Saturday, September 15, 2007

Request Records - Live Jazz From Club 15

Live Jazz From Club 15
Louis Prima / Pete Fountain

Inside 3 Page Booklet

2006 - Request Records 3-8004

CD Listing:
Louis Prima, with Gia Miaone featuring Sam Buttera and The Witnesses
Live From The Casbah Theatre of the Hotel Sahara, Las Vegas, Nevada 5/5/66

1. Theme: When You're Smiling
2. Oh Marie
3. Buona Sera
4. Imagination
5. I Love Paris In The Spring Time
6. Up Jumped A Rabbit
7. Georgia On My Mind
8. I Want You To Be My Baby
9. Baby Won't You Please Come Home
10. When The Saints Go Marching In

Pete Fountain Way Down Yonder in New Orleans

Pete Fountain, His Clarinet, and His Orchestra
Live From The Blue Room of the Tropicana Hotel Las Vegas, Nevada 3/22/66

11. Way Down Yonder In New Orleans
12. Do You Know What It Means To Miss New Orleans
13. Struttin' With Some Barbecue
14. She'll Be Comin' Round The Mountain

Liner Notes:

Recorded Live - Live Jazz From Club 15
Louis Prima With Sam Buttera & The Witnesses 1966
Pete Fountain, His Clarinet, and His Orchestra 1966

Highway 15 - The Road to Vegas

In the 1950s and 60s Las Vegas, Nevada built a reputation for being the playland getaway of the world. Casino lounges provided continuous entertainment from dusk to dawn at no charge except the cost of a drink. Comedians, burlesque shows, musicians, dancers and performers of all kinds entertained hotel guests in intimate showrooms. These lounges quickly became major attractions in their own right. FM Radio with stereo sound was gaining popularity and there, in the parking lot of Howard Hughes' Last Frontier Hotel, Mike Gold and his new FM station KLUC, began broadcasting.

His one problem was that not many people owned FM radios. So Mike came up with ingenious pro-motions one of which was a give away of 100's of small FM Radios - that could only be tuned to his station. Another, called "Three in a Row", was taken from what the people wanted at the slot machines, and this also proved to be a winning format for KLUC's song programming. That and free gasoline promotions kept their audience loyal and tuned in at all times.

1965 and 1966 saw top performers from around the world streaming into the new showrooms on the glittering Las Vegas strip, and Mike Gold was there to broadcast it live from coast to coast over his CBS Radio affiliate. Trucks would pull up to the hotels and connect to the Bell Telephone lines over which the broadcasts were transmitted. Then, in a deal made with the United States Government, he was also able to send these broadcasts live over the Voice of America Radio Network in exchange for advertising U.S. Savings Bonds. Now the people had their radios and the music was playing like never before.

While the musicians were jamming, and the sound was streaming over the telephone lines, Mike's wife Sylvia was sitting with the sound engineer making sure these classic performances would be preserved on tape.

When Mike and Sylvia retired to the lakes of Minnesota, the boxes of tapes followed them. Then in 2004 their grandchildren, David and Carey Lifson, decided that it was now or never to check the condition of the tapes and quality of the recordings. At the retirement home of the Gold's (newly remodeled with a recording studio by Carey) on the shores of Lake Minnetonka, the tapes were played and digitally recorded at the same time because it wasn't known if the tapes would survive more than one playing. Kluc-ally, the tapes held up and the recordings were preserved.

Forty years and Mike Gold have now passed, but a small testament to his legacy and a large addition to the music world has emerged in this collection of rare live radio broadcasts, featuring some of the all time great jazz and swing artists as they lit up the nights of fabulous Las Vegas.

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