Legacy Recordings Announce Vinyl LP Reissue Rollout For Fall

posted September 17, 2008

Megabytes, gigabytes, terabytes, .wav files. .mp3's, iPods, flash drives - all well and good, but does anything compare to the warm ambience of listening to your favorite 12-inch vinyl 33 1/3 rpm platter spinning on a smooth turntable, with diamond stylus, ceramic cartridge, and lightweight tone-arm doing their thing? For audiophiles and headbangers and everyone in between - vinyl rules.

Whether your hardware of choice is a new $33,000 Naim CD555 turntable or that vintage KLH model 24 console that's been kept in working order all these years, the playback rewards of the LP experience are undeniable. CDs soldier on in their third decade, but (as reported by Associated Press on June 10th) "according to the Recording Industry Association of America, manufacturers' shipments of LPs jumped more than 36 percent from 2006 to 2007, to more than 1.3 million."

In September 2008, the LP marketplace will welcome one dozen new slabs of Columbia, Epic, and RCA Victor polyvinyl chloride, joining their RIAA gold, platinum and multi-platinum CD counterparts as new catalog staples. The first six LPs will roll out on September 16th:

  • MINGUS AH UM by CHARLES MINGUS (1959), a cornerstone of his discography, his first Columbia LP introducing "Better Get It in Yo' Soul," and tributes to Lester Young ("Goodbye Pork Pie Hat"), Ellington ("Open Letter to Duke"), Charlie Parker ("Bird Calls"), "Jelly Roll" (Morton), and more, in a 180 gram audiophile pressing
  • AGENTS OF FORTUNE by BLUE ÖYSTER CULT (1976), their break­through fourth album, with the first BÖC hit single, "(Don't Fear) The Reaper," ranked #397 on Rolling Stone's 500 Greatest Songs of All Time
  • BOSTON (1976), the phenomenal 17-million selling biggest debut album in history, with "More Than a Feeling," "Long Time," and "Peace of Mind," in a 180 gram audiophile pressing
  • BRITISH STEEL by JUDAS PRIEST (1980), their eighth LP but first RIAA gold album in the US, the one that started it all for them, with "Living After Midnight" and "Breaking the Law"
  • BERLIN by LOU REED (1973), his raw exposé of abuse and addiction, ranked #344 on Rolling Stone's 500 Greatest Albums of All Time, revived on-tour last year, filmed by Julian Schnabel for theatrical and DVD release
  • 16 BIGGEST HITS by JOHNNY CASH, first compiled for CD and released in 1999, comprised entirely of signature tracks recorded on Sun and Columbia vinyl between 1956 and 1979, and now coming back full circle to vinyl again.

Two weeks later on September 30th, Legacy will roll out an additional six titles:

  • ONE NIGHT STAND / SAM COOKE LIVE AT THE HARLEM SQUARE CLUB (1985), 39 minutes of orgasmic soul recorded January 1963, at a North Miami nightclub with King Curtis onboard, in a 180 gram audiophile pressing
  • GRATITUDE by EARTH, WIND & FIRE (1975), an RIAA double-platinum double-LP #1 R&B/#1 pop smash, the only live album of their 18 years at Columbia, with "Sing a Song" and "Can't Hide Love"
  • BLOWS AGAINST THE EMPIRE by PAUL KANTNER & JEFFERSON STARSHIP (1970), the sci-fi Hugo Award-nominated concept album recorded with members of Jefferson Airplane, Grateful Dead, and Quicksilver, Graham Nash, David Crosby, and more
  • RED HEADED STRANGER by WILLIE NELSON (1975), his Grammy Hall Of Fame debut on Columbia, ranked #184 on Rolling Stone's 500 Greatest Albums of All Time, with the Grammy Award-winning "Blue Eyes Crying in the Rain," ranked #302 on Rolling Stone's 500 Greatest Songs of All Time
  • REMIXED & REIMAGINED by NINA SIMONE (2006), 13 well-chosen numbers from her RCA years (1967-1973) as interpreted for a new club generation by the greatest DJs and remixers from around the world
  • TRIO OF DOOM by JOHN McLAUGHLIN, JACO PASTORIUS, and TONY WILLIAMS (2007), their 25-minute set at 1979's Havana Jam, and 15 added minutes recorded at a NY studio five days later, archived for nearly three decades until 2007 CD release, now in a 180 gram audiophile pressing.

