Two Of A Kind: TjB vs. BMB -- "Ventura" / "Rosemary"

Which version is your favourite?

  • Baja Marimba Band / "Ventura" (from The Baja Marimba Band’s Back on Bell Records; released 1973)

    Votes: 8 80.0%
  • Herb Alpert & The Tijuana Brass / "Rosemary" (not released until the Shout! reissue of WC&OD)

    Votes: 2 20.0%

  • Total voters
    10

JOv2

Well-Known Member
Thread Starter
  • The Tijuana Brass and the Baja Marimba Band have nine recorded songs in common from the A&M and early-'70s era.
  • Vote for your favourite version and tell us a bit about why you made your selection. (The selections are listed in release order.)
  • Thank you to Mr. Bill for this additional two-of-a-kind review, which was hitherto unknown to me, and which will serve to settle our TjB—BMB shootout currently tied 4-4:
    • TjB Victories:
      • More (7-4)
      • Up Cherry Street (12-1)
      • Brasilia (5-2)
      • Spanish Flea (6-5)
    • BMB Victories:
      • Acapulco 1922 (6-5)
      • Las Mananitas (6-4)
      • Wall Street Rag (6-3)
      • Baja Nova / Warm (6-5)
 

Harry

Charter A&M Corner Member
Staff member
Site Admin
How is it that "Ventura" was written by Julius Wechter, yet "Rosemary" was written by Herb Alpert? Hmmm?

Anyway, preference-wise, I'll go with the Baja Marimba Band.
 

Bobberman

Well-Known Member
For me. This is another toss-up but as The BMB'S Ventura was the first version I voted for that even though I Like Herb's mellower slower version titled "Rosemary" I have to go for what I heard first. Either way it's a Great song regardless of whether Herb or Julius wrote it
 

Rudy

¡Que siga la fiesta!
Staff member
Site Admin
Went with the Baja version. I'm not surprised that I never made the connection, as I rarely played that Baja album (owning it since it was released).
 

Mike Blakesley

Well-Known Member
Staff member
Moderator
This is a tough one because I like both versions. I like the ending better on Herb's version vs. Julius's bombastic ending, so I'll vote for the TJB on this one.

I think the writer is definitely really Julius. First, with the chord changes it just sounds more like something Julius would have written. Second, Julius' version came out when the song was still relatively fresh, so the credits-compilers at the time would have better access to accurate information, but we don't know where the Shout Facctory people got their info from. Third, Herb wasn't doing all that much writing during the Whipped Cream era compared to later years.

I assume Herb got the credit on the WC reissue version because when the recording was unearthed, it may not have had any writer credits attached to it? (Maybe?) That could also be why the titles are different.
 

JOv2

Well-Known Member
Thread Starter
I like Herb's contemplative version -- the engineering, trumpet tone and overall vibe of which sound like the early '70s to me (or maybe he overlayed the trumpet parts in the 2000s). I also like his ending. I'll go with BMB, however, as I gravitate to Julius' arrangement here.
 

Mr Bill

Gentlemanly Curmudgeon
Staff member
Moderator
Like Harry, I wonder how this is a Wechter tune, but is credited to Herb Alpert on the S!F version of Whipped Cream. It was obviously one of those "unfinished" songs (most of which ended up on Lost Treasures) but was set aside (with "Blueberry Park") at S!F's insistence that the icomnic Whiopped Cream album have "something extra" to lure new buyers who likely already owned it. -- plus both those songs have "food names."

My guess is that this was one of those tracks that both Herb and Julius were tinkering around with at the time both bands were winding down their A&M careers and each walked away with it where it was, Julius continuing to work it until BMB's Back got recorded, and Herb eschewing it until the S!F deal came along. I just wonder how the penny counters at ASCAP/BMI handled this one when royalty check time rolled around!

--Mr Bill
 

Rudy

¡Que siga la fiesta!
Staff member
Site Admin
If it came to legal precedent, Wechter's credit on the Baja version would most likely prevail. Nonetheless, I doubt anyone got rich off of this tune. 😁
 

Mr Bill

Gentlemanly Curmudgeon
Staff member
Moderator
True. The checks were probably small indeed. I used to work with a couple of the guys from A&M's The Dickies. One, the former bass player Bill Remar (stage name was "Billy Club"), continued his association with the band as their business manager and handled all their song rights. That's how I discovered he was one of the Dickies. He had an envelope on his desk from Almo/Irving and I asked him about it. He showed me the checks inside written to each of the members (and the estate of one of them who was no longer vertical) of varying dollar amounts. I think the biggest one was for $27. He said he got the checks quarterly and they were based on radio play, record sales, licensing to other labels (for compilations), TV or soundtracks, etc. He said in a good quarter they might make $100, but most of the time it was in the $10 to $30 range for each of them.

--Mr Bill
 

Rudy

¡Que siga la fiesta!
Staff member
Site Admin
I've had a similar insight from someone in the business, although it's rather outdated now. Album is released, and the band doesn't start seeing any royalties trickle down from the label for maybe 12-24 months. Live gigs were break even, and they'd split up the proceeds four ways, evenly, if they had any overage beyond their costs. The benefit is that they'd see a slight boost in album sales when they toured.

I'd say a very small percentage of musicians, especially today, can get rich off of music. The majority slug it out for decades in bands, or on their own. They also play side gigs for other artists. Some teach on the side--private tutoring and/or teaching at a university. Some whose bands go on hiatus will take up another career entirely. Others move on to other pursuits--working in the music industry in publishing, A&R, etc., creating other types of art, or going into completely non-related careers.

The music industry is no ticket to success. With the raw deal artists get today, I'm surprised there is still so much music being made.
 

JOv2

Well-Known Member
Thread Starter
My guess is that this was one of those tracks that both Herb and Julius were tinkering around with at the time both bands were winding down their A&M careers and each walked away with it where it was, Julius continuing to work it until BMB's Back got recorded, and Herb eschewing it until the S!F deal came along
That seems quite reasonable -- though it's interesting that Herb apparently didn't revisit it for the '70s TjB outfit.
The music industry is no ticket to success
Financial success.

Yeah.

The only people that made any long-term steady income in the pop racket were the studio cats, A&R guys and assorted label suits and pencil-pushers, and, of course, artist "managers" (who simply bounce from band-to-band only managing "successful" acts so as to ensure their cut of the action). I mean, take a guy like Richard Barbary: in the period of probably less than one year he went from obscure to having a Creed Taylor produced LP on A&M/CTi cut with top-drawer session cats; yet with sales of the LP and associated 45s not meeting A&M's expectations, he was dropped and any potential personal success was then quickly marginalized. Then there're guys like Chris Montez -- who enjoy a notable measure of success...only to lose and never recapture the momentum. Ultimately, after numerous attempts, A&M seemingly gave up on him (and of course, Herb, somewhere around '68, had to deliver the news: "FLINTSTONE, YOU'RE FIRED!!" though with due tact, of course).
 
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