WHITE HEAT MUSIC OUT WEST

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This is a collection of the last recordings the group did as a band -- the project recorded at Different Fur studios with Steve Mantoani as engineer, and Hill Swimmer and Stacy Baird as second engineers. It is essentially an unreleased album. The songs are in order as they would have appeared on the record that never materialized, with “C’est La Funque” starting the second side. If CDs were around then, the songs would have played just as they are sequenced in the player below.


Everyone is playing their usual instruments, with Richard also overdubbing some different keyboards and even a string synth on “Fortune Cookie” rented from Patrick Gleeson (who wouldn’t just let Richard borrow it for a few minutes even though it was sitting in the control room).


Just prior to starting the final mixing of the tracks, Little Feat happened to come to town to play at a local college, and Sam Clayton was somehow hired (at union scale) to do conga overdubs on many of the songs the afternoon before their performance. Afterwards, Bill was driving Sam to the gig in his VW with Dottie and Richard onboard, when Sam started choking on a Life-Saver Bill had given him. Richard repeatedly pounded Sam on the back, finally dislodging the mint and saving us from having to tell the other members of Little Feat that we killed their percussionist.

These MP3s were digitized from the 2-track 7-1/2 ips copy of the master tapes that never left Different Fur. Those masters were erased or destroyed some years after the final bill didn’t get settled.


All the songs contained writing input from all the members as far as the musical parts were concerned, and Richard did all the overall arrangements. The lyrics were mostly Richard’s as well with the exception of “Check Your Stuff” and “C’Est La Funque” which Bicey penned, “The Sky’s the Limit” and “Black Panel Tweed” that were Jimmy’s compositions, and “Love at Last” which Tony and Bill wrote. All the songs were copyrighted at the time of the recording in 1978, and their authors reserve all rights to the songs.


The crowd you hear throughout “Other People’s Whiskey” consisted of everyone they could round up and jam into the small studio one afternoon before the final mixes were underway. The group was asked to sound rowdy and pretend they were in a noisy bar, and several tracks were combined to produce the final background ambience.


The high quality of the recordings and the appeal of the songs made no impact on any record company at the time despite repeated efforts by Don Winstel and others to get the A&R people to listen to the material. In hindsight, a different, more connected producer might have been hired to oversee the sessions, who could then have used his influence to open some doors for the band. Whether that was an option that could have been in the budget back then is another question. Everyone -- including Steve Mantoani -- did their best, and that’s all that could be done. This, then, is the final repository for all that work. Hook up your headphones and enjoy it in all it’s MP3 glory!

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