PopBopRocktilUDrop

From the Land of Band Box Records

Al Kavelin

Frank Kavelin - Lute Records

Frank Kavelin – Lute Records

(The following was provided to me by Frank Kavelin in response to my inquiry concerning Morey Bernstein of Finer Arts Records, his father Al, and Otis Redding among other topics):

FRANK KAVELIN: “Al Kavelin was my father.  My father’s connection to Denver is that he lived there from the ages of 7 to 16. His father, my grandfather, was invited to emigrate from Minsk to Denver to serve as the rabbi in residence for the Jewish Consumptive Relief Society. This occurred in 1907. When my father who was a musical prodigy turned 16, he left home and joined Gene Goldkette’s band. By the 1930s, he was established nationally as a band leader and radio and recording artist.”

Al Kavelin

Al Kavelin

The Bernstein Connection

KAVELIN: “Morris Bernstein was my father’s partner in Lute Records and its affiliated label, Trans-World. My father was the founder and president of these and other labels. It is our home address that appears on these labels (8601 W. Olympic and 164 N. LeDoux Rd). I never knew what role Bernstein played, other than perhaps promotion. The partnership did not last long, nor did it end well.

Lute Records Lives

Lute Records Lives

Although Bernstein lived for a brief time in Los Angeles, he returned to Denver in the early 1960s where he pursued musical ventures including Finer Arts Records. My research indicates that the Otis Redding single released on Finer Arts was indeed a 1966 reissue, whereas the original release of this single on Trans-World was in 1960. I noted that Bernstein listed his home address on the Finer Arts reissue, and later, on a “Trans-World” single without my father’s branding graphics.”

Kavelin explains that the reissue of several tracks on Finer Arts by Bernstein probably crossed the lines of legality but that his father choose not to pursue the activity and so Bernstein and Kavelin went their separate ways.

Finer Arts & Otis Redding

REDDING

(Editor’s Note: Although Frank Kavelin makes reference to Bernstein establishing Finer Arts in Denver, I believe that the label was probably initiated in California by the two partners as is evidenced by Finer Arts release 1001 by Doug and Freddy & The Pyramids “Take A Chance on Love” b/w “I Know You’re Lyin’ (But Say It Again)” released in June of 1961.  This record has all the earmarks of being a Kavelin release – with Gary Paxton producing, Morey Bernstein composing one side, Kavelin Music publishing and the label carrying the Santa Monica address.

FINER ARTS 1001 - DOUG AND FREDDY RED A FINER ARTS 1001 - DOUG AND FREDDY RED B

Bernstein would re-issue this single again from his Denver Finer Arts base in the mid 1960’s. Both the original and the re-issue command nice money on Ebay today.)

FRANK KAVELIN: “Bernstein’s claim that he discovered Otis Redding is in line with his purported claim of having written the lyrics to “Alley Oop.” He did neither. The words and music of “Alley Oop” are the work of Dallas Frazier. Otis Redding was discovered in 1960, when he was living briefly in Los Angeles. The person who discovered him was James McEachin.

James took Otis into the studio  and brought the recordings to my father who just had a hit with “Alley-Oop” on Lute Records. My father agreed to release a single and later released another single on Trans-World. The titles of these records are: “Tuff Enuff,” “She’s All Right,” “Gamma Lama,” and “Gettin’ Hip.” James McEachin wrote most of this material and at times in collaboration with Otis.”

(Editor’s Note:  A new book “Dreams to Remember ” an account of Stax Records and Otis Redding.  The book tells of Otis Redding’s trip from his home in xx to test the waters in Los Angeles.  He worked hard meeting recording industry people and finally was more or less taken under the wing of McEachin who arranged for Redding to record his four sides at the Gold Coin studio in L.A. where several successful artists had recorded.  McEachin shopped the tracks all over the industry with no takers.   McEachin was best known for being an actor but initially spent time as a record producer.)

