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TJB Update!

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Captain Bacardi

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Howdy folks! I'm back from my vacation and I met with Randy (Badazz) Alpert this past Wednesday, so here's the news you've all been waiting for:

All of the Tijuana Brass albums are being remastered and all will be released - every one of 'em! From The Lonely Bull to Coney Island, plus some rarities! (I now have images of Mike jumping up and down knowing that "Sea Is My Soil" will finally be on CD. :D )

Before I go on, I just want to give a big "Thank You" to Randy for taking time from his busy schedule to meet with me. He's a super nice guy and was a gracious host. We hooked up last Wednesday morning and talked for about two hours about a variety of things. He's become a master mixer these days and has a great little setup in his studio. Very high-tech studio and he's kept it pretty quiet the past 16 years or so. He still works with Andy Armer. As a matter of fact you'll be able to hear their new music on the 2004 Summer Olympics next week! They've written the opening theme song as well as three other tunes for the Olympics. Randy told me a lot of stories, much of which I won't be posting about. :wink:

Back to the TJB: This whole thing started after the lawsuit that Herb & Jerry settled with Universal. Randy said they found tons of tapes in the vaults and Randy told Herb he needed to put these all in a digital format before the tapes deteriorate. So Herb and Larry Levine have been working on these ever since. Herb originally wanted to reissue the albums with bonus tracks on them, but Randy talked him out of that. So the albums will be reissued as they originally were, with original art work, notes, etc. Then there will be a separate disc(s) of the rarities.

So what are these rarities, I hear you ask? For starters Randy said there was "a whole bunch of Sol Lake tunes that were never released". He even asked Herb why these never made it to albums, and he said Herb just shrugged and said he didn't recall. Added to this, I also saw John Pisano the night before, and he said that there were "a few of my tunes that never got released", so this will probably be included as well. (I'll have a different thread about meeting John in the jazz forum tomorrow.) There will also be the 45s that never made it to an album - "Mexican Drummer Man", "Fire & Rain", "El Bimbo", "Whistle Song". Randy didn't know everything that would be on the rarities disc outside of these. It's possible that the rarities would be a multi-disc set, but that's still up in the air. I asked Randy if there would be a 2 album on 1 disc concept, since most of the LPs were only 30 minutes long. He thought about it and said it was an interesting idea and would pass it on to Herb. Randy would like to have some of the albums done in a SACD format, and they may do that afterwards. But that's still up in the air.

The next question is what label will it be on? Randy couldn't remember the name of the label, but said it was similar to what Rhino does. It's not Rhino nor Hip-O Select, but similar. Universal will have nothing to do with this at all. Herb is done with Uni. As to the time frame of the release, he's not sure. They're still working on this so it's unlikely to be this year, with the possible exception to The Christmas Album. He's also not sure whether the albums will all be released at once or whether they'll spread them out over a period of time.

Now for the promotion part of it. Both Randy and Herb agreed that if they would just release the albums as is, then the most likely buyers would be the over-35 crowd. Randy wants to do something to spark some interest to the younger folks. Sooooooo, Randy is about to start work on a "Stars on 45" concept, and have some of the TJB tunes done with a more modern drum beat, something that could be played in dance clubs and on radio. The only tunes he knows that he wants on it for now is "Lonely Bull", "Mexican Shuffle" and "A Banda" (a favorite tune of Randy's), plus there will probably be a few more. He said he hopes to start working on this in the next few weeks.

I then asked him about the Dore Alpert and pre-A&M sessions, and he said that wasn't going to happen. First of all Herb doesn't own the tapes to most of that stuff and he doesn't really care about that stuff being released since that's not what he was about. I argued a bit with this, saying that from a historical perspective it may be useful. But Herb has no interest in any of that.

As far as a tour to promote these releases, there's no plan at this time for that. Maybe if it sells well and there's some interest in it. But for now there's no touring plan.

I asked about Herb's solo works, but he doesn't know about anything at this point. It's taken a couple of years just to do the TJB stuff, so it may be a while before the solo works get done.

