Bear Family Records

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  • Vincent Gene - Sounds Like Gene Vincent (10``LP)

    10inch LP (limited edition – silver metallic vinyl) 1-LP (10″), 11 tracks. 
    Re-release of the rare Japanese Capitol 10inch from 1959
    Plus three bonus tracks!
    Reproduction of the rare original cover
    Carefully remastered for this LP output
    Pressed on high-quality vinyl!
    Limited edition of 500 copies on colored vinyl. Photo card enclosed.

    Gene Vincent is especially for the wilder faction of Rock and Rollers since the fifties until the present day of the rockers par excellence. His black leather outfit, sometimes with gloves, has been copied countless times, and even the Beatles were strongly influenced by Gene in their younger years. If you look at film recordings with the Blue Caps, it becomes clear what the qualities of the band were: high musicality paired with a feeling for the right performance on stage. – Also in Japan this did not remain without consequences. 
    The ’Sounds Like Gene Vincent’ 10inch LP was never released in the USA as a 10inch LP, but only as a regular LP with much more tracks! As bonus tracks for our release, we have chosen ’Be Bop Boogie Boy’, ’The Night Is So Lonely’ and Gene Vincent’s great version of ’Over The Rainbow’!

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  • McKay Scotty - Scotty McKay Rocks (CD)


    Scotty McKay aka Max K. Lipscomb – new in our ROCKS! series

    1-CD with 24-page booklet, 32 tracks. Total playing time about 79 minutes.

    • For this compilation Bear Family has collected all the rockers of Scotty McKay from the years 1956-1967.
    • During this time he released on Event, Swan, Lawn, Ace, Squire, Philips, Capri, Savannah Sound and Falcon.
    • Scotty was a member of Gene Vincent’s Blue Caps for a while and performed with this formation at the Ed Sullivan Show on November 17, 1957!
    • Between 1959 and 1962 Scotty McKay was the singer with Tommy & The Tom Toms, whose rockers were not released at that time.
    • And he recorded some songs under his real name Max K. Lipscomb.
    • Extensive booklet with bio and further information by Bill Dahl.

    Maybe Scotty McKay will never appear in the list of the ’100 best musicians of all times’. As a pianist and guitarist he left only a few traces in the history of Rock ’n’ Roll – even though he was a member of Gene Vincent’s Blue Caps for a while around 1957 and appeared on the ’Ed Sullivan Show’ on November 17th 1957. He also sang background vocals and played piano and rhythm guitar on Baby Blue and can be heard on the LP album ’Gene Vincent Rocks & The Blue Caps Roll’.
    As a convincing genuine rocker and strong lead singer, however, Scotty McKay belongs to that group of authentic masters of the genre who deserved to make it big, but mostly made excellent recordings in the shadow of the big names and performed regularly.
    We believe that Scotty McKay simply belongs in our unique ROCKS! series.

    For the first comprehensive compilation, Bear Family has gathered all his rockers from the years 1959 to 1966. Recordings that were made for labels like Event, Swan, Lawn, Ace, Squire, Philips, Capri, Savannah Sound and Falcon. Many of these titles are hereby released on CD for the first time! In addition to his own rockers (and those under his birth name Max K. Lipscomb), McKay was a singer with Tommy & The Tom Toms between 1959 and 1962, but their rock recordings were initially not released as singles or on LP.

    The accompanying book was written by our Chicago expert Bill Dahl. We here at Bear Family are absolutely sure: Scotty McKay’s rockers like Evenin’ Time’, Midnight Cryin’ Time, Baby Let’s Play House, Don’t Wait and many others will surely blow you away!

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  • King Size Taylor - Dr. Feelgood – The Brits Are Rocking Vol.3 (CD)


    The third release in our CD series ’The Brits Are Rocking’!

    1-CD with 36-page booklet, 31 tracks. Total playing time about 78 minutes.

