Sunday, February 26, 2012

Organ Fantasies - Jesse Crawford

That drink had a lot of green in it, or was it purple?

I can still hear the tinkling of those upper notes in tonight's Starlite Lounge presentation, "Organ Fantasies".  And yes, we certainly do know how that sounds, and we don't care what the neighbors think.  Jesse Crawford lulls you into a meditatative state with those low keys and foghorn-like bass notes.  Then all of a sudden, there's a high, tinkling fanfare that jolts through you.  Kind of like fingernails on a blackboard, except a whole lot more enjoyable. 

Especially after a number of green drinks.  Or purple.

Tonight's presentation comes to you in Spin-O-Rama, and it is of course Stereophonic (meaning it goes both ways)


  1. This is the version after Synthetic Plastics in NJ leased their masters to Coronet/Premier in NYC -- same tracks cut down from 12 to 10. (Thanks for including scans of the backs of the LPs.)
    I think Jesse Crawford DID exist (there's a photo on an earlier LP), but who knows.
    Synthetic Plastics & Premier kept re-releasing the same Hawaiian LP (usually as variations of Luke Leilani & Harry Kaapuni) more than 50 times, so it's probably the same with the organ LP(s).

    Somewhere in the past is an old lady who bought the same budget LP twelve times and couldn't figure out why they all sounded the same.

  2. I wondered about that, I have been getting into those "Hawaiian" LPs too, and I noticed a lot of them have the same tracks on them. There's one credited to The Surfmen and it has been released three times with different titles--same album.

    And if that's true about the little old lady, I hope she didn't mind after she had a few snifters of brandy!

  3. "The Surfmen" would be on a California LP -- one would be a real studio group headed by Alvino Rey on one set of labels, the other would be the same Luke Leilani/Harry Kaapuni tracks + a few with an orchestra backup issued on many budget labels (especially Crown).
    One of the record collectors had found a Tiki Culture message board (that's a group of people who convert their basements and backyards into Tiki paradises) in which one of the members had coordinated all the tracks from all his Hawaiian budget LPs on an Excel spreadsheet.
    His theory was that the tracks were taken from a combination of old 78 albums (when they were packed in books) and/or 45 EPs -- not enough for a full LP, so they mixed and matched.

    The East Coast LPs take the exact same 12 tracks (minus the orchestral ones) and never change the titles, only the artist's name. The later Premier/Coronet LPs cut the tracks to 10.

    A bunch of us started researching this once when someone found a Spin-O-Rama special: The front cover, back cover, and record label all had different titles and artists' names. He wrote: "Here we have I-don't-know-who doing I-don't-know-what, and you don't know, either," so we decided to track it down.