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Another TJB imitation (or two)

Aaron Bitman

Well-Known Member
Thread Starter
Every now and then, I discover another TJB imitator (and enthuse about it on these boards, to the annoyance of some people).

Before I get to the main one, I want to mention that I recently discovered that The Ventures Play Telstar and The Lonely Bull came out as early as 1962, before imitating the TJB was a "thing". (It wasn't just "The Lonely Bull". Even though the songs "Mexico" and "Never On Sunday" predate the TJB, I believe the performances on that album showed great Herb Alpert influence.)

But mainly, I wanted to mention that German band leader James Last made three albums titled Trumpet à Gogo that were clearly very much in the TJB’s style. (He later recycled much of that material for the album Olé.)

Here are my five favorite excerpts:

Happy Music
Caravan
Always
Time After Time
Malaguena
 
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Rudy

¡Que siga la fiesta!
Staff member
Site Admin
For me, all the clones, copies and even the blatant rip-offs show how influential someone was back in their time. I think it helps others to know which of the music out there is genuine TJB and which is not, in case someone is searching for a song they heard decades ago they swore was the TJB, but wasn't. Most infamous example is that Bob Crewe Generation track "Music To Watch Girls By."
 

DAN BOLTON

Well-Known Member
Every now and then, I discover another TJB imitator (and enthuse about it on these boards, to the annoyance of some people).

Before I get to the main one, I want to mention that I recently discovered that The Ventures Play Telstar and The Lonely Bull came out as early as 1962, before imitating the TJB was a "thing". (It wasn't just "The Lonely Bull". Even though the songs "Mexico" and "Never On Sunday" predate the TJB, I believe the performances on that album showed great Herb Alpert influence.)

But mainly, I wanted to mention that German band leader James Last made three albums titled Trumpet à Gogo that were clearly very much in the TJB’s style. (He later recycled much of that material for the album Olé.)

Here are my five favorite excerpts:

Happy Music
Caravan
Always
Time After Time
Malaguena

Sounds kinda like The Baja Marimba Big Band...
 

Bobberman

Well-Known Member
My "kick" lately is Tapatío. 😁
I like Tapatio too a Good friend of mine introduced it to me several years ago as with all hot sauces it's not just heat but getting back on topic I do like a few of those TJB imitators as I mentioned elsewhere most of them are not very Good but in my experience there are a few standouts one of them we discussed previously was jazz trumpeteter Chet Baker's Very Commercial Mariachi brass recordings ( which sadly Baker himself Regretted doing as he admitted to doing those albums for Dope money) but I still think the best one out of that bunch was The original theme from The Dating game which appeared on the album "In The Mood" which is almost latinized versions of Glen Miller songs and the aforementioned game show theme tacked on as the last track However I own a clean Vinyl copy which made a nice CD needle drop I also liked the first album called "a Taste of Tequila" which had a decent version of the country classic "Flowers on the wall" but other than this and a couple other imitators such as Los Norte Americanos etc we can obviously say Herb's Music is the Real Deal for reasons mentioned previously
 

Aaron Bitman

Well-Known Member
Thread Starter
Whoa!

First of all, I'd like to say: Thank you, Bobberman, for referring me to Chet Baker's Mariachi Brass albums. I just listened to a couple of them and I intend to listen to more.

But even though I had already heard some of the recordings of Los Norte Americanos, your post influenced me to listen to a couple of WHOLE albums, specifically to The Band I Heard in Tijuana volumes 1 and 2. And when I did, I discovered something shocking.

Some of you may remember that in the last year or two I ordered Mexico Party by Los Tijuana Mariachis (all the way from Germany where the record was made) and posted it on YouTube. (I expect that some of you found the experience so traumatic that you blocked the memory.) I gather that The Band I Heard in Tijuana volumes 1 and 2 came out in 1966, and Mexico Party came out in 1967.

And some of the material is clearly the same recordings!

For instance, here's "A Taste of Honey" from Los Tijuana Mariachis:

A Taste of Honey

Here it is from Los Norte Americanos:

A Taste of Honey

Here's LTM's "My Baby's From Acapulco":

My Baby's From Acapulco

And LNA's "Carta Blanca" is the same:

Carta Blanca

Here's LTM's "Mexican Saturday Night":

Mexican Saturday Night

And LNA's "Now Come On Inn", is the same:

Now Come on Inn

Here's LTM's version of "What Now My Love":

What Now My Love

LNA's version is the same recording:

What Now My Love

So up until this point, I thought that maybe that German record stole some recordings or acquired the rights to them. But then I searched further. LNA's "Model T" and "One for the Camino" are from 1968 (according to Discogs, anyway). They're the same recordings as LTM's "Tijuana Claxon" and "Hey, Let's Have a Party" respectively. Also, the "Greensleeves" recording is the same.

