Monday, September 26, 2016


Artist: Wayne Cochran
Album: Wayne Cochran!
Label: Chess
Catalog: LPS 1519
Year: 1967
Genre: soul
Grading: VG+ cover / VG+ LP
Cover Designer: Jerry Griffith
Photo not applicable
Grade: **** stars

This is one of those covers that probably doesn't make much of an impression to anyone unfamiliar with Wayne Cochran.  That would pretty much be anyone under 50.  So I won't bother with a Wayne Cochran primer since there are plenty already online.  What I will do is show you a picture of Cochran in his prime.   That should make the album cover connection a bit clearer.

 That picture should make it clear ... What a great album cover.!!!

Sunday, September 25, 2016


Artist: Ike Turner
Album: Bad Dreams
Label: United Artists
Catalog: UA LA087 F
Year: 1973
Genre: R&B / soul
Grading: VG+ cover / VG+ LP
Cover Designer: W.T. Vinson
Photo Mike Salisbury
Grade: **** stars

The late Ike Turner wasn't exactly known for his sense of humor - for goodness sake, he's the bad guy who abused Tina Turner and was busted a dozen times for cocaine.  Well, that may all be true, but judging by this hysterical W.T. Vinson cover he did have a sense of humor.   I always wondered what Tina Turner thought of the cover ...


Artist: Snips
Album: La Rocca!
Label: RIO
Catalog: RIO 2010
Year: 1981
Genre: rock
Grading: VG+ cover / VG+ LP
Cover Designer: Snips and Pete Shepherd
Photo Bill Richmond
Grade: * star

It isn't very often I encounter an album cover that I actively dislike.  Sure, there are lots that are boring, forgettable, or in poor taste, but something that I really don't like ...  doesn't happen very often.  This one is simply ugly all around.  Dumb concept; poor execution ... the only saving grace is the music is far better than the concept.

Saturday, September 24, 2016


Artist: The Staehely Brothers
Album: Sta-Hay-Lee
Label: Epic
Catalog: KE 32385
Year: 1973
Genre: rock
Grading: VG+ cover / VG+ LP
Cover Designer: Pacific Eye & Ear
Cover not applicable
Grade: **** stars

Who are these guys?   Second generation members of Spirit (Al Staehely wrote most of the material on the band's 1972's "Feedback" LP) ...  The album cover's Grateful Dead nods were hysterical.   Musically it wasn't a bad mixture of mid-'70s blues-rock, boogie-rock, and a touch of country.

Wednesday, September 21, 2016


Artist: Lamont Dozier
Album: Black Bach
Label: ABC
Catalog: ABCS 839
Year: 1974
Genre: soul
Grading: VG+ cover / VG+ LP
Cover Designer: not listed
Cover photography: not applicable
Grade: **** stars

C'mon, you've got to admit there's something fascinating about this one.   By 1974 Lamont Dozier had been fashioning hits for other people for a decade. The man literally had a golden touch when it came to songwriting.  Against that backdrop you couldn't blame him for wanting to take a stab at a solo career (this was actually his second solo album).   I'm not trying to imply Dozier was suffering from a form of megalomania, but the Bach comparison was certainly pushing.   Regardless, I love the cover art.

Friday, September 9, 2016


Artist: Jerry Williams Group
Album: Down Home Boy
Label: Columbia
Catalog: C 30278
Year: 1970
Genre: rock
Grading: VG+ cover / VG+ LP
Cover Designer: John Van Hammersveld
Cover photography: Peter Pynchon
Grade: * star

I have wondered about this cover for years - what is actually on the plate?   

My best guess is a half eaten Moonpie sitting in some sort of hot syrup ...  Anyone got a better idea?  No matter what it was, Peter Pynchon's photo made for one unappetizing cover, 

Saturday, September 3, 2016


Artist: Les Sinners
Album: Sinnerismes
Label: Jupiter
Catalog: JDY 7009
Year: 1967
Genre: garage / pop
Grading: VG+ cover / VG+ LP
Cover Designer: not listed
Cover photography: not listed
Grade: **** star

If I had to pick an album that grabbed my attention purely on the design colors, then it would have to be this 1967 release by Les Sinners.  Hard to believe, but the actual colors are even more vibrant than the image captures - the cover is literally eyeball searing intense.   Most of the music is decent pop-garage in nature; including an odd French version cover of 'Penny Lane'.  That said the anonymous cover more than compensates for whatever musical limitations the album had.  Wonder what this baby looks like under black light, or under the influence of various lysergic substances ?