Thursday, January 31, 2013

Vintage finds at Rocket Reuse

We have a great shop here in Alameda on Park Street called Rocket Reuse. They mainly sell used books but also carry records, CDs, and some vintage clothing. Everything is reasonably priced. The clothing selection is not huge, but I have found some really great things here for fantastic prices. It has been some time since I have found anything but scored recently with an adorable gray sweater and pink linen dress. The sweater was just $17.95 and the dress was $32 and even still had its matching belt. Both are in great condition with the exception of one small moth hole in the sweater that can be easily fixed. I cannot find any major issues with the dress which I was surprised by since it is such a light color. Of course it could use a good pressing. I love that it is sleeveless so I actually have full movement of my arms. I have quite broad shoulders so that is usually where I run into trouble with vintage dresses which is why I mostly stick to only buying dresses in person when I can try it on first. I’m sure many other girls have had that item in their wardrobe where when they wear it they just say to themselves “Guess I’ll just not move my arms much this evening.” Not good if you dance but I do not so it is easier for me to sacrifice arm movement for a night. I can recall seeing some poor girl coming off a dance floor with a rip down the side of her dress more than one time over the years. So heartbreaking but it’s a risk we take when we wear vintage.

Anyhoo, without further ado, my finds from Rocket Reuse…

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Keb Darge comps plus 'The Rarest Rockabilly Album in the World, Ever!'

The music exchange continues at work and I love it. Recently I was leant the following CDs: Keb Darge & Little Edith’s Legendary Wild Rockers Part I & II (BBE Records), Keb Darge & Cut Chemist Present Lost and Found Rockabilly and Jump Blues (BBE Records), and finally a double disc set called The Rarest Rockabilly Album in the World Ever! (Chrome Dreams). I was so excited and couldn’t wait to listen to them all.

~Keb Darge & Little Edith’s Legendary Wild Rockers Part I & II (BBE Records)
These two have put together a couple of fantastic compilations with quite a few tracks I was not familiar with. Always makes me happy to learn of new music such as, to name a handful, from Part I: 'Flipsville' by Stormy Gayle, 'That’s It' by The Valentines, 'Don’t Call Me Flyface' by The Reekers, and 'Rock-Ola Ruby' by Sonee West. – From Part II: 'The Catalina Push' by The Catalinas, 'Ghost Train' by The Swanks, 'Gorilla' by The Shandells, and my new favorite 'I Don’t Wanna Leave' by Deacon & the Rock & Rollers. Then there are the ones I know but can never get enough of and have been done by various artists, such as 'Little Lil', 'The Itch', and 'The Goo Goo Muck'. This is not all rockabilly, as the cover of the comps suggest, Part I is “A collection of rare rockabilly, surf and exotica” and Part II as “A collection of rare rockabilly & surf from the 50s & early 60s.” I loved both! You can find more info on the Keb Darge comps at

~Keb Darge & Cut Chemist Present Lost and Found Rockabilly and Jump Blues (BBE Records)
Another great one! Both discs were filled with great tunes, new and old. It has everyone from Charlie Feathers, Chuck Berry, and Johnny Burnette to Carlos and the Bandidos (my personal all time fave), The Planet Rockers, and Omar & the Stringpoppers. It obviously covers a lot of ground and again, I loved it. Of course I would since I wouldn’t be writing about any of these it if I didn’t like them. I like that it is more than one style of music as the title suggests. A great mixture that keeps you asking “what’s next, what’s next?!” I tried to take a photo of the track listing on the back with no luck.  Cut & paste is my friend...

Keb Darge Selection (Disc 1)
01 Buddy Griffin & His OrchestraI - Got A Secret (I Ain't Gonna Keep)
02 Big "T" Tyler - Sadie Green
03 Rudy Greene - Juicy Fruit
04 Omar & the Stringpoppers - The My Baby Don't Breathe
05 Chuck Berry - Too Much Monkey Business
06 Lou Millet - Shorty The Barber
07 Carlos & Bandidos - Fever
08 The Scarlets - Stampede
09 Ray Harris - Come On Little Mama (Alternate Take)
10 Dale Vaughn - How Can You Be Mean To Me
11 Willie & the Stringpoppers - Oh Baby Babe
12 Corky Jones - Hot Dog
13 High Noon - Don't Have A Heart Left To Break
14 Moonlighters - Broken Heart
15 The Imps - That'll Get It
16 Jack Rabbit Slim - Long Time Dead
17 Ronnie Hayward - You Hound Ya Lie
18 Mark Lee Allen & the Driver Brothers - The The Oil Field's Burning

