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on 16 February 2016
INTRODUCTION:

The Monument Record label was launched by experienced record man Fred Foster in 1958 in Washington. The label proudly took its name from the Washington Monument. In 1960, he relocated the label to Nashville, just as Roy Orbison found his hitmaking stride. As one can see from the contents below, Monument label is more than just Roy Orbison. Other big stars included Billy Grammer, Billy Graves, Bob Moore, Boots Randolph, Jerry Byrd and Kathy Linden (after her Goodbye Jimmy Goodbye hit). In the 60s, Monument also signed Dolly Parton, Ray Stevens and Kris Kristofferson. It was sold in 1990 and CBS Records (now Sony Muisc), Monument’s distributor from 1971-76, reactivated the label in 1997 with artists like the Dixie Chicks. Fred Foster, who co-wrote the best-selling Me And Bobby McGee with Kris Kristofferson, remained active with the label until 1983. The label’s slogan was “Monument Is Artistry.”

CONTENTS:

This 2 CD set has 40 songs. I have compiled a detailed song listing (with chart position, year, and personal comments), which is as follows:

Disc 1:
01 Running Scared – Roy Orbison (1/1961)
02 Tobacco Road – Bobby Brinkley (uncharted single, 1962)*rare gem; original version; Nashville Teens took this John D. Loudermilk’s song to 14/1964.
03 Tonight (Could Be The Night) – The Velvets (26/1961)*rare gem
04 I Went A Walkin’ – Curtis & Del (uncharted single, 1961)
05 The Nervous Auctioneer – Robin Wilson (uncharted single, 1960)
06 The Shaq (Is Totally Cool) – Billy Graves (53/1959)*rare gem; country singer; performed with Dick Flood on the Jimmy Dean TV Show.
07 Allentown Jail – Kathy Linden (uncharted single, 1960)*rare gem; after her success on Felsted with Billy & Goodbye Jimmy Goodbye.
08 Gotta Travel On – Billy Grammer (Pop 4/1958; C&W 5/1959)*rare gem; his biggest hit; country singer regularly on the Jimmy Dean TV Show
09 Last Cigarette – Paul Clayton (uncharted single, 1961)
10 Chiricahua – Jack Eubacks (uncharted single, 1961)*should have included his hit Searchin’ and Take A Message To Mary.
11 Dream Baby – Roy Orbison (4/1962)
12 It’s My Way – Dick Flood (uncharted single, 1960)
13 Fancy Dan – Boots Randolph & His Orchestra (uncharted single, 1961)*he charted from 1963 to 1970.
14 Too Many Chicks – Leona Douglas (uncharted single, 1962)
15 Mexico – Bob Moore (Pop 7/1961; AC 1/1961)*great song! He led the band on many Roy Orbison’s sessions on Monument.
16 Ma Baker’s Island – Norris Wilson (uncharted single, 1962)
17 Indian Love Call – Jerry Byrd & His Steel Guitar (b-side to Theme From Adventures In Paradise, 1960)*rare gem.
18 It Takes You – Billy Grammer (uncharted single, 1959)*rare gem
19 N-U-T-H-I-N-G – Stan Robinson (uncharted single, 1959)
20 Crying – Roy Orbison (2/1961)

