Monday, July 20, 2009

Authentic Music From Another Planet

Our celebration of Moon Day continues with one of the oddest outsider-music artifacts I've ever come across - an entire album of music and narration from 1956 by someone claiming to be a UFO contactee. And I stumbled across it while perusing my local library.

In the 1950's, at the height of the flying saucer scare, a New Jersey sign-painter named Howard Menger not only had an abduction experience, but he claims that he later
came across a remote building housing a piano with more keys then found on Earth pianos, and that he began to play music guided by alien hands.

Our resident expert in such matters, Greg "Spacebrother" Bishop, notes that "an attractive young woman named Connie Weber appeared at one of Menger’s gatherings. He thought that she was the reincarnation of a blond spacewoman that he had known (in the biblical sense) in a previous life on Venus. He soon left his first wife and family to begin a new life of lectures and touring on the Contactee circuit....Connie wrote a book entitled
My Saturnian Lover about her previous interplanetary relationship with Menger." Gotta find that book!

Apparently the aliens were from The Planet Of Crappy Music, judging by the snoozy piano/accordion instrumentals found on this big 28-minute file. There's nothing spacey or futuristic about it, except for all the echo that drenches everything - music and narration. And despite his description of the alien piano, there's no microtonal sounds here. Maybe that's why the aliens came - to get better tuneage for those long interstellar road trips. The narration is priceless, however. Now I know what The Bran Flakes sampled on the first song on their "
Hey Won't Somebody Come And Play?" album.

Howard Menger - "Authentic Music From Another Planet"


Sorry for the sound quality, and for the size of the file - I got this from a cd I found in the Los Angeles Central Library while looking for something else entirely. Much to my surprise, there's a whole shelf of UFO/conspiracy-related audio documentation. This track is from a collection called "Saucerology: Tales of Giant Rock (Contactees Vol. 2)," compiled by Wendy Connors as part of her Audio History of Ufology Series. She apparently used to have her own label, but the website's gone. I checked out a number of these Conners compilation disks from the Library Shelf O' Mystery, but there's little music to be found on them. Mostly just inaudible interviews and news reports.
Menger just died earlier this year.

14 comments:

Greg Bishop said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Vic said...

excellent work, Mr Fab.

Amazing the sounds you come across in public libraries. Not to mention abandoned buildings with strange pianos...

Greg Bishop said...

I used to have a full recording of this record on a cassette, but lost it. THAAAANK YOOOUU for posting this! This version is better quality, believe it or not.

Name a date (any Sunday) when you would like to come back on for a guest DJ spot at Radio Misterioso and we'll pencil it in.

I now have a digital recorder so you can have an mp3 copy of the show immediately.

Anonymous said...

Listen "The song of Saturn" :
http://www.dailymotion.com/user/chrysmeelie/video/x8y0fu_howard-menger-authentic-music-from_tech

Steve Kostelecky said...

Just found your blog courtesy the Komodo Dragon. I will very much enjoy exploring it. Thanks so much for sharing--this record strikes me somewhere deep in my childhood. Seems like a lot of atmospheric organ music was floating around in the 50s and 60s.
Thanks again.

Mr Fab said...

yes, I loves me some atmospheric organ music my own self - check my "Strange Interludes" collection for more.

What's the Komodo Dragon? there are sentient reptiles recommending this blog?

Steve Kostelecky said...

The Komodo Dragon Show is run by Paul Von Wichert every Wednesday 8-11am Central Time on UMFM 101.5 in Winnipeg, Canada. That's 1300-1600 GMT. His blog with playlists is at: http://komododragonshow.blogspot.com/
He has become a cyberfriend and has been helpful to me over the last few years.
I will be exploring the site.
Thanks for the reply.

Anonymous said...

The link has vanished just like a rapid daylight disc sighting in the West on a sunny day. No saucer friends to listen to there...

Mr Fab said...

I'll try to launch this saucer when I get home from work tonight and can re-up any missing mp3s. So keep watching the skies!

Alfred Armstrong said...

One copy of My Saturnian Lover on AddAll.com ... $300 ... ouch.

the saucer people said...

I have probably spent the last 25 years waiting to hear the Howard Menger album and it looks like I am going to have to wait a little longer as the Mediafire fascist scourbots seem to have suspended yet another account which hosts the file.

Anyway, I will keep watching the skies (actually I wish I was watching them in southern Russia today, that meteor was apocalyptic!) and hoping for a repost of the album.

I wish I had a library that hosted all the Wendy Conners "Saucerology" series! I did contact her a couple of years ago and she was asking $300 for a set of the CD disks, a little beyond my price range!

Mr Fab said...

Link back up!

Mr Fab said...

And yes, I watched that Russian meteor video this morning. Spectacular.

kosmikino said...

Many thanks for re-posting the rip of the Howard Menger album, most appreciated. (I finally found my text file of requests I made from 2013 and I can't believe I requested a repost over a year ago under my "saucer people" nom de guerre).

Well, was it worth the 25 year wait between first reading about this album and finally hearing it? You bet your Venusian sweet ass it was!

While most people would no doubt focus on the uncanny similarity between Menger's "space music" and fifties lounge muzak as a sign of the "inauthentic" nature of his contacts - I would suggest it illuminates the interface between human consciousness and contact with the alien Other - no doubt had Menger had his experience today, the music would probably have a new age ambient feel to it ;)

I have to admit, the file size had me worried, but actually, it's a great recording.. I guess what they say about audio file size...

F.A.B. Mr Fab, F.A.B.!