James McEachin

James McEachin

Then according to the book “Dreams to Remember ” Al Kavelin took interest in the singer and agreed to release two sides on his Trans-World” label.  The first release was credited to “The Shooters” which were the back up band in the Gold Star studio on the session.  A second release would then acknowledge Otis when he began to gain recognition after he departed Los Angeles.

The record would be re-issued by Bernstein in Denver in the mid 1960’s which would give credit to “Otis Redding” on “She’s All Right” and “Otis Redding & The Shooters” on “Tuff Enuff”.

Trans World 6908 - Shooters - She's All Right R Trans World 6908 - Shooters - Tuff Enuff R

Finer Arts 2016 - Redding, Otis - She's All Right Finer Arts 2016 - Redding, Otis & Shooters - Tuff Enuff

And “Dreams to Remember” also states that when McEachin approached Al Kavelin with the Redding cuts, Al assigned to singer to Bernstein who had little or no familiarly with a “soul singer” and complained that he couldn’t understand the words.

KAVELIN:  “I was not consulted in the compilation of “Dreams to Remember.” I believe this accounts for any inaccuracies regarding Trans-World that are found there. I was, however, consulted, as was James McEachin, in the compilation of “Otis Redding: An Unfinished Life” by Jonathan Gould. It is set for release by next spring. The Redding heirs were also consulted and I would view this work as the authorized biography of Otis Redding.

Lute Records and Trans-World Records as well as my father’s other affiliated labels were all based in Los Angeles” (with no connection to Denver).  I produced a few sides that were released on Lute toward the end of its original run. Other than that, I worked as a free-lance arranger, composer and orchestrator during the 70s, 80s and 90s. My father died in 1982.

I only spoke once to Gary Paxton, on the phone. Other than that, I don’t believe I ever met him.  I believe Bernstein later capitalized (on his association with Paxton and Kavelin) to get Paxton to do some work for him and to legitimize his use of the Hollywood Argyles name on his label.”

"Skip" Battin & Gary "Flip" Paxton

“Skip” Battin & Gary “Flip” Paxton

PHOTO ARGYLES

(Editor’s Note:  In a Denver Post article from several years back reference is made to Bernstein not only “discovering Otis Redding” but also “Jan and Dean”.)

FRANK KAVELIN: “My father recorded Jan and Arnie who had a minor hit with “Jenny Lee.” This was before my father started Lute Records and before he ever met Bernstein. Jan replace Arnie with Dean, got a major label deal and the rest is history. If Bernstein ever met them, it would have been through my family. My sisters ran with the same crowd as Jan and Dean.”

(Editor’s Note:  In 1958 Jan and Arnie’s label Arwin released a single by Denver’s Terry Miller – Arwin 877 “Teen Age Lingo Jive” b/w Too Lonesome to Cry” both composed by Morey Bernstein.  It was the second single released on that label.  About a month later Jan and Arnie would release “Jennie Lee” b/w “Gotta Get a Date” which would likely explain at least Bernstein coming into contact with Jan Torrence and Arnie Ginsburg and maybe even stretching it to yet another “discovery”.)

Kavelin Discography

Following are is a vinyl discography as far as I have been able to locate recording images for recordings by Al Kavelin and for recordings composed or produced by the Kavelins and released on one of their affiliated record labels:

45 – Capco 103 – Cleve Herman – “In This Corner” (produced by Al Kavelin – published by Kavelin Music) b/w The Don Rays “Pacific Honky Tonk” (published by Kavelin Music) – Released October, 1963

CAPCO 103 - CLIVE HERMAN A CAPCO 103 - CLIVE HERMAN B

CAPCO 103 - CLIVE HERMAN C CAPCO 103 - CLIVE HERMAN D

45 – Chisa (Motown) – The Five Smooth Stones “I Will Never Love Another (composed & arranged by Frank Kavelin – Published by Karin Music) – Released November, 1969

