Previous releases on our alternate-reality label, Numbero, have paid tribute to the compilations of our fore bearers. With WTNG: Solid Bronze we honored the regional radio contests of yore. Eccentric Breaks and Beats was a nod to the Ultimate original. South Side Story acknowledged lowrider compilations a la East Side Story, and Tin Mine Soul Supply rendered a less precious Gold Mine Soul Supply. With Lows in the Mid Sixties, we take the Highs In The Mid ‘Sixties formula and apply it to the cavernous archives of Cavern Sound, Independence, Missouri. Originally assembled in the ’80s by Bomp! Records and Later Archive International Productions (AIP), The Highs If The Mid Sixties celebrates the same generation of garage rockers as Lows. Here’s some of the great cover art that was boiled down into our Kosmic City tribute. Enjoy while listening to this standout track which you can either stream or download below.
Record Store Day is less than a week away, and boxes full of Numero items are flying across the planet by land, air, and sea. Several shops and distributors are making serious grabs for our limited edition Record Store Day item du jour, WTNG: Solid Bronze. Our tribute to the radio station compilations of yore features 11 unique tunes about taking it easy, love crashing around people, magic lamps, and golden ponies. One song even features “Mike McDonald” on keyboards, lending it serious yacht credibility. Shuffled into many (but not all) orders are translucent blue vinyl and opaque pink vinyl (about 300 of each). When you divide this by the number of stores and subscribers we’re satisfying, there’s no telling which version anyone will get, and there is no outward indication what type of vinyl awaits inside. The pink could be described as Barbie Corvette and the blue could be compared to the Great Lake that graces the album’s facade. But it’s not the color of the grooves that matters, it’s what’s inside. Even those who get block-out-the-sun black will still be listening to one remarkable album clear on through to Labor Day and beyond. Check out the variations below, and the dust-jacket collage that accompanies.
WTNG CDs are moving at high speeds to music shops world wide for Record Store Day. WTNG 89.9 is a tribute to the micro-genre of radio station compilations, wherein several hundred regional acts would “battle” for a coveted spot on their hometown station’s sampler. “Already the careers of the Jon Butcher Axis (Polydor), John Bongiovi [sic] (Polydor), Twister Sister (Atlantic), and 1981’s national winners, the Stompers (Boardwalk) have exploded since participation in the Search for the Superstars of the ’80s” is the takeaway line from the Miller Highlife Rock to Riches compilation. Back at fictional frequency 89.9, we deliver not only 11 great rock-and-soul tracks, but a survey of facades–a cross section of compilations–that served as inspiration for this monstrosity. A fold-out lyric sheet and poster reveals the diverse cast of musicians involved. A disproportionate amount of time, energy, and resources went into making this album, which is hilarious because we’re only making a couple thousand and have no plans to repress. This comes as bad news for anyone who snoozes, thereby forfeiting the right to listen to Winston-Salem, NC’s Roach Band at their leisure. Coincidentally the only way to listen to WTNG is at your leisure.
While fielding comparisons to Stevie Wonder and Steely Dan, J. Michael Henderson eloquently confessed, “We were all running on the same treadmill back then.” A native of Muncie, Indiana, Henderson recorded two substantial albums at 700 West in “nearby” New Palestine in the late ’70s (actually closer to Indianapolis). Henderson, who has since moved to Southern California, maintains one of the most comprehensive websites of anyone on the Numero roster. Finding it hard to pick just one photo out of the dozens provided, we decided a J. Michael Henderson animated .Gif was the best way to resolve such a matter.
“Nite People,” the title track from his second full-length, is a jovial ode to nocturnal types, and will be included in our approaching Record-Store Day release, WTNG. Chicago residents and commuters are encouraged to attend the Numero Pop-Up Store at 1035 North Western Avenue (aka The Empty Bottle) on April 21st, where some of the Midwest’s finest wheelers and dealers will be selling new and used vinyl, executing DJ sets, and generally acting a fool because they’ve been awake since 5 am, all to be broadcasted LIVE on 89.9-FM. We’ll have a Numero 45 that you can only purchase on site, and it’s just going to be great. “Nite People” WILL be played, and that is a guarantee.
“I’d Like to Touch a Star” was one of the first tracks to fall for our record-store day compilation. With it’s inspirational refrain and chart-seeking production, it served as a guiding light for this project, as other succinct contenders were vetted for inclusion.
The Leder Brothers Department Store of Eastern North Carolina predates our combo by a near half-century. By the time Sheldon and Steven Leder had cut “I’d Like to Touch a Star” at Mega Sound Studios in nearby Bailey, father and uncle team Leon and Morris Leder had been selling everything from suits to work boots under the same name for decades, starting in 1934. Having fled Eastern Europe a decade earlier, the Leder Brothers were hardly observers of segregation, and everyone from the mayor to Lee Fields were considered valued customers.
Although we include the Mega Sound mix here and on the compilation, an additional mix was produced by the hit makers at Criteria Studios in Miami. In a March Madness-style upset, the Mega mix takes the title, and shimmers with newly realized fidelity, having been re-mastered directly from tape.
WTNG, Numero’s single-LP homage to the regional radio station comps of yore, features 11 unique acts from across North America. With so many new faces (responsible for so many new flavors), we thought we should introduce some of the folks who will be making their Numero debut via our Record Store Day release (4/21).
Greenflow was an agile soul group that delivered the lion’s share of their performances on military bases from the Aleutian Islands to Wuerzburg, Germany, along with several strategic points in between. Bandleader A.J. Greene was an ex-marine who far preferred entertaining personnel to active duty. “After carrying a gun, it was nice to carry a trombone,” he recently remarked from his home in Pasadena, California. Although Greenflow’s roster fluctuated over the years, prominent on this recording was his younger sister Eleanora, whose previous gig with the Superbs yielded a few significant titles on Dore Records in the mid-1960s.
Greenflow’s contribution to WTNG, “I Got’Cha,” is one of the compilation’s catchiest offerings; the chorus is sung no fewer than a dozen times a day at Numero Headquarters. We feel Greenflow makes a fine addition to the WTNG roster, and we hope you will let their infectious melodies nest inside your brain like they’ve done in ours.
P.S. “I Got’Cha!”