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Various - Record Label Profiles The LIN & KLIFF Story (4-CD Deluxe Box Set)

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4-CD box (LP-size) with 52-page book, 124 tracks. Playing time approx. 296 mns. Joe Leonard's... more

Various - Record Label Profiles: The LIN & KLIFF Story (4-CD Deluxe Box Set)

4-CD box (LP-size) with 52-page book, 124 tracks. Playing time approx. 296 mns.

Joe Leonard's Lin Records of Gainesville, Texas arrived relatively late among the independent labels that began the years following World War II, and it was not especially prolific, but it and its Kliff subsidiary produced a number of excellent and enduring records during a fourteen year existence (1954-1968). Lin enjoyed one national hit, Ken Copeland's Pledge Of Love in 1957, and Leonard placed a number of masters with larger labels like MGM, Imperial and Dot, while covering a wide spectrum of styles, including honky-tonk, western swing, rockabilly, rock and roll, doo wop, rhythm and blues and pop.

Joe Leonard combined business acumen and strong promotional skills with a good ear for talent and an astute willingness not only to adapt to changing tastes, but also to take an occasional chance. Bear Family has previously chronicled Lin's most prolific and important artists, Buck Griffin and Andy Starr and this 4-CD set contains representative examples of their best work, along with well over a hundred recordings by other Lin artists, both important and obscure, like Jerry Fuller, Ray Ruff, David Ray, Ken Copeland, The Strikes, The Four Mints, J.B. Brinkley, and many others. It contains single discs devoted to Lin's country and pop recordings, as well as two discs exploring rockabilly, rock 'n' roll and all points in between.


THE LIN & KLIFF STORY
"It was something we had burning desire to do. We felt like we were right about the commercial potential of an artist. It turned out lots of times that we were wrong, but we kept on going." 
Joe Leonard


Joe Leonard's Lin Records out of Gainesville, Texas arrived relatively late among the independent labels that proliferated in the years following World War II, its first session taking place in the winter end of 1953-54. The labels that sprang up in this boom period ran the gamut from tiny, one or two-off locals to more ambitious companies that enjoyed lengthy and successful regional, and in a few cases national, identities. The smaller of these were sometimes merely a recording artist's vanity label, or sometimes short-lived because they were ill-timed or ill-financed, or simply unlucky despite big-eyed ambition, while the larger companies were often characterized by the forceful personalities and/or ruthless business operations of their owners, like Lew Chudd's Imperial or Bill McCall's Four Star Records -- though there were ruthless small timers, too, like Jimmy Mercer at Royalty in Paris, Texas, and honest big shots, like Starday's Pappy Daily in Houston.

The majority of independents that emerged from the mid-1940s through the 1950s may have been those short-lived failures with a handful of now rare releases, but there were a notable number that were prolific enough or hung around long enough to establish more permanent legacies. Some of these may have ultimately been victims of their own success. Jim Bulleit's Bullet label out of Nashville, for example, survived a half dozen years (and change in ownership) and produced well over a hundred issues, but was effectively sunk rather early in its existence by being too ambitious and incautious after landing the biggest pop hit of 1947. Others rose quickly with an impressive gush of releases, then collapsed under the weight of it all when too few of those releases sold sufficiently (and too few distibutors paid for those records that did sell); witness Herb Rippa's Bluebonnet label in Dallas, or Sol Kahal's Freedom Records or Macy Lela Henry's Macy's label, both of Houston, all three of which issued as many or more records in less than three years than Lin and its sister label Kliff did in fourteen.

Joe Leonard's relatively conservative volume of output over the years -- not only the fourteen years of Lin Records' actual life, but involvement in publishing and side recording projects that continue to the present -- is indicative of a deliberately cautious approach to a usually unkind business. Leonard coupled business acumen (tellingly, he approached Lin as a sideline, always anchored by other more stable enterprises) and strong promotional skills with a good ear for the commercial and an astute willingness, not only to adapt to changing tastes, but also to take an occasional chance, which set Lin apart from, and allowed it to outlive most contemporaries.

Lin enjoyed one national hit, Pledge Of Love by Ken Copeland in 1957, and Joe Leonard placed several artists and a number of individual Lin sides with larger labels, including MGM, Imperial and Dot. It covered a wide spectrum of styles, beginning as a country label, then easing toward rockabilly, pop and rock 'n' roll in time, with an odd R&B, comedy or children's record thrown in here and there. Its lasting impact and significance stems from its early exploration of rockabilly and its subsequent signing of a number of excellent Texas-Oklahoma area rock 'n' roll performers, none of whom became household names but who produced dozens of prized and enduring sides.

