February 12, 2000
Found a portable 8-track player called Portafino by Belair, it splits in half but when itís together it looks just like a teal 8 mm film projector. I must have passed by it 50 times in the last few months for this reason until I scrutinized it today. Probably from the 60ís.
Bought The Allan Parsons Project 8-track just because of the joke about it in the Austin Powers movie and itís actually pretty good (at least the song "Time" is). Also got "Ford Motor Co. Stereo for The 80ís" cartridge and at first hearing it may be the only car tape Iíve been able to listen to all the way through. Itís macho version of Grease by Living Disco sounds like itís sung by Huey Lewis (remember him?). Almost sad that the talented studio musicians who probably studied Mozart were forced to crank out crap like "Seasons in the Sun" in tapes like this to make a living. Selling out ainít just for punks.
February 20, 2000
A busy week combined with guests from out of town made for slim pickens.
Managed to snag 5 still sealed blank cartridges put out by Pay Ďn Save still with the original price stickers on them ($1.49). They belong in a time capsule.
Goodwill now has a new practice of binding 6 random 8-tracks with clear cellophane and pricing them at $2.99. I wonder if anyone is willing to shell out $2.99 plus tax for 5 easy listening "Piano Classics" and 1 Eagles Greatest Hits, not I.
Also found a really cheaply made Gilbert OíSullivanís Greatest Hits sung by The Top of The Poppers. Anyone whoís heard Gilbert OíSullivan in all of his flat nasalness will appreciate a guy who does a pretty fair imitation of him. What a curse that must be, itís starting to grow on me. This with a tiki mug made the trip worth it.
February 21, 2000
A President's day garage sale yielded this strange tape called Skip DeVol by Ultra Banjo. Itís from the late 70ís and country oriented but has a bitchen version of the Theme from Star Wars played on a Banjo^ With all the laser sounds and strummin. Canít wait to play this at the next geek ho down. 8-tracks never cease to amaze me.
February 26, 2000
The usually disappointing, (In the rock category anyway) St. Vincentís De Paul Thrift Store (Maybe them X-tians think rock and roll is Satanic?) turned out a minor score: The Close Encounters Of The Third Kind Soundtrack performed by the Electric Moog Orchestra. (I have The Star Wars Soundtrack by EMO Ė Itís a trip.). Could this band be a pseudonym for TheElectric Light Orchestra?
Also a strange bootleg that hails from Tulsa Oklahoma on the Sound Ventures label. titled Best of Cat Stevens & America. Between both groups itís almost enough listenable material for one 8-track, almost. But the big minor score was an Elvis Quad tape titled Elvis Presley On Stage February 1970, recorded 30 years ago this month. Of course every RCA quad Iíve ever owned needs a new splice and this was no exception. When I pried it open it looked like the cartridge threw up and I ended up rewinding most of it. The tape works fine now but what a plastic hassle.
March 4, 2000
Two new players this weekend: The first is a General Electric Music System that looks like a boxier version of the Power Sound and also sports a jack for a sing a long microphone. Condition wise, it looks like it just was pulled out of the back of a dump truck but has a rich sound. Letís hear it for 8-track entropy. Decay and value go hand in hand.
The other is a self contained Sears 8-track alarm clock with bright red time display. I had hoped to be woken up to the sound of a 8-track tape but instead I get an irritating buzzing noise, damn. It does have a feature that allows you to "sleep to tape" which plays the programs individually and stops at the end of each one. Now where shall I put this?
Tapes from the $.39 bin:
Diana Ross Swept Away (From 1984)
Queen The Game
And my favorite this week:
A Capital double Album titled Beatles 65 & Yesterday and Today.
I have to admit this is this the first time Iíve heard the Beatles version of What Youíre Doing and I must say I like the Wallace and Ladmo rendering better. And if anyone has heard of Wallace and Ladmo either you grew up in Arizona or are a pop culture mutant like me.
