Back in April, I mentioned a fantastic book called "The White Label Promo Preservation Society" that was up for preorder. In brief, my pal and John Sally Ride band mate Sal Maida, along with Mitchell Cohen and some special friends, including Steve Wynn, Marshall Crenshaw, Lenny Kaye, Dennis Diken, John Dunbar and yours truly, offer up essays on 100 "flop albums you ought to know." That book has been released and I've read it all.
And I loved it!
Thanks to this wonderful collection, I now know that The Seeds were far more than "Pushin' Too Hard," that the Bonniwell Music Machine was far more than "Talk Talk" and that Rhinoceros was far more than "Apricot Brandy."
But it's not just the records highlighted in the chapters. There are wonderful tidbits within the essays, as well. For instance, in reading Sal Maida's push for Jeff Lynne's pre-ELO debut with The Idle Race, I found out that there was a flop single before the release of the album "The Birthday Party." It was "Here We Go Round The Lemon Tree," given to them by the author, Roy Wood. The single did nothing, but when The Move recorded and released it themselves, it was a hit. The b-side of that single, "My Father's Son" was written by Idle Race rhythm guitarist Dave Pritchard. Neither of these tracks made the debut album and actually, I had no idea this single existed.
The Move's version of "Lemon Tree" is bigger, though not necessarily better than The Idle Race version. But it is Pritchard's b-side, which is posted above, that knocked me out.
There's a wealth of fun information in this book and I recommend getting yourself a copy if you haven't already. For me personally, discovering this Idle Race b-side has already paid for the book.
Here's a link to the book.