Welcome to the weird and wonderful world of record covers from the golden age of LPs

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February, 2009

The devil wears red pj’s


Los 3 Pelos de Oro del Diablo y El Rey Pico de Tordo   Harmony Records

1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (45 votes, average: 4.00 out of 5)
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The girl can’t help it


Jayne Mansfield on the cover here.   “Only For Dancing”   Belter Records Spain

1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (57 votes, average: 4.09 out of 5)
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Man-Lee man


Man-Lee   by Simon Junior and Maurice Patton and the Melodians   Cortersions Records (Singapore)

1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (33 votes, average: 3.18 out of 5)
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Juan on a peel


Tavin Pumarejo   “Ganador Platano de Oro”   Koitre

1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (47 votes, average: 3.47 out of 5)
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Blue eyed gospel


Gospel Songs by The Grasce Gospel Singers   Ultraphonic Records

1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (32 votes, average: 3.38 out of 5)
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Pretty Polish girl with bangs


Prywatka u Marioli   (“A private party with Marioli”)

1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (44 votes, average: 4.80 out of 5)
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Miss Saigon


Chucha La Loca en Vietnam     “Solo Para Adultos”

1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (49 votes, average: 3.47 out of 5)
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Hey Judo


“Judo Boy”   Polydor Records.

1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (34 votes, average: 3.12 out of 5)
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A dirty martini


Mrs. Shufflewick   “A Drop of the Hard Shuff…”   “Live at the New Black   Cap”   For Adults Only   Decca Records UK

Notes by Molly Parkin:

‘Mrs Shufflewick is a dirty old woman. She is 60, maybe 70, weak-willed and easily led. She has usually just had a few, you can tell by her big red conk and boss-eyed way of walking. She loves a gossip but can never stop long in case her next gin gets cold on the counter. Everybody laughs at her. They call her ‘Shuff’, they whistle and poke fun and cheer when she hoicks up her skirts. They always shout for more, though she doesn’t need encouraging. She is a terrible show-off, whether she is tiddly or not. There is no holding her when there are sailors around: she has a weakness for the Navy. The last sailor she met was French, he kissed her on both cheeks. She was doing up her laces at the time.

She calls herself Missus but has never been married. She tells terrible stories of what she gets up to – she has been telling them for the last 20 years, all over the place, at the Windmill, music halls, working-men’s clubs, Mecca bingo halls – she has even told them on telly, but had to clean them up a bit.

One Monday she appeared at the Mecca Dominion, Walthamstow, the same night as Miss World. They both went to entertain the bingo-players. Shuff got the most laughs, mainly from madams who looked just like her. She had thought of hiring a bathing costume and going on as Miss Courage, riding 14 white horses from Whitbreads, not to be outdone.

She won’t even be outdone at Christmas. She has written her own panto – a skit on Cinderella. She plays Cinders, or course. (She is still trying to decide whether to make Cinderella’s slipper into a bovver boot or a pair of panties).

Mrs Shufflewick is very familiar with the Cinderella story. It happens to her every night. After the last laugh and when the clapping dies, she disappears too, into an old brown leather suitcase. And where she stood stands Rex Jameson. He is an elf. A five-foot, 40-year old with a face like Buster Keaton. And a little green cap on his head and a coat that is a bit too big.

He gives the feeling of being a foundling, which he was. He was dumped when two weeks old on the doorstep of Trinity College Hospital and spent his childhood in Southend with a foster mother. He is a classic clown and as different from his creation, Mrs Shufflewick, as it is possible to be. Small and shy and painfully unsure, he is lonely in love and agonisingly unlucky with his choices. He is protected in his bad patches by the loyalty of his friends and sustained by them, too, through his bouts of insecurity and deep depression.

He is shockingly difficult to manage, like a Hancock or Keaton or W.C. Fields. It is a full-time job. But then Mrs Shufflewick knows she has the audience before she even starts.

It is as painful and personal as laughing at your mother when she has had one too many. And, of course, as far as Rex Jameson is concerned, his mother might be in the audience laughing unknowingly at her son.

1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (38 votes, average: 3.66 out of 5)
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All killer, no filler


The Mad Lads in Action   Volt Records   (1966)   One of the few vocal groups on the Stax roster during the ’60s, the Mad Lads’ doo wop-influenced harmonies were more akin to what you might find in Philadelphia soul acts than those of their native Memphis.   Action includes all of the Mad Lads first recordings, except for their debut “Sidewalk Surf.” (Remakes comprise 25-percent of the album.)   The waltz tempo, “I Want Someone” went to number ten (R&B) and number 74 (Pop), and is their biggest selling single.     “Don’t Have to Shop Around,”   was the group’s second best-selling record, charting at number 11 (R&B) and number 93 (Pop).

The C.O.D.’s hit the big-time with “Michael the Lover,” but listening to the Mad Lads re-recording, you’d think it was written just for them.   Listen up:

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1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (35 votes, average: 4.23 out of 5)
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