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Herb's UK EPs

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TonyCurrie

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It struck me this morning that the 7" Extended Play format - the "EP" - wasn't really much adopted in the USA. Here in Britain, however, EPs were very popular - indeed sometimes an EP would get into the singles chart.

The thought was prompted by the fact that I have a pile of Herb's EPs in front of me - and I thought you might find the details of mild passing interest. I don't know if I have all the EPs issued in the UK (in fact I suspect I don't) but what I have here are:-

MEXICAN CORN: Mexican Corn/Spanish Harlem; America/Winds of Barcelona Stateside SE1037, published 1963
Sleeve: colourful picture of Mexican puppets hanging on a street stall
Sleeve notes: the Hernando Cortes notes found on TLB

UP CHERRY STREET: Up Cherry Street/Numero Cinco; Mexican Shuffle/The Girl from Ipanema Pye International NEP44041, published 1964
Sleeve: save photo as on the front of "WNML"
Sleeve notes: the first two paragraphs of the Hernando Cortez notes but not credited to anyone.


MEETS ZORBA THE GREEK: Zorba the Greek/More and More Amor; A Walk in the Black Forest/Third Man Theme Pye International NEP 44052, published 1965
Sleeve: B/W casual pic of Herb sitting on crude stone steps with hands resting on his trumpet.
Sleeve notes: none

GETTING SENTIMENTAL: I'm Getting Sentimental Over You/Peanuts; And The Angels Sing/Las Mananitas Pye International NEP 44061, published 1966
Sleeve: colour pic of Herb and trumpet sitting against a light green background. (The same picture appears - with a blue background - on the sleeve of a EP of European origin titled HERB ALPERT AND THE TIJUSNS BRASS. Tracks were A Banda/Spanish Flea; Miss Frenchy Brown/Brasilia. A&M EP-25-3)Sleeve notes: very extensive biog indeed!

(SO WHAT'S NEW - Pye International NEP 44069 - I don't have)

WHAT NOW MY LOVE: What Now My Love/The Shadow of Your Smile; Five Minutes More/It Was a Very Good Year Pye International NEP 44079, published 1966
Sleeve: Colour pic of Herb standing on a stone balcony with other members of the TJB out of focus behind him, together with statues and a palm tree. Predominantly brown colour background. Still from a TV show? Close up of Herb on back sleeve - no sleeve notes.

FIVE MINUTES MORE: Work Song/Flamingo; Plucky/Cantina Blue Pye International NEP 44084, published 1967
Sleeve: same photograph as front of "WNML"
back sleeve; photo of Herb in profile. No sleeve notes


(I don't have the disc, but there was certainly an EP - possibly released in Spain - with The Happening/South of the Border; Town Without Pity/A Walk in the Black Forest A&M EP - 26 - 6)

I also have an interesting French EP:

THE MEXICAN SHUFFLE: The Mexican Shuffle/Numero Cinco; mexican Drummer Man/The Great Manolette Columbia ESRF 1569
Sleeve: Colour photo of a sleeping Mexican
Sleeve notes: Minimal biog of Herb

(there was an earlier French EP that I don't have:
THE LONELY BULL: The Lonely Bull/Acapulco 1922; El Lobo/Tijuana Sauerkraut Columbia ESDF 1452; I know there was also a "James Bon" EP which featured "Casino Royale".)

Interesting bits:
NEP 44084 is titled "Five Minutes More" but doesn';t feature that track. However the back sleeve has a label with the track listing that's stuck over what was obviously the originally intended tracks. Side 2 was the same as the eventual release, but side 1 was Five Minutes More/It Was a Very Good Year. Which, of course, was side 2 of NEP 44079!! The version of "Plucky" is the straight one without the bump 'n' grind.


Anyone want to add to the list?
 

