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Tuesday, June 13, 2006

More Thrift Score!!!

Like every good, red blooded, not a terraist Amurkin, when I find myself in times of trouble, mindless consumerism comforts me. Fortunately for me and my wallet, I prefer the bottom feeding of sifting through other's discarded crap at bargain basement prices to the world of full price new merchandise that doesn't smell like bum piss. And because I love you all so much (you meaning those of you I haven't tricked into coming here by putting the word Rapidshare in every post dealing with music*,) I've made it my life's...err blog's work to obsessively document all my thrifting.


I'm going to start with last stop first, as that netted me the least amount of goods.

This was a 50 cent an album store and luckily for me, someone had dropped a collection of stuff in fairly decent shape. It was near closing time, so I had to be kind of swift. As always, from left to right, top to bottom:

Jeff Wayne's War of The Worlds. I remember hearing this one in a store back in the day and thinking it was pretty cool. Probably isn't, but hey, 50 cents! Whoo hoo.

Paul McCartney - Tug of War and Wings Greatest Hits. Did I need either of theses? Maybe the Wings record, but unless I get a burning urge to hear Ebony and Ivory, I doubt Tug of War is going to grace my turntable. But hey, 50 cents each!!! Hip hop hooray!

The Name of this Band is Talking Heads. I think this is the Talking Heads vinyl I needed. Yay completist!!! Yay 50 cents!!!!

Chick Corea - Mad Hatter and Friends. Oy! Should I admit I bought these? OK, the Chickster has some real crap in his catalog. If memory serves, Friends is among that. Still, you have Steve Gadd and Eddie Gomez as the rhythm section. How bad can that be? I'm asking, because I really don't know. Oh, and go Chick, it's your birthday. 50 cent. YEEEEEAHAH.

Wrapping up our package from the day's final thrift store adventure is a copy of Virtua Fighter Kids for Sega Saturn. Usually the Saturn games I find thrifting are shredded, cases are cracked, booklets have been used as toilet paper, etc. I like the Saturn, I like Virtua Fighter and who doesn't like superdeformed characters? This came out to $2.02 because the cashier overcharged me on something else and rather than canceling it out, charged me less on this one. Arrrrite!!!

Total (with tax) $5.83

Onwards, backwards, whatever. Here's load number two...

Alright, now we're starting to get serious. This is from a thrift that's always been hit or miss for me. It doesn't help matters that they have jumped on the ever-so-trendy random pricing of records bandwagon. Basically, this means if the person with the stickers and the grease pencil has heard of the artist, expect at least $1.98 on the price tag. The person who had priced this batch must have loved them some easy listening as Ray Conniff and Andy Williams were going for the premium prices (more on my own Andy William shame coming up.)

I stuck with all the non "as marked" discs, which meant I missed out on another Christmas disco record. This one was Mexican and had an unauthorized photo from Saturday Night Fever on the cover. Maybe I shoulda got that one, but I just couldn't come off the $2.98 for it.


Lew Davies - Two Pianos and Twenty Voices. I have a problem. A serious problem. I'm obsessed with owning every record on the Command label. I think at last count I was about half way there. They look totally awesome on the shelf, all white spines with the same type.

Mostly this obsession has to do with the modern art covers and the liner notes, which are amazing. See, Command was aimed firmly at the budding audiophile market, so the liners are at least as concerned with selling the sound quality as the music. And, for the most part, these records are total ear candy. It's that awesome early stereo sound, where everything was still tube and the engineers all were burly men who smoked cigars and smelled like Brut.

Musically? Not so much. I dig the Persuasive/Provocative Percussion series. Those are lounge classics. Some of the Dick Hyman albums are good too. Other than that...not so much.

Pro Tip: The Ray Charles Singers have nothing to do with Jamie Foxx's character from the movie Ray.

Where was I?

Mary Wells - Greatest Hits. It's not in the best of shape and it's stereo (Motown stereo before about 1969 is bad news, IMHO) but the track list is fairly unfuckwithable. Is that a word? 50 cents!!!! WHOO HOOOOOOO!!!!

Rick Moraz - Out in the Sun. I have no idea what this is. It's on the Charisma label. I bought it mainly because it had the half price sticker on it and I was sick of seeing it in the store every time I went there.