There's probably a couple of things that I'm forgetting about, but it's been a long day on airplanes and I am in dire need of a beer. Maybe a good night's sleep will jar a couple of other goodies. :D


Capt. Bacardi
 

Mr Bill

Gentlemanly Curmudgeon
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Thanks Cap'n B!!! Great news indeed! And now we wait. In the meantime do I make a quick few grand selling my CDs on eBay???

--Mr Bill
 

Captain Bacardi

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Mr Bill said:
Thanks Cap'n B!!! Great news indeed! And now we wait. In the meantime do I make a quick few grand selling my CDs on eBay???

You know, that's not a bad idea. I need to pay off my American Express after this vacation. :D


Capt. Bacardi
 

Mr Bill

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Cap'n 'going postal' B said:
Now for the promotion part of it... Randy wants to do something to spark some interest to the younger folks. Sooooooo, Randy is about to start work on a "Stars on 45" concept...

Hmmm. I'm not sure that's the best way to promote these. I think a multitude of film appearances like in Shrek and Matchstick Men will be a bigger boon to the success of these reissues... But that's just me.

Cap'n 'going postal' B said:
I then asked him about the Dore Alpert and pre-A&M sessions, and he said that wasn't going to happen.

That's a darn shame. Well, at least I have the 45s...

--Mr Bill
 

Rudy

¡Que siga la fiesta!
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I'm probably dreaming, but I would hope these would be released as hybrid SACDs. Thing is, there are very few studios with DSD capabilities and Sonoma workstations to do it with, unless they upsampled from PCM (which is an extra step--ideally they'd go from analog directly to DSD). Hybrids cost little extra to produce--I just bought a Sam Cooke compilation, new, for $13.99 that is a hybrid, and all the Stones ABKCO remasters are "silent hybrids" (nothing on the case says they're SACD). My thought is that this remastering might be a once-in-a-lifetime occurence, so why not do it in the best possible quality.

And let's keep our fingers crossed that whoever masters these stays away from noise reduction, smiley EQs and the compression. :D

The thing I'm happiest for is that Herb Alpert is apparently done with Universal, including having his masters where they belong. :) And kudos to Randy (and Larry Levine) for making it happen!
 

daveK

New Member
Man, if we got a newly remastered "Christmas Album" this year, that would be incredible!!
I guess I always envisioned reissues of the LPs with the mono single versions as bonus tracks. Did he say if any of the single versions of songs like "Taxi" and "Zorba" would end up on the rarities collection?
 

Rudy

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I doubt the albums would be reissued in mono, although personally I'd rather see Lonely Bull released as mono rather than stereo. What would be neat would be a "singles collection" CD, that would compile all of the singles on one or two CDs, original mono single mixes, including B-sides. If held to a single disc, then I'd include only A-sides, and if time ran short, would omit a couple of songs that didn't have really unique mixes.

One thing to keep in mind is that the earlier A&Ms were recorded to three track. Larry Levine mixed the albums for mono, while Herb Alpert did the stereo LPs.
 

DAN BOLTON

Well-Known Member
This is the best news I've heard in a long time! I just can't believe that NINTH, THE BEAT OF THE BRASS, WARM, THE BRASS ARE COMIN' and SUMMERTIME are finally ALL gonna be on CD, along with YOU SMILE, THE SONG BEGINS and CONEY ISLAND...

And, I've never heard EL BIMBO...except when my ex used to nag me...

Herb, Larry, Randy and Cap'n...you've really made my day...

Dan
 

DAN BOLTON

Well-Known Member
As for Sol Lake, there are about 10 or so songs that he's credited with writing that the TJB never released any recordings of.

Dan, excited to the max over the possibilities that exist for rarities...
 

Mr Bill

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Captain Bacardi said:
Is "goining" an actual word? It almost sounds kinky. :wink:

Two things: 1-I fixed it. 2-kinky, yes. Now everyone knows what I have open in the other browser window... :wink:

--Mr Bill
forced to live with a laptop and its micro keyboard which is too small for his fat fingers... online AND off...
 

Rudy

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Captain Bacardi said:
The next question is what label will it be on? Randy couldn't remember the name of the label, but said it was similar to what Rhino does. It's not Rhino nor Hip-O Select, but similar.

