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1970s 45 rpm 7" Rock

Eleven

Brownsville Station were a rock band popular in the early 1970s. They had one big hit, “Smokin’ in the Boys’ Room”, an anthem encouraging teen rebellion in the form of lifelong support for the Philip Morris group of companies. You will know it, even if you don’t know their version – it was covered, almost […]

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12" 1970s 33 rpm LP Spoken Word

Converting me into a bullet

Richard Harris is now chiefly famous for two things: singing the mysterious, melancholy song “MacArthur Park”, which was a huge hit in the late 1960s, and playing the role of Dumbledore in the first two Harry Potter films. He was not especially good as Dumbledore, though in fairness he was in poor health. His singing […]

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1970s 45 rpm 7" Gospel Pop

The firehose effect

Probably the fastest way to disperse a crowd of Australians, short of turning a fire hose on them, is to invite them to church. There is no oppression, just compartmentalisation. You are allowed to sing “Amazing Grace” on Sundays and at funerals, but gospel struggles to reach a wider audience. There is a lot of […]

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1970s 7" Pop Single

Hammond. Not the organ.

What do the following songs all have in common? Leo Sayer: “When I Need You” Willie Nelson and Julio Iglesias: “To All the Girls I’ve Loved Before” Diana Ross: “When You Tell Me That You Love Me” The Pipkins: “Gimme Dat Ting” The Hollies: “The Air That I Breathe” Along with dozens of other successful […]

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12" 1970s 33 rpm Country Pop

Lotta hair

You know her, even if you don’t know it. You know her voice. If you have listened to Emmylou Harris’s albums, Luxury Liner and Quarter Moon in a Ten Cent Town, or Neil Young’s Comes a Time, American Stars and Bars and Rust Never Sleeps, or the Doobie Brothers’ Minute by Minute, or a whole […]

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12" 1970s 33 rpm Compilations Soundtracks

The Persuader

In the late 1960s and early 1970s, as stereo sound systems became more affordable, many record companies produced what you might call stereo samplers, compilations of sound effects and popular music which sounded impressive in the new format. They were sold very cheaply, or even given away, a freebie thrown in with a new record […]

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1970s 45 rpm 7" Children's

There’s something about Mary

The first sound recording in human history occurred in 1877. Thomas Edison, the irascible genius who also invented the incandescent light-bulb and a host of other new technologies, recorded himself onto sheets of tinfoil. The vibrations in the air from his voice caused a diaphragm to move, activating a stylus which cut into the foil. […]

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1970s 45 rpm 7" Pop Rock Single

Groovin’ Around, Baby

In 1973, a group of Australian musicians got together and cut a single. They called themselves Wild Honey, and they could play. The arrangements are complex: shifts in tempo, complex harmonies. For 1973, this is high level production. Who were they? That is a mystery. There have been lots of bands called Wild Honey, but […]

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12" 1970s 33 rpm Singalong

Take a shower, lads

From the sublime to … the Shower Room Squad? Tragically, the individual identities of this vocal group is lost to posterity. They seem to have consisted of a piano player and a bunch of men who were either drunken idiots, or sober and trying to sound like drunken idiots. The few seconds of “atmosphere” before […]