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Catch the Brass Ring

4.5 out of 5 stars 8 customer reviews

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Audio CD, January 1, 1987
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Editorial Reviews

Old-fashioned Merry-Go-Round music including favorites such as "The Beer Barrel Polka", "Bye-Bye Blackbird", "The Missouri Waltz" and 28 others.

Track Listings

Disc: 1

  1. Alexander's Ragtime Band
  2. Beside a Babbling Brook
  3. You Gotta See Mamma Every Night
  4. Old Reliable March
  5. Missouri Waltz
  6. Beer Barrel Polka
  7. Yes, We have no Bananas
  8. Barney Google
  9. Boston Commandery March
  10. When My sugar Walks Down the Street
  11. Oh Katherina
  12. Paddlin' Madeline Home
  13. Always
  14. Alley Cat
  15. Doo Wacka Doo
  16. King of the Air March
  17. Show Me the Way to Go Home
  18. I Love My Baby, By Baby Loves Me
  19. Me and My Shadow
  20. Louise
  21. American Patrol (March)
  22. All Alone
  23. Bye Bye Blackbird
  24. The Merry-Go-Round Broke Down
  25. Agravatin'Papa
  26. Yes sir That's my Baby
  27. Roses From the South
  28. Ja Da
  29. Heaven's Artillery March
  30. Waltz
  31. Goodnite Waltz


Product Details

  • Performer: Various Artists
  • Audio CD (January 1, 1987)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Klavier
  • ASIN: B00000DUWQ
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #259,448 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Format: Audio CD
It's a toughie reviewing this album - I don't know quite how to rate it for the everyday listener, seeing as how band organ music is definitely an acquired taste. However, that said, if you happen to be a band organ nut, you're in for a treat with this CD. It's about as good as it gets.

Kudos to Klavier records for making a recording of this wonderful Wurlitzer 165 band organ - it sounds like a dream, and has transferred relatively well to CD format. My only complaint is that the glockenspiel sounds rather abrasive, and gets really grating when recorded onto a cassette tape. Otherwise, the album is pristine.

The tunes featured are all classic band organ offerings, and the rolls used are in splendid shape. The organ's mechanism performs beautifully - whatever "prominent Midwestern collection", as the liner notes read, it comes from is taking very good care of it.

Basically, this, alongside its sister album "Catch Another Brass Ring", stands as an ideal representation of what a Wurlitzer 165 should sound like. Band organ lovers will adore it. The average Joe? Hard to say...but it's certainly worth a try.
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Format: Audio CD
This is the real thing,not some [poor],boring pipe organ imitation.You'll feel like you're really at the fair again when you listen to this CD!
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Format: Audio CD
Authentic-sounding merry-go-round music. I've listened to dozens of sample CD's, and this and its companion, CATCH ANOTHER BRASS RING, have the best-sounding carousel music. I fact, CATCH ANOTHER is noticeably better than this CD. The glockenspiel, or tingly sounds made by lyres, vibraphones, triangles, etc., are what set this off from mere circus music. Although CATCH ANOTHER is the better CD, "Roses from the South," on this CD, is the best track of either CD.
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Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
Since several other reviewers have given very good descriptions of this CD, I won't re-hash here, but simply say I agree with what they've said. I will add my two cents on a few points not mentioned, though.

Since the Wurlitzer 165 band organ upon which these musical selections are played is in such good condition, we get a musically idealized version of what we once heard at the merry-go-round. The sonic reality often was quite a bit less, with imperfectly working instruments and the sound of the drive motor as it pumped away to turn the carousel, not to mention the noise of the crowd and the children shouting and squealing. This is no criticism of the CD, though, since it only purports to present the music; it would take a lot more than a CD to present a realistic facsimile of the total experience.

The liner notes are brief, but provide some interesting background on the origin of carousels and the words themselves. I think the writer, Tupper L. Turner, deserves credit for his/her efforts.

I was surprised to see Track #30 listed as "Waltz (Title unknown)" when opera lovers will immediately recognize it as two tunes from Verdi's opera "Il Trovatore" (The Troubadour). The first tune is the soprano/tenor duet in the Miserere scene of Act IV; the second is the baritone aria "Il balen del suo sorriso." In any case, neither is a waltz proper, for both are in 6/8, not 3/4 time.

The selection of tunes, of course, depends on availability of the paper rolls which encoded them. I liked most of the tunes, familiar and otherwise, pretty well, and with 31 tracks there's quite a bit of all kinds there, including "The Merry-Go-Round Broke Down."

Overall, then, I was pleasantly surprised by the quality of the CD and the appropriateness of its content.
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