Monday, April 27, 2009

Colgems Blog Is Three Years Old

Happy birthday to the Colgems Blog, which celebrates its third birthday today!

When I started this blog, I had no idea where it would take me and those who visited, but three years later, I am very pleased to say that the blog really has taken on a life of its own.

At this point, all of the non-Monkees Colgems LPs have been made available through this blog, as have all the Colgems singles.

Now the hardest part: to sustain the blog with the Monkees albums, the originals and not the remastered albums that have come out during the past few years.

Thanks to you, those who visit the blog. I obviously cannot put up something every day, but keep on checking back--you never know what you will find here.

Larry Lapka

P.S: I created this blog on this date so it would run side-by-side with my own birthday, which is on April 28. Happy birthday to both myself and the blog!

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

New Colgems Upload - The Monkees (Mono)

After having uploaded every non-Monkees Colgems album during the past three or
so years, it is time to look at the major moneymaker of the label, the act that
enabled the label to exist and prosper and try out all the disparate acts that
were on the talent roster: The Monkees.

Yes, the Monkess albums have been released and re-released and re-released again
many times in many different formats, but if you are like me, there is nothing
like hearing the Pre-Fab Four in monophonic sound, just like we probably heard
them for the first time nearly 43 years ago on our home hi-fi sets.

Sure, many of us bought the stereo release way back when, but I will bet that
most of us went with the mono release, especially of this album.

Rhino Records has done a great job in releasing Monkees product over the years,
but many have the opinion that the most recent releases of the first four
Monkees albums left something to be desired in the remastering of the mono and
stereo tracks. The mono tracks, in particular, just don't sound like the mono
tracks we remember. I don't know if they could, anyway, what with the listening
experience shifting from analog LPs to digital CDs, but there was just something
missing in these remastered tracks.

So, I have taken my own Monkees album and digitized it, and now present it to
you in its unbridled, pop-filled glory. It generally sounds great, and you
really haven't heard "Last Train to Clarksville" until you hear it the way it
was put out in 1966.

Otherwise, the first five Monkees albums have been reviewed and dissected
numerous times over the years, as has the entire catalog, so I won't do that

I will say that this is one of the best albums of its genre, and if you haven't
heard it in a while, listen again--I guarantee it will bring back many, many

You can access this album at

Next month--I need to know--do you want me to upload More of the Monkees in mono
or The Monkees in its original stereo version that many of us bypassed for the
mono version I just described?

Please let me know.

Friday, April 10, 2009

Monkees Mystery Greatest Hits LP Uploaded

The entire unreleased Monkees Greatest Hits LP that I described a few days ago has been posted at, and I have tried to follow the guidelines for the album, that all tracks are in stereo. The tracks came from various sources, so the sound quality might vary from track to track.

This is not one of my monthly Colgems uploads, because the album never came out on Colgems, but it is filled with tracks, some, but not all, of which came out on Colgems in stereo.

Let me know what you think.

Thursday, April 02, 2009

What's Next At the Colgems Blog?

Over the past many months, I have uploaded every Colgems album (less the Monkees) and single that was released from 1966-1971. Although that phase of this blog is over, there is a lot more Colgems material to release that has not found its way onto legitimate CDs.

How can that be, you ask. Well, give it some thought before you answer; the clue is within the blog itself.

If you can't figure it out, in 13 days from today (April 2) it will become apparent.

And no, this is not a late April Fool's Day joke.