Zero to 180 – Three Minute Magic

Discoveries of a Pop Music Archaeologist

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“Baia”: Carol Kaye as Bandleader

One weekend in late March 2009 I was listening to Bob Edwards‘ radio show while on my way to an event and had to pull over to finish listening to the rest of his interview with legendary session bassist, Carol Kaye – who is estimated to have played on more than 10,000 [!] recording dates.  Bob was a total fanboy as he interviewed this pivotal musician who, quite literally, played on all the hits, and his enthusiasm was infectious.

I have since come across a great instrumental – “Baia” – by Carol Kaye (& the Hitmen) in a rather rare turn as bandleader, and I’m stunned to discover that this 1965 recording seems not to have been released on vinyl back in the day:

“Baia”     Carol Kaye & the Hitmen     1965

This 1996 German release appears to be the only commercial access to Carol Kaye in her one-time role as Recording Artist – who, by the way, wrote 4 of the 16 songs assembled here.  Check out the lineup of musicians:

Bass Guitar – Carol Kaye & Rene Hall
Double Bass – Al McKibbon
Drums – Earl Palmer
Flute – Bill Green
French Horn – Dwight Carver
Keyboards – Ray Johnson
Lead & Rhythm Guitar – Carol Kaye
Percussion – Gary Coleman
Saxophone – Jim Horn & Bill Green
Trombone – Lew McCreary & Dick Leith
Vibraphone – Gary Coleman

Producer – Carol Kaye
Arranger – Carol Kaye & H.B. Barnum
Engineer – Bob Ross
Reissue Producer – Bert Gerecht


Recorded in Hollywood Circa 1965

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Carol Kaye on bass

                                 “The Clique” vs. “The Wrecking Crew”

Carol was part of a group of in-demand musicians, who are most commonly known as “The Wrecking Crew,” although Carol strictly insists she and her colleagues referred to each other as “The Clique:

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