CHISA 8006 - FIVE SMOOTH TONES A 11-69

45 – Kammy 105 – The New Hollywood Argyles “Alley Oop ’66” b/w “Do The Funky-Foot” (Published by Maverick-Kavelin) – Released November, 1965

KAMMY 105 - N HOLLYWOOD ARGLES 11-65 A KAMMY 105 - N HOLLYWOOD ARGLES 11-65 B

45 – Kammy 425 – “The Soul Machine” b/w “I Really Got It Bad” (Publshed by Kavelin Music)

KAMMY 425 SOUL MACHINE A BW I REALLY GOT IT BAD

45 – Kammy 369 – The Isonics – “Sugar” b/w “He Needs Her” – (Produced by Frank Kavelin – Published by Kavelin Music) – Released 1967

KAMMY 3689 -ISONICS 1967 A KAMMY 3689 -ISONICS 1967 B

45 – Kammy – Scot “Sand Children” b/w “Carla Jo” – Produced by Frank Kavelin – Published by Karin Music)

KAMMY 6605 - SCOT A KAMMY 6605 - SCOT B

78 – Decca 1358 – Al Kavelin & His Orchestra “Caribbean Star”

KAVELIN AL RELEASE DECCA 91008 A

78 – Decca 3459 – Johnny Long & His Orchestra with vocal by Helen Young “I Give You My Word” (Co-written by Al Kavelin) – Released 1940

KAVELIN AL COMP - 1940 JOHNNY LONG - Copy

Sheet Music – Al Kavelin and Merril Lyn – “I Give You My Word”

KAVELIN AL SHEET MUSIC 01

Sheet Music – Al Kavelin Orchestra – “The Umbrella Man”

KAVELIN AL SM UMBRELLA MAN

45 – MGM K12565 – Joni James “I Give You My Word” (Co-written by Al Kavelin) – Released 1957

KAVELIN AL COMP - 1957 JONI JAMES 01 KAVELIN AL COMP - 1957 JONI JAMES 02

45 Extended Play – Mercury EP-3344 – The Platters “I Give You My Word” (Co-written by Al Kavelin) – Released 1957

KAVELIN AL COMP - 1957 PLATTERS A KAVELIN AL COMP - 1957 PLATTERS B

45 – Lute 101 – “My Heart Is An Open Book” b/w “(You’ll Find My) Ring In the Roses

LUTE 101 - RILEY A LUTE 101 - RILEY B

45 – Lute 721 – Somebody “We Are What We Are”  b/w “Not The Same” (Composed and Produced by Frank Kavelin)

LUTE 721 - SOMEBODY A BW NOT THE SAME

45 – Lute 5801 – Gary Paxton – “You’re Ruinin’ My Gladness” b/w The Way I See It” – Released 1960

45 – Lute 5802 – Ty Terrell – “The Scratch Part 1” b/w “The Scratch Part 2” (Published by Kavelin Music) – Released 1960

LUTE 5802 - TERRELL TY - 1960 A

LUTE 5802 - TERRELL TY - 1960 B LUTE 5802 - TERRELL TY - 1960 C

45 – Lute 5903 – Terry Miller with The Don Ralke Orchestra – “Please, Somebody” b/w “I’m Available” – Released February, 1960

LUTE 5903 - MILLER TERRY B LUTE 5903 - MILLER TERRY

Terry Miller was from Denver, Colorado – He recorded on several other labels and recorded on Arwin Records performing compositions by future Denver label Finer Arts owner Morey Bernstein in 1958

45 – Lute 5904 – Robie Lester with Don Ralke – “The Ballad of Cheatin’ John” b/w “The Miracle of Life” (Published by Karin Music – Produced by Al Kavelin) – Released 1960

45 – Lute 5905 – The Hollywood Argyles “Alley-Oop” b/w “Sho’ Know A Lot About Love” (Published by Kavelin Music) – This one put Lute on the map – climbing all the way to the number 1 position on the national charts – Released in May, 1960

