Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Little Caesar & The Romans

Little Caesar & The Romans Not to be confused with Little Caesar & The Consuls, though the none other than Joel Whitburn himself does so confuse them. The Romans were American, the Consuls Canadian, just so we’re clear.

They’ve had warnings on re-recordings for a while now; sometimes the warnings sound positively glowing. This is where some recording artist (or group, though not likely the original group) rerecords some old hit, and they make a collection of these, and release it on some budget priced CD. And it sounds like crap. But of course the recording techniques are more modern and the sound itself is probably superior (at least technically, not necessarily atmospherically) to the original. And so the warning, telling us that we are not getting what we may think we are getting, often lauds the improved sound quality, and downplays the inauthenticity of the experience.

But that’s all material for reflection. It didn’t used to be like that. And back in the day I got burned once or twice. I remember buying a double album that positively brimmed with great 60s oldies, but as luck would have it they were almost all bogus. One of the exceptions (out of a maximum of three, I can’t remember now) was the one hit by Little Caesar & The Romans. The sound on it is so primitive that it’s a giveaway. A lesson learned.

Little Caesar & The Romans:

Those Oldies But Goodies (Remind Me Of You) – This was a hit in the summer of 1961, so I don’t know how old the oldies were, though one could go back to Palestrina if one wants, I suppose. And Little Caesar (I assume that’s him singing, though apparently at least 2 members of the group each claimed to be him) repeatedly commits one of the great grammatical gaffes of pop music when he keeps singing how “those oldies but goodies reminds me of you.” But beyond all the silliness, there is something truly profound about the songs that comprise the soundtrack of one’s life. Just ask me. “Yes dear, they’re playing OUR song…”

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