Real Gone Announces August '16 Releases

Article Contributed by Real Gone Music | Published on Thursday, June 16, 2016

Summer’s at its hottest in August, and so is Real Gone’s release schedule! Leading off is the first of three volumes of the complete Atlantic singles of the great Wilson Pickett. With such classic songs as “Mustang Sally,” “Land of 1000 Dances,” and “In the Midnight Hour,” this promises to be the year’s wickedest soul release. Then, Real Gone is releasing the first-ever live album on CD to capture the beloved new wave band The B-52’s in their early prime (1979 to be exact), complete with such classics as “Rock Lobster” and “Planet Claire.”

Real Gone also is bringing to a close its reissue campaign of the classic Reprise albums by the all-female band Fanny with a (vastly) expanded edition of their Mother’s Pride album, complete with tons of rare photos and liner notes by the band (the label is also repressing Fanny’s first album). The legendary folk group The New Christy Minstrels also gets the Real Gone treatment with an expanded edition of its seminal Ramblin’ album, again with loads of bonus tracks and great liner notes by NCM expert Tom Pickles. Then, the label continues its string of 2-CD compilations from the Sony vaults with hit-crammed collections from the country group Diamond Rio and the legendary producer, arranger, and A&R man Mitch Miller. And the label is re-pressing the debut album by Cat Mother and the All-Night Newsboys, which was produced by none other than Jimi Hendrix!

Finally, Real Gone is releasing a limited orange vinyl edition of Faithful, the lost third Atlantic album by Dusty Springfield that the label released to great acclaim on CD several years ago. And probably the greatest postwar Western album of all time, Marty Robbins’ Gunfighter Ballads and Trail Songs, receives a limited magenta vinyl run to match the color of its classic cover art.

Are you ready for the wickedest Real Gone soul collection yet? Here, in one smokin’ hot set, are the first 22 single sides that the great Wilson Pickett recorded for the Atlantic label, some of the most hallowed recordings in the history of soul music. Along with the intoxicating mix of hits—“In the Midnight Hour,” “Mustang Sally,” “634-5789 (Soulsville, U.S.A.),” “Land of 1000 Dances,” “Don’t Fight It,” and more—and rare B-sides that come with the territory on a singles collection, you also get those punchy mono single mixes/versions that bring out the raw excitement of these seminal performances, not to mention the incredible musicianship of folks like Steve Cropper, Al Jackson, Donald “Duck” Dunn, and Isaac Hayes. Indeed, even if you purchased Rhino Handmade’s collection of Pickett’s complete Atlantic studio sessions, you don’t own the single versions—this volume (and the two to come after it) are necessary complements to that outstanding set. Remastered by Mike Milchner from sources derived from the original tapes, and annotated by Joe Marchese, who penned the notes on Real Gone’s previous collection of the Wicked Pickett’s RCA recordings, The Complete Atlantic Singles Vol. One presents some of the greatest soul ever waxed exactly how it was originally waxed—as singles for airplay on the radio. It’s the material that made Wilson Pickett a legend.

Best to let the band itself describe this live album, which is only the second B-52’s concert recording and the only one to capture them during their early years: “We opened for the Talking Heads at the Berklee Center in Boston just six weeks after our first record was released. We were a little scared of the audience so we kept our heads down and focused – and we danced like mad when there was a break! Ricky was so fierce on the guitar – so intense – it was all so raw and live and we loved it.” Now, Real Gone Music is very proud to present The B-52’s: Live! 8.24.1979, a key live document of one of America’s most beloved and distinctive New Wave groups on CD for the first time, complete with liner notes by Jason Gross featuring fresh quotes from the band members and rare photos. From “Rock Lobster” to “Private Idaho,” you WILL dance this mess around when you hear this, we promise.