Shock - Shock Talk. Man, you put "Special 12" Disco Mix" on a record and I'mma buy it. I'm dumb like that. I'm sure this record is total butt, but maybe it's not. Fantasy was putting out the Sylvester records about this time and those are pretty hot. The records, not Sylvester.

Newcleus - Jam On Revenge. Let me repeat that for you: Newcleus - Jam On Revenge!!! Man, I woulda traded my Payless fake Air Jordans for a copy of this back in the day. Don't hate me, but this is still only the second best dirt cheap hip hop find I've had. (Number one is still the mint Doug E. Fresh The Show/La-Di-Da-Di 12" I copped for a quarter. f33r my l33t digging!!!)

CDs? Yeah, here they are, not as interesting to me, but cheap-ish. Suprisingly, none of these look like they've been used like a puck in a game of street hockey. I do wish the store hadn't written the price on the disc in paint pen, but at least they had the sense to put 'em behind the counter.

Pro Tip: putting CDs anywhere in a thrift store other than behind the cash register is an open invitation for people to boost the discs and leave the case.

Cat Stevens - The Very Best of. Oh god, I suck. It's bad enough I admitted to buying a copy of the gheyest Chick Corea album, but now this? My street cred is totally gone. *sob*

Mayor Of The Sunset Strip soundtrack. WTF? Haven't seen the movie yet, but this is a pretty happening soundtrack. Even if Hole is on it. :/

Twista - Kamikaze. Still sealed!!! RARE!! L@@K!!!! (Guilty pleasure. No comment.)

Rocky Horror Picture Show soundtrack. I think I must be on the doorstep of total self-loathing. Why I'd want to relive this painful chapter of my life is beyond me. Sadly, I still know all the words to this movie as well as most of the audience participation lines. *sigh*

Star Wars soundtrack. Too bad it's not Empire Strikes Back. That was the bomb.

Freddie McGregor - Push On. I like McGregor. The album Big Ship is a total post-roots, pre-dancehall reggae classic. This could be sketchy as there's no dates listed. Steely and Clevie are on it, so that gives me an idea of what to expect. It also features the song Jogging, which always sounds to me like Big Ship Part 2.

I think I just lost every one of you that made it this far.

Neil Norman - Greatest Science Fiction Hits IV. God, this one reeks of cheese. Also, I wasn't aware James Bond films were sci-fi. Who knew?

Grand total: $19.60 and a slice of my dignity.

Alright, halfway marker. Grab a cup of coffee, or some caffeinated soap because we've still got a way to go.

My first destination of the day was a big chain thrift I'm normally not too big on visiting. Rarely do they have much of interested these days, as they seem more interested in competing with dollar stores. However, today was a little different.

First, let's look at the LPs I got:

The Hollies Greatest Hits. Rechanneled stereo (aka shit) but who cares? Some great British invasion pop and this is stuff my mom used to play for me when I was a youngin, so nostalgia trip to boot.

Performance soundtrack. Man, what is with all the soundtracks? Anyway, has Jagger on it (in it?) and I have nothing else to say.

Andy Williams - Love Theme from the Godfather. The horror! The horror!!! So, what possessed me to but this? It's quad, maaaahnnnn. As a quadraphonic sound enthusiast, I have to pick up everything and anything quad to play on my system. Which means, a ton of dreck. *sigh*

Pro Tip: it wasn't three competing systems that no one could really demo properly that killed quad, it was the fact that most of the quad records were MOR crap like Andy Williams and Jim Neighbors that killed quad.

Wake up. I'm losing you again.

Martin Mull - Days of Wine and Neurosis. Yes, that Martin Mull. I love the holiday single he had out, and I've heard nothing but good things about his albums. We'll see.

Normally I don't buy LPs sans jackets, but...these might have fallen into a sleeve with another record. Maybe. Who knows? It's a crazy world.

Shuggie Otis - Here Comes. This is a typical example of the thing about thrifting that breaks my heart: a totally desirable album with no jacket. It is better than a jacket with no album. I tore a store up once looking for a missing Astro Sounds From Beyond the Year 2000 record and like a dumbass I left the store without the jacket when I didn't find the record.

The Gentries - Keep On Dancing. I had no idea they spun their one hit into a whole album. I'm assuming this is going to rock, hard.

