Records ‘Round and ‘Round The World

Cool In Any Language

Because The Dean Martin Show was telecast not just in the United States but also in many other countries around the globe, both The Golddiggers and The Dingaling Sisters over time developed a following not just in America, but among international audiences, as well.

That legacy evidently continues to resound in the present day, as we discovered recently while trawling the World Wide Web.

One of the clearest signs of this ongoing transnational awareness of the Golds and Dings is the growing availability of, and demand for, Michelle DellaFave’s Cool Burn album. At first offered exclusively through the site CDBaby.com, the individual tracks from that album soon started to appear on music download platforms such as Napster, Buy.com, Bitmunk, MXP, MusicIsHere, and by far the biggest of them all, itunes.

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BURNING UP THE CHARTS HERE, THERE AND EVERYWHERE:
Michelle DellaFave’s Cool Burn album (above) has proven a winner on CD and on download services like itunes.

Then this past fall, Cool Burn received a huge vote of confidence from music merchants when it was picked up by the second largest vendor of CDs on the Internet, CD Universe.

What adds a fascinating note of foreign intrigue to the picture is the news that the album is now also being carried for sale by the German version of the Internet’s top seller of music discs, Amazon. Could placement on other Amazon sites, including the one here in the good old U.S. of A., be very far behind?

In the meantime, with sales of Cool Burn starting to cross the ocean, it seems that there are fans of Michelle, proliferating on both sides of the Atlantic, who might be inclined to paraphrase President Kennedy and say “I take pride in the words: Ich bin ein DellaFaver!

Giving New Meaning To The Term “Gold Record”

In yet another corner of the world, the distant echoes of voices from vintage Golddiggers recordings continue to reverberate. Case in point: On one of the largest websites devoted to the sales of collectible vinyl and CDs, we came across what surely must be regarded as both a rarity and a curiosity: A white label promo copy of the very first Golddiggers album that was issued only in Japan.

jappressys-2250-mdlarge.jpgTRANSCENDING BOUNDARIES — PHYSICAL, CULTURAL AND TEMPORAL: It’s unclear whether Japanese audiences were familiar with The Golddiggers when promotional copies of their LP (depicted above) came ashore in 1969, but obviously at least one recipient valued the album sufficiently to hold onto a copy long enough to now be offering it for sale as a rare collector’s item.
(below): The back, followed by the front, of the U.S. album covers for The Golddiggers’ inaugural LP.
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Examining the front cover of the Japanese release (the first of the three images shown above), and comparing it with both the front and back of its U.S. counterpart (shown next), observers will note both similarities and differences. Among the most obvious in both categories is that the photo used for the front cover of the Japanese pressing is the same one adorning the back of the U.S. edition (and while we don’t have a shot of what’s on the back of the Japanese jacket, who knows — maybe it completes the reversal and it’s the same circular photo seen on the front cover of the American album).

Notice also that the Japan-only album displays the same typography on the Golddiggers logo as seen on the U.S. version, except with a multi-hued rainbow fill.

Now, we know that The Dean Martin Show was broadcast in England, Canada, Australia, France, Germany, Italy and in many other parts of the world, but whether or not it ever made it to Japan is a question that we simply can’t answer. However, even if Dean’s series never aired in the Land of The Rising Sun, it’s possible that The Golddiggers still had some exposure to Japanese viewers, because the Bob Hope Christmas Specials, on which the girls appeared from 1968 to 1971, were beamed to virtually every continent, and Japan might well have been one of the countries in which those programs were telecast.

Whatever the case, the very existence of this promo copy of The Golddiggers’ debut album tells us that — whether or not the group was already familiar to Japan’s audiences via the tube — some type of marketing effort was apparently made to acquaint Japanese listeners with The Golds’ music.

For anyone who’d like to see the actual listing of the album on the GEMM website where it’s being sold, here’s a link to it:

Golddiggers White Label Japan-Only Promo LP

Those who venture over to the page referenced above will discover that the release date listed for the album is 12/31/68 — seemingly implausible, given the fact that it wasn’t issued in the U.S. until 7/69, and also that some of the members of The Golddiggers shown on the cover and who actually sang on the album didn’t even join the group until 1969.

But there’s no mistake about another set of numbers in the description — the ones following the dollar sign. And no, if you did a double take when you saw them, your eyes weren’t deceiving you. It’s true: The price tag on this unusual item is a mere $172.50 (plus the proverbial shipping & handling).

To be sure, that’s pretty steep — especially considering that the included 33 1/3 RPM record is the same one contained in the U.S. release, and that even the album artwork is basically just a rearrangement of what’s found on the cover of the American version.

But then again, perhaps no asking price for such a rare artifact would be regarded as too exorbitant for that Golddiggers aficionado with the sufficient, ahem, yen to own it (sorry, we couldn’t resist).

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