The recordings of Andy Starr and Buck Griffin, Lin's most prolific artists (though many of their Lin-produced recordings were released on larger labels), have been collected on previous Bear Family CDs. Four sides by the Strikes, leased to Imperial have been reissued on 'That'll Flat Git It, Vol. 12' (BCD 16102). These were singers who came to Joe Leonard as essentially country acts that veered toward rockabilly and rock 'n' roll. They have been included here as well, in representative early sides, along with artists like the classic late-period rockabilly David Ray (Ray Smith), the elusive, Buddy Holly-struck West Texan Ray Ruff, and the fresh-faced, unassuming teen Ken Copeland, whose surprising stabs at rock 'n' roll stand in stark contrast to his pop sides (and who is far better known today as televangelist Kenneth Copeland). Also getting his start at Lin and almost as squeaky-clean as Copeland was in 1957, was Jerry Fuller, who became a semi-successful recording artist after leaving Lin, then far more successful as a songwriter and producer.

Included among the more than 120 sides here are pop, country, R&B, and many stops in between -- how does one neatly categorize the niteclub quasi-rock 'n' roll of the Chuck-A-Lucks' Disc Jockey Fever ? --from Wayne Jetton's inaugural country sides from the winter of 1953-54 to Honee Welch's overlooked blue-eyed soul from 1968. In addition to the artists mentioned above, and many others -- The Four Mints, The Atmospheres, Steve Wright, and on -- this set features a impressive roll call of excellent backing musicians, from guitarists Thumbs Carllile and J.B. Brinkley, fiddlers Johnny Manson, Jimmy Belkin and Johnny Gimble, tenor banjoist Marvin 'Smokey' Montgomery, pianist Bill Simmons, to multi-instrumentalist Paul Buskirk, Nashville session legends like saxophonist Boots Randolph and pianist Floyd Cramer, and even the soon-to-be country-pop singing star Sonny James when he was still working Dallas recording sessions as a decidedly country fiddler...

KEVIN COFFEY
Fort Worth, Texas

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The LIN & KLIFF Story (4-CD Deluxe Box Set)

