this stuff, pre war gospel music from the "Old and Weird America." Oddly enough this one was only priced about $15 more than the cd collection.
Various Artists "The Rough Guide to Psychedelic Cambodia" (RSD limited to 1200) Rough Guide does a great job with all their compilations. They released a handful of psych compilations for the RSD and I really had spent a ton of cash already so I went with the Cambodia comp. I haven't had a chance to devour it yet, but Rough Guides are a stamp of approval, I know I'm getting good quality stuff.   

RSD 2015 7's and 10 inch

7's Clockwise top left: The Pretty Things EP (Limited 400) Repress of the first Pretty Things EP which collected their first two singles, Don't Bring Me Down and Rosalyn. Couldn't pass this up.
RSD 2015 Mystery Disc (Spoiler alert!) Ramones and Husker Du Sheena is a Punk Rocker. The Mystery Discs are a fun release I buy them every year.
Black Keys/Junior Kimbrough Meet Me in the City (RSD exclusive 6000) Impulse buy on this one. Still a great track by either artist.
Antorchas (RSD exclusive 550) Three track EP featuring two English and one Spanish tune from this Mexican psych band. Haven't played it yet. Couldn't pass it up.
Los Juniors/Tomcats (RSD exclusive 550) Split psych single from two awesome Spain based psych bands. 
Small Faces Afterglow of your Love (RSD exclusive 400) Features an alternate take from the Odgen's Nutgone Flake Album.
10 inch right side. Tess Parks and Anton Newcombe Cocaine Cat (RSD exclusive 2000) I've yet to play this but the reviews have been extremely good. Anton is the brainchild behind the BJM. 

All in all a great RSD. I did it right this year. There were a few releases I purchased that may not be as strong as others. I stayed away from the Side by Side series. I didn't think the prices made sense for a truly one sided single. My new and used purchases will be reviewed in an upcoming post.

How did I do? How were your scores? Comment below. 

* Jethro Tull Stand Up man: A guy who frequents local record shows with the intention of only buying Jethro Tull's 1969 progressive rock masterpiece "Stand Up."
** eBay completed listings: The area on eBay where you can view sold prices.  

Monday, April 13, 2015

Vinyl finds week of 4/12/15

Hi ya folks back again with a quick post showing off my recent vinyl pick ups for the week of 4/12/15. Most of them are either hillbilly country or bluegrass. Tons of cool stuff. They've all been in heavy rotation currently at Glass Orchid HQ.

I picked up this Rolling Stones bootleg for $4 at the Steel City Con (more on that in future post). Contained within is the Rolling Stones "Europe 70" (Roll and Rope records) 10/7/70  Grugahalle, Essen, West-Germany, Live Concert. The audio is an audience tape but still sounds very good 2 LPs. I asked the seller what show was on the record, he said "I haven't listened to them in years." Which was odd considering the May 2014 Goodwill sticker in the lower left corner. (A great show, not a duff track)

Hank Williams "Memorial Album" (MGM 1953). This one was rescued from the bargain basement of my usual haunt. $1  Classic Hank best of compilation. Essential, the majority of the big hits are here, no elaboration needed.

Various Artists "Blue Ridge Barn Dance" (Country 746) $4 I'm a sucker for record labels numbering systems. The Country label is no exception. Like the title boasts it's filled with traditional Old Time Music. Feel good music.      

J.D. Jarvis and Rusty York Bluegrass Gospel Songs (1968 Rural Rhythm RRJD 195) $4. This is one of those amazing albums that just appear out of nowhere. So to be fair this is really a split album. Each artist gets a side. Rusty York cherry picks most of my favorites, Drifting Too Far From the Shore, Great Speckled Bird, House of Gold, Where The Soul of Man Never Dies, Shake Hands with Mother Again, and Old Rugged Cross. Rusty York ran the Jewel Label (see also the Light Company) and is probably better known for his Rockabilly contributions on Chess and King records.

Cliff Waldron & The New Shades of Grass, One More Step with (1972 Rebel SLP 1510) $4 Ah yes the good 'ol Rebel label, yet another label to get obsessed with. If you are looking to listen to some of the truest Blue Grass recorded start with Rebel. This is a stellar effort. The liners suggest it's the 7th Rebel LP released by Cliff. The cover tunes on this one just smoke. Working Man's Blues holds a steady 125mph throughout the whole song. Plenty of Stanley/Louvin harmonies and insane mandolin and banjo pyrotechnics on Ring's of Gold. Probably not the music I should be listening to at 10:30 at night.


