I absolutely love 'tribute' albums. You may have seen stuff like this floating around ever since people owned their first turntable. These are albums full of your favorite songs performed by a bunch of crappy studio musicians. They're usually cheaper than your name-brand label compilations. They're priced low, and usually disguised as a REAL compilation. One of the big series out there today is the stuff performed by 'The Countdown Singers'. I've been toying off and on with the idea of actually collecting their stuff, but I'm too cheap to fork over $3 for a CD recorded by a bunch of phonies. 99 cents to $1.99 is about all I'm willing to pay for such junk.
Anyway, I'm bringing you highlights from three 8-track tapes. Some of the songs actually closely follow the original, while others make you wonder if these guys listened to the original more than twice.
Here is a fine tribute cart from what appears to be 'Soundco' records. There is no actual identifying mark on the label except for the catalog number (SC-129) and the word "Soundco" stamped into the plastic on the underside of the tape. There is absolutely NO indication on the label that these songs are played by a bunch of hacks.
Another oddball thing about this tape is the notch in the upper left-hand side of the tape. These notches were used on quadraphonic 8-tracks to automatically switch from 2-channel mode to 4-channel mode. In other words, if you jam this baby into a quad player (yes, I own one), you're going to hear Mungo Jerry singing with T.Rex, each on their own side of your living room in living stereo! But I digress, that's not really Mungo Jerry or T.Rex, nor is stereo actually a living thing.
Anyway, let's get to the songs. I don't know how popular The Stampeders were outside of Canada, but this is an extremely shitty re-creation of "Sweet City Woman".
For the second song, here is some Canadian dude trying to remove Marc Bolan's accent in the T.Rex song "Hot Love". Note that the song fades out in the middle to switch programs. I even left the long-ass cue tone in there for your listening pleasure. Marc Bolan is rolling in his grave.
Top Pop Hits Vol.29
Thanks to this tape, I've made it my life-long goal to track down the other 28 volumes in this collection. Jesus Christ, why couldn't they just re-name it after the second or third volume?
On the plus side, the Cherry label fully acknowledges that these songs were recorded by a bunch of assholes who will never be successful. I laughed my ass off when I read "Fantastic impressions of today's top hits simulating your favorite artist." It's like reading the ingredients on the label of a cherry-flavored candy.
And now, I bring you The Atlanta Connection doing a bad impression of Jimi Hendrix playing and singing "Heartbreaker", originally done by The Rolling Stones. Mick Jagger is rolling in his grave.
For our second selection from this tape, here is an extremely clumsy rendition of Terry Jacks' "Seasons In The Sun". I would have preferred them doing the B-side "Put The Bone In". At least nobody would care if they buggered up that song.
Top Ten Rock Vol.6
These guys were clever. They named their band "American Pick Hit Artists" which is a description of what the original artists are. These guys are also notorious for getting the lyrics wrong. Combine that with their terrible interpretation of what the original music is, and you've got "American Shit Pick Artists"
The first one is the 'single version' of Steve Miller's Jet Airliner. I would have loved to hear these hacks do Threshold, but that was too difficult for them so they just left it out.
The last one I'm offering is Peace of Mind originally done by Boston. The guy is most obviously scared of the high notes. He only manages to squeeze his balls for it at the end of the song, and I believe he ordered the band to skip playing the middle part to minimize testicular damage while recording. Brad Delp is rolling in his grave.
And that's it for this round. I've got lots more of these albums kicking around, and I'll probably post more in the future.
One more thing, I've almost run out of hard drive space. I need to do some archiving badly so I can get some more videos up on Youtube. I've got some pretty funny ones just waiting for an audience :)