Cut Chemist Selection ( Disc 2)
01 Jesse Powell Orchestra - The Walkin' Blues (Walk Right In, Walk Right Out)
02 Little Junior's Blue Flames - Feeling Good
03 McKinley Mitchell - Rock Everybody Rock
04 John Fred & His Playboy Band - Boogie Children
05 Arsen Roulette - Lovin' On My Mind
06 Link Wray And His Wray Men - Run Chicken Run
07 The Phantom - Love Me
08 Johnny Clark & The Four Playboys - Jungle Stomp
09 The Recalls - Nobody's Guy
10 Ric Cartey - Scratching On My Screen
11 Johnny Burnette - Rock Billie Boogie
12 Kick' Em Jenny - Stressed Up
13 Mickey Hawks & the Night Raiders - Cottonpickin'
14 Junior Dean & the Avalons - Chick Chick
15 Johnny Powers w/ Stan Getz & the Tom Cats - Long Blond Hair, Red Rose Lips
16 Wayne Walker - All I Can Do Is Cry
17 Charlie Feathers - Bottle To The Baby
18 Flea Bops - Good Time Woman
19 The Planet Rockers - Batteroo

~The Rarest Rockabilly Album in the World Ever! (Chrome Dreams)
With a title like that, how could I not be filled with anticipation? Is it really the rarest in the world, ever? Well, I am not sure I can vouch for that but it was sure filled with a ton of stuff I did not know, for example, 'Yah I’m Movin' by Jimmy Patton, 'That Ain’t Nothin’ But Right' by Joey Castle, 'Oakies in the Pokie' by Jimmy Patton (love that title!), and 'Rock N Roll Saddles' by Johnny Edwards & the Whitecaps. I just discovered there is a Part 2 to this series which I might just have to look in to now.

These comps are dangerous since after listening to them I have so many more albums I want to buy. I’ll have to be strong and resist the urge to buy every album I can find from some of these guys. Well at least one song from a great artist is better than none or not ever knowing about them in the first place. With over 100 songs combined from these above mentioned CDs, I think this should tide me over for a while.

Saturday, January 26, 2013

Alameda follow up...Huell Howser!

As a follow up to my previous Alameda post, I finally found the episode where Huell Howser came to Alameda in 2009!  It was from a series called “California’s Communities.”  I recently learned of the untimely death of Huell Howser from a blog post I came across on Wacky Tacky.  Huell fans, definitely check out these posts - wacky tacky Icons & Open Up Those Pearly Gates.  I was sad watching this episode, knowing he was gone and was doubly sad as the portion where he visits the theatre features the manager at the time who has since passed as well.  I believe Huell did a very fitting tribute to Alameda.  I was just wishing I could have been around when they were here filming!

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Cry Danger & Eloise Jensson

Recently TCM had Eddie Muller on with Robert Osborne to present some film noir selections in honor of Noir City happening in San Francisco from January 25th through February 3rd. One of the films shown was Cry Danger (1951) with Dick Powell and Rhonda Flemming. Thankfully this film had recently been restored in 2011 and I really wish we would have made it to Noir City 2012 to see it on the big screen. We really enjoyed it and I wanted to steal everything that Jean Porter wore! She was a smaller part in the film but looked fantastic. The film credits Eloise Jensson as costume designer and with the exception of one dress, I loved everything the women wore. Especially the poolside outfits of Jean Porter. I do not know much about Hollywood costume designers but this got me to searching around a bit and I found she also worked on some episodes of I Love Lucy and designed outfits for Marilyn Monroe in We’re Not Married.

My favorite Jean Porter wore without the striped cover up...

...and with! So amazing!  
If only you could see the fabulous shoes she had on as well!

poolside outfit #2 - couldn't find a better photo 
but it was super adorable as well

The following two Eloise Jensson Marilyn sketches found at this website

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

10 years on this great little island called Alameda

I just realized that it has been about 10 years since we moved to Alameda in 2003 and we have never regretted it once! So hard to believe that much time has passed and that we are on our 5th, and hopefully final, apartment here. I may have grown up less than a half an hour from here but really never knew anything about it until the late 90s. When we were deciding where we wanted to live when we moved in together I had remembered coming to Alameda once before to go to Lucky 13. We decided to come back and check it out and knew right away we had to live here. Alameda has got everything: a movie theatre, great restaurants and bars (Lucky 13, Swell Bar, Forbidden Island to name just a few), a pinball museum, wineries, a distillery, monthly antique faire, vintage shops, and more including a rich history such as the long gone Neptune Beach amusement park. Thankfully a ton of buildings and homes have been protected here rather than torn down so there are loads of Victorians, bungalows, cottages, Mediterranean style homes, and great old apartments buildings as well as many other architectural styles and historical buildings.

So much has changed in these past 10 years. There are so many more restaurants (before it seemed the only choices were La Piñata, Ole’s or Linguini’s - I love all three but it’s nice to have more variety). One of the best changes in my opinion is that the theatre from 1932 stopped being a gymnastics studio as it was when we first arrived and has been beautifully restored. I never thought we would live in a place where we could ride bikes or walk to an amazing movie theatre. I sure do not miss having to go over to Jack London Square in Oakland to catch a movie.

