Photo courtesy of Beau Daddy
As we draw closer to the holiday, I’m still going to try to keep up the pace with the posts. Whatever the case, I promise to at least post a side, even if there isn’t an in depth review. I do have a few surprises up my sleeve for Christmas, but as it gets closer and closer, you’ll get it. Thanks for all the kind words in regards to The Squeeze Mix. I have another mix I started to put together, so within the next week or so I should have it completed. I also want to plug The 4th and Kingsley Soul Club on December 21st at Asbury Lanes. We’re ready for The Budos Band in Asbury Park! Larry from Funky 16 Corners and I will be dropping lots of Funky Soul gems before, in between, and after their sets. If you are in the vicinity, please don’t miss the show. On with the program. I dug this next record up in North Jersey this past summer. I had no idea what to expect, but the name really caught my eye and I scooped it up. It was from Jersey, so how could I go wrong with a Jersey side? Representing Bergen County is Skip Jackson & the Natural Experience, with “Microwave Boogie” on Catamount Records.
I have to admit, I only know a little bit about this side. Catamount Records was founded by Stan Krause in 1964 in Bergen County, NJ. His area of expertise was acapella groups, and Krause would go on to release and work with groups such as The Persuasions, The Royal Counts, The Five Fashions, The Savoys, The Versailles and The Zircons. Tommy Brown, aka Skip Jackson started out with a vocal group called The Chantons, and put out a few sides on the Jay Mar label: “Lucille”, “Triangle Love”, and “Santa Claus Is Coming To Town”, among others. He was an integral part of the band Calvin and the Catamounts who would release “Creation of Love” on the Catamount label. Jackson did most of the writing, and also wrote for Disco bands like Fourteen Karat Soul, who were also on the label as well. Skip passed away in 1982 at age 42.
The record itself is a Disco Boogie monster, predecessing some electro tracks that would be released shortly after. It’s fuzzed out sound is what kept me coming back (besides the red vinyl and the name) and dropping the needle over and over again on this thing. A great bass line and spaced out synths that just don’t quit make this song a definite keeper. Apparently it was released in a few different forms, 45, 12″, etc. This record was used on a Kon and Amir mix The Cleaning, plus got the reworking treatment by them as well. The re-edit of the tune is quite interesting, and if you can get your hands on that thing, it’s probably easier than getting this 45. I have to be totally honest, I paid about $2 for this side, and I have heard tale of it going for high 3 figures. I am in no way a Disco guy myself (Disco Pres doesn’t advertise), but there are a lot of things I dig on in this 45. This record is from 78/79, and you all know that’s not my time period. However, like in any situation, you have to keep an open ear and open mind. This track is HOT, and I definitely plan on using it again. I spun it back at an early 45 Sessions, and it went over really well. So here we have another piece of New Jersey music history in Catamount Records, Stan R. Krause, and Skip Jackson and the Natural Experience. If anyone has more information about the label, the 45, and or the band, please feel free to contact me.