By March 26, 2016 Read More →

Weekend Needle Drop-Troublemakers

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Troublemakers-Compilation Warner/Reprise
Released 1980
Before the internet the Compilation Album was a great way to find out about music. An inexpensive way for a record label to get the word out about their artist. Be it a genre related release or label centric, as a consumer you got quite a lot of bang for your buck.

Warner/Reprise released a series of “Loss Leaders” Double LP Compilations only available through the mail at a cost of $3 each postage paid. Now talk about a bargain. At the time you figure about $1.35 raw cost to produce the records and jacket, .15 cents for the caraton, add postage, engineering and advertising and so on. $3 maybe more with neither the Labels or the artist making any money off of these releases.

Each “Loss Leader Compilation had 24 tracks many of them unreleased elsewhere and you only got them if you decided you wanted them mailed.

I have a couple of these in my collection but the first one I got was Troublemakers, a collection of songs by artist that were signed to Warner Bros or Reprise Records that may not have been getting Radio play or major sales.

Troublemaker was the last release in the “Loss Leader” series(the first was released in 1969 and had songs by the Mothers of Invention, Jethro Tull and Jimi Hendrix.) 23 Compilations were released in the series.

What I loved so much about this particular release was the introduction of new artist I might not have come across until years later if not for getting these slabs of wax delivered to my house. I was already familiar with DEVO, the Sex Pistols, Public Image Ltd. and the Buggles(Radio Killed the Radio Star). Though was not hip at that time to Wire, Gang of Four, Pearl Harbour and the Explosions or Modern Lovers(Johnathan Richman).

It was through collections of songs like this and those put out by I.R.S and Stiff that help me and many others hone our musical landscape for years to come.

The compilation made a comeback in the late 90’s early 2000’s with Punk and SKA labels around the World once again introducing new acts at an affordable price. Asian Man Records Mail Order is Fun Comps were a favorite to many with a very affordable price and usually showcasing another label along with those bands on Asian Man.

Why don’t you dig out an old comp and remember when finding new music was an adventure.




About the Author:

Middagh Goodwin LIVES Music. He has been booking and promoting Music, Art and Comedy for years in the Central Valley. He ran the award winning Plea for Peace Center in Stockton for 5 Years and has booked bands from A-Z. Middagh is beginning 2016 with a new position at the Gallo Center for the Arts and celebrating Beat Happy! Music's 30th Anniversary. Read the MAMAView every month and a the Needle Drop 52 Records 52 Weeks.