    • The third artist in our series with British rockers is called King Size Taylor!
    • This Bear Family CD features Taylor’s complete recordings from 1963/64 for the German labels Philips, Polydor and Ariola. 
    • The third protagonist from ’The Brits Are Rocking’ series is accompanied by The Dominos and The Shakers.
    • Taylor became famous in Germany through his Star-Club appearances.
    • He always stood for Rock ’n’ Roll and less for Beat!
    • Bonus tracks: four private recordings in good quality from 1958, first time on CD!
    • Linernotes in the 36-page booklet by Ashley Wood, an expert on the British R&R scene, based on a recent interview with ’King Size’ Taylor.
    • Pure listening pleasure guaranteed!

    With ’Dr. Feelgood’ Bear Family presents a long overdue album: the first CD compilation with all recordings of ’King Size’ Taylor for Polydor (as The Shakers) and Ariola (as King Size Taylor & The Dominoes).
    Especially here in Germany, King Size Taylor was known in the early sixties as a regular guest in Hamburg’s Star-Club. In the Hanseatic city he had more than 250 performances between 1962 and 1964 and recorded exclusively in Germany during this time. Due to the creation of legends around the young Beatles, King Size Taylor also ran under the popular label ’Beat’. But on closer inspection Taylor was and always remained the real rocker from the British Isles.

    After his first musical attempts in a skiffle band (1957), the guitarist and singer, who was born in Liverpool on November 12, 1939, soon after founded a rock ’n’ roll formation, which performed under King Size Taylor And The Dominos from 1960 onwards and moved to Hamburg in 1962. Ariola released live recordings from the Star-Club. A somewhat later album, ’Let’s Do The Slop, Twist, Madison, Hully Gully …’ was released by the German Polydor company – under the pseudonym The Shakers. Single releases were issued in Great Britain as well, including Money, Whole Lotta Lovin’ and Hippy Hippy Shake. Like the other numbers on the LPs, these songs were cover versions of the hottest rock and R&B originals of the time.
    After the band broke up, Taylor went back to England, where he was unable to continue the great success of his days in Hamburg.

    In addition to the recordings for Ariola and Polydor, the CD on Bear Family contains four rare, previously little known recordings from 1958, which were recorded in the living room of a band member in Liverpool at the time and are of astonishingly good quality. The liner notes in the thick 36-page booklet were written by Ashley Wood, an acknowledged expert on the British rock ’n’ roll scene. Edward ’Ted’ Taylor was recently interviewed by him.
    We hope you enjoy these top-class recordings and great British rock of the early sixties.

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  • Washington Dinah - A Rockin’ Good Way – Juke Box Pearls (CD)


    ​1-CD Digipak with 36-page booklet, 29 tracks. Total playing time about 77 minutes. 

    Dinah Washington was not only called ’The Queen’, she simply was ’The Queen’. 
    Her incredibly powerful voice, which is unparalleled, obliges us to include her in the ’Juke Box Pearls’ series!
    With a total of 29 sound clips dating from 1947-1962 we show the complete stylistic range of this great artist!
    On this very personal selection – mostly up-tempo numbers and brilliantly arranged pop – you will find rarities and greatest hits.
    Among them her smash hits What A Diff’rence A Day Made (she sang makes instead of made), September In The Rain, Mad About The Boy as well as the two duets with Brook Benton: A Rockin’ Good Way and Baby (You Got What It Takes)!
    Rarities such as the hard-to-find Mercury single Honky Tonky, which was released in 1958 under the pseudonym ’The Queen’, are also included.                                                                       
    With this ’Juke Box Pearls’ edition of the great Dinah Washington we are erecting a small but fine memorial.                                                                                         
    The 36-page color booklet contains her biography, written by the famous Chicago music journalist Bill Dahl, as well as many photos and memorabilia, some of them rare!
    A review of Dinah Washington’s career
    This compilation of 29 songs does not follow a chronological order, but it outlines the great career of the artist, who died far too early. It is impressive how her voice has developed over the course of two decades, from the jazz-soaked Rhythm & Blues of the late 1940s and early 1950s, when Dinah Washington was just one singer among many, to the great monumental pop arrangements and jazz standards of the later years with an enormous flexibility of her voice!
    A Rockin’ Good Way
    Dinah Washington’s greatest hits are all there, including the title song she sang with Brook Benton. Many will also remember A Rockin’ Good Way in the cover version of Shakin’ Stevens with Bonnie Tyler from the 1980s, as well as Mad About The Boy from Levi’s Jeans TV commercial around the same time. Not only nostalgics and collectors will get their money’s worth here, because if you’re into powerful female voices, Dinah Washington is always the right choice – and young girls who dream of a singing career should also listen to this CD! 
    Included is a 36-page booklet in color with a Dinah Washington biography, written by the great Chicago music journalist Bill Dahl, and many photographs and illustrations, some of them rare!