March 7, 2000
Today I found a copy of K-telís Mindbender featuring 22 original hits/original stars. It made my day since I donít have this one and got me into thinking on what I would put on an all 70ís K-tel compellation. So I went into my collection of 30 or so different K-tel 8-tracks with pen in hand and threw together this list. I more identify with music of the 80ís but I thought Iíd keep up with the K-tel spirit and limit the choices to the 70ís era. Every song here appeared on a K-tel album at least once. Here goes:Love Fire- Jigsaw They sound like a poormans Beatles
Hard Luck Woman -Kiss Why were Kiss albums produced so poorly?
They Just Canít Stop It- The Spinners
Right Back to Where Se Started From -Maxine Nightingale Someone told me that this is the first disco song
Letís All Chant -Michael Zager Band
I Want to Be With You -Raspberries Eric Carmen before he was all by his self
You Sexy Thing -Hot Chocolate
Play That Funky Music -Wild Cherry
Love Rollercoaster -Ohio Players Don't the Ohio Players have the cheesiest covers?
Shadow Dancing- Any Gibb RIP "One down three to go"-Dennis Leary
Hollywood Swinging- Kool & The Gang The one Quentin forgot
Living Thing -ELO One day I'd like to ask Jeff Lynn what the deal is with that colorful flying saucer
Heart of Glass- Blondie
Ballero & Low Rider (tie)- War
Saturday Night -Bay City Rollers These guys have a great sound too bad they were so tenny bopper and dismissed
And just for jollies I put together a K-Hell list
Laverne and Shirley Theme -Cindy Grecco This actually made the top 40, but I guess so did the theme from Friends
You Donít Have to Be A Star -Marilyn McCoo & Billy Davis
Sometimes When We Touch- Dan Hill Why are most of these songs so overly sentimental?
Torn Between 2 Lovers -Mary McGregor Sooooo Sad
My Eyes Adored You -Frankie Valli
Run Joey Run -David Geddes
Rocky Austin -Roberts Sniff, Sniff
Poetry Man- Phobe Snow
Pilot of the Airwaves -Charlie Dave Kissing the DJ's ass to get air play, how coy
Feelings- Morris Albert Voted one of the all time greatest songs by Reader's Digest, it figures.
Too Much Too Little Too Late- Johnny Mathas
Baby Face -The Wing & Prayer Fife & Drum Corps What's worse, the song or the bands name?
Hmm... maybe K-tel isn't so great after all.
March 12, 2000
On a related note a few fellow thrifters invited me to an Ebay party. These guys are known around this circle as self-made Ebay people who usually make about $400.00 a day selling stuff (Recently they have become knighted with the title "Ebay Power Sellers"). The local paper even wrote a story on them and since they said theyíd supply the beer how could I refuse?
After a while I came to the realization that Ebay is the Amway of the year 2000. I think Ebay should hire these guys as spokesmen and send them on tour to push their service. I wasnít too impressed by the capitalistic elements of the "seminar" as I was seeing the stuff that I passed on the shelves that I didnít give a second glance weeks ago go for these unheard of amounts. Example- a ceramic hippo for $40.00 and $30.00 for a Starbucks mug, whatís going on here? Then we went on a field trip to Goodwill (I kept my mouth shut about the portable 8-track players since I donít need the competition.). Nothing too great 8 track wise- a few bootlegs (Carpenters, Bob Dylan, Neil Young) and a Bobby Sherman record I bought on a lark which I kind of wish I didnít since now I have the song Sweet Gingerbread Man stuck in my head now. "Fresh out of the pan sweet gingerbread man."
Conclusion: 8-tracks donít belong on Ebay but ceramic hippos do and as for Bobby Sherman, the juryís still out.
March 18, 2000
I'm track in the saddle again. After gutting two very inexpensive 8-track players I finally found a belt that fits my Sears car player which has be idle for the last month. I can't tell you how nice it is not to be stuck listening to oldies and soft rock radio stations. How do people do this on a daily basis?
Also since I was in the customizing mood, I screwed on some Yosemite Sam "Back off" mud flaps on the back of the car. Now I just need a CB radio to make the effect complete.
The closest I'll get to a muscle car.