Wednesday, August 31, 2011
"I WANT TO PLAY ON THAT GAYWAY..." - POSTCARD RECORDS FROM THE 1962 SEATTLE WORLD'S FAIR
"It's a postcard!"
"No, it's not. It's a record! Lemme play it"
"No, it's a postcard! I wanna mail it!"
"Hold on kids, you're both right - these 6 postcards we bought at the World's Fair can also be enjoyed on any record-player."
"Gee, dad, that's swell!"
(Dad goes back to his pipe, nodding and smiling)
Despite the ridiculous amount of music I have, I'm not really a "collector." I'm more like a bottom-feeder, buying the stuff no-one else wants. But, while visiting Seattle some years back, I really did have to pry open my wallet and shell out $50 or so for these lovely postcard/records. It was so worth it - all six were in mint condition, never played, and they look and sound great. The artists were probably Seattle locals. I found some info on The Frantics and Frank Sugia, but as for the others, they apparently never made the national scene, or even other recordings.
This fascinating article describes some of the literally hundreds of songs written about the Space Age extravaganza known as the "Century 21" World's Fair of 1962, but I couldn't find many. Only two, to be exact, included here as bonus tracks, courtesy of the "I'm Learning To Share" and "Beware of the Blog" blogs. I've also added a song from the soundtrack to an Elvis film shot on location at the fair. (Of course, strange music fans know and love Attilio Mineo's "Man In Space With Sounds" LP, but many other blogs have already posted it.) So this is all I got so far, but it is, to quote Joe Juma, "an acme of delight."
Seattle World's Fair 1962
01 "Invitation To The Fair" - Joe Juma (a country stomper)
02 "World's Fair Seattle" - Billy Earles (Man, dig this finger-snappin' lounge crooner)
03 "Summer of '62 - Ronnie Draper and the Fordomatics (frantic banjo-driven hoedown with those white-bread folk-revival vocal harmonies)
04 "Cafe in The Sky" - Kelly Gates (Space-Age organ sounds? Now we're talkin'!)
05 "Gayway Twist" - the Frantics (this rock'n'roller is an instrumental, which, considering the title, is perhaps just as well)
06 "Come and See Seattle" - Frank Sugia Trio & Naomi (an accordion waltz for the Lawrence Welk crowd - Sugia seems to have had a fairly successful musical career, releasing an album in 1967)
Elvis Presley - "Take Me To The Fair"
Joy and the Boys - "Meet Me In Seattle"
The Lancers - "See You In Seattle"