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Various - Record Label Profiles - The LIN & KLIFF Story (4-CD Deluxe Box Set) Box set 1
01 A Crazy Mind Plus A Foolish Heart JETTON, Wayne
02 Meadowlark Boogie GRIFFIN, Buck
03 I'm Running For Your Heart SWITZER, Bill
04 Too Fast, Too Wild RAY, David
05 Just Give Me Time CRABB, Larry & Louis
06 I Love You Just Because SHELTON, Merle
07 The Dirty Bird Song STARR, Andy
08 Lookin' For The Green GRIFFIN, Buck
09 Pecosita (Freckle-Face)(& FRANK DOVE) ARMSTRONG, Gene
10 (Love You, Baby) All The Time RAY, David
11 My Louisiana Home CRABB, Larry & Louis
12 Bawlin' And Squallin' (Over You) GRIFFIN, Buck
13 Do You Remember? BUSKIRK, Paul & Freddy Powers
14 Loser BUSKIRK, Paul & Freddy Powers
15 Do It Right STARR, Andy
16 The Richest Man Alive GOLD, Johnny
17 Somebody's Girl JETTON, Wayne
18 Chilena, My Dancing Girl SHELTON, Merle
19 Why Can't You And I RAY, David
20 Cochise GRIFFIN, Buck
21 You Are Still In My Heart CRABB, Larry & Louis
22 Little Red Bird SWITZER, Bill
23 Wasted Love BUSKIRK, Paul
24 Let's Elope Baby GRIFFIN, Buck
25 Lonely Hours ARMSTRONG, Gene
26 Chapel Of My Heart BUSKIRK, Paul
27 Because I Love You GOLD, Johnny
28 Please Pardon My Tears CRABB, Larry & Louis
29 The Prisoner's Farewell MITCHELL, Woody
30 It Don't Make No Never Mind GRIFFIN, Buck
31 She's Somebody's Mother MITCHELL, Woody
32 Lonesome Baby Blues RAY, David
Various - Record Label Profiles - The LIN & KLIFF Story (4-CD Deluxe Box Set) Box set 2
01 Rockin' Rollin' Stone STARR, Andy
02 Lonesome Baby Blues RAY, David
03 Guitar Smoke BRINKLEY, J.B.
04 Mother Goose At The Bandstand FULLER, Jerry
05 Stutterin' Papa GRIFFIN, Buck
06 Busy Body Rock FOUR MINTS
07 Where The Rio De Rosa Flows COPELAND, Ken
08 Teenage Love FULLER, Jerry
09 I Took A Liking To You RUFF, Ray
10 If You Can't Rock Me (alt.) STRIKES
11 I Am A Fool RAY, David
12 The Door Is Open FULLER, Jerry
13 Saccharin Sally TU-TONES
14 Angel Blue RUFF, Ray
15 I Want To Go Steady With You COPELAND, Ken
16 Blue Memories FULLER, Jerry
17 The Fickle Chicken ATMOSPHERES
18 My Girlfriend's Car RUFF, Ray
19 Now I Know McCLAREY, Butch
20 Kabalo ATMOSPHERES
21 Far And Distant Lands WRIGHT, Steve
22 Little Mama Tree Top FOUR MINTS
23 I'll Be Your Baby BRINKLEY, J.B.
24 Come Back To Me STRIKES
25 A Certain Smile FULLER, Jerry
26 Jelly Roll Man SIMPSON, Bill
27 Pledge Of Love RUFF, Ray
28 Rockin' Hall McCLEARY, Butch
29 (Don't Leave Me) Alone FOUR MINTS
30 Wild, Wild Woman WRIGHT, Steve
Various - Record Label Profiles - The LIN & KLIFF Story (4-CD Deluxe Box Set) Box set 3
01 Round And Round STARR, Andy
02 Rough Tough Man CURTIS, Don
03 Jitterbugging Baby RAY, David
04 I Found A New Love FULLER, Jerry
05 Jessie Lee GRIFFIN, Buck
06 Dogfight JOKERS
07 Night Air FOUR MINTS
08 Through Eternity FULLER, Jerry
09 A Fool Again RUFF, Ray
10 My Poor Heart STRIKES
11 Still In Love With You TU-TONES
12 Lonesome Feeling RAY, David
13 Telegraph ATMOSPHERES
14 Angel From Above FULLER, Jerry
15 Do You Know PECK, Bill
16 In Dreamland RUFF, Ray
17 Caravan ATMOSPHERES
18 Special Kind Of Loving ALEXANDER, Don
19 Lipstick And Rouge FULLER, Jerry
20 Until You're Mine FOUR MINTS
21 Knee Shakin' TERRY, Don
22 I Do STRIKES
23 Fanny Brown COPELAND, Ken
24 My Little Girl CURTIS, Don
25 Old Man Mose SIMPSON, Bill
26 Beatle Maniacs RUFF, Ray
27 Do You Love Me FULLER, Jerry
28 She Giggles TERRY, Don
29 Blue Moonbeam JOKERS
30 Whistling Rock And Roll STUBBLEFIELD, Bill
Various - Record Label Profiles - The LIN & KLIFF Story (4-CD Deluxe Box Set) Box set 4
01 Disc Jockey Fever CHUCK-A-LUCKS
02 Pledge Of Love COPELAND, Ken
03 Dark Eyes TANNER COMBO, Bob
04 Music Box Lullaby JOHNSTON, Nora
05 Rendezvous REDD, Ramona
06 Someone To Love Me COPELAND, Ken
07 Late In The Evening DUNCAN, Doodle
08 You'e Getting The Idea COPELAND, Ken
09 Show Me The Way (To Your Heart) ROBINSON, Margee
10 A Twist Of Lemon TANNER, R. Wolfe
11 The Devil's Train CHUCK-A-LUCKS
12 And So It Goes PECK, Bill
13 Give Me Your Heart REDD, Ramona
14 Somewhere Angels Are Smiling JOHNSTON, Nora
15 Love Only Me COPELAND, Ken
16 Lonely Rhapsody TANNER COMBO, Bob
17 Death Row DUNCAN, Doodle
18 Beyond A Shadow Of A Doubt THOMPSON, Virginia
19 Suez STUBBLEFIELD, Bill
20 Who Am I? CHUCK-A-LUCKS
21 Hurt Me ROBINSON, Margee
22 Golden Grain HOLMAN, Dixon
23 The Magic Of First Love CHUCK-A-LUCKS
24 Locked In The Arms Of Love COPELAND, Ken
25 Fools HART, Trella
26 Going Home, All Alone HART, Trella
27 Why Did She Leave WELCH, Honee
28 It's Me Girl WELCH, Honee
29 I'm Gonna Try (To Steal Her) WELCH, Honee
30 Woman Child WELCH, Honee
31 Angels Can Lie WELCH, Honee
32 It Must Be Love WELCH, Honee
Records Visionaries Label Profiles History and Wedegang of record companies In addition to... more
"Various - Record Label Profiles"

Records Visionaries

Label Profiles
History and Wedegang of record companies
In addition to presenting special record companies on individual CDs, Bear Family Records has dedicated boxes and entire series to several labels over the last twenty years.

The Texas label D-Records, for example, changes on 24 CDs from an ethnic-folkloristic label to a hardcore honky-tonk smithy and the home of the very young George Strait.

Then there is the indispensable Sun range and some other great boxes.

