Welcome to Casablanca Records

Posted by Mr. Chadwick, February 29, 2008 12:30pm | Post a Comment

1980 saw the Casablanca release of Tony Joe White's The Real Thang album, which contained the amazing track "I Get Off On It", in which he discusses various individuals and their predilections--  junk food, trannys, trenchcoat flashers, bondage. Combine with a couple of other album highlights "Disco Blues" & the disco-ized version of "Even Trolls Love Rock and Roll", add copious amounts of cocaine and you've pretty much 'crystallized' the Casablanca Records story. 1980 was also the year that Polygram final squeezed Casablanca's founder out of the picture.  Neil Bogart went on to put together Boardwalk Entertainment, signing Joan Jett.  He also signed Get Wet -- if anyone out there knows what the Lou Reed connection is with them, please chime in. Anyhow, Mr. Bogart's body gave out on him 2 years later. 

Under the name Neil Scott, Bogart (born Bogatz) cut his music biz teeth at Cameo Parkway- talk about a crash course in the reality of the biz! He released a few records before they got shut down for Stock fraud.  He then moved on to Buddah and was crucial in the rise of Bubblegum, something he stuck with throughout his career- think T-Rex, Kiss, Joan Jett etc...Joining forces with fellow Brothers in Buddah Cecil Holmes, Larry Harris and Buck Reingold, he created Casablanca Records.

An early overpressing of the Johnny Carson double record (believe me, there are still way too many of them around, haunting me daily upstairs in vinylandia) put the label in a serious bind, but young Eugene and his bandmates scored an impossibly huge hit with their low budget masterpiece in tape splicing KISS Alive and really shot the label into the stratosphere... (btw Eugene, please get that f**king sex tape destroyed- I hate to see larger than life types brought down to mortal-dom. Nothing does that faster than inviting the world to watch you get sloppy in the bedroom.)

Anyhow, the rest is history.  Donna Summer, Village People, Scatt Brothers (the best Casablanca release PERIOD), Flashdance, Steve Allen "Funny" Fone Calls and on and on.  As above mentions, Neil was out of the pic in 1980, but the label kept on at it till 85, bowing out with A Chorus Line. Yet another major overpressing...Anyhow, here's a nice collection of Casablanca (and related labels) artwork and such.  Next Blog will be a quite stunning label gallery...Check out Tony Joe doin his thang live at the bottom...Motolla's Lindsey Lohan relaunch of Casablanca has no relation to the real deal, sorry pal- I know you gave Dr. Buzzard and crew their big break, but I just can't give a crap about Lohan...worst...Marilyn...ever... Yaaaawn.......


Relevant Tags

Casablanca Records (3), Neil Bogart (1), Kiss (16), Donna Summer (16), Cocaine (6), Disco (42), Bubblegum (2), Tony Joe White (2), Bondage (3)