J.E. Mainer The Fiddle Music of J.E. Mainer and the Mountaineers Vol 20. (Rural Rhythm RRJEM 250) $4. Yet another killer Rural Rhythm find. This is such a feel good album, mostly due to the percussion being spoons, washboard, and whoops on a few tracks. It seems to threaten to go off the rails on every track but somehow it all stays together. The musicians sound like they are having the time of their life yelling and whooping back and forth. Truly captures the essence of a time gone by.     

Lefty Frizzell The One and Only (Columbia CL 1342 1959). $1 basement. So this is one of those sorta "new recordings of his greatest hits" compilations. It contains a handful of Lefty's biggest tunes updated for the late 50's sound. I like the fresh arrangements. Really the only classic tunes missing here are Long Black Veil and Saginaw Michigan, which Lefty would release after this album came out. The stand outs are If You've Got the Money, Always Late, and I Want to Be with You Always.

Various Artists 4 Kings of Country Music (1966 Nashville NLP 2032) $1 basement pick up. A Buck Owens, George Jones, Jimmy Dean, and Roger Miller compilation of older songs previously released on the Starday label. I guess what is cool about this one is the tracks spotlighted here all came out prior to the artists becoming big stars. Jimmy Dean's remake of Freight Train Blues is the biggest stand out. It's a bit jarring since the Possum gets two songs on each side. Only 10 tracks so it's a quick one.    

Leon McAuliffe Swingin' Western Strings of (1965 Starday SLP 309) $1 basement. Leon was one of the Texas Playboys. He doesn't sing so these are all steel guitar instrumentals. There is a small amount of weird instrumentation on here...more clarinet then you would expect. Faded Love is the big track, but there is a nice arrangement of Walkin the Floors Over You, Columbus Stockade Blues, and Jambalaya. The other tracks are so so. It's a Starday so I couldn't pass it up for $1. Check out the cool Ernest Tubb record shop sticker.

The Kitty Wells Family Gospel Sing (1965 Decca DL 4679) This was another $1 basement find. There's not really anything too earth shattering on here. There are plenty of full arrangements of hand clapping gospel. Lots of great harmonies. I'll admit I really like records like this. Truth be told Kitty Wells probably cranked out in two days. (Stand out tracks: Where the Soul of Man Never Dies, Shake Mother's Hand for Me, Precious Memories.)  

Sunday, April 12, 2015

Dateline Pittsburgh the week that was 04/5/15

Greetings faithful readers! First off I'd like to say thanks to all the folks who sent me messages through Facebook and the Papernets. (That's snail mail) I know it's been a while, trust me, there's plenty of irons in the fire right now, many of which caused the initial derailment of Glass Orchid. Remember those paper thingys that you got in the mail 2 or 3 years ago?

Anyhow, this post marks a new digital era of Glass Orchid. Just something extra to visit right before bed, in those last waking hours staring at your glowing screen, no matter what format it might be.

2015 is shaping up to be an insanely interesting year for me, both professionally and personally. I figure I'd document each week including forays in Music, Film, and Pop Culture. (The same stuff you've been digging in Glass Orchid) Come along for the ride will ya?

The week that was 4/5/15-4/11/15:

Most of this week was spent revisiting VH1's Bands On The Run TV show. I stumbled upon a few decent uploads of the show on YouTube. For those not familiar with the show, it aired in the spring and summer of 2001, pitting four bands (three in the pilot) Flickerstick, Soulcracker, Harlow, and the Josh Dodes Band in a multi city road trip in a contest to win equipment, cash, and an artist showcase. It was basically a reality show that combined American Idol and The Amazing Race but predated both only by a handful of months. Each band member is given $20 a day to live off of as they travel from city to city playing gigs, competing to see who can make the most cash from either the door or merch. Not to mention a bunch of people getting drunk, bumbling around, and doing stupid stuff. aka great television 101.

The show is still great, it aged well. Viewing it now revealed this weird pre 9/11 world. Pagers, payphones, phonebooks, maps, all this stuff that technology has bastardized. What struck me funny was the ages of all the cast members. In 2001 I was still 6 years younger then the youngest person on the I found myself older than the oldest band member. Which I guess to say seeing 30 year olds playing in a band, drinking hard, trying to score chicks, and still not have a stable mindset or foundation seems so stupid. Call me old.

There was an episode filmed in Pittsburgh which is great. It was filmed in November of 2000 but aired in April of 2001. There are so many moments that you can only expect to happen in Pittsburgh. (LINK audio/video on this one is a bit sketchy, but it's worth it.) Spoilers ahead so watch first!!

