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He put the A in A&M
March 31, 2007 7:13 PM   Subscribe

Happy birthday, Herb Alpert! The man who managed to make bullfighting look sexy (and the only solo artist to ever hit #1 on the Billboard charts for both vocal and instrumental pieces) turns 72 today. Celebrate by watching a classic video, listen to a 2001 appearance on Morning Edition, or spend some quality time with Dolores Erikson, the "Whipped Cream Lady."
posted by jbickers (26 comments total) 1 user marked this as a favorite

 
And the man who, as the 'A' in A&M Records, managed with Jerry Moss to launch the careers of many talented musicians.
posted by ericb at 7:21 PM on March 31, 2007


Dang, that takes me back!
Thank You jbic--
My mom and dad must've played that 12 -inch every day for a year!
(12-inch, for you post-millenial punks and punk-ettes, was like a really BIG CD...)
posted by Dizzy at 7:26 PM on March 31, 2007


There was a little Spanish flea
A record star he thought he'd be ...
posted by mr_crash_davis at 7:32 PM on March 31, 2007


You say you want the album cover for wallpaper?
Really crappy wallpaper that someone did with paint shop?
Here you go.
Herb was never so lo-fi.

Aah parody.
Je T'dore.
posted by isopraxis at 7:36 PM on March 31, 2007


Ah, that famous cover art -- my first-ever bit of erotica. Sigh.

I remember, as a thoroughly prococious grade-school boy, poring over that album cover without knowing quite why it fascinated me so -- it certainly wasn't, I knew, because I had more than the usual child's affinity for Reddi-Whip, but I intuited that it was special in some forbidden, delightful way I couldn't articulate at the time. My parents have passed on, but I still have that same Herb Alpert album of theirs, and the cover photo is as timelessly erotic now as it was when I first encountered it.
posted by pax digita at 7:38 PM on March 31, 2007


I think everyone's parents had at least on HA and the Tijuana Brass album, no?

We don't have any instrumental equivalents today, do we? MAybe not since that disco classical stuff (a 5th of Beethoven?) that hit the charts way back when? or Kenny G? (god forbid!)
posted by amberglow at 8:18 PM on March 31, 2007


I just bought four Herb Alpert albums on vinyl at goodwill.
$1 a piece. Awesome!
posted by Balisong at 8:31 PM on March 31, 2007


Whip It: The Art Car
posted by macadamiaranch at 8:39 PM on March 31, 2007


The importance of this can not be overstated; after all, the entire purpose of the Internet is a mass experiment to see if any digital video can be made funny by putting "Tijuana Taxi" on it's soundtrack.
posted by Astro Zombie at 8:46 PM on March 31, 2007


His stuff really needs to be remixed and mashed-up.
posted by amberglow at 9:06 PM on March 31, 2007


>>>I just bought four Herb Alpert albums on vinyl at goodwill. $1 a piece. Awesome!< /blockquote>This is precisely how I acquired Alpert albums back in the day - we're talking 10+ years ago now. Paid a $1 per as well, at Goodwill. Worth every damn penny, too.

For those who like the brass-band sound, you might consider checking out the Youngblood Brass Band.

posted by tristero at 9:16 PM on March 31, 2007



We don't have any instrumental equivalents today, do we? MAybe not since that disco classical stuff (a 5th of Beethoven?) that hit the charts way back when? or Kenny G? (god forbid!)


I've always thought Calexico owed a huge debt to Herb Alpert, although only about half of their stuff is instrumental.

And speaking of mashups, nobody ever did answer this question for me, including the rep at Calexico's label. *pout*
posted by padraigin at 9:16 PM on March 31, 2007


The great bit about this post is that, 40 years on, The Whipped Cream Lady is still a good looking woman.
posted by paulsc at 9:47 PM on March 31, 2007


The importance of this can not be overstated; after all, the entire purpose of the Internet is a mass experiment to see if any digital video can be made funny by putting "Tijuana Taxi" on it's soundtrack.

Exhibit A (as per this previous MeFi thread).
posted by ericb at 9:51 PM on March 31, 2007


His stuff really needs to be remixed and mashed-up.

Well, there's always the classic The Virtual Gunderphone (some consider it to be the first modern mashup) by the ECC. Tracks 1 and 9 are Herb Alpert + Public Enemy.
posted by timelord at 9:53 PM on March 31, 2007


His stuff really needs to be remixed and mashed-up.
posted by amberglow at 9:06 PM on March 31

ever hear of the evolution control committee?

By The Time I Get To Arizona (Whipped Cream Mix)

circa 1996, if memory serves. dual cassette deck and a razorblade--old school mashups.

(the Rebel Without A Pause mix can also be found in the first link; perfectly free and legal for download from the ECC folks.)
posted by the luke parker fiasco at 9:56 PM on March 31, 2007


d'oh ... timelord beat me to it.
posted by the luke parker fiasco at 9:57 PM on March 31, 2007


oh, never mind then : >
posted by amberglow at 10:16 PM on March 31, 2007


Happy Birthday Herb! And it is so great to see some MeFi love for HA -- truly a classic.

And am I the only one who, upon hearing the "HONK" of the Tijuana Taxi, thinks of a goose?
posted by davidmsc at 10:47 PM on March 31, 2007


pax digita summed up just about exactly what I would've said about that record cover.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 12:18 AM on April 1, 2007


(12-inch, for you post-millenial punks and punk-ettes, was like a really BIG CD...)

Dizzy, if you're gonna play schoolmaster to the young set, you might want to get your terminology straight. When people use the term "12-inch", they're usually referring to this. Whipped Cream and Other Delights, though it was in fact 12 inches in diameter, is what was universally referred to as an album, or an LP. Of course, it's possible that there are certain parts of the world where the term "12-inch" is commonly used when referring to LPs. I've just never heard it.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 12:45 AM on April 1, 2007


His stuff really needs to be remixed and mashed-up.

Whipped cream and other delights rewhipped. One of the best albums of 2006.
posted by toxic at 5:43 AM on April 1, 2007


My dad had a copy of "Whipped Cream..." wayyyy back when I was but a mere boy just entering adolescence.
I love my dad...
posted by Thorzdad at 6:25 AM on April 1, 2007


f-jax---
Of course you are correct, in the strictest sense.
posted by Dizzy at 7:06 AM on April 1, 2007


in the strictest sense.

Well, I'm a strict one, I'll admit. I did get to wondering, though, about the whole 12 inch thing, and in my travels around the web I came across this.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 7:14 AM on April 1, 2007


I watched The Yes Men a few weeks ago, and learning that Herb Alpert was a big financial benefactor of the pranksters doubled my respect for him.

Chris Smith, who co-directed the movie, was a friend of my across-the-hall neighbor when I was in college. He'd come to visit him and bring his student films. He made a bunch of amusing quick-cut scenes of his friends running around backed by music he lifted off thrift-store records, including a lot of Alpert. My favorite was a guy in longjohns out in the snowy woods, trying to teach aerobics to a bulldozer, to the sounds of "Tijuana Taxi."
posted by hydrophonic at 9:53 AM on April 1, 2007


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