• Two exciting new Carpenters releases are now available. The new book Carpenters: The Musical Legacy can be ordered here. A big thanks to the authors and Richard Carpenter for their tremendous effort in compiling this book! Also, the new solo piano album Richard Carpenter's Piano Songbook is available for ordering here.

🎧 Podcast Carpenters: Q&A, Ep. 2: "A Kind of Hush" (Album)

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Matthew Smith

Well-Known Member
I suppose that I'm ignorant on the ins and outs of music publishing rights and royalties, but it still seems like a bookkeeping measure as to whether Albert Hammond would get his royalties from the song. On the very first original LP - I have promo copies - the credit is given:

On the rear of the jacket, and the stunningly lovely label:
I Need To Be In Love 3:47
(Richard Carpenter & John Bettis, Albert Hammond) Almo Music
Corp./Sweet Harmony Music/Hammer & Nails Music/
Landers-Roberts Music, ASCAP

On the innersleeve:
Music: Richard Carpenter
Lyrics: John Bettis & Albert Hammond
©Copyright 1976 Almo Music Corp., Sweet Harmony
Music, Hammer & Nails Music, and
Landers-Roberts Music. (ASCAP)


Landers-Roberts Music appears to be the publishing company for Albert Hammond's compositions. So did this album fly under the radar when it came time to divvy up the profits? Was Lander-Roberts Music ignored? More importantly, why didn't Mr. Hammond simply step up and ask where his share of the royalties were?

As I said, I'm totally ignorant on all of these processes. I've only ever written one song, and it's never been published.
I’m sure the publisher, who incidentally also has to be paid, didn’t just let this slide by. There was probably some “legal” mumbo jumbo in the contract to use the portion of the song Albert wrote that allowed them to do what they did. After all, they didn’t use an entire song, just a portion. Perhaps there was/is a legality that says no compensation is needed. Or perhaps they paid a one time fee with no royalties. Who knows? I doubt we’ll see the contract to review it or that any of us will be hiring our own attorney to do so. It’s done now. I appreciated hearing the story, Chris!
 

Geographer

Well-Known Member
I’m sure the publisher, who incidentally also has to be paid, didn’t just let this slide by. There was probably some “legal” mumbo jumbo in the contract to use the portion of the song Albert wrote that allowed them to do what they did. After all, they didn’t use an entire song, just a portion. Perhaps there was/is a legality that says no compensation is needed. Or perhaps they paid a one time fee with no royalties. Who knows? I doubt we’ll see the contract to review it or that any of us will be hiring our own attorney to do so. It’s done now. I appreciated hearing the story, Chris!
Reading through this thread, this is exactly what I was thinking. There was, as stated, a "publishing AGREEMENT," which means, that what ever Mr. Hammond got, or didn't get, was agreed to. I also would imagine, that he may have "agreed" to a one-time payment for the use of his contribution which may or may not be standard practice (not sure of this). The question is the "royalties" which go into the future. Apparently, that wasn't in the "agreement." Also, remember, the song, initially, wasn't a "sell through" hit, only charting in the mid 20's on the charts. I can't believe that it generated that much profit (relatively speaking) anyway UNITL it sold millions decades later in Japan. At that time, Richard took the initiative to make sure Mr. Hammond got his due. It was the right thing to do at the time.

The example that comes to mind is Willie Nelson who wrote "Crazy" for Patsy Cline. He was paid $50 at the time. Standard practice in the industry. How much money has that song earned over the decades? Yet Nelson agreed to, and got, his $50.00.
 

Song4uman

Well-Known Member
@Chris May
Has Richard ever mentioned songs that he wishes had been released as a single?

or songs that he now hears and could hear Karen singing?

jonathan
 

ullalume

Well-Known Member
Brilliant stuff, Chris. I'm lapping this info up like crazy...to think they were going to end the album with a mini-medley....did Karen ever lay down a work lead for that Skeeter Davis song you mentioned?

Thanks again.

Neil
 

Vinylalbumcovers

Ah am so steel een luv weeth yoo
Moral of the story…don’t jump to conclusions and dog Richard when we don’t know all the facts and we were not privy to all the data.

No one is doing that. Listen to what Chris said. He copped to what he did. He said it. I know we want to look at Richard with rose-colored glasses but he blew it here.

Ed
 

Richard’s namesake

Active Member
In episode two, I talk about the Carpenters' seventh studio album, "A Kind of Hush," and how many of the songs were selected—including some nuggets of trivia related to several of them. Also, Richard personally explains the story behind the title track, here in his own words.

But first, I address the question that many fans have asked over the years related to Karen's "work" lead vocals, and how she might have recorded those for tracks she also played drums on, without causing leakage in to the drum mics. The answer is really quite simple!

Thanks Chris, love this. Totally agree with you regarding your choice of best songs on the album. Have to say, I never really cared for “Breaking up” and “Can’t smile”. Lovely album though.
 

GDBY2LV

Well-Known Member
My favorite Skeeter Davis song. It’s on the list of songs they recorded, but never released. Too bad that medley never happened. It’s essentially the same song as BUIHTD with different lyrics. Carole King and Gerry Goffin were close friends with Neil Sedaka, and copy cat or answer songs were popular then. He wrote Oh Carol about her, she followed up with Oh, Neil. Probably her rarest single.
I still think “You” was the best song on the album. I saw the writing on the wall when they released “I Need To Be In Love” as the follow up to Hush, and further damage with “Goofus”. It was really hard to be a outspoken fan then. I did not like any negative comments about Carpenters period. I still got to see them in concert that winter with 3 friends at Lake Tahoe. Goofus got lots of airplay on the local AM adult station in Chico, Ca. 1976. We only had one big FM station there at that time, and it was way to hard rock for my liking. I put large antenna on my apartment roof so I could get Top 40 FM stations from Sacramento, and some Bay Area ones too.
 

