Apollo-Themed 45 Releases

When I was in 11th grade, the unthinkable happened:  I received two Fs in the same semester!  One of the Fs was in Physics class, an absolute nightmare.  Thankfully, Paul Guinnessy of the American Institute of Physics has helped me deprogram from this hellish experience, thus empowering this historian-in-training to gather up the courage to take on new musical challenges — in this case, showcasing 45 single releases that celebrate the extraordinary accomplishments of the Apollo moon landing program:

45 Single Releases from 1969

NoteClick on the three images below to view in Hyperspace mode

“Audio highlights of the Apollo 11 Lunar Landing Mission”
Note: Narrated by Peter Thomas.Note
:  “Record comes with 2, 3 page wrap round sleeves and with a 4 page insert.  Pressed exclusively for News of the World readers.”

LINK to 45Cat catalog record

“Audio highlights of the Apollo 11 Lunar Landing Mission”
Narrated by Peter Thomas.

Link to 45Cat catalog record

Note:  7″ record at 33 1/3 rpm

LINK to 45Cat catalog record

Note:  Issued as a flexi-disc

LINK to 45Cat catalog record + streaming audio

Note:  “Swedish reporter interspersed with original NASA soundtrack of the first moon landing 1969”

LINK to 45Cat catalog record

Note:  Sole release from South Africa’s Rory Blackwell Sound.

LINK to 45Cat catalog record

Note:  Produced by DC’s WWDC — compliments of the Washington Senators; “Baseball Is More Than a Game” by The John Bahler Singers on the flip side.

LINK to 45Cat catalog record

Note:  In no way was MGM involved in staging the moon landing.

LINK to 45Cat catalog record + streaming audio

Note:  US picture sleeve = ‘Future ShockTypeface in Popular Music

Note:  French picture sleeve = song produced/written/arranged by Rick Shorter

LINK to Discogs catalog record + streaming audio

Note:  Band from Belgium.

LINK to 45Cat catalog record + streaming audio

Note:  Band from France.

LINK to Discogs catalog record + streaming audio

Note:  B-side of “Time of the Season” instrumental cover.

LINK to 45Cat catalog record + streaming audio

“Apollo 11” backed with “Moonwalk”

LINK to 45Cat catalog record + streaming audio

LINK to 45Cat catalog record + streaming audio

“Apollo 11” backed with “Mission Control”

LINK to 45Cat catalog record 

Note:  Moon Boys = Hippy Boys (i.e., future rhythm section for The Wailers)

LINK to 45Cat catalog record + streaming audio

LINK to 45Cat catalog record + streaming audio

LINK to 45Cat catalog record + streaming audio

Side One title:  Moments In Space History
Side Two title:  The Actual Voyage Of Apollo 11

LINK to 45Cat catalog record

LINK to 45Cat catalog record + streaming audio

Note:  Promo 45 only

LINK to 45Cat catalog record

LINK to 45Cat catalog record

Note:  Produced by CBS News with Walter Cronkite and Joel Heller.

LINK to 45Cat catalog record

Let’s Do It On the Moon” backed with “Moon Shot

LINK to 45Cat catalog record

Johnny Harris Orchestra — German picture sleeve

LINK to 45Cat catalog record

Johnny Harris Orchestra — French picture sleeve

LINK to 45Cat catalog record

Note:  Sole release by German band, Gordon Young and the California Brass.

LINK to 45Cat catalog record

German picture sleeve

LINK to 45Cat catalog record + streaming audio

Moon Mission” backed with “Astronautical”

LINK to 45Cat catalog record

The Cape Canaveral Construction Company — Spanish picture sleeve

LINK to 45Cat catalog record

The Cape Canaveral Construction Company — UK release

LINK to 45Cat catalog record + streaming audio

LINK to 45Cat catalog record + streaming audio

Featured song:

Moon Flight” by Vik Venus [break-in record]

Buddah issued this Japanese picture sleeve in August, 1969.

Honorable mention:  “Apollo 13” by French composer/bandleader Caravelli

LINK to Zero to 180’s  “Duke Ellington Meets Apollo 11” from 2017

Also worth noting:  “Man on the Moon” by saxophonist Ornette Coleman

France – 1969

Apollo = Canadian label (1969-1970)

Early reggae blank promo 45 by unknown harmony group!
Man Discovering the Moon” – 1969 – Jamaica

Dig Yaphet Kotto’s Scene

Yesterday’s piece about Gary Usher and his work on indie label, Vault, led to a discovery:  veteran stage and screen actor, Yaphet Kotto (Giardello in Homicide:  Life on the Street), once cut a record for a label, Chisa, that was distributed by Vault.

Yaphet Kotto AYaphet Kotto B

That’s right, as the Summer of Love gave way to Autumn in October of 1967, Kotto would release his lone 45:  “Have You Ever Seen the Blues” b/w “Have You Dug His Scene:

Could the song title be a wry reference to the singer’s main occupation?

The single, interestingly enough, would be reissued two years later for the same label, but this time distributed by Buddah Records.  According to Both Sides Now Publications, “Vault was being distributed by Autumn Records [where Sly Stone served as house producer] in San Francisco.  Just a few months later [in 1966], Autumn would run out of money, and Vault ended up with the entire Autumn catalog, possibly partly due to money owed.”

Mayf Nutter and The Chamber Brothers, among others would help Vault evolve from its original surf-rock roots.  But alas, Vault would only hold on for a couple more years before being sold to National Tape Distributors in August, 1969.

1969 reissue on Chisa, now distributed by Buddah

Yaphet Kotto AAThanks to IMDB, I would learn that Kotto is (1) the son of a Cameroonian crown prince; (2) has a Bay-Area hardcore punk band named for him; and (3) although he didn’t enjoy filming Midnight Run, the character of Agent Alonzo Mosley remains his favorite.

Cincinnati: Hard Rock Capital of the World?

I have an album of repackaged material from the Buddah label – a compilation entitled Heavy Mix – that is one of the odder releases from everyone’s favorite reissue label, Pickwick.   I love that the cover art has a cement theme:

Heavy Mix - Pickwick

Even more intriguing than the kitschy cover concept is the cryptic bit of text at the bottom of the label of “Heavy Mix” cement:Hard Rock Cement Co

First is an unattributed quote that proclaims in classic 1969-speak, “Gettting It Together,” followed by the name of a fictitious business – Hard Rock Cement Co. – that is allegedly located in Cincinnati, Ohio.  Not sure I follow, but okay, why not.   Now, it is true that The Sacred Mushroom came from Cincinnati, and it would be fair to call them “hard rock” – as this track from 1969 would clearly indicate.

Or perhaps Pickwick was making reference to the Ludlow Garage – Cincinnati’s closest approximation to Bill Graham’s famous Fillmore rock venues – whose proprietor in 1969 was Jim Tarbell, the one responsible for bringing in such “hard rock” acts as Neil Young, The Allman Brothers, and The Grateful Dead (and who would later become a Cincinnati City Council Member and hold the title – by mayoral proclamation – “Mr. Cincinnati” for life).

My favorite track on this motley mix is a surprisingly supple cover of the theme from the 1969 Oscar-winning film (Film; Director; Adapted Screenplay) – “Midnight Cowboy” – by John & Yoko’s one-time backing band, Elephant’s Memory:

Midnight Cowboy – Elephant’s Memory

[Pssst:  Click on the triangle above to hear “Midnight Cowboy” by Elephant’s Memory.]

There’s a nice little drum break starting around the 1:18 mark where the drumming alternates between speakers – consider using this track in the event you need to test the stereo directionality of your computer’s speakers.