October 11th, 2021

Readers may know I’m a fan of weird fortune cookie sayings. Here’s another one: “Do it now! Today will be yesterday tomorrow.”

There’s simply nothing I can add to that.

We’re saddened by the passing of George Frayne, aka Commander Cody, at 77. Commander Cody and his Lost Planet Airmen (named after a 1951 science fiction movie) were one of the first bands to blend country music with rock, and earned their place in the pantheon of musical greats with their blazing 1971 version of “Hot Rod Lincoln.” We salute you, Commander.

In this issue: I cover the premiere of the first two vinyl releases from Octave Records: jazz trumpeter Gabriel Mervine’s Say Somethin’ and Out of Thin Air by pianist Don Grusin. Anne E. Johnson looks at rock icons the Pretenders and jazz vibraphonist Bobby Hutcherson. David Snyder brings us Part Two of his comprehensive guide to Roon. Tom Gibbs sees Red – the King Crimson album of the same name, that is. Rich Isaacs has a laugh about 1970s comedy troupes. J.I Agnew is dazzled by direct metal mastering and the DMM Dubplate, Vol. 1. Tom Methans brings us Sevdah, the traditional folk music of Bosnia-Herzegovina. B. Jan Montana rides closer to Sturgis.

Ken Sander revisits Summer Jam at Watkins Glen – and an innovation that changed live concert sound forever. Russ Welton begins a series on getting better sound from computer audio with the least expenditure, and another on choosing speakers. Rudy Radelic surveys the landmark Dionne Warwick recordings with Burt Bacharach and Hal David. Ray Chelstowski interviews rocker Joe Grushecky on the eve of the 25th Anniversary reissue of American Babylon. Steven Bryan Bieler grooves to train songs. Stuart Marvin remembers Sixties rock hype victims Rhinoceros. Andy Schaub has a personal look at FM radio. Larry Jaffee digs Big Bill Broonzy live in Nottingham. The Copper A/V squad concludes the issue with an avian audiophile, this year’s model, multichannel women, and a hole in the wall.

Staff Writers:

J.I. Agnew, Ray Chelstowski, Cliff Chenfeld, Jay Jay French, Tom Gibbs, Roy Hall, Rich Isaacs, Anne E. Johnson, Don Kaplan, Ken Kessler, Don Lindich, Tom Methans, B. Jan Montana, Rudy Radelic, Tim Riley, Wayne Robins, Alón Sagee, Ken Sander, Larry Schenbeck, John Seetoo, Dan Schwartz, Russ Welton, WL Woodward, Adrian Wu

Contributing Editors:
Ivan Berger, Steven Bryan Bieler, Harris Fogel, Robert Heiblim, Steve Kindig, Ed Kwok, Stuart Marvin, David Snyder, Bob Wood

“Cartoon Bob” D’Amico

James Whitworth, Peter Xeni

Parting Shots:
James Schrimpf, B. Jan Montana, Rich Isaacs (and others)

Audio Anthropology Photos:
Howard Kneller, Steve Rowell

Frank Doris

Paul McGowan

Advertising Sales:
No one. We are free from advertising and subscribing to Copper is free.

 – FD

Choosing New Speakers: What Information Is Helpful? Part One

Impedance. Signal to noise ratio. Driver size. Flatness of frequency…

Roon Done Right: A User Guide, Part Two

In Part One (Issue 146), we covered the fundamentals of…

Summer Jam at Watkins Glen, Part Two

In Part One (Issue 146) Ken talked about his journey…

Joe Grushecky: Still Rocking the House

Pittsburgh’s own Joe Grushecky is one of the most genuine,…

Octave Records Releases its First Vinyl LPs

PS Audio’s Octave Records is proud to announce its first…

Stream of Consciousness: Better Sound From My Computer Audio, Part One

As something of a musical magpie, I have always been…

Big Bill Broonzy, Live in Nottingham 1957

Big Bill Broonzy The Midnight Special: Live in Nottingham 1957…

Everyone Loves the Sound of a Train in the Distance

I’ve always loved trains and music. When I was little,…

The Joys of FM

Although it’s common for more than person to discover or…


The early years of my life were spent on my…

Pilgrimage to Sturgis, Part Five

[The first installments of this series appeared in Issues 143, 144, 145…

Pretenders: The Real Thing

On September 7, 2021, Chrissie Hynde turned 70 years old.…

The DMM Dubplate and the Art of Pushing the Boundaries, Part One

Before I begin writing about the DMM Dubplate Vol. 1…

1960s Rock Band Rhinoceros: Hype (and Then, More Hype)

Way before Menudo there was Rhinoceros. Rhinoceros was a late…

Burt Bacharach, Part Two: Make Way for Dionne Warwick

Part One in Issue 146 covered Burt Bacharach’s early years,…

Beyond the Firesign Theatre: Other Comedy Troupes of the 1970s

(WARNING: You may be exposed to adult content and humor…

Bobby Hutcherson: Good Vibes

Given the up-and-coming jazz greats who surrounded him, Bobby Hutcherson…

King Crimson – Red (40th Anniversary Steven Wilson Remix/Remaster)

I know, I’m pretty much late to the party with…

Avian Audiophile

One Speed Is All You Need

Detail of the front panel of a 1970s MAC-1900 receiver,…

This Year’s Model

Hole in the Wall

It was the perspective through the hole in this stone…
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Stop by for a tour:
4865 Sterling Dr.
Boulder, CO 80301

Join the hi-fi family

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