Baja Marimba Band's Back

Harry

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This album was one of the remaining missing pieces in my Baja collection. I'd owned NATURALLY for years, and picked up the more recent LAZY DAYS issue on CD, so that left this Bell album as the hole in my collection. I located a really nice white-label promo copy and it made a dandy needledrop. I've never heard any of the tracks from this album before, save for the "Ventura" song that Herb tacked onto WHIPPED CREAM as "Rosemary" on the Shout reissue.

I was dumbfounded to hear "It's A Small World" as part of the opening two-song mash-up. Living close to Disney, I think I hear that one just driving around with the windows open...

Overall, not the greatest Baja Marimba album, and it's got its high points. I like the rousing dixieland treatment of "Just An Old Fashioned Love Song", and the several Wechter songs. All in all, it's a nice addition to the collection.
 

Harry

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A&M was moving away from the old MOR sound they'd relied on in the 60s. Jerry Moss was intrigued by the rock sounds that were exploding everywhere so acts Sergio Mendes and the Baja Marimba Band didn't get contract renewals. A&M wanted to focus on rock acts like Joe Cocker, Spooky Tooth, Procol Harum, etc.

Even Herb had disbanded around this time, and signing Carpenters was looked down on.

Both Sergio and Julius found a home in Bell. Sergio got two albums on that label, while Julius only managed one. Then Bell got sucked into Arista and both acts were shown the door.
 

Mike Blakesley

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That was an OK album, not my favorite either.

I liked the opening tune the best. That medley has a special memory for me... when home video was in its infancy, some friends and I took to making "comedy" videos where we spoofed TV shows and such. One clip we did was a "home workshop" type of show, where we built a "project" with disastrous results. (And no, I will not be posting the video here!) We used "Tomatoes/Small World" as the opening theme music and it played in the background during the show. We also used one of the slow tunes, I forget which, as background music for a "commercial" during the show.

I remember being seriously bummed when I read an article in Billboard about Sergio and Julius being let go from Bell. I knew they hadn't had spectacular sales of late, so I was a little worried there'd be no more music from them... and in the case of Julius, indeed there was very little more. But Sergio sure kept going!
 

Rudy

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My mother bought this one for me when it first came out. In later years I found a sealed copy and honestly haven't given it more than a single spin. I didn't play my first copy all that often but it wasn't well cared for, played on cheap equipment. But at least I have a good one! Naturally was the hard one to find...
 

Bobberman

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I first heard this one back in 1981 when my older sister checked out 2 records from the library and taped them for me for my 14th birthday the other album was Herbs beat of the brass and sadly I wore the tape out but thankfully was able to get a clean copy of both as for This BMB rarity I loved it at first listen it was comfort music for me at the time I do have a few standout favorites such as Tomatoes/Small world. Do you want to dance. Ventura and especially "Here's that rainy day". Which was the very first time I heard that song and I consider it a definitive version. The whole album is still a gem to me and my copy is a stock copy which I bought in 1984 and still in excellent shape today and like all my other vinyl this was long ago digitized via needlework. And still sounds killer.
 

Mr Bill

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I really enjoyed the first and last songs on each side (but must admit the song "Small World" gets on my nerves in very short order). I think those tracks' placement are a perfect example of LP programming from the era. Herb's Whipped Cream and Other Delights is another with the first and last on each side being what I consider perfect programming.

Speaking of Whipped Cream: with "Ventura"/"Rosemary" -- Which is the REAL title and WHO actually wrote it? Shout!Factory disc says Herb, this LP says Julius... If I had to guess I'd say it was one they worked on together back in the TJB heyday and either never finished or Julius continued tinkering with it until A&M let the BMB go, and he finally wrapped it up for this Bell release...

As for the covers, I'm more familiar with these versions than the originals -- I couldn't listen to that crazy rock and roll stuff like "Bread" (or Carpenters for that matter) until I was much older!

--Mr Bill
 

Rudy

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As for the covers, I'm more familiar with these versions than the originals -- I couldn't listen to that crazy rock and roll stuff like "Bread" (or Carpenters for that matter) until I was much older!
:D
 

JMK

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My junior year high school Honors English teacher was David Gates' cousin. We found out about that the same day that "our" Mr. Gates announced he was engaged. Not one person asked him about his impending nuptials, everyone just wanted to hear about Bread LOL.
 