    Included are Dinah Washington’s greatest hits such as the title song she recorded with Brook Benton. Many of you will also remember A Rockin’ Good Way in the cover version of Shakin’ Stevens and Bonnie Tyler in the 1980s as well as Mad About The Boy, which was used in a Levi’s Jeans TV commercial at about the same time. Not only nostalgics and collectors get their money’s worth here, because if you like powerful female voices, Dinah Washington is always right for you and young girls who dream of a singing career should also listen to this CD! Included is a 36-page booklet in color, with the Dinah Washington biography, written by the great music journalist Bill Dahl, as well as many rare photos and illustrations!

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  • Walker Billy - Whirlpool – Gonna Shake This Shack Tonight (CD)

    Billy Walker’s career spanned a period of almost sixty years!
    Already as a teenager he became a member of the legendary Big D Jamboree in Dallas.
    In 1949 the Texan signed his first record deal with Capitol Records, two years later he landed a contract with Columbia.
    From 1952 he belonged to the Louisiana Hayride and scored his first hit in 1954 with Thank You For Calling. 
    Bear Family’s CD album in the popular ’Gonna Shake This Shack’ series proves that Walker was much more than just the ballad singer on the Grand Ole Opry.
    We present the first fourteen years of his career, from 1949 to 1962.
    Stylistically, the spectrum ranges from Texas honky-tonk, fast shuffles and Tex-Mex-style songs to rockabilly and up-beat pop.
    The CD is rounded off by his early Nashville recordings, including his only number one hit, Charlie’s Shoes from 1962.
    Liner notes by Dave Samuelson in the extensively illustrated booklet.

    In a career stretching nearly sixty years, Billy Walker (1929-2006) charmed audiences with his lively stage presence and lilting Texas tenor. Often overlooked and underrated since his tragic death, this new entry in Bear Family’s ‘Gonna Shake This Shack’ series reveals that Walker was far more than a Grand Ole Opry balladeer. Spanning Walker’s first fourteen years on record, this set includes Texas honky-tonk, up-tempo shuffles, Tex-Mex novelties, rockabilly and upbeat pop. His early Nashville Sound hits are here, too, including his only country chart-topping Charlie’s Shoes.

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  • Herrold Dennis - The Mystery Of Dennis Herrold 10″LP + CD (10``LP)


    10″LP 25cm, plus bonus CD

    Dennis Herrold – short-lived comet in rockabilly heaven!
    The mystery of Dennis Herrold is finally solved with this release!
    The 10inch LP contains the five tracks Dennis Herrold recorded for Imperial, including an alternative version of Hip Hip Baby and the previously completely unreleased Don’t Push Away as well as Make With The Lovin’ (the released single was faded out) in full length.
    For the first time on vinyl there is the unreleased track Boppin’ In The Dark, written by Dub Dickerson, who recorded the song at that time.
    All tracks of the LP plus bonus material are also available on the enclosed CD!
    Extensive liner notes were written by rock ’n’ roll expert and music journalist Alex Petrauskas, who did meticulous research with Nico Feuerbach and Mark Lee Allen to trace and conclusively illustrate the biography of Dennis Herrold.
    Dennis Herrold, one of the great unknowns of Rockabilly history! Until now, hardly anything was known about his life and career as a musician. This will change radically with the release of his Imperial recordings from 1957 as part of this vinyl/CD combination on Bear Family!
    Together with the music journalist Alex Petrauskas, Mark Lee Allen and Nico Feuerbach did thorough field research and Mark Lee Allen established contact with the Herrold family. After several interviews with family members, they were able to draw the most detailed picture of Dennis Herrold’s life so far.
    The short-lived comet in the sky of Rockabilly was born in Virgina in 1927 and died in New Mexico at the age of 74. In late 1957, at the time of his only session for Imperial Records, Herrold lived with his wife Erma Lee in Dallas, Texas.
    Bear Family released Dennis Herrold’s You Arouse My Curiosity on the 12th release in the ’That’ll Flat Git It!’ series in 1997. More than 20 years later, the rest of the 8 numbers he recorded for Imperial followed.
    The accompanying CD also contains several bonus tracks. With the completely newly researched liner notes, previously unknown details and facts from Herrolds life are made available to a Rock ’n’ Roll public for the first time! And you can see the first confirmed photos of Dennis Herrold …!
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  • Various - Destination Lust – Songs of Love, Sex And Violence (CD)

