Crossfire's Birmingham Sunday, Hollywood Persuaders, Surf/Pop Box Sets Build on Success of Paul Buff/Frank Zappa "Highlights" Set
October 20, 2012 - New York - Hot on the heels of the 5-CD set "Paul Buff Presents Highlights from the Pal and Original Sound Studio Archives," Crossfire Publications will release three multiple-disc sets drawn from Paul Buff's master collection. More than 100 tracks are making their official CD debuts. "Prevalent Visionaries: The History of Birmingham Sunday" is Crossfire's definitive two-CD, 46-track set of the Nevada-based group with more than two dozen previously unissued demos, alternate mixes and reunion recordings. The 90-track, three-CD "World Of Paul Buff" collections "Breaktime For Surf" (covering 1959-1964) and The Hollywood Persuaders' "Drums-A-Go-Go" (spanning 1963-1970) have five previously unreleased tracks each. Both triple-disc sets are lavishly packaged in DVD-sized cases with full color, 24-page illustrated booklets.
Birmingham Sunday was formed in Carson City, Nevada in 1966. After signing to Bill Holmes' All-American label in 1968, the group recorded their debut album "A Message From Birmingham Sunday" at Original Sound with Paul Buff engineering and playing a Mellotron-like Chamberlin throughout. The album was accompanied by the single "Prevalent Visionaries"/ "Egocentric Solitude," a Top 10 radio favorite on Nevada and California radio stations. Original albums (with only 10-20 in existence) have recently sold for more than $1,200, and its full inclusion as part of Crossfire's set emphasizes its solid value to collectors. Birmingham Sunday's recently recorded second album, "It Is What It Was," will also be part of this essential set.
Multi-instrumentalist Paul Buff, owner of Pal Recording Studio in Cucamonga, California from 1957-1964, created Pal in December 1957 with a simple two-track Viking recorder. The demand for stereo recording led Buff to create a homemade, five-track recording studio when the industry recording standard was still mono or two-track stereo. Buff's creativity with his equipment proved that the studio was yet another musical instrument in the recording process. Musicians of all backgrounds and styles took advantage of the creative environment at Pal to create career-defining, high quality master recordings.
While still at Pal, Paul Buff started working with legendary deejay Art Laboe, owner of Original Sound Records. Laboe asked Buff to create a new recording studio for Original Sound, and in 1964, Paul unveiled his ten-track recording and mixing console. Paul Buff was already in place as Original Sound's studio engineer when he sold Pal Recording Studio to Frank Zappa on August 1, 1964, and Buff engineered all recordings by Original Sound clients until 1972.
Paul Buff's Pal and Original Sound output was credited to his own name as well as many other artists. Early tracks recorded with guitarists Ronnie Williams and Frank Zappa were released as by The Masters, while cuts with Dave Aerni were credited to The Bongo Teens or The Rotations. One-man-band recordings issued as The Hollywood Persuaders include the well known "Tijuana" and "Drums A-Go-Go." Paul also recorded with his wife Allison as The Catalinas, Lori Allison, Lori Lynn, The Buff Organization and with vocalists Ricky Dean and John Castello. The Friendly Torpedoes featured Buff with the late Music Machine leader, Sean Bonniwell.
"Breaktime For Surf" contains many in-demand early 1960s Buff tracks along with a stellar collection of surf instrumentals, big band jazz, doo-wop and pop vocals. Demos, outtakes and first-time stereo mixes are well represented. One of the CD debuts is Johnny Gatewood's "Pocketful Of Rainbows," a song that Elvis Presley first recorded for the film "G.I. Blues." The deluxe booklet also covers the untold stories of Frank Zappa-related singles by Ron Roman and Brian Lord And The Midnighters.
The Hollywood Persuaders' "Drums A-Go-Go" was one of the most popular drum showcases of the mid-1960s, with Paul Buff's original version quickly joined by versions by Sandy Nelson and Hal Blaine. Crossfire's "Drums A-Go-Go" collection contains the original stereo album and singles plus numerous rarities and tracks by The Buff Organization, The Tired 4, Ricky Dean, John Castello and The Friendly Torpedoes. Also notable is the inclusion of the demonstration record/tape for Buff's groundbreaking Kepex noise-reduction system. Kepex would be used by studios throughout the world for decades.
"Drums A-Go-Go" from 1965 marked Paul Buff's transition to ten-track recording at Original Sound. The album's full audio spectrum was the initial result of the studio's enormous recording capability, with competing studios clamoring to upgrade their four-track equipment. As music became more progressive as the second half of the '60s unfolded, Paul Buff and Original Sound's studio led the way. Independent producers brought their clients into Original Sound to create groundbreaking recordings, and Paul Buff moved into more progressive music with his Buff Organization. This is the first CD collection of Hollywood Persuaders recordings remastered from the original mixdown tapes. Demos, originally unissued tracks and first-time stereo mixes abound.
Release Dates for all three projects: October-November 2012.