Now, brace yourself because here is the piece de resistance:

Check out that mess! I mean, just look at 'em! Normally I'd pass on 45s at this thrift as they charge 99 cents a toss. To some, that's fair, but when I started thrifting, 45s were a quarter or less. It's just difficult for me to pay the same as an album for a 45. These were in pretty good shape for the most part, which is suprising considering they were all thrown together in a big box.

I love 45s. Seriously, I think they are the only proper way to listen to classic rock and roll. They almost always sound better than any other version and they look so cool. I'm part owner of a jukebox, so I always have an excuse to buy these suckers, even though I think I have 3948 records I want to put in my half of a machine that holds twenty.

Anyway, here's another 33:

The Pack - Fire (or as the label calls it "Let me Stand Next to Your Fire"). The hip thing to say is: this is a contemporary to the MC5 and the Stooges doing a Hendrix cover. The not hip thing to say is: this is a precursor to Grand Funk Railroad doing a Hendrix cover.

Desmond Dekker - Israelites. RIP. I think I own a dozen copies of this already, but when the apocalypse comes, I'm going to be ready for all your Desmond Dekker needs.

Robert Preston - Chicken Fat. Apparently this was part of JFK's idea to get school kids in shape. This song was featured in the 365 Days project (Google it) and is ridiculous.

The Electric Prunes - Get Me To the World On Time. It's the Prunes. 'Nuff said.

Joyce Kennedy - The Hi-Fi Albums and I. I don't know about this but Andre Williams produced it so it's gotta be good.

Bobby Byrd - The Way I Feel. Anything after I Know You Got Soul is going to be a let down, but so what? It's still Byrd.

The Soul Survivors - Express To Your Heart. Early Gamble & Huff excellence.

Aretha Franklin - Baby I Love You. If you have to ask...

Les McCann - Bucket O'Grease. How can this be bad?

The Wishbone - Let The Good Times In. I got nothing.

The Crickets - The Sound Of The Crickets EP. Woah. Where did this come from? I'm going to be an eBay hundredaire!!!!!! No cover tho. :(

The Four Speeds - Four On The Floor. Surf from Usher and Christian.

"The" Cream - Sunshine Of Your Love. On 45? Why not?

Tommy Wills - Lost Dreams. Local cat. Second record of his I've found and still not the one I'm looking for.

(You getting tired yet? I am.)

The Impressions - Talking About My Baby. Awesome.

James & Bobby Purify - I'm Your Puppet. I love this song.

The Shirelles - Welcome Home Baby.

Aphrodites Child - Rain and Tears. Greek prog on 7". Featuring the artist currently known as Vangelis.

Ray Charles - The Brightest Smile in Town.

Jackie Wilson - I'll Be Satisfied. An early Berry Gordy composition.

Ray Charles - Crying Time. This is gonna sound great on the jukebox.

The Shangri-Las - Give Us Your Blessings.

Sammy Turner - Lavender Blue.

Dickie Goodman - Batman & His Grandmother. I used to love the Buchanan and Goodman Flying Saucer records when I was a sprout.

Beach Boys - Wild Honey. Although this is one of my favorite post-Smile tracks, I got this 45 as the flip is straight up Smile leftover. Wind Chimes. On a 45. Niiiiiice.

Chase - Get It On. It's like a pep band from hell!!!

The Zebra - Miss Anne (Ain't That Kind Of Man). I have a hunch this is going to suck mightily.

Travis & Bob - Tell Him No. I think this is rockabilly, but I'll bet I'm wrong.

The Impressions - I'm So Proud.

Are you still reading this?

Sir Douglas Quintet - Nuevo Laredo.

The Music Explosion - Little Bit O'Soul. Another duplicate (at least.) Oh well, good tune. I'll do a scratch routine with 'em.

Linda Gail Lewis - South Side Soul Society Chapter #1. Quote Han Solo: "I've got a baaad feeling about this."


The Virginians - Limbo Baby. Because when I think limbo, I think Virginia.

So, the moral of the story here is I really need to start bringing my portable with me when I go thrifting. All I wanted for Xmas a few years ago was a portable turntable. Well, I got it, and the only time I actually remembered to bring it with me, the batteries were dead.

Speaking of dead, I'm dead tired. Get some sleep.

* just kidding. I love you guys too, you cheap music pirating bastards.

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