Zero to 180 – Three Minute Magic

Discoveries of a Pop Music Archaeologist

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Category: Capitol Records

Hearts & Flowers: Country Rock

Back when I did the daily commute to Baltimore and my car radio had better reception, I used to enjoy a great community radio station that shares programming with its owner, WXPN, the Philadelphia radio station known for its “World Cafe” program, and yet operates out of a high school

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Lee Hazlewood vs. Don Nix: ’73

I discovered another musical coincidence recently — two albums with similarly-constructed titles released the same year by two hip and influential songwriter-producer-arrangers:  Poet, Fool or Bum by Lee Hazlewood -vs.- Hobos, Heroes & Street Corner Clowns by Don Nix, both from 1973. On his one and only album for Capitol,

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(Son of) Plays Guitar Like a Piano

I finally got around to learning how to convert VHS into DVD so that I could preserve a rare piece of Ameri-music-ana:  a live performance of “Tulsa Trot” by noted western swing outfit, Tex Williams and His Western Caravan, that offers a second startling peek at the unorthodox technique of

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The Surf Symphony’s Sole 7-Inch

Who are/were The Surf Symphony — and why just the one Capitol 45? “Night of the Lions”     The Surf Symphony     1969 Wait!  As it turns out, the joke’s on us:   This is a “supercharged” instrumental version of the song “Night of the Lions” from Mark Eric‘s A Midsummer’s Day

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Burton & Mooney’s Diesel Classic

I once played a sweet little instrumental by James Burton and Ralph Mooney on an all-truck-driving radio show, even though it’s not actually a “trucker tune” — and yet nobody called me out on it, because the song – “Corn Pickin‘ – fit like a glove.  Later when I “back-announced”

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Dune Buggy Racing Instrumentals

Interesting to see Kelly Gordon and (especially) Shorty Rogers attempt to muscle in on the hot rod scene with a late 60s concept album — contemporaneously titled Bug-In! — that pays musical tribute to the hot rod’s off-road counterpart, the dune buggy.  Gordon and Rogers splurge on a gatefold album

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"My Buddy"
Zeroto180

Alvino Rey: Steel Guitarist Bandleader

Thanks to Andy Volk of the Steel Guitar Forum for pointing me to Anne Miller’s fascinating profile of steel guitarist bandleader Alvino Rey for the Smithsonian in which we learn Rey, as a consultant for Gibson in the 1930s, helped develop the prototype for the ES-150 (made famous by Charlie

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“Move It on Over”: Banished to LP

I love how the staccato guitars emulate the sound of scratching fleas as a result of the song’s protagonist being banished to the doghouse in this retooling of Hank Williams: Rose Maddox     “Move It on Over”     1960 John Maddox & John Newman:  Guitar Henry Maddox:  Mandolin Allen Williams:  Bass Henry

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Hager Twins: Holding the World’s Hands

Jim and John Hager – like the Chaparral Brothers – were (1) identical twins, who (2) once recorded for Capitol.  Unlike the Chaparral Brothers, the Hager Twins (1) would perform on TV’s Hee Haw from 1969 to 1986, and (2) get close to a Top 40 Country hit in 1969

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The Chaparral Brothers: Shattered Men

At last weekend’s Arbutus Record Show, I picked up some interesting long-players, including one each by a pair of unsung Capitol country artists – both, as I discovered, identical twins:  The Chaparral Brothers and The Hagers. Paul Vorhaben + John Vorhaben = The Chaparral Brothers Indeed, I was happy to

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