My strongest Xmas time memory takes me back over 40 years – searching my home before Xmas trying to find out if my Dad had bought me the George Harrison “All Things Must Pass” 3LP boxed set. He had; it was in a plain brown paper bag in his bottom dresser drawer. It probably cost between $7 – $10, a lot of money in 1970 – way beyond my means, which were usually restricted to a single $2.98 LP on a payday). And the George Harrison set is an amazing album, isn’t it? Impressive packaging: custom labels, inner-sleeves…”Apple Jam”, anyone?
And another George Harrison Xmas memory: The “Bangla Desh” 3LP boxed set! I am positive the LP came before the opportunity to go to a theatre and see the film, for me anyway. Leon Russell!!
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I learned to two-finger type when I was about 12 years old – on a Smith-Corona portable typewriter. I mostly typed up label discographies (Atco, Elektra etc.) and index cards, for my “collection”. Many years later, I went to work at the record distributor; one of my many jobs there in the early 80’s was to add titles to and order a “print” of the LP order book that was sent out to stores. You went to the desk, turned the machine on, dialed the phone (‘cause the mainframe was over in Burbank), placed the phone on the cradle – and eventually the computer screen would light up!
My first computer was likely a 286 clone – and I worked in PCFile (later PCFile 5), the forerunner of Excel. Kicking and screaming, I eventually got a then-impressive 486 clone, which was mightily expensive. Somewhere along the line, I typed up a roughly 10,000 title list of Joe Castle’s CD collection, circa late 90’s. I got on-line about ’96 (Jim Kane), eBay (Joe Castle) since ’99, Blogger (Warren Bowman) about ’02, Flickr (Cathy Cole) about ’06, on and off of Facebook (“nobody”); WordPress (Jim Donato) fun since last year…
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I think the first time I went to Hollywood Blvd. was about 1965 – my parents took us to Grauman’s Chinese Theatre to see the James Bond film “Thunderball” – I remember not comprehending the idea of an “Intermission”! We (my family) had a dinner at a place called “Coffee Dan’s”. Later on (1967), I asked my brother where he bought British import records: Lewin’s Record Paradise on Hollywood Blvd., near Wilcox. The first record I got there was the British mono LP of “Are You Experienced?” Track Record UK, by The Jimi Hendrix Experience ($4.98, 3 songs not on the US LP & a groovy cover!); also snagged a Rolling Stones “Come On” b/w “I Want To Be Loved” British Decca 45 ($1.75). 464-8088 was that store’s phone number. Walking up and down Hollywood Blvd., there were tons of record stores! Vogue, Pacific Discount, Phil Harris Record Shop, Psychedelic Supermarket (on Las Palmas) and several more that I never knew the name of.