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Ritchie Valens In Concert At Pacoima Jr. High (LP)

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  • LPRN70233-C
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(Rhino) 10 tracks - Reproduction of the original 1960 'DelFi' album! Cut-out LP! Ritchie... more

Ritchie Valens: In Concert At Pacoima Jr. High (LP)

(Rhino) 10 tracks - Reproduction of the original 1960 'DelFi' album! Cut-out LP!

Ritchie Valens in concert at Pacoima Jr. High
We at Del-Fi have released the following recorded Assembly because somehow the word got out that it had been recorded, and the requests from Ritchie's Fan Clubs are so numerous that we finally decided to include the Assembly as part of this new album. We realize that the recorded sound is not as clear as we would like it, but when recording .on-the-spot" this sometimes happens. At any rate this album is a rare opportunity to hear the great Ritchie Valens in person, and to hear him as he was in everyday life. As you listen, you will realize what is great entertainer he was, as well as having such a wonderfully natural sense of humor. Also his great humbleness is felt from the first works he speaks. Gail Smith, the President of the Los Angeles Ritchie Valens Memorial Fan Club, is the Mistress of Ceremonies and she was is very close friend of Ritchie's. They were classmates at Pacoima Jr. High School. We owe her many thanks for conducting the Assembly in such a fine fashion. Ironically, Ritchie sings one of the songs that made Eddie Cochran famous, 'Summertime Blues' Ritchie was very close to him, forming their friendship when they appeared together at the Loew's State Theatre in New York. Little did Ritchie know that Eddie Cochran was to die in a crash also. Another tune, 'From Beyond' although an instrumental, expresses Ritchie's inherent sadness felt in so many of his songs: such as 'Donna','Bluebeirds Over The Mountain', 'Now You're Gone' and others found in his first album 'Ritchie Valens' and his second album 'Ritchie'.

 By contrast his great feeling for humor is expressed in 'Summertime Blues' and 'Come On Let's Go' (which may sound slightly different from his record; but he never sang a song the same way twice). Also by contrast his endless vitality comes through when he sings the great hit 'La Bamba': So here we go...as we listen to the only 'on the spot' recording of the one and only 'Ritchie Valens in concert at Pacoima Jr. High'

Side two of this album has been devoted to presenting some of the recordings that 'may have been' had Ritchie lived. These are fragments of ideas not yet polished or completed ... ideas that Ritchie recorded at my home from time to time as we worked preparing new material. Many of these tunes have no names so I will describe them prior to each track. The first track you will hear is an idea for is rhythm song and, as far as I know, no lyrics have been written to it yet.

'This next track, No.2 shows the influence of thereat talent, Bo Diddley, who appeared with Ritchie on the same bill with Eddie Cochran for twelve days during the Allen Freed Christmas Show in New York. Ritchie had just returned from this engagement when he recorded the track you are about to hear. Track 3...One of Ritchie's greatest records was a Mexican folk song titled 'La Bamba' which he adapted. This next track was to be the follow-up to 'La Bamba' ... its title: 'Malaguena!' This song also is a great Mexican standard and, as you can hear, would have been another million seller we are sure. Although Ritchie had not put his voice to the song as yet, if you try, you can picture him singing it...with all the fire that was in his guitar playing, laying a foundation for his great voice. The next track, 4, is the beginning of a song about a boy who loved to dance. In case you cannot understand all the lyrics, we have put them down here for you to read: '

Well now, little girl, I'm getting so tired just waiting for you darling. I want to get to the dance tonight; I want to dance all the way. Well now, everytime I come here You're fixing your hair. Come on, little baby, Let's do the hop and rock it up tonight, dear; 'Cause I want to just dance, dance, dance. Well now, just rock along baby; You know, rock along baby. Let us rock little darlin: gonna rock it up tonight.'

The final track is a tune Ritchie called 'let's Rock And Roll'. Only part of the song was completed, but it had all the indications of being another 'Come On Let's Go': So here is the final song in the album: A perfect cross-section of the great Ritchie Valens, singing the songs he would have made famous had he lived.
Bob Keene, President Del-Fi Records, Inc.