With the release of Fanny’s 1973 album Mother’s Pride, Real Gone Music concludes its reissue campaign of the groundbreaking female rock group’s classic Reprise catalog. And while there might be some argument as to whether or not we have saved the best for last—all four Reprise albums the band put out have their champions among Fanny followers—there is no question that we have saved the biggest for last, as this expanded edition clocks in with no less than eight bonus tracks! Indeed, Mother’s Pride is perhaps the most controversial entry in the Fanny catalog, as Todd Rundgren agreed to produce the album on the condition that he and he alone oversee the album mix. The result was a record that cemented Fanny’s popularity in the U.K. but failed to make a dent in the charts here in the States. Like our previous Fanny reissues (Real Gone is also repressing Fanny, the group’s self-titled debut album), this release features track-by-track annotation from the band as well as rare photos. Another seminal ‘70s rock record from everybody’s favorite “forgotten” all-female rock group, supplemented with rare demos and lost tracks.

The New Christy Minstrels’ classic Ramblin’ album has long been considered that great group’s creative high water work.   Released in July of 1963, the album instantly made the charts and stayed there for 77 weeks, earning founder Randy Sparks and his group their first Gold Record…and bringing fame and a little “Green, Green” to one Barry McGuire.   Here it is again, in long-overdue, sonically superior remastered form – and now in an expanded edition loaded with rare material (including six unreleased tracks) related to the album.   You’ll hear the creation of “Green, Green” – the group’s biggest hit – in unreleased versions that feature members Dolan Ellis, Jackie Miller, and Gayle Caldwell (later “Jackie and Gayle” of Shindig fame), with Barry McGuire on only the third verse.  It’s a great arrangement, very different from the hit single…and a MUST HAVE for every Christy fan.  Plus, you’ll hear the German and Spanish versions of the hit – released in the US for the first time and recorded just after (future Byrd) Gene Clark joined the group.  PLUS…an unreleased “live” version recorded at Randy Sparks’ folk club, Ledbetter’s and a “gag” version with a solo by Randy himself (teasing his group). And, there’s more…you’ll hear the brilliant Nick Woods’ amazing solo of “Natural Man” – originally intended to be the follow up single to “Green, Green.” Those plans were set aside when Randy came up with a little number called “Saturday Night”…which had “hit” written all over it.  Both songs are here…along with “The Banjo” (the B-side of “Green, Green”), “Walk the Road”, an unreleased version of “The Drinking Gourd,” and – most rare of all – a demo of “Last Farewell” (JFK’s favorite Christy song) with a pop arrangement featuring a terrific solo by Randy Sparks himself. It’s a great package for folkies everywhere – remastered by Sean Brennan at Battery Studios in New York, with detailed notes by Christy guru Tom Pickles that tell the story of Randy Sparks and his group at their absolute peak.

Oddly enough for a band that started as an attraction at the Opryland theme park, Diamond Rio turned out to be more authentic and original than most any of their country contemporaries, eschewing session musicians to sing and play everything on just about every song they recorded. Add crisp, multi-part harmony arrangements and excellent songwriting to that streak of homegrown creativity and you had, along with Alabama, the biggest country group of the ‘90s, which The Definitive Hits Collection celebrates by living up to its name by offering 31 of the 33 hits Diamond Rio notched during its unparalleled run on the Arista Nashville label. The 40-song set leads off “Meet in the Middle,” the only debut single EVER to hit #1 on the charts, and doesn’t let up with such chart-toppers as “How Your Love Makes Me Feel,” “One More Day,” “Beautiful Mess,” and “I Believe,” plus such favorites as “Love a Little Stronger,” “Walkin’ Away,” “You’re Gone,” and more. Notes by Bill Kopp round out the set, which is freshly remastered by Maria Triana at Battery Studios. By far the biggest and best Diamond Rio collection ever.

