The Man with no Friends

Tag: records





I purchased this today and tried it out on a Ist press. Lee Morgan on Blue Note . Mono. It dampened down , anchored the sound which is just what you need to get good mono sound quality. I paid just over 400 euros ( £325) and it is worth the money. I have played a couple of vintage Blue Note Mono pressings and they sound wonderful. Tomorrow I will be listening to my Tempo UK jazz albums and am really looking forward to it.

It is now tomorrow and I played a couple of Tempo LP’s this afternoon and the sounded great. To be quite honest I did not notice any huge dramatic difference when I first tried this record clamp. Some people make outrageous claims about record weight and I have no intention of getting in to all that nonsense but there is no doubt that depending on you system this clamp can make a difference. I have a very basic mono set up.  Rega Planar 2 ( with wood trim)  , the trim does help to damp down the sound , Rega RB 300 tonearm with Tecnoweight and extra heavy weight , metal subplatter , Denon DL 102 Mono cartridge and leather mat. The combination of these modest upgrades help to produce a very natural , flat ( blue note sound) damped down tone.




Seoirse Bodley’s Symphony for Chamber Orchestra , New Irish Recording Co. NIRC 1974. One of the rarest Irish records ever this is impossible to find. Also features pieces by Arthur Duff , ‘Echos of Georgian Dublin / Meath pastoral”. The chamber symphony is available on cd (lyric) but the vinyl is the original recording  and there is no comparison between it and the 2 later cd releases. If you have any information about the NIRC record label please get in touch – no matter how trivial it may be I would be delighted to hear from you. Also if anyone has any LP’s /cd’s by Irish Composers I would be interested in them.

You can see some other Irish classical recording from the NIRC label here.


Today I posted a video on Youtube of a Stan Tracey album , “Stan Tracey in person”. It is a mono LP and I played it using a Denon dl 102 mono cartridge. Why not follow this link and check it out. I rarely get the chance to make a Youtube video as there is always a dog barking just outside my door  all day – today was a bank holiday so the complex was quiet but I will have to wait for the Christmas holiday before I get another opportunity…..The dog has a very loud rasping bark and it literally barks all day long and there is nothing I can do about it.


I am looking for a copy of an LP record called  The Great Saturday Night Swindle. It was released on the CBS label in 1977. It was an Ireland only release. If you have a copy that you would like to sell let me know. I had a copy of this album about 15 years ago but got rid of it because the cover was in poor condition. I though I could just root around and pick up another copy but 15 years later I’m still rooting and have not  found another copy yet.


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I bought this LP just for the cover art. I found it in my local record shop. The group is called Dreams and I had never heard of them before but like I say I liked the cover. According to the sleeve notes the album was made up in the studio – the songs had not actually been written but just made up as the session   progressed. It made the album sound interesting but to be honest it’s a rather bland affair……’soft funk soul with nothing to make it stand out from the crowd. But the cover is something of a work of art…….lp covers 003

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While I was writing this  post I had the album playing on my deck  in the background and feel I have to correct my initial comment/review. Side a is indeed bland and very ordinary but side b is somewhat odd and for that reason interesting. There are two tracks  on this side which blend into each other  , Dream Suite and New York and there is a touch of the avant garde  about them – but only the slightest touch.


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This is the cover of a psych/religious/born again  album called , ” So confusing and so very clear. It is quite rare. lp covers 007

It is one of those albums that is worth buying just for the cover art…..’though the music is first rate. The record was a private pressing and would have had a very modest print run. It did not sell in its day but is now quite sought after. This girl would be in her fifties now. ……It really is a very nice piece of montage…Give the image a click to have a proper look at it.



“Emerald 45 rpm record pressed 1966. This is actually the B side , a Brubeck style jazz/blues number. The A side is a pleasant orchestral piece probably written for television. To the best of my knowledge this is the only jazz 45 Kelehan issued.  A nice item and the only Irish  jazz 45 that I have ever come across.  If anyone has any information about this record or Kelehan’s jazz output on vinyl or cd please feel free to leave a comment. I also have a cd called  “Noel Kelehan – a celebration”  It was issued by RTE ( Irish state broadcasting co. ). It is a private pressing and was not released commercially. The music was recorded  live  in Vicar Street on 12/12/00. Lineup: Noel Kelehan  Michael Buckley  Peter Ainscough  Michael Coady. It is a four track EP and would have had a very small print run.



A few weeks ago I picked up this Demo record – Wonderous Place by Billy Fury . It looks pretty much unplayed , apart that is from the couple of times I have played it. As a record collector it really made my day  to find this.

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 Fury had a tragically short life. He was ill and was  not expected to live beyond childhood.  The B side of this record is blank although I did actually play it……It retains it’s original sheen and is in beautiful condition.

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Fury had several hits in the mid to late 50’s but by the time the Beatles released their first record in 1963 Fury’s star was on the wane. Like many other early rock n roll stars he was more or less written out of the history of rock. This had a lot to do with class. Fury was a working class boy and by the mid 60’s more and more young people were going to college , becoming middle class and adopting middle class class prejudices. Fury and many others were a reminder of their working class roots – something that these middle class kids did not want to be reminded of. The sixties were not quite as liberal as the sixties generation like to think or have us think. This situation remained up until about ten years ago when rock historians began finally  to acknowledge his contribution to the birth of british popular music.  Bill Haley suffered much the same fate and Haley is still out in the wilderness.  Someone should write a thesis on Haley….he really was written out of history.  Even today ageing rock stars looking  back to their roots develop total amnesia when it comes to Haley.  There are many theories as to when or how Rock ‘n Roll first started but the truth is that without Bill Haley it might never have existed in the first place.  There are a whole army of folk who will tell you that Big Joe Turner’s Shake Rattle and Roll is THE REAL THING but they forget that if Haley had never recorded the song they probable wouldn’t have ever heard Joe Turner’s name.

       Bill Haley died a more or less forgotten man.  Towards the end he  would phone people up in the night  or the early hours of the morning , people he had met briefly at some point in his career just to talk about the old days….He might not have met them in 40 years….Some studio engineer  who might just happen to have been in the same studio that Haley was recording in would wake up decades later at 2:00 am to hear a voice say , – ” Hello , this is Bill Haley”……..

   Elvis Presley , Bill Haley ……..Billy Fury – we will never see their likes again. They just  don’t make legends like that any more.

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