The copy we are selling is similar to the one pictured above.
Side One: Mint Minus Minus
Side Two: Mint Minus Minus
- An excellent copy of Sugar 'N' Spice with Double Plus (A++) sound throughout
- So hugely spacious and three-dimensional, yet with a tonally correct and natural sounding Peggy, this is the way to hear it
- This '60s LP has the kind of Tubey Magical Midrange that modern pressings barely BEGIN to reproduce
- Folks, that sound is gone and it sure isn't showing any sign of coming back
- "Peggy Lee is in fine voice throughout this jazz-flavored set, backed by ensembles arranged by Benny Carter, Billy Byers, Billy May, and Shorty Rogers. One of [her] better recordings from the early '60s."
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Having done this for so long, we understand and appreciate that rich, full, solid, Tubey Magical sound is key to the presentation of this primarily vocal music. We rate these qualities higher than others we might be listening for (e.g., bass definition, soundstage, depth, etc.). The music is not so much about the details in the recording, but rather in trying to recreate a solid, palpable, real Peggy Lee singing live in your listening room. The best copies have an uncanny way of doing just that.
If you exclusively play modern repressings of older recordings (this one is now 60 years old), I can say without fear of contradiction that you have never heard this kind of sound on vinyl. Old records have it -- not often, and certainly not always -- but less than one out of 100 new records do, if our experience with the hundreds we've played can serve as a guide.
What The Best Sides Of Sugar 'N' Spice Have To Offer Is Not Hard To Hear
- The biggest, most immediate staging in the largest acoustic space
- The most Tubey Magic, without which you have almost nothing. CDs give you clean and clear. Only the best vintage vinyl pressings offer the kind of Tubey Magic that was on the tapes in 1962
- Tight, note-like, rich, full-bodied bass, with the correct amount of weight down low
- Natural tonality in the midrange -- with all the instruments having the correct timbre
- Transparency and resolution, critical to hearing into the three-dimensional studio space
No doubt there's more but we hope that should do for now. Playing the record is the only way to hear all of the qualities we discuss above, and playing the best pressings against a pile of other copies under rigorously controlled conditions is the only way to find a pressing that sounds as good as this one does.
What We're Listening For On Sugar 'N' Spice
- Energy for starters. What could be more important than the life of the music?
- Then: presence and immediacy. The vocals aren't "back there" somewhere, lost in the mix. They're front and center where any recording engineer worth his salt would put them.
- The Big Sound comes next -- wall to wall, lots of depth, huge space, three-dimensionality, all that sort of thing.
- Then transient information -- fast, clear, sharp attacks, not the smear and thickness so common to these LPs.
- Tight punchy bass -- which ties in with good transient information, also the issue of frequency extension further down.
- Next: transparency -- the quality that allows you to hear deep into the soundfield, showing you the space and air around all the instruments.
- Extend the top and bottom and voila, you have The Real Thing -- an honest to goodness Hot Stamper.
Mint Minus Minus is about as quiet as any vintage pressing will play, and since only the right vintage pressings have any hope of sounding good on this album, that will most often be the playing condition of the copies we sell. (The copies that are even a bit noisier get listed on the site are seriously reduced prices or traded back in to the local record stores we shop at.)
Those of you looking for quiet vinyl will have to settle for the sound of other pressings and Heavy Vinyl reissues, purchased elsewhere of course as we have no interest in selling records that don't have the vintage analog magic of these wonderful recordings.
If you want to make the trade-off between bad sound and quiet surfaces with whatever Heavy Vinyl pressing might be available, well, that's certainly your prerogative, but we can't imagine losing what's good about this music -- the size, the energy, the presence, the clarity, the weight -- just to hear it with less background noise.
- Ain't That Love
- The Best Is Yet To Come
- I Believe In You (from "How To Succeed In Business Without Really Trying")
- Embrasse Moi
- See See Rider
- Teach Me Tonight
- When The Sun Comes Out
- Tell All The World About You
- I Don't Wanna Leave You Now
- The Sweetest Sounds
- I've Got The World On A String
- Big Bad Bill (Is Sweet William Now)
Peggy Lee is in fine voice throughout this jazz-flavored set, backed by ensembles arranged by Benny Carter, Billy Byers, Billy May, and Shorty Rogers. The program only includes two performances over three minutes in length, so there is not much for the backup bands to do. However, the material is mostly pretty strong, with the highlights including "See See Rider," "When the Sun Comes Out," "I've Got the World on a String," and "Big Bad Bill Is Sweet William Now." One of Peggy Lee's better recordings from the early '60s.