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Steve Foran

Skullsnaps Lp

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The original LP did it have the sticker on the front cover saying "Includes the hit/track Im your pimp"? I always thought this issue was AFTER it became played?

I know it has been the subject of many topics AND I feel it is a very difficult one to tell the first issue from re-issues?

JM told me a few years back that it was the number of turns in the run out groove? Say 3 for first issue and 4 for the others? I think the stamp/matrix is positioned in the first run out groove but on the re-issues it is further in?

 

If anyone can say I would be a happy bunny.     

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I'm not too convinced that "I'm your pimp" was ever a hit in the States.... Can anyone confirm this, or otherwise?

I bet it's pretty hard to have a hit, with a LP only track.

Unless the boot counts in chart returns.  :lol:

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I'm not too convinced that "I'm your pimp" was ever a hit in the States.... Can anyone confirm this, or otherwise?

l always thought that some dealer put the stickers on.

To sell the LP because of plays on the scene. 

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They are not stickers on the cover, it's actually printed on the cover.

That puts the cat amongst the pigeons than.

It's that long since l had one, l can't honestly remember.

It is 40 years ago now since it became a big Mecca spin.

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The original LP did it have the sticker on the front cover saying "Includes the hit/track Im your pimp"? I always thought this issue was AFTER it became played?

I know it has been the subject of many topics AND I feel it is a very difficult one to tell the first issue from re-issues?

JM told me a few years back that it was the number of turns in the run out groove? Say 3 for first issue and 4 for the others? I think the stamp/matrix is positioned in the first run out groove but on the re-issues it is further in?

 

If anyone can say I would be a happy bunny.     

 

My copy is without sticker, I'll try to lay hands on it to check.

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They are not stickers on the cover, it's actually printed on the cover.

 

 

That puts the cat amongst the pigeons than.

It's that long since l had one, l can't honestly remember.

It is 40 years ago now since it became a big Mecca spin.

 

Brivinyl is absolutely correct. They were definitely available in Manchester late 70s with the 'printed on' sticker.

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The original LP did it have the sticker on the front cover saying "Includes the hit/track Im your pimp"? I always thought this issue was AFTER it became played?

I know it has been the subject of many topics AND I feel it is a very difficult one to tell the first issue from re-issues?

JM told me a few years back that it was the number of turns in the run out groove? Say 3 for first issue and 4 for the others? I think the stamp/matrix is positioned in the first run out groove but on the re-issues it is further in?

 

If anyone can say I would be a happy bunny.     

 

 

My copy is without sticker, I'll try to lay hands on it to check.

 

So... my copy has two turns in the run out groove on side A and three on side B. On both sides the matrix stamp (GSF.S.1011A/B) is positioned in the first turn.

Hope this helps!

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Must have been for UK consumption as I don't think I'm your pimp was released as a 45 anywhere..so it couldn't have been a hit. The only place it hit was on the northern soul scene.. and it was pretty big.. so the copies with the sticker with it on most likely represses in 75/76 when it was massive

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Is it classed as a boot then? quite a few titles are available as 'reissues' Gloria Scott. Alice Clark, Sidney Joe Qualls (20th century and Brunswick), Loads of Terry Callier and Tyrone Davis Albums too,who's behind them all?

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FWIW, I remember seeing this LP as a cutout here in the US, c. 1980. No stickers or messages on any of the couple dozen LPs. I also saw the Joe Quarterman LP in the same piles.

 

Correct.

 

And there would only ever have been one original press of the LP made  in the US around '73. Dave in post #17 suggests that the LP was repressed with the sticker around 75/76 on the back of northern scene plays but  this is highly unlikely as  the GSF label ceased operations around 1974. The label was another one of Lloyd Price's ventures in the music business.

 

The re-issues only started showing from the late 80's once the LP had become an established  classic on the funk and rare groove scene.

 

To establish  whether you have  an original press or a reissue, it's really not necessary to go into all that stuff about matrix numbers  or how many turns are in the run out groove.   The far simpler and obvious method to check if you have an original press is   -   as mentioned in post #2 above   -   the gatefold sleeve of the LP consists of a hard thick card which is brown in colour on the inner surface of the sleeve.  

 

The many reissues that have appeared since the 80s  have had  thin photo reproduced sleeves which are white in colour on the inner surface. I've yet to see a reproduction of this LP with thick brown card. Harder of course to check if you are  buying a  sealed copy on ebay or the net .   In which case, as we say,  only buy from a seller who is reputable and knows the score  ... 

