Alec Palao’s Grammy Nominated Stone Flower Liner Notes | Favorite Quotes

February 5th, 2015

“…and then the Woodstock film. Sly with his arms out, wearing a white fringe leather jacket, and right behind him a huge spotlight… the spotlight looked like the sun, and the jacket looked like wings of wax. And I said… My god, it is Icarus. He has flown too close to the sun.” – David Kapralik, Sly’s manager

“As far as I could see, there were people agreeing with me. That can make you feel pretty powerful.” – Sly on the Woodstock era

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“Decades before a computer algorithm was concocted to mimic human touch or inflection, Sly Stone was forcing his equipment to reflect the way he felt as a musician in a tangible fashion.”- Alec Palao

 “Sly’s music was, is, and shall forever remain upbeat. Cock an ear to the overriding lyrical thrust throughout this album. Epigrammatic as Sly always was, the tone is positive and observational, with instructive yet empowering use of the personal pronoun: somebody’s watching you, you’re the one (or conversely, I’m the one), and — most significantly – I’m just like you.” – Alex Palao

“By boiling rhythm down to its very nub, Sly pointed the way forward in a way neither he nor anyone else could have ever known at the time, and it was married to the inclusive philosophy that confirmed Sly Stone’s humility and humanity: he knows how we feel, he’s just like us.” - Alec Palao

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“‘Somebody’s Watching You’ was a playful yet cautionary item from the Family Stone repertoire, with a lyric that blended classic Sly Stone aphorism — ‘the nicer the nice, the higher the price’ – with amused references to the goldfish bowl environment in which Sly now found himself (the line ‘shady as a lady with a moustache,’ for instance refers to Kapralik).” – Alex Palao

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Sly  confessed to his bemused  host on the notorious June 1970 episode of The Dick Cavett Show that, “I look in the mirror when I write – the reason that I do that is… I can react spontaneously before I realize that I’m going along with what I’m doing.”

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“Sly speaks in opposites. He sees things that way. A lot of metaphors, which is not unusual for African-American writers, but I love the way he uses them. Sly is one of those folks who got it. When the world went on and decided it didn’t like nonconformity, he was being so real in many ways that he didn’t make that change. We went as a nation, a society, into a period where it was like the groupthink, and some folks like Sly were not gonna make that transition because they are individuals.” -Tiny Mouton of Little Sister

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The ladies of Little Sister

“The people that intimidated me the most were fourteen, fifteen-year-old white kids, that I saw playing music on the computer. I said, I gotta find out how to do this. Know what I mean? For them it’s normal, that’s just the way they are. Anything that can express your heart, it’s an instrument, man. In the future, they won’t even relate to a guitar, there’s gonna be something else that can do that. It’s not the name of it, it’s how you can get the feel over…” – Sly

“Yeah… shit. I’m not deep. I just look at shit the way it is, because we are — you’re the one, I’m the one, whatever you do is what you do. My songs, as far as I know, they ain’t songs yet until they totally say something to me… I an’t just gonna say nothing. I ain’t just gonna say ‘I love you, I love you’ or something. I ain’t gonna do that. I can’t do that.” – Sly

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“See in the studio, I’m a gangster. I mean, not a gangster… [but] I don’t care, I respect music in the studio, and to hell with everything else. In the studio I feel like I can say what I want to say. Because you know what, it’s not as easy as people think it is, see. You gotta stay focused. If there’s something in there, you better hold on to it. Hold on to that feeling.”- Sly

See part two of the Cavett interview below:

We’re Goin’ to the Grammys!

February 3rd, 2015

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We are humbled that two Light In The Attic releases have been nominated for Grammy awards this year. There’s A Dream I’ve Been Saving: Lee Hazlewood Industries 1966 – 1971 CD box set (deluxe version) has been nominated for Best Historical Album and I’m Just Like You: Sly’s Stone Flower 1969-70 has been nominated for Best Album Notes by the 57th Grammy Awards. We’ll be attending the event this Sunday, February 8th and all we really want is a solid ‘Hi, mom!’ moment and some champagne clinks.

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There’s a Dream I’ve Been Saving
our most expansive and lavishly packaged project to date, was seven years in the making. The set commemorates the legacy of Lee Hazlewood Industries and its stable full of brilliant artists. Some of these artists we’ve even put out individually, including Honey Ltd. and Arthur. The deluxe box set includes a hard cover book, a DVD of Cowboy In Sweden, 4 CDs and 3 DVDs worth of tunes, a flexi disc of Lee ‘studio chatter,’ a reproduction of Lee’s original LHI business card, archive photos and more.

