[78-L] 1st Family

Michael Biel mbiel at mbiel.com
Sat Mar 6 15:28:25 PST 2010

Bertrand CHAUMELLE wrote:
> The last URL you sent us. So it must be that guide. Thanks to eBey for 
> saving my life !
> I know that comedy album; I've seen it several times at the flea 
> market, here, in the old days. 

Pressed where?  France?  I have Canadian and British issues but didn't 
know of any others.  Get me details of any from Europe. 

 > I found the cover unattractive

Actually I love the combination of the light green grass and the light 
blue sky.  In the original Cadence pressings the color cover folds over 
the edges to the back, and make blue and green stripes when there are 
several on the shelf.   I remember when price shopping the day  after 
Thanksgiving 1962 there were 500 copies on the counter at e.j. Korvettes 
and the effect of the colored edges was striking.  They had the best 
price and were completely sold out when I returned less than two hours 
later after checking 5 other stores. That day I saw over a thousand 
copies of both that album and My Son the Folk Singer, and not one copy 
was stereo!  I didn't find my first stereo copy of TFF until 1974, and 
MSTFS until maybe 4 years ago.  Yet they both also topped the separate 
Billboard Stereo charts. 

> and I discovered Jonathan Winters, instead. As unattractive, perhaps, but 
> very funny (in my opinion).

I think I have a complete set of all his LPs, including the underground 
dirty ones.
> So you're interested by that album, not because it's supposed to make 
> you laugh, but because it's about a president who had a violent death, 
> isn't it ? 

Not at all.  I can recite the entire album from beginning to end, and 
some of the tracks from the Vol 2.  I started collecting all of the 
other lesser JFK comedy albums immediately in 1962, such as The Other 
Family, The Other First Family, My Son The President, etc.  I have well 
over 2000 comedy LPs.  I also started buying JFK speech albums even 
before his death  I think the first one with his inaugural address on 
one side and FDR speeches on the other side I got in early 1962.  I have 
a whole room of spoken word documentary and comedy. 

> If you happen to find a comedy album about Ike or Truman, 
> you won't stop by ? The tragedy aspect is  'the main ingredient' ? Just 
> curious.  BC
I do have every album I've ever been able to afford about Ike and 
Truman, but there were not that many devoted to them individually.  
After JFK there were many presidential comedy albums about Johnson, 
Nixon, Carter, Reagan, etc.   Of course there also were comedy albums by 
Mort Saul and other political comedians like Will Rogers joking about 
Coolidge and FDR.  There was a great album by Professor Irwin Cory 
during the 1960 campaign, and my daughter met him last year and told him 
that my favorite joke is his from that album:  "FDR showed that you 
could be president FOREVER.  Truman proved that ANYBODY can be 
president.  And Eisenhower proved that we don't NEED a president!"  I 
think I got it in 62.
There are comedy albums of speeches "The Stevenson Wit", "The Kennedy 
Wit", "Who's In Charge Here?" "Welcome to the LBJ Ranch", and many 
others.  There are about 3 or 4 shelf feet of political comedy records 
downstairs.  But most of these have been detailed in the excellent 
Goldmine Price Guide to Comedy Albums, so that aspect has been done.  My 
idea is to show the marketing, business, and production aspect of how 
the industry reacted to two huge super-hit albums that absolutely took 
over the 1962 Xmas season and were far from being Christmas oriented 
albums like would normally be expected.  The follow-up was about how the 
industry was wondering how that could match that, but then with less 
than 5 weeks cam the tragedy that shut down the country.  The two 
tribute albums that were totally speeches and were sold for just $1 for 
charity were just as amazing in 4 million sales in a couple of weeks 
that strained all aspects of the industry which knew it was not doing it 
to amke any money.  It was a catharsis for the country.  We laughed one 
year and cried the nest.  The record industry had never seen xmas 
seasons like these two, and now there are no more media sales at all!  
Even the Beatles, Elvis, Michael Jackson were never like this because 
they never hit like this in an Xmas season.

Here's another little story.  In early Dec 1967 Columbia put out a 
comedy album "Senator Bobby's Christmas Party" which sold only in 
December and unsold copies would be sent back by the stores with all the 
other Xmas albums by around a January 10 deadline. The album never 
really sold, and I don't remember seeing a copy in the stores.  We had 
aired a sample 45 of some excerpts that Columbia had sent, but they 
never sent the station the LP.  Around March or April I took a chance 
and included the catalog number in an order for DJ copies I sent in to 
Columbia and was surprised to get it. Of course you know what happened a 
couple of months later and I have never seen another copy of that LP.  
And most of the other Bobby Kennedy comedy albums I have like "Boston 
Soul" I got before the assassination. 

Mike Biel  mbiel at mbiel.com

Le 6 mars 10, à 22:13, Michael Biel a écrit :
>> Bertrand CHAUMELLE wrote:
>>> eBey says >Unfortunately, access to this particular item has been
>>> blocked due to legal restrictions in some countries.
>> Was it the record (just a worn copy Tschaik 6th on Columbia) or his
>> guide to losing 35 pounds in a week?  THAT woud kill you!
>>> I was just wondering, Mike, why do you collect multiple copies of 'The
>>> First Family' (LP)?
>> For many years I have been planning to write the story of the 1962 Xmas
>> season when this and My Son the Folk Singer sold millions in a few
>> weeks.  Cadence had to use 10 pressing plants in the U.S. and I have
>> copies from at least 8.  I want to include full descriptive data.  I
>> already  have the complete inside story of the planning, pressing , and
>> distribution of both of the albums, and the story of the sequels.
>> Something always comes up when I plan to write it, but 2012 is the 50th
>> anniv so this WILL be IT.  I will also do a follow up on the 63 Xmas
>> season which was overtaken by the JFK assassination and several tribute
>> LPs sold even faster than the First Family/My Son had the year before.
>> I have several shelf feet of JFK LPs and a proper discography has never
>> been done.
>>> And, thanks for you previous 'calm and logical' replies. I think that,
>>> now, I may have a better understanding of what makes you tick$  BC
>> Good.  Now tell me!  (only kidding)
>> Mike Biel  mbiel at mbiel.com

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