    1-CD with 28-page booklet, 32 tracks. Total playing time approx. 78 minutes.
    • A crazy compilation of songs and instrumentals about the ’most beautiful trivial thing in the world’: love, sex and its varieties. 
    • Rare and interesting recordings at a reasonable price in Bear Family’s ’Destination’ series.
    • Erotic-nostalgic is what this album is all about. Back when women were still allowed to be full females and the ideal of beauty was not yet the ’hunger hook’. Back then, when sex was not talked about but sung about, not to forget the renaissance of burlesque shows.
    • Here presented on over 30 musical jewels from three decades.
    • Among those two songs about the legendary story of ’Christine’, by Miss X and her Italian answer Andrea Tosi.
    • Also included: a rendezvous of international sex bombs and film divas like Jayne Mansfield, Lizabeth Scott, Ann-Margret, Elke Sommer, April Stevens and Mamie van Doren!
    • Plus fabulous instrumentals that orchestrate the scenes in striptease clubs and burlesque shows! Not to forget the harder gaits on the erotic playground.                                                                       
    Hits and rarities are combined here. The rarities predominate, many of them for the first time on CD! 
    Song by song notes by Bill Dahl in the richly illustrated colourful 28-page booklet. 
    Erotic retrospect into earlier decades
    Eroticism and sexuality was officially not an issue in the first decades after the war. But unofficially, behind closed doors, in dark smoky clubs, strip clubs and under the counter, there was a lot going on. Meaning, the people back then did it just as wildly as today, just not so obviously. Of course, this did not pass by the music, and this is exactly what is impressively proven here!
    Destination: Desire
    Besides the great listening pleasure, this compilation takes you on a journey towards lust. The desire for erotic bar banter – sex bombs with erotic voices make you dream and some songs make you smile. Very rare masters and nostalgic hits alternate. Everyone remembers Teach Me Tiger by April Stevens or the novelty number Love Potion No.9 by the Clovers! Some rare recordings have been released here on CD for the first time. Among them Andrea Tosis La Sorella Di Cristine and Ruth Wallis’ Long-Playing Daddy! There are also plenty of orchestral numbers that convey the wicked atmosphere of equally wicked establishments. Most notably The Stripper by David Rose, plus Cozy Cole, Slim Gaillard and the wonderful version of Fever by Richard Marino & His Orchestra. But the sound of this compilation comes mainly from Hollywood’s international sex symbols: Jayne, Mamie, Lizabeth, Elke, Lola, Ann-Margret – get to the microphone! The CD is accompanied by annotations to each song by the great music journalist Bill Dahl and many photos and illustrations in the 28-page booklet!
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  • Turner Big Joe - The Complete Boss Of The Blues (2-CD) (CD)

    2-CD (6-sided Digisleeve) with 24-page booklet, 32 tracks. Total playing time approx. 134 minutes.
    • Seriously, one of the best blues albums of all time.
    • masterfully tight, unpretentious and crazily swinging album.
    • One of the first conceptualized blues records ever recorded.
    • Recorded on two consecutive days in March 1956.
    • Original mono album released September 1956.
    • Turner never sounded better.
    • Album re-issue producer and liner notes: Colin Escott.
    • Eco-pack with extensive booklet.
    When Big Joe Turner recorded the songs for ’Boss Of The Blues’ on two consecutive days in a New York studio in 1956, he could already look back on several stages of an extremely successful career. Around the mid-1930s, Turner began working with one of the stars of boogie woogie, pianist Pete Johnson from Kansas City. Both were involved in the legendary 1938 show produced by John Hammond Sr. at New York’s Carnegie Hall, the ’Spirituals to Swing’ concert.
    In 1951 Ahmet Ertegun signed Turner to his young Atlantic label. Over the next few years, Big Joe Turner recorded his most successful singles and became an Atlantic bestseller with a series of major hits in the R&B charts.