The mastermind behind the LHI box is Hunter Lea, who co-produced the set with Matt Sullivan and Patrick McCarthy (LITA project manager). Hunter is a Lee Hazlewood historian and a musician in his own right. There would be no LHI series without him.

One of the most unique and fun features of the deluxe edition is the Hazlewood ‘studio chatter’ flexi disc. “When we started to listen to playback of the tapes, there were so many amazing Lee moments,” Patrick remembers. One such moment included Lee giving the direction, ‘Play it like a cowboy song!’ Studio chatter like this is a rare glimpse of how these people really acted in every day interactions. You hear Lee being charming, riffing with people and teasing. “There were hours and hours of tape to go through and as we listened to transfers, we marked great lines. This stuff was too good not to share,” says Patrick. 

 

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Lee Hazlewood and Suzi Jane Hokom Photo Courtesy of Mark Pickerel

 

All of these components render a portrait of Mr. Hazlewood as a fiercely talented, brutally independent, ornery, and visionary svengali/super-producer/songwriter who set a new standard for creative freedom within the music industry. His is a life that should be studied and that was our aim with this box set.

Hear a little bit of that ol’ Lee chatter and find out more about the release in the following video:

 

 

 

Photo by Stephen Paley.

Photo by Stephen Paley.

Sly Stone ran the influential yet short-lived Stone Flower record label from 1969-1971. The sound Stone formulated while working on Stone Flower’s output would shape the next phase in his own career as a recording artist: it was here he began experimenting with the brand new Maestro Rhythm King drum machine. In conjunction with languid, effected organ and guitar sounds and a distinctly lo-fi soundscape, Sly’s productions for Stone Flower would inform the basis of his masterwork There’s A Riot Goin’ On. The Grammy nominated liner notes for which this album is nominated are by the immensely talented, Alec Palao, who also acted as producer and compiler.

 

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Photo by David Black. Rhythm King courtesy of Steve Frothingham.

 

2015′s off to a superb start for Sly, as he recently won a major court case against his former manager for millions in unpaid royalties. Cha-ching, baby! This is an epic and well-deserved win for Sly and sets a great precedent for all artists. It’s nice to see Sly finally getting what’s rightfully his. Fingers crossed for a Grammy win to add to a banner year for the man!

Sly, circa 2014. Photo by David Black.

Sly, 2014. Photo by David Black.


I Love Lizzy Art Contest!

February 2nd, 2015

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Because it’s almost Valentine’s Day and because this year our valentine is Thin Lizzy, we want to see what cool art y’all have up your sleeves. Please send in any original art that shows your love for Thin Lizzy for a chance to win some awesome Lizzy loot! All submitted art will be added to a facebook album on Monday Feb 9th. The artist with the most ‘likes’ in the FB album by Valentine’s Day wins!

And because we love you, the prizes are as follows:

  • 3rd place: Choice of 1 Lizzy LP + Thin Lizzy poster
  • 2nd Place: Choice of 2 Lizzy LPs + Thin Lizzy poster
  • 1st Place: All 3 Lizzy LPs + Poster

The top three artists & their art pieces will be announced on our blog and posted on our Instagram, Twitter, etc., for all to marvel at.

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The Rules:

  • Please email your art to social@lightintheattic.net by Sunday Feb. 8th (8pm PST) with I LOVE LIZZY in the subject. Include your name as you would like to be credited, and your IG or portfolio site if you want us to link it.
  • All entries will be posted to a facebook album on Monday Feb 9th (by 10am PST).
  • Voting will take place the week leading up to Valentine’s Day– Feb 9th to Feb 13th (until 8pm PST).
  • Feb 14th – Winners will be announced!

NOTE: You must LIKE Light In The Attic’s facebook page to qualify. Limit one entry per person.

Yee-haw!

Free Basin’ Friday | Arthur’s ‘Dreams & Images’!

January 30th, 2015

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For this week’s Free Basin’ Friday giveaway, we want to hear your dreamiest dream. The dreamiest of all wins a Valentine Grey wax copy of Arthur’s Dreams & Images. Comment on this post before next Friday with your weirdest, wonderfullest dream to date for a chance to win! Thanks for playin’!

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Meet Your Maker: A Trip to Stoughton Printing Co.

January 29th, 2015

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Photo courtesy of Stoughton Printing Co.

