You Voted! Your Favorite Vintage Recordings

In no particular order, here are your submissions for Favorite Vintage Recordings:

Sonny Rollins, Saxophone Collosus, LP

Pink Floyd, Meddle, LP

The Beatles, Help

David Holland Quartet, Conference of the Birds, LP

Dave Brubeck Quartet, Time Out, LP

Ian and Sylvia Tyson, Four Strong Winds, LP

The Who, Who’s Next, LP

Steely Dan, The Royal Scam, LP

Steely Dan, Aja, LP

Eagles, Hotel California, LP

Beatles, Rubber Soul, LP

Warren Zevon, Warren Zevon, LP

Cowboy Junkies, The Trinity Sessions, 45RPM LP

David Sancious, Forest of Feeling

Pink Floyd, Obscured By The Cloud, LP

Gong, Expresso, LP

PFM, Isola di Niente

Peter Frampton, Alive, LP

Pink Floyd. The Wall, LP

Thelma Housten, Pressure Cooker LP

Led Zepplin, all of them, LP

Fleetwood Mac, Rumors, LP

The Who, Quadrophenia, LP

Bessie Smith, Trombone Cholly, LP

Supertramp, Crime of the Century, LP

Harry Belafonte, Midnight Special, vinyl

Jethro Tull, Aqualung, vinyl

Fleetwood Mac, Rumors, vinyl

Pink Floyd, Dark Side, EMI version vinyl

Roy Orbison, The All Time Greatest Hits, Mobile Fidelity vinyl

CCR, Green River, AP vinyl

Led Zepplin I, II, III, IV, AC vinyl

What makes a great Vintage recording?

“I’m considering the 1960s and 1970s fair game for “vintage.” Almost all of the albums I list are technically “antiques.” I’d say music and technical sonics that reflect the absolute cutting-edge and/or state of the art constitutes “greatness.” For example, I think the Beatles’ Revolver represented the Beatles’ peak, the beginning of more heavily technologized sound and studio work, and that it had an immense impact on the rest of their work as well as on the future of popular music.”


“Their performance and recording excellence. It must capture the artist at their best performance but you have to understand the limited techniques in the recording studios – some of them were 3 track while others were 8track. When you play them back on a good system you will notice not only the miracle of the impossible sonic achievement – live it like you were there. You should also enjoy the different engineering techniques of recording & mixers and note their signature – you should be able to tell how a good recording engineer heard the performer in the studio.”


“It has to be cutting edge for the time , original, recording has to have an strongly conveyed unique sound, that is not only very articulate, but not easily forgotten sonic experience. Recording must also have mega passion and emotion from the musicians during the performance.”


“The artist and the capturing of a great performance. It does not matter if mono or stereo, vynl or CD.”


“I have no idea what makes a great recording, only can discern the good from the bad once I hear it.”




“35mm film uses an optical track not magnetic. According to “One big advantage of film over tape was that distortions due to the drag of the original tape across the recording head (“wow” and “flutter”) were reduced dramatically.”  Bob, in reply to Andrew


early (60s) Joan Baez on Vanguard and early The Guess Who, Fifties Sinatra on Capitol

Clement Janequin/Antoine De Bertrand Chansons De La Renaissance Ensemble Vocal Phillippe Gaillard Erato STU 70519 Recorded Paris, France 1972? Too bad the jacket copy is French. Can’t find mention of recording venue. If you love polyphony, scour old collections for this one. I probably have the only copy extant west of the Mississippi as the old Erato label folded not long after I bought this at Sams in Toronto in ’73. To my knowledge it was controlled by German News, which is also defunct(?), and the masters from this series of recordings supposedly destroyed. It sounds best with a good historical novel and a Highland Malt Whiskey very neat on a winter evening.
There are two albums which are, to my taste, unmatched in Popular Music, and remarkably they are from the same Group—The Band. Their 1st and 2nd albums, “Music From Big Pink” and “The Band” (aka The Brown Album), went completely against the grain of what just about everyone else in Pop was doing at the time that they were released (’68 and ’69). The musicians playing for the song (and great songs they are), and three unique, great voices, singing alone and in ensemble. The 1st album was recorded in New York and Los Angeles studios, and has a crisp, close-miked sound. The 2nd, they and their producer (John Simon) set-up a tape machine and mics in Sammy Davis Jr’s pool house, which they rented, and recorded themselves. The album has a very “in-the-room” sound, immediate yet warm. If I could have only two albums, it would be these two. They’re that good!

Tea for the Tillerman…Cat Stevens, vinyl only, a masterpiece of production. Stay away from any type of reissue or remaster.


Back in the daze (1968) when I sold audio equipment my favorite demo album was ELP’s first album. There are 3 tracks that I used: Take a Pebble, Tank (this one showed if there were shortcomings in the system, the last minute of that track would distort at the crescendo.) and Lucky Man for the bass peddle. Still a good test for turntable, cartridge and tonearm along with speakers and amp clipping. Aside from that It was and still is one of my favorite albums of all time.

Nightfly – Donald Fagen 1982


I like Fleetwood Mac Rumors sound
It’s very hormonic and pleasant for ears
Disagree that Cd and vinyl sound the same
Try any Cd for more then 20 min, and your brain
Get tired


Resurrection of Pigboy Crabshaw by Paul Butterfield Blues Bay recorded on electra records, guitarist Mike Bloomfield, Elven Bishop. The best gut buster blues song is Driftin’ And Driftin


If you have a favorite recording to add to the list, sound off in the comments!

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