Wednesday, August 09, 2006

Willie and the Bumblebees

Alright, I feel a little guilty about turning my mp3 blog into a lame travel blog, so I'm going to make it up to you right now. Right before I took off from Guatemala I headed over to Amoeba Records here in San Francisco. I kind of have a love hate relationship with that place. I go there all the time and I'm always buying records. Since I buy so many records at places like swap meets and such I end up with a lot of crap. Well, not really crap, but stuff I don't want and don't have the room for in my shitty one bedroom apartment. Often, while browsing through the records of Amoeba I encounter these same crappy records at fairly high prices. Prices definitely higher than the measely one or two bucks I spend at the swaps. Every few months my stack of crap records becomes so big that I decide to take it down to Amoeba. At Amoeba I wait in line until the record nerd motions to me and my records. He sorts my crap records into various piles while I try not to worry about his judgement of my musical taste. Then, I'm offered a rediculously low price for my records. I know, I know they're my crap records. What am I complaining about It's just that after selling my records to them I feel like I've been reamed.

So, the last time I was at Amoeba, right before I left for my trip, things finally evened out. I was browsing through the stacks of new records and came across something I thought I'd seen before. The record was called Willie and the Bumblebees and had a picture of some goofy looking guys with even goofier sunglasses. Unlike most of the records in the pile, there wasn't a nice plastic protective jacket over the album. Also unlike the rest of the records in the stacks, this record was priced at $1.99. Why did I know this record? I knew I must had seen it on or something, but that can be tricky because people post about crappy records almost just as much as they post about good records. Well, I bought the record and headed home to do some record nerd research on the internet.

What did I learn? Willie and the Bumblebees is a private press record from Minnesota that routinely fetches 40 bucks on Ebay. There hasn't been a reissue or boot, so I made a good 38 dollars from Amoeba that day. Ha ha record nerds working at Amoeba!

So, to celebrate my victory over the record buyers at Amoeba I bring to you what I think are the three strongest tracks from Willie and the Bumblebee's Honey from the Bee. I hope you enjoy them.

Honey from the Bee by Willie and the Bumblebees from Honey from the Bee
Dipstick by Willie and the Bumblebees from Honey from the Bee
Sahara by Willie and the Bumblebees from Honey from the Bee


Anonymous b said...

nice score. really digging willie & the bumblebees.

good to have you back.

7:43 AM  
Blogger bryan said...

Great post and an even better story, I've been in your shoes more times than I care to remember, but it sure is gratifying to find something the buyers forgot to check EBAY on or have no clue about! If youre bored check out my contribution to the MP3 blog world

12:33 PM  
Anonymous DJ O-Nice said...

maaaaan you might be able to sneak Willie & the Bumblebees past the dudes at Amoeba, but you better not test their Elliot Smith skillz!

nice to see you back up north, great story, great find!

6:16 PM  
Blogger k8_is_great said...

ahhh! you have this record! It is so hard to find. My mum has our family copy (my uncle is the one standing in the middle with the dark shirt (#4 from either side.) You let me know if you ever want to sell it.

Kate Curry
John Beach's niece
Columbus, OH

2:16 AM  
Anonymous dakkan abbe said...

Where are the MP3s? I LOVE this record and my copy was destroyed ina basement flood!

9:51 AM  
Blogger Matt said...

Great lp - crunchy 4 track fidelity, very adept at all styles contained within (funk, stax soul, blues), great horns and songmanship. Like a stack of good rare 45's.

9:50 PM  
Blogger Sam Sewer said...

I have three copies of this LP and I can never get enough! Great Minnesota music from my homeland! Always happy to see this get love. And, yes, I agree with your track choices.

3:37 PM  
Blogger Executive Dreamer said...

I have another record by Willie & The Bumblebees called "Music Is Just a Bunch of Notes". Its on label called Sweet Jane, and features "Spider" John Koerner.
This record is excellent!!

Spider John and Willie Murphy did a record together for Elektra in the late 60s called "Running, Jumping, Standing Still. Pretty good too.

Great blog, keep it up!

7:12 PM  
Blogger dehlet01 said...

I scored this lp and just put it up on is in mint condition if anyone is looking for it....

I also found a double 7" by these guys from 1972...but I'm keeping totally rocks!

6:12 PM  
Blogger regis "t.b." milkshakey said...

yes - crate digger win!

1:55 AM  

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