Light In The Attic products are handmade. Each LITA LP that you hold in your hands has been touched by at least three other sets of hands. At the Stoughton Printing Co. open house last week, we got to shake a few of those hands, from the founders and project managers to the employees who operate the press and glue art to cardboard. Stoughton makes almost all of the tip-on jackets for our LPs, CDs, and cassettes and we think they do a damn fine job.IMG_8957

The Stoughton office feels like a mini Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, only instead of Patti Smith and Buddy Guy, the LP jackets themselves are the main attraction. When you walk in, there’s a wall of  LP covers printed at Stoughton (can you spot the LITA titles?). And all around the office are displays organized by artist– a display of every Led Zeppelin or Neil Young product printed at Stoughton, for example.

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We also got to meet the good people of Spicers Paper, who provide the high-quality paper that Stoughton prints on. Spicers had two whole tables set up with samples of every kind of paper you could imagine, including ‘the Rolls Royce’ of paper– McCoy. Who knew? “This ain’t Dunder Mifflin,” I joked to the affable Spicers rep, who laughed uncomfortbaly and replied, “Well, we don’t usually go there… but yeah. Although we do also sell copy paper, if that’s what you’re looking for. ” Did I just commit a paper faux pas?

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Rob, one of the head project managers at Stoughton, has a collection of records in his office that would make even the most jaded collector green with envy. A true vinyl head, Rob recalled a recent climb he did on Mt. Whitney, during which he listened to Lee Hazlewood for a solid eight hours. Can you imagine hearing ‘Trouble is a Lonesome Town‘ with a view of the snow-capped Sierra Nevadas at 14,000ft?

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One of Stoughton’s room-sized printing presses.

When we’re browsing through the stacks at a record store and we see the gnarly cover of some unholy metal album, we rarely think of the printing press employee who had to see that ghastly image a thousand times in a day. It’s someone’s job to place the album art by hand onto the glued cardboard with perfect precision. And apparently some of these employees at Stoughton have been “bothered” by past album art. “They talk about it…” said our tour guide. Think of that man or woman the next time you purchase some blood-soaked horror soundtrack. *Cough* One Way Static *cough.* These people are the real MVPs!

Rock Out With Thin Lizzy!!

January 28th, 2015

Hey Buffalo Gal,
Hey Baby Face,
Hey Teddy Boy,

Do you love Lizzy?

Hard and heavy, good-vibes Irish rocker lads Thin Lizzy hold good-time memories for so many of us. This is why we are so pleased to announce the official vinyl reissues of Thin Lizzy’s second and third albums, Shades Of A Blue Orphanage and Vagabonds Of The Western World.

Originally released in 1972, Shades Of A Blue Orphanage ranges from uninhibited and fuzzy to soft and tender. It’s an early psych-folk rendering of this sonic force that would come to rule the jukebox. Vagabonds Of The Western World (1973) is a confident and somewhat dangerous mix of blues, folk, psych, and Celtic music.

Two LP Bundle

3 LP bundle

These two new albums are available for preorder today as either single LPs, a two-LP bundle, or a three-LP bundle along with the first eponymous Lizzy album we reissued in 2012. Each LP comes with deluxe gatefold “Tip-On” jackets, 180-gram vinyl, book-deep liner notes, and rare archive photos.

Whenever a Thin Lizzy song comes on, all of us here at LITA can’t help but smile big Christmas morning smiles. We love Lizzy. And now you can bring the boys home in their Sunday best, and sing along, Molly-o.

Welcome to the family, MONDO!

January 27th, 2015

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You’re eating your morning cereal when you realize that from behind the cereal box you’re being watched. Blank, glowing eyes stare out of an iron visage. You raise your head, milk dripping from the forgotten spoon in your hand, and see that this iron man is… smiling.

Who left the Iron Giant action figure in the kitchen??

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You’re part of an elite police squad, standing in the stairwell of a tenement building in Indonesia in the middle of a violent raid, when a vicious crime boss, whose headquarters is on the upper floors, shuts off all the lights. In the pitch black darkness, he announces over the PA system that the first tenants to kill the police in the stairwell will be granted permanent free residency. All is silent.

You’re back in your living room. Time to switch to the b-side of The Raid soundtrack. 

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These are the kind of super badass, nerd-your-heart-out, kid-in-a-candy-shop experiences you can fill your every day life with thanks to Mondo, the newest addition to the Light In The Attic distribution family.

An extremely established vinyl movie soundtrack, screen printed poster, VHS re-issue, toy and apparel label from Austin, Mondo has recently joined forces with beloved UK horror soundtrack label Death Waltz Recording Co. The two labels remain autonomous, but Death Waltz now operates under the Mondo banner. Together they are killing the soundtrack game. Their first two drool-worthy joint releases were the original Indonesian score to action film The Raid and a 7” of Frankie Vinci’s songs from the slasher film Sleepaway Camp.