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18 May 2017

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THE LIN & KLIFF STORY
THE LIN & KLIFF STORY "It was something we had burning desire to do. We felt like we were right about the commercial potential of an artist. It turned out lots of times that we were wrong, but we kept on going." Joe Leonard Joe Leonard's Lin Records out of Gainesville, Texas arrived relatively late among the independent labels that proliferated in the years following World War II, its first session taking place in the winter end of 1953-54. The labels that sprang up in this boom period ran the gamut from tiny, one or two-off locals to more ambitious companies that enjoyed lengthy and successful regional, and in a few cases national, identities. The smaller of these were sometimes merely a recording artist's vanity label, or sometimes short-lived because they were ill-timed or ill-financed, or simply unlucky despite big-eyed ambition, while the larger companies were often characterized by the forceful personalities and/or ruthless business operations of their owners, like Lew Chudd's Imperial or Bill McCall's Four Star Records -- though there were ruthless small timers, too, like Jimmy Mercer at Royalty in Paris, Texas, and honest big shots, like Starday's Pappy Daily in Houston.
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Tracklist
Various - Record Label Profiles - The LIN & KLIFF Story (4-CD Deluxe Box Set) Box set 1
01 A Crazy Mind Plus A Foolish Heart
02 Meadowlark Boogie
03 I'm Running For Your Heart
04 Too Fast, Too Wild
05 Just Give Me Time
06 I Love You Just Because
07 The Dirty Bird Song
08 Lookin' For The Green
09 Pecosita (Freckle-Face)(& FRANK DOVE)
10 (Love You, Baby) All The Time
11 My Louisiana Home
12 Bawlin' And Squallin' (Over You)
13 Do You Remember?
14 Loser
15 Do It Right
16 The Richest Man Alive
17 Somebody's Girl
18 Chilena, My Dancing Girl
19 Why Can't You And I
20 Cochise
21 You Are Still In My Heart
22 Little Red Bird
23 Wasted Love
24 Let's Elope Baby
25 Lonely Hours
26 Chapel Of My Heart
27 Because I Love You
28 Please Pardon My Tears
29 The Prisoner's Farewell
30 It Don't Make No Never Mind
31 She's Somebody's Mother
32 Lonesome Baby Blues
Various - Record Label Profiles - The LIN & KLIFF Story (4-CD Deluxe Box Set) Box set 2
01 Rockin' Rollin' Stone
02 Lonesome Baby Blues
03 Guitar Smoke
04 Mother Goose At The Bandstand
05 Stutterin' Papa
06 Busy Body Rock
07 Where The Rio De Rosa Flows
08 Teenage Love
09 I Took A Liking To You
10 If You Can't Rock Me (alt.)
11 I Am A Fool
12 The Door Is Open
13 Saccharin Sally
14 Angel Blue
15 I Want To Go Steady With You
16 Blue Memories
17 The Fickle Chicken
18 My Girlfriend's Car
19 Now I Know
20 Kabalo
21 Far And Distant Lands
22 Little Mama Tree Top
23 I'll Be Your Baby
24 Come Back To Me
25 A Certain Smile
26 Jelly Roll Man
27 Pledge Of Love
28 Rockin' Hall
29 (Don't Leave Me) Alone
30 Wild, Wild Woman
Various - Record Label Profiles - The LIN & KLIFF Story (4-CD Deluxe Box Set) Box set 3
01 Round And Round
02 Rough Tough Man
03 Jitterbugging Baby
04 I Found A New Love
05 Jessie Lee
06 Dogfight
07 Night Air
08 Through Eternity
09 A Fool Again
10 My Poor Heart
11 Still In Love With You
12 Lonesome Feeling
13 Telegraph
14 Angel From Above
15 Do You Know
16 In Dreamland
17 Caravan
18 Special Kind Of Loving
19 Lipstick And Rouge
20 Until You're Mine
21 Knee Shakin'
22 I Do
23 Fanny Brown
24 My Little Girl
25 Old Man Mose
26 Beatle Maniacs
27 Do You Love Me
28 She Giggles
29 Blue Moonbeam
30 Whistling Rock And Roll
Various - Record Label Profiles - The LIN & KLIFF Story (4-CD Deluxe Box Set) Box set 4
01 Disc Jockey Fever
02 Pledge Of Love
03 Dark Eyes
04 Music Box Lullaby
05 Rendezvous
06 Someone To Love Me
07 Late In The Evening
08 You'e Getting The Idea
09 Show Me The Way (To Your Heart)
10 A Twist Of Lemon
11 The Devil's Train
12 And So It Goes
13 Give Me Your Heart
14 Somewhere Angels Are Smiling
15 Love Only Me
16 Lonely Rhapsody
17 Death Row
18 Beyond A Shadow Of A Doubt
19 Suez
20 Who Am I?
21 Hurt Me
22 Golden Grain
23 The Magic Of First Love
24 Locked In The Arms Of Love
25 Fools
26 Going Home, All Alone
27 Why Did She Leave
28 It's Me Girl
29 I'm Gonna Try (To Steal Her)
30 Woman Child
31 Angels Can Lie
32 It Must Be Love