Music blogs and Easy record labels

Music blogs are important. They keep rare music alive, build a community around those wonderful, forgotten disks. They introduce this music to a wider audience, make it accessible to those who can’t get a hand on the few, often pricy LPs. Seeing some really good blogs go was a pain and partially the motivation to open up my own blog. Music blogs are important. Equally so are the small record labels, that reissue countless albums that would have been otherwise forgotten by the market. If it weren’t for them, we wouldn’t have heard many albums, since they produce first reissues after many decades (Mindbender, Inner Space), sometimes they issue a soundtrack for the first time (Dirty Harry). If we want to keep it that way, we have to appreciate their work by buying their products as well. To sum this up, I want to celebrate with you music blog culture, as well as introduce you to the most important labels concerning my own music genre, those easy sounds. Easy Listening, Lounge, Jazz-Pop, Instrumental Pop, whichever of those closely related terms you want to use.

Apollo Sound
Some really nice example of a library music label actually putting their catalog on CDs for everyone to buy. Budapest Radio Orchestra, Polish Radio Orchestra ring a bell?

Beatedelic
Not a label, but sort of a collecting tank of really rare library records, mostly German.

Beat Records
THE Italian reissue label. They have tons of Italian soundtracks. Has a nice familial touch to it.

Diggler Records
German label, many cool sleazy listening albums.

Dutton Vocalion
UK-based label. Among other lost genres such as »Light music« they have library music compilations and other rare Easy Listening albums – only on CD, though.

Easy Tempo
I dunno whether this label actually has a web store, but it has supplied many Italian easy listening albums.

él Records
Dunno how to describe this best, just take a look – heh.

GDM Music
Another address for Italian OSTs.

Harkit Records
UK label, nice jazz-pop albums of the Sixties.

Intrada
They brought us many Mancini first-time publications, among other things.

Ishtar.it
They have a small, but interesting »Easy Series« worth checking out.

Promising Music
The heirs of the MPS catalogue, around 50 reissues. Still many to go!

Movie Grooves
A UK classic, closed down about two years ago, but now rebuilt by another guy running this great site.

Recur Records
Very small GEMM-based label. Interesting compilations of library music.

Screen Archives Entertainment
Huge institution to me, ministry-like, they are that important. They do a great job at reissuing soundtracks.

Sonorama
German label, mostly Easy Listening and other tasteful jazz music.

Thee Roundtable
Votary offshoot, very similar releases.

Trunk Records
Founded by Johnny Trunk, one of the most colourful figures in vinyl culture that I know. The website is full of British humour. If I’m not mistaken, he actually rediscovered Basil Kirchin and his music. Thank you.

Vadim Music
French label. Many library and easy and Bossa Nova reissues.

Votary
Australian. Reissued Sven Libaek’s legendary Inner Space album. They have dug up many treasures from down under.

Winchester Hospital Radio
Charity label, issuing really good UK library music compilation CDs. Unfortunately, most of them are out of print. You may find some of them used on Amazon or Ebay, though.

If you would like to share your own favourite sources for things easy, write them in the comments (at the top left of the article).

Introducing… The Four King Cousins (1968)

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Some nice and mellow Easy Pop, although it disappoints at the end for thorough listening. For a similar, but more inspired album I can only recommend the great Meet Triste Janero (1969), even available on CD and LP for little money (get it!). Still, I reckon it’s a sought-after album for some, so here you go.

06. I Wanna Be Free
10. Here, There, And Everywhere

Gimme Gimme Gimme

Christiane Legrand – Of Smiles And Tears / Le Brésil de Christiane Legrand (1971 / 1972)

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Now for an obscure and wonderful album. I can’t give you any definitive details about the original LPs. According to the scarce information available on the internet, the album was issued by Philips in 1971 as Of Smiles And Tears, then again by AMI Records in 1972 as Le Brésil de Christiane Legrand. The album got reissued in 2001 by Universal Music Japan, named after the Philips version. Brazilian standards, sung by the great Christiane Legrand and backed by lush radio orchestra sounds. Wholeheartedly recommended.

Some more info on the tracks:
http://jazzstation-oblogdearnaldodesouteiros.blogspot.com/2011/11/cd-of-day-christiane-legrand-of-smiles.html

Great stuff.

Ken Thorne – The Persuaders (1971) (Bootleg)

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The Persuaders – one of the greatest TV series of the Seventies, which got cancelled after its first season. It shared thus a fate with other great, and far too short TV series such as Police Squad!. At the same time, the tapes for The Persuaders have been lost – otherwise there surely would have been a reissue by now, most probably by the ‘Network’ label, which has issued soundtracks for other ITC productions. A couple of tracks from the OST have actually survived, and made their way onto a Network compilation titled ‘The Music of ITC’. Unfortunately, it’s highly doubtful whether we will ever have the pleasure of the full OST to The Persuaders. Thankfully, there has been somebody who assembled a bootleg soundtrack directly from the TV series. If I knew the author, I would name him here. This compilation doesn’t seem to be around in the Blogosphere anymore, so I put it up here.

Some examples from YouTube

Enjoy!