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‘Angela’s Theme’ and other songs by Frankie Vinci from Sleepaway Camp

On their site, Mondo says, “It’s our passion to introduce fellow enthusiasts to an eclectic mix of products and experiences from the coolest properties, brands and creators. We bring like-minded people together to celebrate, discuss and discover art and music curated just for them. Mondo fans aren’t interested in the obvious, they want to be impressed – it’s our job to make that happen.”

Never a dull moment with MONDO in the house.

Stay tuned!

Michael Chapman – “Window” | Pre-order!

January 14th, 2015

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Every artist has a piece of work that niggles them–something that they wish they could redo, given the chance. It’s why Paul McCartney once reproduced Let It Be and why Kate Bush re-recorded Wuthering Heights for her best-of album. For the prolificMichael Chapman, that album is Window, the missing link in our series of Chapman’s early albums. Window sits just after the previously released Fully Qualified Survivor and Rainmaker, right before Wrecked Again.

When Chapman recorded the album in 1970, while signed to the hip Harvest label (home to Kevin Ayers and Syd Barrett, among others), the singer-songwriter and prodigious guitarist was in transition from his folkier origins to his heavier future and heading for a whole mess of trouble. Immediately after recording finished, Michael took the band back out on the road with the understanding that as soon as he got back, he’d put the final acoustic guitar tracks down to replace what he’s always said were only guide tracks. Unfortunately, Harvest’s parent label decided the album was finished and pressed it up anyway. And Chapman, as a result, hates it.

Indeed, 34 years later he even set out to right the wrong, re-recording parts of the LP and noting it was a strange experience listening to “dead people on the between-track studio chatter” (Dudgeon, engineer Robin Cable, and drummer Richie Dharma have all since passed).

As part of our revival of Chapman’s early career, however, the album is presented as was originally released, with Michael’s blessing and albeit with two CD-only bonus tracks. Andru [Chapman] notes, “Warts and all, it is an important part of the Michael Chapman: The Early Years story.” Michael has been less diplomatic in talking about the album. “It is a piece of my history for those interested in that, even though I think it sounds like a piece of crap,” he says.

We’re loathe to disagree with him, but, well, why don’t you take a listen and decide for yourselves?

Pre-order now!

The Supreme Jubilees – It’ll All Be Over | Pre-order!

January 7th, 2015

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If God had a disco, the DJ would be playing California gospel-soul group The Supreme Jubilees. A band of brothers and cousins, the group was founded from two families: brothers Joe and Dave Kingsby plus Dave’s son David Kingsby Jr., and keyboardist Leonard Sanders plus his brothers Phillips (drummer), Tim (bassist), and Melvin (tenor). The Sanders clan grew up singing together in the Witness of Jesus Christ church in Fresno, CA where dad Marion was pastor. Guitarist Larry Price-who belonged to neither family-completed the line-up that recorded the group’s first-and prophetically only-album, It’ll All Be Over.

Released in 1980 on the group’s own S&K (Sanders & Kingsby) label, It’ll All Be Over pinpoints a fatalistic mood exemplified by the title, its lyrics drawn from the Old Testament, its sound from the church by way of the disco, and its feel captured by the album cover-a low, orange sun setting over the Pacific Ocean.

Making the album was not easy. Sessions began in Trac Record Co., a country and western studio in Fresno, CA where the engineer was so put out by the group’s requests for heavier bass in the mix, he stopped the session and kicked them out. They left with four songs-one side of the album-and the record was completed at Sierra Recording Studio in Visalia, CA. Leonard Sanders reported having a spiritual encounter in his sleep while in Visalia; the next day he recorded his part of the album’s title track in a single take.

After the LP was pressed, the group took their music on tour but soon became disillusioned by the hardship of the road. Eventually, a copy of the album that sold to a fan on that tour made its way to a San Antonio record store where it was discovered nearly three decades later by collector David Haffner (Friends of Sound). He managed to track down the Kingsby-Sanders clan at a Fourth Of July barbeque in Fresno in 2004, and he eventually introduced the group to us here at Light In The Attic. This is the first time the album has been restored, remastered, and made available to the public.

Pre-order now!

 

Free Basin’ Friday | Lewis – L’Amour Test Pressing!

December 19th, 2014

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Happy Friday! Christmas and the new year is right around the corner, so this will be our last Free Basin’ Friday of 2014!  Since we’re taking a hiatus until the year, we’re offering up a very special prize this week, a rare edition Lewis – L’Amour test pressing!

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All you have to do to win is tell us your New Years resolution. The best/funniest resolution wins! Leave your comment below, and be sure to include your name and email address (kept private). A winner will be chosen next Friday and notified via email.