    In March 1956, however, history was written. ’Boss Of The Blues’ was one of the first blues concept albums (almost all other LPs of that day were compilations of previously released singles). Atlantic engaged musicians from the Count Basie community (plus their arranger). The music is anything but nostalgia. With exquisite musicians he created one of the best blues/jazz albums of all times with Big Joe Turner at the peak of his vocal expressiveness.

    In September of that year the LP was released in a mono version; one title remained unreleased. For this special edition we were able to enlist Colin Escott for the compilation and liner notes. For the first time, Bear Family’s double CD will feature both mono and stereo recordings and all alternative versions.

    ”Item is sure-fire for collectors of late ‘30s and early ‘40s K.C. jazz, and can do nicely among Turner’s latter day r&b followers. A most happy, swinging set, and Turner never sounded better”. Billboard Magazine (review of the original LP)
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  • Various - The Precious Years (34 Teen Dance Hits From The Bear Family Archives) (CD)


    34 Teen Dance Hits From The Bear Family Archives (CD)
    1-CD with 28-page booklet, 34 tracks. Total playing time approx. 75 minutes.

    34 songs, lighthearted rock ‘n’ roll and dreamy ballads. Songs from the golden teenage era of the late 1950s and early ‘60s. Artists include Rick Nelson, The Everly Brothers, Eddie Cochran a.m.o.

    Brimful CD compilation with the perfect soundtrack for your next vintage party!
    Teenage parties of the late 1950s and early 1960s undoubtedly had their own soundtracks, with songs about teenage love, abandonment and growing up and well … teenage parties! Bear Family’s ’The Precious Years’ compilation takes you with 34 tracks to the times of ’High School Dances’, ’Sock Hops’, ’College Parties’, ’Record Hops’, ’Pyjama Parties’ and ’Senior Proms’. 

    Besides the well-known teen idols like Ricky Nelson, Tommy Sands, Paul Anka, Eddie Cochran and Pat Boone, there are many performers who didn’t belong to the classic ’teen idols’, but who tried to get their piece of the cake on the competitive teen market. They did not always succeed, but qualitatively they were not inferior to the ’experts’ of this profession. Lesser known performers in this genre included Lefty Frizzell, Marty Robbins, Jimmy Donley, Marvin Rainwater and Glenn Reeves to name but a few who were not typical representatives of teenage rock ’n’ roll.

    On this compilation you will find a big selection of great uptempo songs and dreamy ballads – what you had heard at parties at that time and what you could identify with! We wish you lots of fun on the journey to the time of Milkshakes, Ice Cream Sundaes, Pizza Parlors, Malt Shops and Drive-In Movies’.

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  • Various - Great Tragedy – Winter Dance Party 1959 Vol. 2 (CD)


    BEAR FAMILY : Our second release on commemoration of the tragic plane crash that killed Buddy Holly, Ritchie Valens and The Big Bopper on February 3, 1959.

    The second part of the ’Winter Dance Party’ tour will be covered for the first time with this CD album. The promoters let the tour continue seamlessly! Dion & The Belmonts, Frankie Sardo and the Crickets (Buddy Hollys Band) from the original tour line-up stayed on board.

    Replacement for the casualties was quickly found: Frankie Avalon, Jimmy Clanton, Fabian, Robert Velline and his Shadows, and Bill Parsons filled the gaps. The new tour members were successful young teen idols, hardly the typical heavy rock ’n’ rollers. Two more songs dedicated to Buddy Holly, Ritchie Valens and The Big Bopper complete this CD.

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  • Various - Bärenstark – Bear Essentials (Käytetty CD)


    27 stars salute Bear Family’s 25th anniversary.
    Comes with 80 pages booklet.

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