There was never anybody like Mitch Miller in the music business. And there never will be again. Head of A&R for Columbia for over 15 years, star of his own television show on NBC, accomplished oboist and English Horn player, Miller was enormously influential on pop music during the ‘50s and early ‘60s, producing and nurturing the careers of such popular artists as Doris Day, Frankie Laine, Jo Stafford, Johnny Mathis, Guy Mitchell and many others, while famously passing on more rock and roll-oriented acts like Elvis, The Beatles, and Buddy Holly. But Miller’s contribution didn’t stop there—he was also a successful recording artist in his own right, recording 13 Top Ten albums and a series of bestselling singles with an orchestra and chorus, often credited to Mitch Miller and the Gang. Spanning the years 1950 to 1962, The Definitive Collection covers virtually his entire recording career at Columbia, and includes such chart-topping highlights as “The Yellow Rose of Texas,” “Tzena, Tzena, Tzena,” “Meet Mister Callaghan,” the famous “The River Kwai March”/”Colonel Bogey March” medley, “Song for a Summer Night,” and more, plus the movie themes “The Guns of Navarone” and “The Longest Day.” Gene Sculatti’s notes (festooned with photos from the Columbia vault) trace a career arc like no other in the annals of the music industry. 38 freshly remastered tracks (by Maria Triana at Battery Studios) for you to sing along with Mitch.

Let’s get the preliminaries over with right away by stating that The Street Giveth…and the Street Taketh Away, the 1969 debut release from Cat Mother and the All Night Newsboys, was co-produced by none other than Jimi Hendrix (they were long-time friends, the band opened for the Experience on tour, and had the misfortune of sharing the same manager, Mike Jeffrey). But Cat Mother was far more than a footnote to a superstar’s career. Not only did this record score a Top 40 hit with “Good Old Rock ‘N Roll,” but it’s also a marvelously eclectic affair beloved by record collectors of every stripe—just do a quick Google search—with elements of folk, country and late ‘60s riff rock alongside the hit’s tongue-in-cheek revivalism. Not JUST for Hendrix completists (though they will want it, too).

In 1971, Atlantic Records released a pair of Dusty Springfield singles produced by the legendary songwriter/producer Jeff Barry (one-time songwriting and romantic partner of Ellie Greenwich, and author of too many hits to name):  "Haunted"/"Nothing Is Forever" and "I Believe In You"/"Someone Who Cares." A restless Dusty, freshly relocating to America from her native England, then departed the label and left an additional 9 songs recorded with Barry in the can, where they stayed until Rhino issued one track, "Faithful" (in mono), as a bonus track on the 1990s CD release of Dusty's 1970 Atlantic album A Brand New Me. The other tracks didn’t surface until a subsequent deluxe reissue of Dusty’s landmark 1969 album Dusty in Memphis included them as bonus cuts. Now, reissue producer Jim Pierson—who tracked down the missing masters after being lost for over two decades —has assembled  Dusty’s Barry-produced masters and put them together in a single package for the first time to create the third Dusty Springfield Atlantic Records album as planned in 1971. Real Gone Music’s release of Faithful on LP presents these historic Barry-Springfield collaborations exactly as they were originally intended to be heard, with the 12 tracks meant for the album release finally out on vinyl 45 years later. All tracks are in stereo, while the liner notes on the inner sleeve, penned by The Second Disc's Joe Marchese, feature a number of rarely-seen photos of the legendary singer. These stunning pop, soul and gospel flavored selections showcase the iconic singer at the height of her vocal magic.  A missing/jumbled part of Dusty’s august recorded legacy, finally set right and available in its intended format. Out on orange vinyl limited to 1000 copies.

Real Gone Music is proud to present the original mono version of what most folks consider to be the single greatest postwar album of Western music, Marty Robbins’ Gunfighter Ballads and Trail Songs. Everything about this album is iconic, from its “quick draw” cover art to the songs it contains—“Big Iron,” “Cool Water,” “The Master’s Call,” “Billy the Kid,” “The Strawberry Roan,” and, of course, “El Paso” (here in its rare, full-length version)— that have come to define the Western genre. And the music has never sounded better than it does here: our limited edition (of 500 copies) magenta vinyl pressing was remastered by Vic Anesini at Battery Studios in New York with lacquer cutting by Kevin Gray. Comes complete with the amazing original album art, too…a classic album now even more collectible than before.