LUTE 5905 - HOLLYWOOD ARGYLES A LUTE 5905 - HOLLYWOOD ARGYLES B

45 – Lute 5907 – Darlene Paul “In Darkness, In Daylight” b/w “You’re Just You” (Published by Kavelin Music) – Released July, 1960

LUTE 5907 - PAUL DARLENE A LUTE 5907 - PAUL DARLENE B

45 – Lute 5908 – The Hollywood Argyles – “Gun Totin Critter Called Jack” b/w “Bug-Eye” (Published by Kavelin Music) – Released August, 1960
(An attempt to cash in on another Dallas Frazier composed novelty song – Gary Paxton includes “Flip” in his name due to the success of his duo with “Skip” in 1959 with “It Was I” and again in 1960 with “Cherry Pie”.  “Skip” was Clyde Battin performed solo on many labels as “Skip Battyn” and later performed as a member of The Byrds, The New Riders of the Purple Sage and The Flying Burrito Brothers.

LUTE 5908 - HOLLYWOOD ARGYLES A LUTE 5908 - HOLLYWOOD ARGYLES B

45 – Lute 5909 – The Starlets – “I’m So Young” b/w “He’s Got It” – Released 1960

45 – Lute 5912 – “I’ll Find A Way” – B side unknown – Released 1960

45 – Lute 6002 – The Hollywood Argyles “Hully Gully” b/w “So Fine” – Released November, 1960

LUTE 6002 - HOLLYWOOD ARGYLES A LUTE 6002 - HOLLYWOOD ARGYLES B

LUTE 6002 - HOLLYWOOD ARGYLES C LUTE 6002 - HOLLYWOOD ARGYLES D

45 – Lute 6003 – The Starr Sisters – “The Boy In The Study Hall” b/w “Love’s A Funny Little Game (Published by Karin Music) – Released

LUTE 6003 - STARR SISTERS C LUTE 6003 - STARR SISTERS D

LUTE 6012 - STARR SISTERS A LUTE 6012 - STARR SISTERS B

45 – Lute 6004 – Gil Shelton “Penny In the Wishing Well” b/w Shirley, My Love” (Produced by Kavelin Music) – Released 1960

LUTE 6004 - SHELTON GARY A LUTE 6004 - SHELTON GARY B

45 – Lute 6007 – Steve Wale – “Boy Meets Girl” b/w “You Can’t Take It With You” (Published by Karin Music) – Released 1961

LUTE 6007 - WALE STEVE A LUTE 6007 - WALE STEVE B

45 – Lute 6008 – Cyd & Cheri – “I’m A Lookin’ For Blue Eyes” b/w “Lonesome For You” – Released 1961

45 – Lute 6009 – Danny The Dreamer – “Like Napoli” b/w “Melissa” – (Published by Karin Music) – Released 1961

LUTE 6009 - DANNY DREAMER ALUTE 6009 - DANNY DREAMER B

45 – Lute 6010 – The Bishops – “Masquerade Ball” b/w Open Up Your Heart” – Released 1961

45 – Lute 6012 – The Starr Sisters – “Deedle Dum Dum” b/w “Dancing In the Moonlight” – (Published by Kavelin Music) – Released 1961

LUTE 6012 - STARR SISTERS A LUTE 6012 - STARR SISTERS B

45 – Lute 6013 – Peter Piano – “Sabre Dance Rock” b/w Peter Piano Roll Rock” – Released 1961

45 Lute 6014 – Pat Vegas – “I Wanna Be a Movie Star” b/w “I’ve Traveled The Whole Wide World” (Published by Kavelin Music) – Released 1961

LUTE 6014 - VAGAS PAT A LUTE 6014 - VAGAS PAT B

45 – Lute 6015 – Sherrell Townsend – “I Love You Alone” b/w “Summer Days Are Here” – Released 1961

