Tag: Columbia Records

Billboard Time Capsule — August 14, 1965

Billboard Time Capsule — August 14, 1965

Music, Retrotisements
In Billboard Time Capsule, we journey through an old issue of Billboard to see what the most popular and advertised albums of the day were. Not through charts, but rather through advertisements. In each capsule you'll see ads for classic songs and albums, both promoting new recordings and trumpeting ones that had already gained traction. Enjoy! For those who dig Spotify playlists, here is one that contains about half of these songs. I suspect the rest are either not permitted or may have just been lost to the mists of time...
Album Cover of the Week: Miles Davis — Porgy and Bess

Album Cover of the Week: Miles Davis — Porgy and Bess

Album Cover of the Week, Music
I know for a fact that I'm not alone in my love of Miles Davis's seminal 1958 album, Porgy and Bess, or of its cover. In addition to being one of the landmark albums of Cool Jazz, it boasts a cover image that is every bit as alluring as the music within. It could just be my imagination, but what we have here is a rather suggestive image, but perhaps I'm reading into things. You may be wondering -- that's probably Miles on the cover, but who's the woman? And what does this have to do with Porgy and Bess? Well first, that is Miles Davis, and the lady holding his trumpet is Frances Taylor, his first wife. The cover was shot by famed photographer Roy DeCarava, who apparently had some trouble getting it taken in the first place. According to a poster on the All About Jazz message boar...
Album Cover of the Week: Look At Them Beans

Album Cover of the Week: Look At Them Beans

Album Cover of the Week, Music
Ladies and gentlemen I give you Johnny Cash, the Man in... Beans? I would love to know the story behind this cover. I do know that the title is taken from a Joe Tex song called "Papa's Dream," which appeared on his 1973 album Joe Tex Spills the Beans. But anyway, about the Johnny Cash album. That's the Man in Black wearing blue on the front, and with his son John Carter Cash -- then just five years old and the only son of Johnny and June Carter Cash. Photography on Look at Them Beans (Columbia Records KC 33814) is credited to Marion Ward and Bill Barnes, and the design was by Barnes.
Sunday Jazz: Duke Ellington at the Newport Jazz Festival, 1956

Sunday Jazz: Duke Ellington at the Newport Jazz Festival, 1956

Music, Sunday Jazz
This weekend sees the continuation of one of the greatest musical celebrations around -- the Newport Jazz Festival. It was founded by George Wein in 1954 and in its half-century-plus history has showcased some of the greatest talent in jazz, as well as other genres. But in just its third year, 1956, the Newport Jazz Festival was the setting for a truly legendary performance. For it was that year that Duke Ellington and his band took the stage and delivered a show for the ages. I'll let this clip from Ken Burns' Jazz documentary miniseries tell the story... The band's performance of "Diminuendo and Crescendo in Blue" -- punctuated by tenor saxophonist Paul Gonsalves' famous solo -- became the defining moment of Ellington's late career, and led to a creative and commercial resu...
Album cover of the week: Jesus of Cool

Album cover of the week: Jesus of Cool

Album Cover of the Week, Music
I've been in the mood for power pop lately, so I can think of few better albums to spotlight for this series than one of the best ever — Nick Lowe's 1978 debut LP, Jesus of Cool. This was how the album was issued in most countries in '78, via Radar Records. But in the good ol' USA, Columbia Record execs didn't think that title would fly. So the album was rechristened (get it?) as Pure Pop for Now People. The Americanized version featured a few different pictures on the front and a different track listing. At least this change, silly as it was, made a little sense. If you look closely at the first cover, you can see the phrase "Pure Pop for Now People" spelled out in the borders of the pictures. Nevertheless, this bit of meddling was rectified in 2008, when Yep Roc reissued th