A&M Retro

Well-Known Member
I can think of two. 'Skyline Pigeon' from Elton John was one he tried to get Karen to record, but she didn't like it. The other is 'Killing Me Softly With His Song' from Roberta Flack, which Richard and Karen always said would have been perfect for them.
 

GDBY2LV

Well-Known Member
The list is about 90 songs long. Many have been released officially, and some bootlegged since it was made. Not sure when the list was made exactly. I hear “Box Office Movie King” is one of the best they recorded in later years. Hopefully, even if not finished, their release would still be welcomed by most of us here. I know Richard loves perfection, so probably not going to happen.
 

Vinylalbumcovers

Ah am so steel een luv weeth yoo
The list is about 90 songs long. Many have been released officially, and some bootlegged since it was made. Not sure when the list was made exactly. I hear “Box Office Movie King” is one of the best they recorded in later years. Hopefully, even if not finished, their release would still be welcomed by most of us here. I know Richard loves perfection, so probably not going to happen.

He's spent nearly the entirety of his career from 1983 forward additionally producing/remixing/arranging/performing on unreleased Carpenters material. He'd be entirely forgiven to call it a career now. No other artist has gone this far when their singer has passed. He's earned the right to stop - though we understandably want to hear it all.

Ed
 
I checked the "A Kind Of Hush" songbook that came out approximately when the album did and "I Need to Be in Love" and it says "Words & Music by Richard Carpenter, John Bettes & Albert Hammond. The more recent "Carpenters Anthology," the one with the brown cover, also says the same thing about who wrote the song. So credit was given on the sheet music.

The brown cover Anthology songbook, is, in my opinion, the best of all the songbooks published. The arrangements are truer to the recordings.
 

Chris May

Resident ‘Carpenterologist’
Staff member
Moderator
Thread Starter
I checked the "A Kind Of Hush" songbook that came out approximately when the album did and "I Need to Be in Love" and it says "Words & Music by Richard Carpenter, John Bettes & Albert Hammond. The more recent "Carpenters Anthology," the one with the brown cover, also says the same thing about who wrote the song. So credit was given on the sheet music.
Credit was always given to the three of them—that was never in question. However, at the time of the song's release, there wasn't much of a stink made on the publishing split as far as Albert was concerned. It wasn't until later on as it was picking up traction that things turned around, and Albert was compensated.
 

GaryAlan

Well-Known Member
So, I went back a listened to the Kind of Hush album three different times, in one setting.
Why so ? Well, Richard states that on the specific song There's A Kind of Hush that Karen
did not sing "full-out." (15:54). Richard goes on to say "It had a whole different sound to it." (16:12).
Randy Bash listened to the song and said "it doesn't quite sound like Karen" and Richard adds "and, it doesn't." (16:36).
Richard says "I made the mistake of putting a synthesizer on it."(17:12).

So, I honed in a a few items:
Firstly, I must say that the entire album, not simply that one particular song--There's a Kind of Hush---
has a whole different sound to it.
Secondly, it seems to me that Karen is not singing "full-out" on most of this album, but I had always
attributed that to her health issues (as I did with most Made In America songs).
Thirdly, the use of the synthesizer was perfectly fine and I never understood his regret(s) for using it whenever he did (sparingly).

That's my two cents. And, only one opinion.
That said, I still enjoy the entire album.
 

Someday

Well-Known Member
I've always thought that 'There's a Kind of Hush' (title track) had a kind of detached quality. It's rather emotion-less and unlike most of Karen's work. Now I see why.
 

Harry

Charter A&M Corner Member
Staff member
Site Admin
I think she was just mimicking the way that Peter Noone sang it on the Herman's Hermits song:

 

GaryAlan

Well-Known Member
There was always the "complaint" that the duo wanted the songs to play out in concert just as the songs had sounded on record.
Then, along comes "There's A Kind of Hush" and suddenly we get that terrific "live" version of the song--
which has not the identical resemblance of "hush-i-ness" in its vocals compared to the studio recording. Here:
 

Mark-T

Well-Known Member
Gary Alan, seeing this always makes me smile- and that slow opening line by Karen is one of her most charming phrases ever.
 

GaryAlan

Well-Known Member
^^Mark, that "live" version of Hush surely seems to me as if Karen is singing "full out." !
The slow boil intro is fantastic, followed by the accentuated/punctuated expressiveness with "...of lovers in love..." :)19).
Karen holds some of the notes beautifully (1:07 "...love...") and is clearly enjoying herself !
Cubby's drumming is spirited.
 

ullalume

Well-Known Member
^^Mark, that "live" version of Hush surely seems to me as if Karen is singing "full out." !
The slow boil intro is fantastic, followed by the accentuated/punctuated expressiveness with "...of lovers in love..." :)19).
Karen holds some of the notes beautifully (1:07 "...love...") and is clearly enjoying herself !
Cubby's drumming is spirited.
Plus we get the ending that would be used 5 years later to end WYBIMLA
 
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