 

As for the hard luck the group had with this record and the label ,  here's an extract of an interview with them :

 

.... They found a true believer in New York DJ Al G, who brought them to the attention of rock & roll legend Lloyd Price, who in turn signed them to his fledgling GSF label. By early 1973, they had two weeks of recording time booked at the newly built Venture Sounds studio in SommervilleNew Jersey. “The Skull Snaps were the first band to ever record at Venture, and also the first band I ever recorded,” remembers Skull Snaps engineer and mixer Ed Stasium, an industry veteran who has put his stamp on albums by the Ramones, Talking Heads, Mick Jagger, and Living Color. “To be honest, I had absolutely no clue what I was doing. I was just learning how to engineer.  I wasn't even getting paid at the time. I was an intern kind of guy, collecting unemployment.  I think I did a pretty good job for not knowing sh*t. But there was a lot of sweaty palms going on.” In the studio, the band was energized, jumping with all they had at the chance to finally get their music across. “We were playing live together as a trio all the time, and it was so tight, so big that we wanted to record that,” recalls Samm. Reaching deep, they poured themselves into the recording process. “We spent a lot of time in there,” says George. “We used to go into the studio at nine and not leave until four of five in the morning the next day. We put our talent to use and were very serious about what we were doing. And once the microphones were on, that was it.  We did what we had to do.” According to producer George Kerr, the band made in two weeks an album that would have taken other bands three or four months to record. “I only produced who I liked at that time, and I loved them because they were so talented, so tight, they just fit together like hand in glove,” remembers Kerr. “Working with them was always cool, always focused, always happening,” adds Stasium. “They would roll through their three-piece thing live.  It was all done in one or two takes.  Just amazing.”  Samm adds: “It was done so fast and so straight and to the point.  We went into the studio and played, and things started to happen in there. It was quite an affair.” “The singing was powerful,” says Samm. “Everybody had such strong lead voices. We all took turns singing lead. That's what made the Skull Snaps so different from everybody else.” “Our harmony was also unique,” adds George. “I did the low parts, Ervin was in between that, and Samm was on high. And it just grew from that.” Instrumentally, Samm’s unbeatable bass grooves and Erv’s scratchy wah-pedaled guitar mesh with Bert Keyes’ lush orchestrations and funky horn arrangements, while George's devastating drums takes everything higher. “We went through the soul and funk and got into and the fatness of the music,” says Samm. “That's why all the tracks were so powerful.” The record opens with the love-is-the-drug anthem, My Hang Up Is You, which drives to the ears like a familiar hit. Retreating from wholesome themes, the band moves on to sing the glories of the ghetto hustler in I'm Your Pimp, a song used by legendary New York DJ Frankie Crocker as his show's closing theme. Adding political heft to the record, It's A New Day proclaims an era when black people "…ain't gonna step to the back of the bus no more!” The album is rounded out by the deliciously mid-tempo soul ballads Having You Around, I Turn My Back On Love, and the exceptionally catchy I'm Falling Out of Love. The album in the can, the band searched for a name. “Until then, we had been recording as the Diplomats,” explains Samm. “But people didn't know us for making funky music, so we decided we needed to come up with a new name, something catchy. So we threw it all up and down, but still didn't know what to call ourselves. And then Lloyd Price said, your music is so powerful it just cracks people's skull, man. So that was it. That's why on the album you saw the skeleton standing there with the skull in his hand lookin’ at it and the other pieces are on the floor. That was the whole concept behind the band.” In mid-1973, a few promotional singles of It's A New Day were released by GSF and started getting airplay by DJs in the New York area. The band held their breath, allowing themselves to dream a little. Copies of the album started trickling out. Then, just as quickly as it began, things fell apart. “The reason the record became a collectors item instead of a giant hit was because GSF closed their doors on it,” claims producer George Kerr. “GSF didn't do us no justice on this record at all,” remembers Erv with more than a hint of bitterness. “The way it looked to me, they didn't really intend to go so far with us, except maybe as a tax write-off. They didn't realize or care what they had on their hands.” “Not that many copies got out there,” recalls Samm. “I remember the promotion being stopped. That record had already been passed to (DJ) Frankie Crocker. All the correct steps were being made. But then the company suddenly folded. They were closed and gone so fast you didn't know which way was up with them. We could have been a success had we been on any other label at that time with that record.” Erv adds: “If we could have got in control of the album, maybe we could have hustled and got it out there to the public. But when you got families, the children come first. We had to move on. When you have the resources, you can do anything you want to do. We had nothing.” “If our record had come out now instead of then, it would be downloaded and wouldn't get lost through the cracks,” concludes Samm. “It's a whole different day…a different world. Ain't no telling what could've been.” The fiasco with GSF left the band in dire financial straights. “We never really got paid for doing the record,” recalls Erv. “I felt very proud of what we had done, but my pockets were crying,” adds George. Still, the band was able to keep it together in 1973 long enough to record a cover version of Manu Dibango’s Soul Makossa on Buddah under the alias of All Dyrections and to back Screamin’ Jay Hawkins on his Africa Gone Funky single for Queen Bee. By 1975, when Grill released the final Skull Snaps single, Ain't That Lovin' You b/w Al's Razor Blade, the band had already parted ways .... "