In all this time there are still some things I cannot believe we have not done here yet such as go to Hangar 1 for a vodka tasting or go to the Pacific Pinball Museum. Soon we shall make it to both, I swear!

The first set of photos are from an Alameda postcard book that I own.

Still looks the same today...

This hotel is now apartments...

The stained glass at this church is beautiful at night

This whole neighborhood is filled with amazing homes

Ole’s Waffle Shop
(photo courtesy of this site)

Alameda Theatre

interior photo EverGreene

Pacific Pinball Museum
(photo from their website)

Neptune Beach (closed in 1939)

Also home to the best 4th of July parade!
This is the float for Swell Bar (I'm the 5th sailor from the left)

Sunday, January 20, 2013

Latest furniture Art Deco Vanity!

I have always wanted to have a proper vanity in my bedroom but never thought I’d get to actually have one. Our previous apartment was a tiny cottage with a tiny bedroom to match. When we moved into where we are now I was so excited to realize there is plenty of space for a vanity. I did not plan to buy one this soon but sometimes you come across something too good to pass up. I found this beauty in the basement level of Park Street Antiques here in Alameda. I saw it a while back but swear that the price was drastically different before. Recently I was at the shop admiring it again and noticed it was actually a great price. Of course I obsessed over it that evening then raced back the next morning so I could buy it. They even knocked some off the price so I paid an even better price than I imagined. It cleaned up really nice. One major selling point for me was the matching stool with green upholstered cushion that is hinged so more can be stored in the seat. It has already been so nice having a full length mirror again. No more standing on a stool in the bathroom! Now my next search swill be for a lamp to go on the vanity. Something to look for at the next antiques faire February 3rd!

I love how the mirror continues to the bottom

Check out these handles...Bakelite?

Great new spot for my Bakelite

Friday, January 18, 2013

Sid King & the Five Strings

I have been listening a lot to an album lately that I forgot I even had. I love rediscovering music. In this case it is a CD Bear Family put out of Sid King & the Five Strings, Gonna Shake This Shack Tonight. A friend of mine gave me a copy of this years ago and I am so glad that he did. Actually, I think he gave it to me before Viva Las Vegas #7 since Sid King was to perform that year. There are a ton of songs on this CD as per usual when it comes to Bear Family Records. Their earlier stuff was definitely more western but later got a bit more rock'n'roll. I laugh every time I hear 'Who Put the Turtle in Myrtle's Girdle' which was one of their earliest recordings as well as 'I Like It.' They then went on to record covers such as 'Drinking Wine, Spo-Dee-O-Dee,' 'Blue Suede Shoes,' and 'Ooby Dooby.' Another of my favorites off this disc is 'Sag, Drag and Fall.' Below is the track listing. Check it out!

1. I Like It
2. Crazy Little Heart
3. Put Something In The Pot Boy
4. Drinkin' Wine Spo-Dee-O-Dee
5. But I Don't Care
6. Mama, I Want You
7. Purr, Kitty, Purr
8. Sag, Drag, And Fall
9. Blue Suede Shoes
10. Let 'Er Roll
11. Booger Red
12. Ooby Dooby
13. When My Baby Left Me
14. Good Rockin' Baby
15. Gonna Shake This Shack Tonight
16. It's True, I'm Blue
17. I've Got The Blues
18. Warmed Over Kisses, Left Over Love
19. What Have Ya Got To Lose
20. Twenty One
21. I Cried
22. Oh What You Do To Me
23. Hello There Rockin' Chair
24. Once Upon A Time
25. Who Put The Turtle In Myrtle's Girdle
26. If Tears Could Cry
27. How Easy Was It Dear
28. When My Baby Left Me
29. Good Rockin' Baby

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Latest Freddie's of Pinewood purchases...

I recently purchased two more pairs of jeans from Freddie’s of Pinewood, the Indigo Pleated Pants and the Blue Pedal Pushers. I have a pair of the Selvedge Jeanies already and wanted more. As an added bonus, all orders during the month of December received a free Freddie’s retractable tape measure. Perfect for when shopping since the one I usually carry I am constantly rolling back up.

I absolutely love the Indigo Pleated Pants! So flattering and comfortable. The pocket detailing and white buttons are adorable. They have a wider leg than my selvedge jeanies. Since I am tall I do not get to turn them up as much as I would like but still like them with a smaller cuff. The Blue Pedal Pushers need to get broken in a bit but I like them as well, especially the cute zipper used for the side zip and the additional zipper details on the back pockets. The hips on these are much wider than the other pairs I have so they are very roomy. According to the website they are a reproduction of an actual pair of vintage pedal pushers. Unfortunately it has been far too cold here to get to wear them.

I am holding off but the next item I want to purchase from Freddie’s is the Dolman Sleeve Cardigan.

Indigo Pleated Pants

Pocket and stitching detail...

Blue Pedal Pushers

My free measuring tape...

Couldn't resist the tote bag

Dolman Sleeve Cardigan from Freddie's
on my wish list...