MARCH 2010 - FOUR NEW DIGITAL
VINTAGE DISNEY ALBUMS
produced four new albums now available exclusively as digital
downloads on Amazon and soon on iTunes.
GOLDEN HORSESHOE REVUE
I wanted to get the Golden Horseshoe Revue out there, but the original vinyl had no bands on it. It was one big track on either side. When I restored it for the Wonderland kiosks, I put the two sides together and put an index mark for side two for people who grew up with the album it would still start off as side two. But when I used that recording and restored it a bit more for the Disneyland (50th Anniversary) box set, I kept it as one track because it is a show. The Golden Horseshoe Revue!
For iTunes there’s single based things and hearing some people talk about having the other Golden Horseshoe Revue, it’s kind of problematic to scan through all this audio without an index to get to the next song or to get to your favorite bit or to jump to Wally Boag’s section or any of that stuff. So I decided I was going to index each of the individual songs for Golden Horseshoe Revue and put it up there.
It’s a live album, just like Date Night at Disneyland, which was my first test in doing something like that because it, too, is one continuous recording in essence. I indexed each of the songs there.
When you have an album like this, The Wall is very much that way, Dark Side of the Moon, it’s weird that I’m pulling out Pink Floyd references, but concept albums like that, you’ll hear a little bump in a digital download because each song is a separate file, but that’s just the way it is. Most people won’t even notice it. I notice it because that’s what I do.
But I think it would be easier that way to access individual songs, plus people will be able to buy the individual tracks separately so they don’t have to buy the whole album if they don’t want to.
SUMMER MAGIC PLAYER PIANO
The Summer Magic Player Piano music is something that fans have been requesting for awhile. It’s all the Sherman Brothers songs from the film, just played on a player piano.
One of the tracks, I believe it could have been “Flitterin’”, actually appeared on the Summer Magic soundtrack album that’s already up on iTunes, but this is an entire album of player piano music from the film.
Scott Wolf: The album was not done for the movie or anything? With the exception of that one song, the arrangements were all exclusively for this album, right?
RT: Right. It was a sing-along. It’s really great. Essentially it’s the first digital music playback system, without it actually being digital. A player piano’s a machine, but it’s digital but going one’s and zero’s and ons and offs, that’s what those little holes in the piano scroll are. It’s ons and offs for the notes and all that stuff, so there’s a mechanical feel to it, but it’s perfect for the time period that the film is set in. “Beautiful Beulah” or “Pink of Perfection” played in ragtime on a player piano is just really cool background music.
If you listen to the stuff, you feel like you’re walking doing Main Street even though these recordings have absolutely nothing to do with the park.
A Story with Songs told by Jimmie Dodd
Perri is my first experiment in the storyteller releases. I would like to get the storyteller releases out there. I know a lot of people grew up with them. I also would like to try to do the storytellers and use the Magic Mirror coversSnow White and the Seven Dwarfs), even though some of the later releases of the storytellers were still pretty much the same audio back in the day, but they would change covers all the time.
The other stuff got a little kiddie, but there was an elegance to the Magic Mirror covers because it was sort of a nice cover. It looked like a leather-bound book with a die-cut in the center where you can see an image, and people just have a fondness for this Magic Mirror cover.
It’s difficult to fit in the storytellers into this new digital world because this really isn’t a spoken word, this isn’t a book on tape, and it’s not a song album. So how does it work?
Going back to what I was talking about with live recordings, these are all continuous recordings. So do I break it up with a song, because we did that with the Snow White storyteller we did back in the early ‘90s and The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh. We put indexes in where the songs begin, but after the song concludes, then the narrator comes in and the story picks up again and you have all this story until the next song. So as far as (iPod) shuffling and all those kinds of things, it really doesn’t work. There really isn’t a way around that. So I am going to index these things at the beginning of the songs so you can get to those things first, but with iTunes and other digital download services, they have a difficult time wrapping their head around this kind of release. Everything’s geared for a song album.
I was about to test The Jungle Book storyteller at the Wonderland system, before it closed up, but I figured Perri, with all its songs and a single narrator, I thought that would be a good one to test.
It’s Jimmie Dodd narrating and he’s singing the songs with Darlene Gillespie of the original Mouseketeers, and it’s just one of those charming little albums that you had as a kid.
As a matter of fact, the impetus for actually doing this album was a gift to my boss, Ted, Kryczko, who retired in October. He worked for the company for 27 years. This was his very first album as a kid, Perri. It also turns out that when he got the album, he took it to his grandmother’s house but she only had a 78rpm record player, so he was never even really able to hear the album properly, it was all sped up. So I thought it would be really cool if we went and we scanned in the artwork, and we had a special CD for him and we replicated the packaging to where he even opened up the booklet and it was the map of the forest and everything, so we were able to give that to him, and it’s all cleaned up and restored.
SW: Were the songs for Perri written for the movie or for the album?
RT: For the album, however it does use Paul Smith’s score underneath some of the songs underneath some of the story points? The melodies are from the score but they are not the film’s recordings.
SW: So the songs with lyrics were actually written as score for the movie?
RT: Yes, like “Break of Day” and “Perri.”
MICKEY MOUSE AND HIS FRIENDS
RT: Mickey Mouse and His Friends was just a compilation, taking some of the songs from the Mickey Mouse Club albums that were done by AmPar, before our record label was formed. You know, the version of “The Mickey Mouse March” that was on every single children’s album as a kid? Personally I was always disappointed that it wasn’t Buddy Baker’s original arrangement with the trumpets and the fanfare and everything, and that it was a bunch of adults.
But this was an album that I had as a kid and I played over and over and over again. It has jokes and riddles with Goofy, which I believe is really Pinto Colvig. It’s very very 1950s. It has quack, quack, quack Donald Duck and the Donald Duck song and the “Mickey Mouse March.”
It’s just some of those silly little children’s songs that we did back in the day that’s all collected on one album. The Japanese had released that album before, too, but I went back to the master and cleaned it all up and it sounds really good.
Now I’m going to be working on the next five which will be all brand new titles.