Zero to 180 – Three Minute Magic

Discoveries of a Pop Music Archaeologist

Category: Hohner

"Love Me Do"
Zeroto180

Earliest Melodica Recording ’64

A Postcard From Canton [Massachusetts] celebrates the accomplishments of one of the town’s most “esteemed citizens” — and industrious tinkerers: [James Amireaux] Bazin came to examine a simple free-reed instrument when he was 23 years old.  A group of men brought him a broken pitch pipe and asked him to

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"Wild Blue Yonder"
Zeroto180

Lloyd Green Stumps for Baldwin

Check out the Clavinet-like sounds coming from Jerry Whitehurst‘s electric harpsichord on “Wild Blue Yonder,” side one’s closing track from Lloyd Green‘s third solo LP Day of Decision, an album that was recorded (like Stones Jazz) in one day — in this case, on June 18, 1966 at RCA Studios in Nashville: “Wild

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"Ice Cream and Suckers"
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Earliest Recording of a Melodica?

July 2020 Update:  Click here for the latest info One of Zero to 180’s earliest pieces (from 2012) concerned itself with documenting the earliest recording of a melodica (i.e., keyboard version of a harmonica), and 1966* seems to be year to beat in this regard, with the composer, Steve Reich,

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"To the Left (And On the One)"
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Silver Spring’s Blues Home: Adelphi Records

Zero to 180 isn’t above recycling old tricks, like posting a “vintage” high-resolution image as a shameless distraction ploy to stall for time, while it finishes pulling together over fifty years of history celebrating Gene Rosenthal and his Silver Spring-based independent music operation, Adelphi Records. The same December, 1979 issue

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"Diamond"
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Paul Beaver Played Clavinet, Too (plus Emil Richards Tribute)

Remember last month when I was hot on the trail of identifying the first recording of a clavinet, thanks to a tip from Jim Kimsey:  “Six O’Clock” by John Sebastian & The Lovin’ Spoonful?  Was John Sebastian‘s “electric harpsichord” (as he referred to the instrument), in fact, a clavinet?  Sebastian

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"Let Go of You Girl"
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The Left Banke: Early Clavinet ’67

A big breakthrough in Zero to 180’s lifelong quest to identify the “first clavinet recording“ — Michael Brown plays a Hohner clavinet on “Let Go of You Girl” from The Left Banke’s debut album, released February, 1967 (i.e., 2 months before John Sebastian’s “6 O’Clock“): “Let Go of You Girl” The

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"Six O'Clock"
Zeroto180

“Six O’Clock”: First Clavinet?

Jim Kimsey – much to my annoyance – would connect the dots first:  John Sebastian‘s opening clavinet chords tick-tick-ticking the seconds of the new dawning day on “6 O’Clock” just might be the earliest recording of a clavinet, having been released April, 1967: “Six O’Clock” The Lovin’ Spoonful (1967) I

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"Baby You Come Rollin' Cross My Mind"
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Peppermint Trolley: Clavinet ’67

It’s always a thrill when somebody who actually served on the front lines of music history reaches out to help fill in some of the historical gaps.  Just last month, Danny Faragher of the Peppermint Trolley Company chimed in on an earlier NRBQ piece that attempts to identify the earliest

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Bolan + Clavinet = Glam Funk

One thing you will not experience in a Barnes & Noble or Books-a-Million:  finding something inside the book you just bought, such as a newspaper clipping that pertains to the book in question (typical) or a press release from the publisher (also common).  More unusual would be to find cut-up

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Don Sebesky: Clavinet Pioneer

Last November’s tribute to the funkiest musical instrument known to humankind would seem to designate NRBQ‘s “Stomp” (recorded December, 1968) as among the earliest of recordings to feature the clavinet, even though by article’s end I reveal my trump card: “Attractive Girl” by The Termites — an album track on

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