TallPaulInKy

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The song Taco Belle , I believe, was performed on the great one hour TV special for PBS the Baja Marimba Band did. I keep hoping it gets reissued on DVD as my off the air copy is not the best. We had a power outage during the Nashville TN broadcast.
 

Bobberman

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Naturally was the hard one to find...
I agree Naturally and As time goes by for me were even harder to find and in 2006 I finally got them along with the New Deal CD my BMB collection was finally complete which was a harder task to do Herb's discography was much easier to complete
 

Mr Bill

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I purchased Naturally along with a few other Applause Record releases (The Lettermen I believe were one) when they came out. Sadly, Applause folded soon after, with little fanfare or (ahem) applause...

Applause was marketed as the new home for adult contemporary music, a market that, sadly, was not as strong as the label had hoped. They had, Shirley Bassey, The Lettermen, BMB, Steve and Eydie, Jack Jones, Sammy Davis, Jr., Robert Goulet , Peter Nero and others...

--Mr Bill
 

Bobberman

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I purchased Naturally along with a few other Applause Record releases (The Lettermen I believe were one) when they came out. Sadly, Applause folded soon after, with little fanfare or (ahem) applause...

Applause was marketed as the new home for adult contemporary music, a market that, sadly, was not as strong as the label had hoped. They had, Shirley Bassey, The Lettermen, BMB, Steve and Eydie, Jack Jones, Sammy Davis, Jr., Robert Goulet , Peter Nero and others...

--Mr Bill
What happened to the Applause label is the same fate that befell the Short lived Bay cities label which coincidentally had the Baja Marimbas "New Deal" and I believe a Solo album by Toni Tennille. Sad stories in both cases
 

Aaron Bitman

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In 1962, Julius Wechter, who played the marimba and wrote songs for Herb Alpert's Tijuana Brass records, formed the Baja Marimba Band - or the BMB - which toured with the Tijuana Brass, just as Sergio Mendes and Brasil '66 did, becoming - together with those two groups - the staple of A&M in the mid-1960s.

After the TJB disbanded, BMB stuck around long enough to put out one more album in 1971 before calling it quits as well. It was all over.

Or was it? In 1973, the BMB reunited to make another album, The Baja Marimba Band's Back! Unfortunately, except for one song ("Tie a Yellow Ribbon 'Round the Ole Oak Tree") this album was unavailable on the internet...

...until now. Today, I uploaded all 11 songs to YouTube. I now give you The Baja Marimba Band's Back!
 

Aaron Bitman

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Okay, I wrote that previous post as a new thread starter, not realizing that it would be moved to this thread, or even that this thread existed. Had I known, I would have written that last post differently. But anyway, that post linked to the album. Enjoy.
 

Aaron Bitman

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Okay!

I don't know if anyone listened to the album on YouTube the last time I posted it there, or noticed the problem if he did. But just in case, I'll mention that I wasn't happy with the copy of The Baja Marimba Band's Back! that I uploaded. It was off-center, resulting in a bit of "wow". The more I listened, the less I could stand it. So I bought another copy and uploaded THAT. Here's an updated link.
 

Harry

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Thanks Aaron. I'm the one who combined the two threads since the other one was started only back in September. It just made sense to me. I didn't get a chance to hear your "wow" version as I too just obtained this album, as detailed above, and did my own cleanup and needledrop. It's always fun to hear a "new" album from an old favorite.

(My mind is just thinking about the somehow strange congruity of a Baja Marimba Band album being off-center...) :)
 

AM Matt

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Back when I was 9 or 10 years old, the AMPEX 8 track tape had a "farting" sound in my stereo system back then. The Baja Marimba Band on Bell Records & also on AMPEX 8 track back then with the total timing!!! Only a few of them (AMPEX) do not have the "farting" sound probably because it was less than 7 or 8 minutes on each 4 channels!! By the way, KISS "Dressed To Kill" (Casablanca) was I believe the last 8 track for AMPEX in May of 1975!!!
 
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