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Spun 

Sandler amp; Young: Standing in the shadow of the Las Vegas Strip, Morning Blues from Mark Twain School and Amateur Anthropologist's "Time to Go" rocks and romps

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Fright from the Bins

Sandler & Young
Pretty Things Come in Twos (1969)

Even in its hey-nonny-nonny heyday, Las Vegas was more than just the Rat Pack ... what about the Mouse Pack? There were hundreds of meek yet punctilious entertainers willing to pay their dues up and down the Strip, sucking up to Sammy and working their asses off on Dean's TV show, all in the hope that one day they could open for Frank on the main stage instead of singing in toilets like The Clam Room or the Tick Tock Lounge. Yes, these Vanguards of Vegas, these gladiators of glitz, these shamans of shazam left their mark on Sin City without controversy, without headlines and without having anyone's legs broken for not sending enough towels up to the room.

Such an act was Tony Sandler and Ralph Young, the indescribable one-two ker-pow of a Belgian guy (Sandler) singing in foreign languages and a Bronx guy (Young) dumbing it down in English for the crap shooters.

They met during a Parisian revue at the Dunes Hotel in 1963. Remembering how much everyone enjoyed hearing testimonies translated at the Nuremberg trials, they dared to wonder, "What if we did it every goddamned number in the show?"

Signed to Capitol Records in 1966, an avalanche of song-translation albums followed; Here's Sandler & Young, More Sandler and Young, Way Too Much Sandler and Young and of course this, the boys' controversial nod to the free-love generation, Pretty Things Come in Twos.

Looking at their soaked-in-Dubonet leers on the cover, it's hard to imagine a time when the booze would stop flowing, when the unstoppable Sandler & Young juggernaut would grind to a halt, a time when people who needed to hear "Yesterday I Heard the Rain" and "You've Got a Friend" in eight different languages were dying off in big numbers. —Serene Dominic

 

Schoolyard Verse

This Morning I Got the Blues

This morning I got the blues
This morning I got the blues
I was sad when I heard the news.

There was school today
And that was not cool, not cool.
Because I was sleepy, sleepy.

When I didn't get up
My mom came in my room
To take a peeky peeky.

Then I got the blues, the blues.
Oh the blues.

—Alexus Wright, 5th grade, InsideOut Literary Arts Project, Mark Twain School and Academy

 

Download of the Week

Amateur Anthropologist — "Time to Go"

These young, rock 'n' romp upstarts are doing it in Detroit the hard way. Starting at the Token playing to staff, they've since kept company with Danny Kroha and played all the city's venerable venues, buzzing up the town. They blend punk and pop, but aren't pop punk.

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January 20, 2020

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