Article properties: Ritchie Valens: In Concert At Pacoima Jr. High (LP)

  • Interpret: Ritchie Valens

  • Album titlle: In Concert At Pacoima Jr. High (LP)

  • Label RHINO

  • Genre Rock'n'Roll

  • Year of publication 1987
  • Geschwindigkeit 33 U/min
  • Vinyl record size LP (12 Inch)
  • Mint (M)
  • Sleeve Grading Mint (M)
  • Artikelart LP

  • EAN: 0081227023317

  • weight in Kg 0.21
Valens, Ritchie - In Concert At Pacoima Jr. High (LP) LP 1
01 Come On Let's Go Ritchie Valens
02 Donna Ritchie Valens
03 Summertime Blues Ritchie Valens
04 From Beyond Ritchie Valens
05 La Bamba Ritchie Valens
06 Rhythm Song Ritchie Valens
07 Guitar Instrumental Ritchie Valens
08 Malaguena Ritchie Valens
09 Rock Little Darlin' Ritchie Valens
10 Let's Rock And Roll Ritchie Valens
Ritchie Valens Ritchie Valens, who became the first major star of Chicano rock and roll in... more
"Ritchie Valens"

Ritchie Valens

Ritchie Valens, who became the first major star of Chicano rock and roll in Southern California, was born Richard Steven Valenzuela in Pacoima, San Fernando Valley (near Los An- geles), on May 13, 1941. His parents, of Mexican descent, separated when Richard was only three years old. He grew up with his father listening to Mariachi music, flamenco gui- tar, and rhythm and blues. His father encouraged his musical ambitions and Richard started playing guitar at a young age, as well as trumpet and drums. After his father’s sudden death in 1951, Richard returned to his mother’s home in Pacoima. He attended Pacoima Junior High School at age 13, where he entertained his schoolmates with his guitar. It was during this time that he began to develop his distinctive style, impro- vising words and melodies and seldom playing a song the same way twice.

Record producers would later remark that Ritchie played a song different every time. Valenzuela became a huge Little Richard fan when the rock and roll craze began. He joined a local band called The Sil- houettes as their guitarist but soon became their lead singer. His high-energy performances inspired by Richard’s rock and roll hero earned him the nickname ‘The Little Richard of the Valley.’ Those performances came to the attention of Del-Fi label boss Bob Keane, who recognized Richard’s star quality and signed him to a contract in May of 1958. On Keane’s recommendation, Valenzuela shortened his name to a more commercial-sounding Ritchie Valens. Valens’ first Del-Fi sin- gle Come On Let’s Go almost reached ‘Billboard’s‘ Top 40, peaking at #42 in September of 1958. Tommy Steele cov- ered the song for the British market. Only two months later, Valens hit it big with La Bamba b/w Donna, peaking at #22 (La Bamba) and #2 (Donna) on ‘Bill- board’s‘ Top 100. This huge success made Ritchie the first international Chicano star almost overnight.

He quit high school and made numerous television appearances, including Dick Clark’s ‘American Bandstand,’ and Alan Freed’s Christmas show. More recording sessions for Del-Fi and an appearance in the rock and roll film ‘Go, Johnny, Go’ fol- lowed. The fateful ‘Winter Dance Party’ tour of the Midwest started in early 1959, along with Buddy Holly, The Big Bopper, Dion and The Belmonts, and Frankie Sardo, among others. Poor climate conditions on the tour bus led Valens, Holly, and The Big Bopper to charter a plane after their gig in Clear Lake, Iowa. The plane crashed into a snowy field shortly af- ter takeoff, killing all on board. Valens was only 17 years old. Although Donna was Valens’ biggest hit, he is most remem- bered for his rockin’ version of the Mexican folk song La Bamba; three decades later it was the title of a movie about his life.

Recorded by Los Lobos for the movie, it reached top positions on the charts on both sides of the Atlantic and brought Ritchie‘s name back into the public consciousness in the 1980s. Valens was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2001, and he has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. Not bad for a youngster from the San Fernando Valley whose career lasted only eight months...

Marc Mittelacher in August 2020

© Bear Family Records®
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Various Artists
The Right To Rock - The Mexicano And Chicano Rock'n'Roll Rebellion 1955-1963 (CD)

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