Disc 2:
01 Who’s Gonna Buy You Ribbons – Paul Clayton (uncharted single, 1960)
02 What’d I Say – Jack Eubanks, His Orchestra & Singers (uncharted single, 1961)*rare gem
03 Only The Lonely – Roy Orbison (2/1960)
04 The Three Bells (The Jimmy Brown Story) – Dick Flood (23/1959)*rare gem
05 Double Crossin’ Sweetie Pie – Janice Ward (uncharted single, 1961)
06 For A Little While – Norris Wilson (uncharted single, 1962)*original name.
07 Cherry Berry Lips – Curtis & Del (uncharted single, 1962)
08 Midnight Bus – Billy Graves (uncharted single, 1959)*rare gem
09 So In Love With You – Kathy Linden (uncharted single, 1961)*rare gem
10 That Lucky Old Sun – The Velvets (uncharted single, 1960)
11 Up Town – Roy Orbison (72/1960)
12 (Theme From) My Three Sons – Bob Moore (uncharted single, 1959)*rare gem; great version that rivaled Lawrence’s Welk’s rare gem.
13 Close To Me – Robin Wilson (uncharted single, 1960)
14 Bonaparte’s Retreat – Billy Grammer (50/1959)*rare gem
15 (Theme From) Adventures in Paradise – Jerry Byrd (97/1960)*rare gem
16 (I’m Just) The Guy With The Car – Bobby Brinkley (uncharted single, 1962)
17 Blue Angel – Roy Orbison (9/1960)
18 Hey! Daddy, Daddy – Boots Randolph (uncharted single, 1961)
19 The Thing – Grandpa Jones & His Grandchildren (uncharted single, 1960)
20 Lana – The Velvets (b-side to Laugh, 1961)*rare gem

POSITIVE POINTS:

1 This is a great collection with 50 songs, many being charted hits, e.g., Roy Orbison, Billy Grammer, Jerry Byrd, Bob Moore, Dick Flood and Billy Graves.
2 There are also many uncharted rare gems, like Theme From My Three Sons by Bob Moore, Kathy Linden’s output after her charted success on Felsted label.
3 The sound is good with no hiss.
4 The songs are all original versions. No re-recorded versions.
5 There is a nice essay by Mick St. Michael on the history of Monument label.
6 The price is certainly reasonable (especially from sellers).

NEGATIVE POINTS:

1 I would have preferred charted hits instead of uncharted hits (like Jack Eubanks & Norris Wilson).
2 The restriction to year 1959 to 1962 (probably due to Public Domain law).

FINAL THOUGHTS:

Monument label is one that I am quite familiar with, mainly due to Roy Orbison. There are many hits in this set with many rare gems. The sound is good. The price is reasonable. This set is recommended, especially for collectors.
0Comment|2 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
Monument Records are best known for releasing early Roy Orbison records but they had a much wider span of music and a pretty long run as a label. This latest issue is a winner both for the feel of the late 1950s and early 1960s and the sound transfers make for easy listening. The liner notes are informative and the artwork attractive with some small photographs of the artists included.
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on 5 July 2014
I really enjoyed this compilation. I've been impressed with all of the One - Day Music series, but this one seems a little different for some reason. Obviously the 6 Orbison tracks are well known, as are the Billy Grammer items ( two of them anyway ), and one of my all-time fave doo-wops "That Lucky Old Sun" is here with the usual batch of relatively unknown artistes and recordings. Very diverse, and there are some nice instrumentals, incl. Hawaiian & South American arrangements.Hearing "The Thing" transported me back to my Childrens Favourites days- wonderful!!!
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on 9 August 2014
Yes, we all know what Roy Orbison did! No doubt his tracks have always outdone anything Monument produced, but check out the Velvets. Orbison himself discovered them and brought them to Monument. They were four high school students with their English teacher Virgil Johnson from West Texas; very unusual territory for doo-wop. "Tonight (Could Be The Night)" was their smash hit in 1960, featured here. Their other tracks were and are very underrated; "Lana" was cut by Orbison himself.

Other notable tracks here are "Tobacco Road" by Bobby Brinkley; not the original, but I admit is quite good. I like it even better than the commercial Nashville Teens version later in 1964. Bob Moore's instrumental "Mexico" was a Top Ten hit in 1962; his orchestra offered the backing on many of the label's tracks.

Anyway, good overview of the Monument label!
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on 27 April 2014
Good compilation , good quality of mastering. Only downside is the poor liner notes. I guess I am spoilt when I see the offerings put out by other companies and the liner notes are not very comprehensive, they are better than none but....
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on 4 March 2015
A mix of early 60s music ,pop,blues ,soul middle of road stuff but good value as there are some gems on it
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on 17 July 2014
A very good collection of oldies, which is good to reminisce with. Good value for money.
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on 6 September 2014
Excellent.
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on 22 September 2014
love it
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on 15 December 2014
brill
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