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if frankie crocker was using im your pimp, on his radio show, it isnt beyond the realms of possability that a run of the lp was done using the pimp sticker to sell in his area, just a thought.

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Must have been for UK consumption as I don't think I'm your pimp was released as a 45 anywhere..so it couldn't have been a hit. The only place it hit was on the northern soul scene.. and it was pretty big.. so the copies with the sticker with it on most likely represses in 75/76 when it was massive

 

Correct in my opinion Dave, it was as if it was never unavailable.  Someone repressed them for the Northern scene.

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Correct in my opinion Dave, it was as if it was never unavailable.  Someone repressed them for the Northern scene.

 

However, if you check Popsike you'll see that the majority of original copies with the printed sticker have come from the US. Also, I'm fairly sure the Bostocks copies with sticker were also cut outs. Is anyone in contact with any members of the group? It'd be interesting to find out if 'Pimp' was a radio hit somewhere.

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Correct.

 

And there would only ever have been one original press of the LP made  in the US around '73. Dave in post #17 suggests that the LP was repressed with the sticker around 75/76 on the back of northern scene plays but  this is highly unlikely as  the GSF label ceased operations around 1974. The label was another one of Lloyd Price's ventures in the music business.

 

The re-issues only started showing from the late 80's once the LP had become an established  classic on the funk and rare groove scene.

 

 

 

Sorry but this is incorrect.  The record went big in 1975.  The albums were easy to obtain.  In 1976 the albums with the fake sticker on the front were available as imports, they were identical to the 'first pressings' apart from the cover.  Then it just faded away and as you say, was counterfeited in the late 80's.  But there are two pressings from the 70's.  

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Sorry but this is incorrect.  The record went big in 1975.  The albums were easy to obtain.  In 1976 the albums with the fake sticker on the front were available as imports, they were identical to the 'first pressings' apart from the cover.  Then it just faded away and as you say, was counterfeited in the late 80's.  But there are two pressings from the 70's.  

 

I hear what you're saying Pete but perhaps the copies of the LP that found their way into the UK were just existing deletion copies from the original press run which were sitting idle in US warehouses or store cut out bins and then just had the stickers put on them either on being shipped from the US or on arrival in the UK .

 

Surely the cost of pressing an LP (as against a 7") would have been prohibitive for the bootleggers ,  and the GSF label itself had long shut down by then.

Edited by sunnysoul

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I hear what you're saying Pete but perhaps the copies of the LP that found their way into the UK were just existing deletion copies from the original press run which were sitting idle in US warehouses or store cut out bins and then just had the stickers put on them either on being shipped from the US or on arrival in the UK .

 

Surely the cost of pressing an LP (as against a 7") would have been prohibitive for the bootleggers ,  and the GSF label itself had long shut down by then.

 

No I'm not going to disagree with you am just saying that there were definitely two 'versions' of the same lp back then.  We were surprised even back then when it mentioned "the hit single" as everyone knew it was played from the LP.

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The sticker says the 'hit song' not 'hit single/45' - maybe the track was getting plays locally in the US - there were some massive regional markets and target audiences back then in the US - we seem to underestimate this over here.  People seem to think a record was pressed and that's that. But things were repressed regionally , re-promoted with different tracks to suit what was happening locally - how many times do we hear a about DJ's flipping a single - do you think a record company would not react to that?   Maybe the 'sticker' is an example of that?

