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Joe Droukas and his Crazy Man Band - Goodbye Joe Drake (Possible Stealth Matrix Quad LP)

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steelydave

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Trawling through some old trade magazines the other night, I came across this interesting bit of news from a 1973 issue of Cash Box magazine:

Cashbox-1973-03-17-Joe_Droukas_Quad_LP.jpg


Digging through discogs I found the album that matches this description, both release year and personnel:

Joe Droukas and His Crazy Man Band Goodbye Joe Drake (Sweet Fortune Records SFS-801)


1603845642572.png


Aside from the impressive lineage of the studio musicians on this album (Rick Marotta, Hugh McCracken, etc.) there's also a really strong quad pedigree here, both in terms of the engineers involved, and the label, Sweet Fortune Records, that released the album.

Sweet Fortune Records was a subsidiary of the Famous Music Corporation, company that owned several other labels that had quad releases: Blue Thumb (Sun Ra), Dot (Roy Clark, Donna Fargo), and Paramount (Billy Vaughn, Godfather and Love Story soundtracks), and in early 1974 they were sold to ABC, who of course were very active in quad too.

The album was recorded at the Record Plant NYC, where many quad mixes were done including John Lennon's Walls and Bridges, Blood Sweat & Tears New City, and all of the Aerosmith mixes, and the engineering team has an equally strong pedigree: Shelly Yakus did the quad mixes of Edgar Winter's Jasmine Nightdreams and Rick Derringer's Spring Fever, and Roy Cicala did the quad mix of John Lennon's Imagine.

I had a listen to the album on YouTube, and it seems to have the telltale signs of a quad mix - a lot of the rhythm instruments are pushed hard left and right in the stereo spectrum, where you'd figure probably half of them in a quad mix would probably be left rear/right rear. The music isn't half-bad either, kind of typical early '70s singer-songwriter fare with some blue-eyed soul overtones - I can hear a bit of Cat Stevens, Joe Cocker, and John Fogerty in there, though Droukas's anonymity 40 years later suggests probably not as good as any of them.

The official audio on YouTube sounds like it might be a needledrop, but I thought I'd include a link anyway, in case anyone wants to try feeding it to their Surround Master to see if it does anything. I think it's equally possible that the stereo mix is a straight quad fold-down (in which case it wouldn't do anything) as it is a matrix stealth quad. If it is matrix, I'd lean more toward it being QS (given that the Famous/ABC labels leaned that way) but there is the outside possibility of it being SQ given that Yakus had prior SQ mixing experience.

 

J. PUPSTER

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Trawling through some old trade magazines the other night, I came across this interesting bit of news from a 1973 issue of Cash Box magazine:

View attachment 58608

Digging through discogs I found the album that matches this description, both release year and personnel:

Joe Droukas and His Crazy Man Band Goodbye Joe Drake (Sweet Fortune Records SFS-801)


View attachment 58609

Aside from the impressive lineage of the studio musicians on this album (Rick Marotta, Hugh McCracken, etc.) there's also a really strong quad pedigree here, both in terms of the engineers involved, and the label, Sweet Fortune Records, that released the album.

Sweet Fortune Records was a subsidiary of the Famous Music Corporation, company that owned several other labels that had quad releases: Blue Thumb (Sun Ra), Dot (Roy Clark, Donna Fargo), and Paramount (Billy Vaughn, Godfather and Love Story soundtracks), and in early 1974 they were sold to ABC, who of course were very active in quad too.

The album was recorded at the Record Plant NYC, where many quad mixes were done including John Lennon's Walls and Bridges, Blood Sweat & Tears New City, and all of the Aerosmith mixes, and the engineering team has an equally strong pedigree: Shelly Yakus did the quad mixes of Edgar Winter's Jasmine Nightdreams and Rick Derringer's Spring Fever, and Roy Cicala did the quad mix of John Lennon's Imagine.

I had a listen to the album on YouTube, and it seems to have the telltale signs of a quad mix - a lot of the rhythm instruments are pushed hard left and right in the stereo spectrum, where you'd figure probably half of them in a quad mix would probably be left rear/right rear. The music isn't half-bad either, kind of typical early '70s singer-songwriter fare with some blue-eyed soul overtones - I can hear a bit of Cat Stevens, Joe Cocker, and John Fogerty in there, though Droukas's anonymity 40 years later suggests probably not as good as any of them.

The official audio on YouTube sounds like it might be a needledrop, but I thought I'd include a link anyway, in case anyone wants to try feeding it to their Surround Master to see if it does anything. I think it's equally possible that the stereo mix is a straight quad fold-down (in which case it wouldn't do anything) as it is a matrix stealth quad. If it is matrix, I'd lean more toward it being QS (given that the Famous/ABC labels leaned that way) but there is the outside possibility of it being SQ given that Yakus had prior SQ mixing experience.

Hugh and Toots are giants - need to check into this one Dave.
 

steelydave

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I meant to add as well, the third credited engineer in the sleeve photo above, Jay Messina, did the quad mixes of the three Aerosmith albums in addition to the 5.1 remix of Toys in the Attic.
 

J. PUPSTER

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Yeah, that song does have that extra wide (almost to the sides sound), and the piano tinkling at the end has a good phantom center presence.
-also just saw Guitarist David Spinozza, he's been all over the place too, even on the title Buddy Rich ‎– A Different Drummer.

*OK, just between you and me Dave ;) - I ordered a sealed LP from discogs ~$11; who knows that new Abraxas album from Japan might be a real loser.

I love new finds like this :)
 
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