What about Sundazed? Definitely need a small, specialist, collector-oriented label to release these.

The key thing to remember here is that it's still a work in progress, and no definite release dates are set. Still, it IS good to know that they do intend to get these all released, and are working toward that goal. Better to take the time to do it right! :)
 

Mr Bill

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I'm guessing it means we shouldn't expect to see anything before next summer ('cept maybe the Xmas LP)...

--Mr Bill
jazzed at this news...
 

Dave

Well-Known Member
So glad that Herb Alpert and the T-j-B will finally be put out on C-D!! :cheers:

I knew it would someday see the "laser-light o' day"! :winkgrin:

Dave

...and Post 911...but at least Good News, for a change...!! :tongue:
 

Harry

Charter A&M Corner Member
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All in all, great news, Captain. Thanks for doing your meet-up with Randy Badazz, and thanks to Randy for passing along the news. It's nice to hear something semi-official.

Captain Bacardi said:
The next question is what label will it be on? Randy couldn't remember the name of the label, but said it was similar to what Rhino does. It's not Rhino nor Hip-O Select, but similar. Universal will have nothing to do with this at all. Herb is done with Uni.

The only troubling thing to me is whether or not these new discs would be "allowed" to use the old A&M logo, styles, photos, etc. Does Herb's ownership extend that far that he'd have the rights to say a Jim McCrary photograph, etc.? Can he legitimately throw an A&M logo on the package for authenticity? Would he have to get permission from Universal?

I guess we'll find out the answers to some of these in time. Meantime, it's comforting to know that *something* is just around the corner.

Harry
...thanking Capt. Bacardi for the good news, online...
 

ThaFunkyFakeTation

Ah am so steel een luv weeth yoo
One would imagine that since Universal is still using the A&M logo, they must own it. It'll be interesting to see how this works out from a packaging aspect.

Ed
 

Rudy

¡Que siga la fiesta!
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Harry said:
The only troubling thing to me is whether or not these new discs would be "allowed" to use the old A&M logo, styles, photos, etc. Does Herb's ownership extend that far that he'd have the rights to say a Jim McCrary photograph, etc.? Can he legitimately throw an A&M logo on the package for authenticity? Would he have to get permission from Universal?

I guess we'll find out the answers to some of these in time. Meantime, it's comforting to know that *something* is just around the corner.

Sounds like a few more "corners" to go around, actually. :wink:

That didn't occur to me about the A&M logo--I doubt Universal would allow it, since it technically is their property, a trademark and brand name. (If the recordings were licensed from them, then it would be allowed.) I could see them getting away with the proper label colors and that, but without the logo, it's kind of a moot point. Next best thing? Have a partial reproduction of the cover art, or the same text and colors as the title on the album cover, for the CD label.

As for art and other things, using them at another label is no different from how the specialty reissue labels do it. I'm thinking of current labels like Analogue Productions, S&P, and older labels like Mobile Fidelity and Nautilus. He may have retained rights to use the album cover art (sans logo) when he left A&M.

Just some guesses here...
 

Ed Bishop

Member
I take this news with a mild grain of salt, but maybe, FINALLY, there is a light at the end of this tunnel.

I also pray that bonus tracks are added, and that they will be the special single mixes and edits we all love and would cherish on CD.

Perhaps most of all...MASTER THEM CORRECTLY! No NR! No compression, maximization, EQ, other nonsense! Just an honest rendering of what is already there....


That's all I want.... :)


:ed:
 

Johnboy

New Member
Great news, man! I can only hope that the singles mixes will be added to something...a boxset, rarities, or as bonus tracks to the original lps on CD. That's what would interest me most.

Johnboy :thumbsup:
 

DAN BOLTON

Well-Known Member
Rudy said:
As for art and other things, using them at another label is no different from how the specialty reissue labels do it. I'm thinking of current labels like Analogue Productions, S&P, and older labels like Mobile Fidelity and Nautilus. He may have retained rights to use the album cover art (sans logo) when he left A&M.

Just some guesses here...


So we won't necessarily have to look forward to Delores Erickson doing a new cover shot?



Dan
 
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