 

Take another contentious example GSH' s The Bottle - not a scrap of evidence it was ever released as a 45 as contemporaneous release with the album but multiple cover versions appeared and I have read at least one review of the Brother To Brother version talking about the 'hot pull track'  from the GSH  album.

 

So there are examples of 'hits' that are not necessarily 45's or chart entries........just my thoughts mind.... 

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 perhaps the copies of the LP that found their way into the UK were just existing deletion copies from the original press run which were sitting idle in US warehouses or store cut out bins and then just had the stickers put on them either on being shipped from the US or on arrival in the UK .

 

 

That's the point though - they are NOT stickers. The so called sticker is actually a printed part of the album cover made to look like a sticker. It's not over-printed either as you can't see the dark cover underneath it. I think it's more realistic to suggest a second run with the amended cover - and it was these copies that were eventually deleted and appeared as cut outs in the US and UK.

I struggle to believe that someone would go to the trouble of printing a brand new cover for an album already deleted and would then put them back in the cut out bin. Surely it's more reasonable to think that either the label had caught on to the fact that it was getting played in the UK or, as Mike Lofthouse and I have already suggested, some radio play somewhere in the states and printed a new cover to reflect that...

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So... my copy has two turns in the run out groove on side A and three on side B. On both sides the matrix stamp (GSF.S.1011A/B) is positioned in the first turn.

Hope this helps!

That sounds very similar to how John told me Thank You.

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This reminds me of the first Todd Rundgren LP under the name of Runt. Some original copies had a sticker mentioning the song "We Gotta Get You A Woman" (a semi-hit 45 here in the US when it and the LP was released in 1970). When the LP was booted/counterfeited in the mid-late 1970s, the sticker was now part of the printed cover. I think there are more examples of this but the Runt LP is one I remember most. There were a bunch of counterfeit LPs from the same era, Yardbirds, the first Billy Joel LP, all US issues.

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Guest johnny hart

Whats It Worth ? 2 on Discogs £178 and £187 ,The winner is Rare Northern soul.com £300.

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When I referred to the 'hit' I was referring to it in the sense of radio or club plays in America. It's a well known fact it wasn't released as an official 45.

 

My copy, which I got in the late 70's also has the printed on 'sticker' - I never once thought, or heard of anyone else thinking it was repressed due to any demand in the UK, of which there was no real demand for "I'm your pimp" by then. It wasn't even getting played all that much on the Soul scene at that time, which kind of makes no reason for anyone to think of going to the trouble of doing it. LPs certainly were not big sellers then either - certainly not for that track.

 

I was more wondering if anyone had any knowledge of it ever being popular in the States, maybe just on a regional level.

Although it's not unheard of for record companies to use that type of thing to aid sales.

 

The Frankie Crocker theory certainly fits with my way of thinking...

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When I referred to the 'hit' I was referring to it in the sense of radio or club plays in America. It's a well known fact it wasn't released as an official 45.

 

My copy, which I got in the late 70's also has the printed on 'sticker' - I never once thought, or heard of anyone else thinking it was repressed due to any demand in the UK, of which there was no real demand for "I'm your pimp" by then. It wasn't even getting played all that much on the Soul scene at that time, which kind of makes no reason for anyone to think of going to the trouble of doing it. LPs certainly were not big sellers then either - certainly not for that track.

 

I was more wondering if anyone had any knowledge of it ever being popular in the States, maybe just on a regional level.

Although it's not unheard of for record companies to use that type of thing to aid sales.

 

The Frankie Crocker theory certainly fits with my way of thinking...

 

John I actually thought it was the opposite, I thought they did repress it for the UK specifically...that was the general consensus back then, they'd heard it was popular so repressed it...I am talking about 39 years ago though and we weren't as well informed as we are now!

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John I actually thought it was the opposite, I thought they did repress it for the UK specifically...that was the general consensus back then, they'd heard it was popular so repressed it...I am talking about 39 years ago though and we weren't as well informed as we are now!

 

Like I say though Pete, in recent years there have been tons of copies found in the US with the printed sticker. With the benefit of current knowledge it seems less likely that any repress was specifically for the UK.

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I bought a cut out copy in Malmo Sweden in 1976 no sticker

Pimp is the first track on the b side so it a relatively easy one to cue

My Hang up is You was released in the UK so the band must have 

been well thought of.

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