UK ©2006 Revvolution Records (REVVCDA001)
Released by RTD/Universal Music Operations
CD reissue with new cover artwork. Updated liner notes by record producer Jonathan King.
Total running time: 41:38
Missing songs: "Charles Atlas Song", "Charles Atlas Song (Reprise)", "Eddie's Teddy", "Planet Schmanet, Janet".
CD Front Cover
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CD Back Cover
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CD Liner Notes
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CD Liner Notes Back
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It was the morning of June 17th of 1973. I was enjoying my morning cup of Blue Mountain coffee and reading the Daily Mail. There was a first night review by my friend, the critic Jack Tinker, raving about this Theatre Upstairs at the Royal Court production - The Rocky Horror Show. It looked brilliant.
At this moment Donald Torr, a dancer in the BBC Young Generation alongside later to become famous "Nasty" Nigel Lythgoe, phoned. Were we still on for dinner that night? "Sure," I said, "but there's a great review of a new play - do you fancy going to see it first?" Yes, he said, so I booked a couple of tickets (easy to do; it was half empty) and we went.
To my astonishment (Jack had not mentioned it in his review) it was a musical. And, obviously, a giant future hit. I have always been good at spotting hits.
At the end of the show I went backstage and asked for the rights to record and release the soundtrack. Richard O'Brien was over the moon. It had rarely happened that a show was picked up virtually in rep and given a recording deal. I also wanted to invest in the entire project. Richard loved the idea and took me to a meeting with his producer, Michael White, the next day.
I agreed to put up 20% of the costs (£20,000 - the show capitalised at £100,000) in return for 20% of all the profits. And I signed to purchase the rights in perpetuity for the cast album. I was very keen that we should record the album very soon and very fast.
The first day off the cast had, I took them into Sarm Studios and recorded it, as live, from the start to finish. It took 24 hours. I wouldn't let anybody leave in case we needed to rerecord bits. Many of the musicians and cast slept on the floor. After recording, we mixed. Nobody went home until the entire project was both recorded and mixed. Exhausting but, I believe, it captured the tacky, innocent, amateur quality of the very first performances.
Which, to me, was 50% of the charm. This is the recording contained herein.
Three extra pieces of information.
Due to massive demand, we've done a dance remix of The Time Warp - Time Warp 2007 - which is getting tremendous club reaction. It's included on here. Secondly, Donald Torr never got his dinner. And third, mysteriously, as the show became the smash I'd predicted (largely due to my promotion and marketing skills), all the rights were transferred and the Michael White company which had granted me the 20% investment went into liquidation. I've never gotten to the bottom of it and I've never received my 20% share of profits since then. Not one single penny. I still own the rights to my brilliant recording of the initial soundtrack, though. And I give it to you with love and delight.
Enjoy the innocence and enthusiasm and don't worry about the cash. I certainly didn't regret a single second of my crucial and proud involvement in the discovery and success of...
THE ROCKY HORROR SHOW
Jonathan King 2006
Richard O'Brien's spangled piece of erotic fantasy is so funny, so fast, so sexy and so unexpectedly well realized that one is in danger of merely applauding it without assessing it. That would be a pity. Because besides enjoying the whole non-stop 90-minute entertainment hugely, I believe Mr. O'Brien has something quite nifty to say about the present state of nostalgia. He has taken all the innocent kitsch fantasies of the 50s - horror movies, Charles Atlas muscle-bound ads, sequined pop stars - and turned them into the high camp sensuality of the 70s. The magic wand he uses is the maxim: Don't dream it; be it.
Thus the familiar horror kingpin of the piece is transformed into a gloriously imperious transvestite. Instead of sucking the blood of his innocent victims (that well worn sex-substitute of yore) he does the real thing and deals them fates worse than death. The effect on Brad and Janet, an all-American teenage pre-Pill couple, is something akin to the liberation that Mrs. Whitehouse, Canute-like, is at this moment trying to hold back. From Bill Haley to David Bowie is one hell of a time leap. Mr. O'Brien measures it effortlessly, illuminatingly, and wittily.
'I made you - and I can break you,' snaps the Master (Tim Curry, all suspenders and suspense) to Rocky Horror, his muscular man-made slave (Rayner Bourton in a G-string). It speaks wonders for Jim Sharman's vivid direction which takes the action round, up and over his audience, that, for all its highly sensual ambiance as a piece, it is far too joky to ever be accused of practicing the corruptions it pretends to preach.
Richard Hartley - Piano and Organ
Count Iain Blair - Guitar, Electric and Acoustic
Dennis Cowan - Bass Guitar
Martin Fitzgibbon - Drums
Phil Kenzie - Sax
Narrator - Jonathan Adams
Frank-N-Furter - Tim Curry
Riff-Raff - Richard O'Brien
Brad Majors - Christopher Malcolm
Janet Weiss - Belinda Sinclair
Rocky Horror - Rayner Bourton
Magenta and Usherette - Patricia Quinn
Columbia - Little Nell
Eddie and Dr. Evrett Scott - Paddy O'Hagan
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