It's cool to see all these locations where these bands play and just knowing they were setup for disaster. For instance the Josh Dodes Band (sorta this soul/funk/lounge group) play on a flatbed truck in the 18th street parking lot in the South Side on a Saturday night. Yeah great idea. As expected the police shut down their show. There's a handful of shots of the Buzz Poets playing at Nick's Fat City (now Diesel). Could you get anymore stereotypical? In all seriousness it's great to see this.

Each episode has a special challenge where each group gets a text message and tries to be the first to complete the goal. This episode's special challenge was to chug an Iron City. Flickerstick, who was already sitting in the bar (surprise surprise) wins the prize of playing music to tailgating Steeler fans from a boat cruising around the rivers. When they go to promote their upcoming show to tailgating yinzers, it's clear that football fans have no interest in going to a show. They persuade some dude setup in the parking lot with a PA system to play their single. Best part is him shouting "STEELERS, EAGLES," overtop of Gary Glitter's "Rock and Roll pt. 2." (I will mention there is a quick shot of a then still under construction PNC Park. You can see they had yet to install all the seats. (It wouldn't open until March of 2001.)

The musical showdown occurs at Metropol (now M) and Rosebud (now Static). Both bands draw about 20 people to each of their shows. I mean seriously who wants to go to see out of town bands in the strip district on a Steeler Sunday night? It's fairly anti-climatic. The best part is a random dude that gets a ride from the Josh Dodes Band to Mount Washington. The band tries to get directions back to Green Tree which the guy has no idea, in true "you can't get there from here Pittsburgh form." Not from Pittsburgh? Better be prepared to know landmarks that don't exist anymore. I laughed out loud when the guy said "here's the tricky part." To be fair the West End Circle was still a big friggin mess in 2001. It gets ugly because the guy leaves the band stranded three miles away from Green Mount Washington. A fight almost breaks out when the dude fails to correctly give band directions.

A Bands On The Run DVD set will likely never see the light of day because of all the licensing needed to clear all of those wonderful mid 90's and early 2000's tunes that soundtrack the episodes. But take a minute to enjoy these episodes before YouTube takes them down.

Here are links to the better quality episodes. Sadly it's not the complete season, but the full pilot and season finale are included so you can get the idea. Link 1 Link 2 Link 3

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Glass Orchid #6 has arrived!

Alright, after a long wait issue #6 is now available. We've over stuffed the content expanding by 8 extra pages! That's 40 pages full of Glass Orchid goodies. Highlights include Holy Smokes: The Story of the Mission...a look at the strange history of a folk group of singing seminarians who later covered Dylan, Cohen, The Youngbloods, George Harrison, and The Who. It's a story of fuzz guitars, lawsuits, rock operas, and Jesus. Tame Impala gets reviewed in the Jukebox Jury. And a new column Greg's Grindhouse. Greg sits through one of the goriest Asian Trash Cinema flicks of all time...Riki-Oh. Get it today! (All Prices include shipping)

Glass Orchid #6
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Glass Orchid #5 and 6 Bundle
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Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Back Issues available soon!

Hey Folks, I've been receiving a good deal of mail asking for back issues. So I'm proud to announce issues 1,2, and 3 of Glass Orchid will be put back into print. I've overhauled the image quality and proofread and proofread and proofread... Keep an eye on this page for pricing. They will be available as single issues, mix and match, and super bundles. So if you want to get 1-5 in one swoop, now will be your chance. Happy reading!

Sunday, January 13, 2013

Glass Orchid #5

The holidays are over and while everyone is trying to shed those extra pounds it's time to stuff yourself with the best in music/film and pop culture! Glass Orchid #5 is another corker! We travel South of the border with 60's garage rock legends the Los Apson. We finish off our interview with David Detillo, who gives insight of the final days of David & Anthony and the elusive 45rpm single. Memphis Jim serves up the last few slices of the blues rock guide, and Alvy Trout reviews the dark comedy of Harold and Maude. Drop us a line at Glassorchidmag at

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

Hey Folks! I want to thank everyone who bought, found, or borrowed an issue in 2012! There are some great articles in the hopper already for issues #5 and #6. (Both will drop before the spring of 2013). When I completed issue #4 there was more content then pages to publish on. This has allowed me to get a bit ahead of the print schedule...which is always a good place to be. Again thank you O humble reader of the Orchid! On behalf of the staff of Glass Orchid Merry Christmas and best wishes in the New Year. Cheers! Glass Orchid