DAN BOLTON

Well-Known Member
I had a cassette tape back in the late '60's that had the same playlist as the WNML EP. At least, I think it was a cassette tape...as I remember, it fell apart after just a few plays, and the tape deck I had to play it on wasn't made for listening to music. It was about the same time that Neil Diamond's SHILOH came out, because I had it on a cassette album of his, too. It didn't sound any better than the TJB tape did...

As I remember, there wasn't a big price difference between the TJB EP and the regular album, and the format faded rather quickly. I think this was about summer 1968, could have been 1967, though...


Dan
 

Rudy

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EPs were short-lived in the US. RCA was the biggest proponent of them--you could often find these "mini-albums" for many of RCA's popular releases, like the Peter Gunn soundtrack. Sound quality isn't the best--the EPs have less bass and sound thin compared to single-song 45s from the same and later eras. Some of Elvis's earliest releases came on EPs.

The other EP format was actually a mini-LP--the 10" LPs that other labels put out. That format never really caught on either, although the earliest examples of these now sell for a good sum at the record shops. I've seen a couple of RCA Shorty Rogers EPs for $75 and $125 at one nearby shop. Many major labels put these out, but they all seemed to favor the 12" we're so familiar with.
 

Mr Bill

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To add to what Neil says... Here in the US the 7" EP was strictly for the JukeBox market. and (to my knowledge) were sold to JukeBox owners/merketers via rack jobbers and not commercially available in your neighborhood shop (not legally anyway, a la promos).

The 10" EP was a 50s phenomenon that was dead by the mid 60s. It saw a resurgence as one of many novelty vinyl formats in the late 70s and early 80s with the punk/new wave movement. These were typically pic discs, colored vinyl, shaped discs, groove out and vinyl sizes from 5" to 12". Although these formats dwindled in popularity until the CD explosion killed them, the EP itself lived on (and still does to some extenet) in the form of 12" maxi singles. These usually contain several mixes of one song or selected cuts off an LP or non-LP tracks.

--Mr Bill
 

Harry

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Back in the '50s and early '60s, EP's were semi-common in the US. I have several examples from my childhood when buying an album was virtually unthinkable, and most of us "kids" had 45-only players. So EP's were a way of getting more than just a single with a flip side. Even some of the kiddie records I still have are EPs.

By the mid-'60s though, EP's had pretty much died out as a viable format. Albums like PET SOUNDS and SGT. PEPPER'S were art-forms in their entirety, and most of us "boomer kids" graduated to the LP.

Harry
 

Rudy

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Jukebox EPs were a different animal than commercially released EPs--for RCA (and maybe one or two others), the 45RPM EPs were a common release format. Joel Whitburn's books mention them. I think because RCA invented the 45RPM record, they were trying to capitalize on it and make it a popular format to replace the 78RPM record, which only had one song per side. I don't own a jukebox EP--don't they run at 33-1/3 RPM? RCAs were the standard 45RPM speed, and I still see many up on eBay. Neat curiosities to own, but I would not go out of my way to spend more than a couple bucks each for them.
 

Numero Cinco

New Member
What a terrific thread. Thanks for starting it, Tony. I'd never heard of EPs before, much less learned so much arcana about them.

Thanks also to Steve for linking us to those foreign sleeve jackets. Great stuff.
 

TonyCurrie

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Having taken a little time out tonight (waiting for wife and son to return from a ski-ing holiday, and the flight's an hour late!) I consulted the Pye Records catalogue for 1969, which shows that there were about a dozen TJB EPs available at that time - some on A&M, some still on the Pye International label. I don't have time to list them all, but will happily do so another time if anyone's really interested.

One of the reasons that they're more interesting to collect than singles is that - in the UK and most of Europe - they came in full-colour laminated sleeves, often with quite extensive sleeve notes. They were indeed mini albums, and at one time practically every LP that was doing well in the charts spawned three EPs with assorted combinations of tracks from the "parent" album.

The TJB stuff is more interesting, though, because tracks would get mixed up from various albums - like the odd inclusion of "Las Mananitas" on "Getting Sentimental".
 
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