I’ve been trawling through my local record stores stock of vinyl today, and it’s good to see it making a comeback. CD’s are all very well and compact, the sound quality is good, but you can’t beat the feely-touchy experience of picking up an LP and admiring its artwork. Well, most of the time. It has to be said that down the years, there have been some less than bad album covers that you just wouldn’t be seen dead with!
Take this cover for example, Freddie Gage, ‘All My Friends Are Dead’. Apparently, Mr Gage is a preacher who is a reformed drug addict. That puts into perspective why and how the album title came about, but it’s hardly something that you’d want in your collection, or would you? I should imagine the songs are not the most cheerful to listen to either. It also begs the question, was there a pre-curser to this album with the odd title of ‘All My Friends Are Ill’?
I Hate Men is a self explanatory album cover from Nancy Walker. It’s pretty obvious with the photo of her sticking pins in a voodoo doll, who I assume to be her husband or lover, or worse, every man in the world. The title of the tracks show exactly what she means too, ‘You Irritate Me So’, ‘I’m Gonna Wash That Man Right Out Of My Hair’, I didn’t read any further, I put it back on the shelf out of harms way.
I don’t think I’ve ever seen a cover as daft as this one. Music To Drill Oil Wells By. I bet all those guys stuck out in the middle of nowhere, drilling for oil have got this one on their ipod! This was supposedly released by the America company, General Electric jumping on the mood music band wagon at the time. There are also titles released by Remington, Music To Shave By! I must keep an eye out for that one, my beard is getting to long.
Geraldine and Nicky, what can I say about this? It’s called ‘Trees Talk Too’ which is ok by me, although I can’t say I’ve ever heard the oak tree outside my bedroom window ever say anything. What I find puzzling is the dummy, who I assume is Nicky. It all seems scary to me.
I didn’t even bother to pick this one up and have a look. I know what the sounds of a man alone are, believe me, I’ve been a man alone on many occasions and some of those noises are not for recording! It makes me wonder if anyone ever goes into a record store and asks for these titles? Even if there was the slightest possibility that I may want an album like this, taking it to the check out to pay is another thing altogether. You’d have to put it on your birthday or Christmas list and hope the person buying it for you won’t be as embarrassed as you if they decide to treat you! Which leads me to another question, your wife says, ‘Honey, what would you like for Christmas?’, ‘Oh, I’d love that album on vinyl by Dean Del Ray called The Sounds Of A Man Alone’. I’m sure there would be a long, long silence.
There are many bad album covers out there, thankfully there are far more good ones, but if you see or know of any, I’d love to hear about it. Honestly, I don’t collect this stuff, but I do find it fascinating that people take the time and trouble as well as a lot of expense to make these records that probably, or maybe never sell a single unit. Oh well, I’m off to listen to my latest purchase, ‘My Love For Cacti’ by Spike Wilkinsop.