October 14 releases:

  • RIDDLE BOX by INSANE CLOWN POSSE (1995), a CD making the transition to vinyl as a double-LP, exploring the violent, graphic, dangerous world of Detroit's Violent J and Shaggy 2 Dope, on their early third album
  • ELVIS PRESLEY (1956), his one-and-only 12-song first LP, with "Tryin' to Get to You" and "Blue Moon," and those earth-shaking covers of "Blue Suede Shoes," "I Got a Woman," "Tutti Frutti," and "Money Honey"
  • SURFING WITH THE ALIEN by JOE SATRIANI (1987), a CD making the transition to vinyl, the hard rock guitar virtuoso's second solo album, with that amazing Silver Surfer cover art and his explosive "Satch Boogie"
  • LEGALIZE IT by PETER TOSH (1976), his first solo album after a decade with Bob Marley & the Wailers, including the career staples "Burial," "Ketchy Shuby," "Brand New Second Hand," and of course "Legalize It"
  • HEAVY WEATHER by WEATHER REPORT (1977), with "Birdland," it was the biggest LP (RIAA platinum, #30 in Billboard) for the band that starred Joe Zawinul, Wayne Shorter, Jaco Pastorius, Alex Acuña and Manolo Badrena, now on a 180 gram audiophile pressing.

October 28 releases:

  • CHILD IS FATHER TO THE MAN by BLOOD SWEAT & TEARS (1968), Al Kooper's all-time groundbreaking classic, with "I Love You More Than You'll Ever Know," "I Can't Quit Her," "Just One Smile," "Morning Glory," and more, on a 180 gram audiophile pressing
  • LIVE AT BUDOKAN by CHEAP TRICK (1979), the historic concert that lanched the import rock LP revolution, with "I Want You To Want Me" and "Ain't That a Shame," on a 180 gram audiophile pressing
  • HEADHUNTERS by HERBIE HANCOCK (1973), introducing the first Headhunters band lineup, a four-song must-have with "Watermelon Man," "Chameleon," "Sly," and "Vein Melter," on a 180 gram audiophile pressing
  • REMIXED & REIMAGINED by BILLIE HOLIDAY (2007), a CD making the transition to vinyl, with 14 songs from her early Columbia and OKeh 78 rpm treasures (1935-41), and 1958's Lady In Satin LP
  • SOCIAL DISTORTION (1990), a CD making the transition to vinyl, the Epic debut of the legendary SoCal cowpunk hardcore band led by Mike Ness, with "Story Of My Life" and their cover of Johnny Cash's "Ring Of Fire"
  • PASSION & WARFARE by STEVE VAI (1990), a CD making the transition to vinyl, the hard rock guitar virtuoso's second solo album, an RIAA gold title that is considered his finest career work.

"From college dorm rooms to high school sleepovers, an all-but-extinct music medium has been showing up lately," observed Time magazine last January, in an article titled Vinyl Gets Its Groove Back. "Vinyl records, especially the full-length LPs that helped define the golden era of rock in the 1960s and '70s, are suddenly cool again... Like the comeback of Puma sneakers or vintage T shirts, vinyl's resurgence has benefited from its retro-rock aura. Many young listeners discovered LPs after they rifled through their parents' collections looking for oldies and found that they liked the warmer sound quality of records, the more elaborate album covers and liner notes that come with them, and the experience of putting one on and sharing it with friends, as opposed to plugging in some earbuds and listening alone."