So now I'm thinking that some cooperation was going on. Maybe some of the personnel - like the producer, or somebody - were the same people? Does anyone have any thoughts?
 

Bobberman

Well-Known Member
Whoa!

First of all, I'd like to say: Thank you, Bobberman, for referring me to Chet Baker's Mariachi Brass albums. I just listened to a couple of them and I intend to listen to more.

But even though I had already heard some of the recordings of Los Norte Americanos, your post influenced me to listen to a couple of WHOLE albums, specifically to The Band I Heard in Tijuana volumes 1 and 2. And when I did, I discovered something shocking.

Some of you may remember that in the last year or two I ordered Mexico Party by Los Tijuana Mariachis (all the way from Germany where the record was made) and posted it on YouTube. (I expect that some of you found the experience so traumatic that you blocked the memory.) I gather that The Band I Heard in Tijuana volumes 1 and 2 came out in 1966, and Mexico Party came out in 1967.

And some of the material is clearly the same recordings!

For instance, here's "A Taste of Honey" from Los Tijuana Mariachis:

A Taste of Honey

Here it is from Los Norte Americanos:

A Taste of Honey

Here's LTM's "My Baby's From Acapulco":

My Baby's From Acapulco

And LNA's "Carta Blanca" is the same:

Carta Blanca

Here's LTM's "Mexican Saturday Night":

Mexican Saturday Night

And LNA's "Now Come On Inn", is the same:

Now Come on Inn

Here's LTM's version of "What Now My Love":

What Now My Love

LNA's version is the same recording:

What Now My Love

So up until this point, I thought that maybe that German record stole some recordings or acquired the rights to them. But then I searched further. LNA's "Model T" and "One for the Camino" are from 1968 (according to Discogs, anyway). They're the same recordings as LTM's "Tijuana Claxon" and "Hey, Let's Have a Party" respectively. Also, the "Greensleeves" recording is the same.

So now I'm thinking that some cooperation was going on. Maybe some of the personnel - like the producer, or somebody - were the same people? Does anyone have any thoughts?
Aaron I have several thoughts but heres my main belief in my work as a radio DJ especially in genres like easy listening into there were artists or studio musicians who had their work released to radio stations under one or more Aliases back in the day there were two or more stations in indivividual markets recieving custom music for airplay only and there were several syndicators such as Bonneville and Schulke radio productions Broadcast programming etc and it was a Competition thing where you could hear the exact same song on 2 different stations and those stations would have two different artists names credited it gave them a feeling of Exclusivity and my theory is since they weren't available to the public for purchase it seemed easy to pull it off I find the same scenario with the aforementioned group names and songs you listed and I think today with these recordings the producers are trying to make as much money from them as possible I think this has been an old trick all along with a lot of music over the years just my take on it I'm Glad I could aid you in your discoveries Enjoy The music.
 

Rudy

¡Que siga la fiesta!
Staff member
Site Admin
I figure these recording really don't hurt anyone either--at the very least, the musicians involved collected union scale for their performances. Not every working musician can be famous, and something like these recordings pays the bills. The working musicians that I know (including those who are nationally known who I work with or am acquainted with) don't make much at all from their recordings, and they come out just a little bit ahead on the touring (which acts as a promotion for their latest recording). They supplement the income by recording as session musicians, performing locally with other groups or backing vocalists, tutoring, teaching at a college or university, etc. It really is a full time job for most of them, but at least they are proud of their work, no matter how inconsequential it might be. Composers often write, produce and/or perform jingles for advertisements--uncredited, of course, but it's good steady work if they can get it.
 

Bobberman

Well-Known Member
I figure these recording really don't hurt anyone either--at the very least, the musicians involved collected union scale for their performances. Not every working musician can be famous, and something like these recordings pays the bills. The working musicians that I know (including those who are nationally known who I work with or am acquainted with) don't make much at all from their recordings, and they come out just a little bit ahead on the touring (which acts as a promotion for their latest recording). They supplement the income by recording as session musicians, performing locally with other groups or backing vocalists, tutoring, teaching at a college or university, etc. It really is a full time job for most of them, but at least they are proud of their work, no matter how inconsequential it might be. Composers often write, produce and/or perform jingles for advertisements--uncredited, of course, but it's good steady work if they can get it.
Very true Rudy and Every Little bit Always helps in this case.
 
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