45 – Lute 6016 – Billy and the Kids – “Take A Chance On Love” b/w “The Way It Used to Be” – (Published by Kavelin Music) – Released 1961

LUTE 6016 - BILLY AND KIDS A LUTE 6016 - BILLY AND KIDS B

45 – Lute 6017 – The Monorails – “Come To Me Darlin'” b/w “Will Ya William” – (Published by Kavelin Music) Released 1961

LUTE 6017 - MONORAILS A - Copy LUTE 6017 - MONORAILS A

45 – Lute 6018 – Emmy Lou – “Love Ya, Need Ya” b/w “I Wanna Know” – (Published by Kavelin Music) Released 1961

LUTE 6018 - EMMY LOU A LUTE 6018 - EMMY LOU B

45 – Lute 6020 – Peter Scott Peters – “Fallout Shelter” b/w “Moon Flight (Astronaut Blues)” – (Published by Kavelin Music) – Released 1961

LUTE 6020 - PETERS SCOTT A

45 – Lute 6021 – Joe Matty – “Teenage Monster” b/w “Merry Twist Mas” – Published by Kavelin Music – Released 1961

LUTE 6021 - MATTY JAY A LUTE 6021 - MATTY JAY B

45 – Lute 6225 – “No More” b/w “I’ll Be There” – Released 1962

LUTE 6225 - UPTONES A LUTE 6225 - UPTONES B

LUTE 6225 - UPTONES C LUTE 6225 - UPTONES D

45 – Lute 6226 – The Arrogants – “Canadian Sunset” b/w “Mirror, Mirror” – Released 1962

LUTE 6226 - ARROGANTS A LUTE 6226 - ARROGANTS B

LUTE 6226 - ARROGANTS C LUTE 6226 - ARROGANTS D

45 – Lute 6227 – Bobby Lyle – “Money Talks” – B Side Unknown – Released 1962

45 – Lute 6228 – The Subversives – “On The Wild Side” – & Ortin Freenie – “Mr. Kruschev, Honey Baby” – Published by Kavelin Music – Released 1962

LUTE 6228 - SUBVERSIVES A

45 – Lute 10771 – The Great Crowd – “Lola Lee” b/w “All Over, No Wonder”

LUTE 10771 - GREAT CROWD A LUTE 10771 - GREAT CROWD B

45 – Marsh 202 – The Ribbons – “Ain’t Gonna Kiss Ya” b/w “My Baby Said” – Published by Kavelin Music – Released 1962
(Safe to say label was name saked for Marshall Leib – Lute Records associate )

MARSH 202 RIBBONS C MARSH 202 RIBBONS D

MARSH 202 RIBBONS A MARSH 202 RIBBONS B

45 – Marsh 203 – The Ribbons – “After Last Night” b/w “This is Our Melody” – Released 1963

MARSH 203 RIBBONS A MARSH 203 RIBBONS B
Here, Frank Kavelin discusses the re-emergence of Lute Records in this Urban Melody Television interview in January of 2015.

45 – Trans World 6906 – The Hong Kong White Sox – “Cholley-Oop” b/w Brumley Prunk “He’d Better Go”  – Released July, 1960

HONG KON WHITE SOX - TRANS WORLD 6906 A HONG KON WHITE SOX - TRANS WORLD 6906 B

HONG KON WHITE SOX - TRANS WORLD 6906 C

45 – Trans World 7001 – “Tick Tock” b.w “The Rut” – Released November, 1970

INNOCENTS - TRANSWORLD 7001 DJ A INNOCENTS - TRANSWORLD 7001 DJ B

INNOCENTS - TRANSWORLD 7001 a INNOCENTS - TRANSWORLD 7001 b

Check out the Lute Records/Kavelin story on the Kavelin Music Web Site (Click Here or on Graphic)

AA Kavelin Web Site

Visit Lute Records on Facebook

AA Kavelin FACE BOOK

One Comment

  1. Pingback: Lute Records Returns! | PopBopRocktilUDrop

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