Sunday, February 1, 2009

H.B. Barnum - Tia Juana \ Blue Mood

Don't be dissuaded if the name reminds you of PT Barnum and you're expecting some sort of circus music. Despite a less than eventful solo career, he was extremely successful as an arranger. To copy and paste from wikipedia, he has become most widely known as an arranger, for a very wide range of performers including Count Basie, O.C. Smith, Frank Sinatra, The Supremes, Aretha Franklin, Little Richard, Gladys Knight, Al Wilson, and the Pump Girls. This doesn't really sound like any of those, it's a straight up sax-fueled rock & roll instrumentals from (like most of these 45s) 1958.

Tia Juana (yeah, that's how it's spelled on the 45) is a blast. Raunchy, fast and crude. Tequila came out in the same year and I wouldn't be surprised if that had something to do with this track, but melody-wise it's completely its own song.
Tia Juana

Blue Mood isn't nearly as fun. Why do they always have to pair up a good, fast single with a slower number? MORE POWER PLEASE. I mean, it's a good song, but you just go ahead and listen, I don't really have any actual knowledge to spread here.
Blue Mood

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