Saturday, 28 April 2018

DICK JENSEN "HONOLULU GIRLS / ON THE BEACH" (circa 1982-84)



As promised just a few months ago, here comes what could possibly be one of the last posts in the long series that I dedicated to Dick Jensen since October 2011. Well, I must admit that I am contemplating the idea of gathering together all his singles, so there may still be room for one more big post dedicated to him here on Stereo Candies sometime soon.

Oh, and I have not yet completely resigned myself to live without a copy of Jensen's "True Spirit of Aloha", a religious album (...vinyl? ...cassette? Who knows....) that was released in 1985, after he became a born again evangelical Christian minister. This release is mentioned at least on a couple of Hawaiian websites and could easily be seen as the Holy Grail for all Jensen's die-hard fans, namely Me, Myself and I.

If you happen to have any information about such release and, who knows, even a copy for sale then I would love to hear from you, really!

A short biography of Jensen follows; for more details about his career up till the early '70s please have a look at this other post of mine: "Dick Jensen - An Entertainer Without a Hit Record (Part 1, 1942-1972)".


A rare early/mid '80s picture of Dick Jensen, sorry for the awful quality!

Jensen was a live musical performer of the Rhythm and Blues, Soul, and Gospel genres. A native Hawaiian athletic song stylist and a prime mover of nightclub shows inspired by Little Richard, whose "white hot soul" electrified audiences with his belting voice and imposing physical performances.

Jensen earned the sobriquet "The Giant" because of his tall stature, but he had a talent to match that nickname. His signature on-stage style incorporated strenuous dance moves similar to those of Jackie Wilson; he was noted for his glide - a proto-Moonwalk - well before Michael Jackson made it fashionable; just have a look at this clip on YouTube.

Jensen's music career began in 1959 and during the next fifteen years he moved back and forth between the Continental U.S. and Hawaii several times. He soon established himself as a singer in the Islands and in 1965 he got a contract with Loma Records.

During the late '60s / early '70 he often performed at several hotels and casinos and guested on many TV shows. His first album, entitled "White Hot Soul" (...available here...) was released in late 1969.

His potential as a national mainstream recording artist resulted in a contract with Philadelphia International, one of the top Soul music labels of the early 1970s. His "Dick Jensen" album was released in early 1973, but unfortunately sales were low and Jensen's tenure with the legendary label was very short...

Jensen returned to Honolulu around 1974 or 1975 and quickly re-estabilished himself as a local showroom star with engagements at the Hula Hut and at the Empire Room on the Oceania Floating Restaurant; the latter was jammed night after night for eight years.

"Giant of Hawaii", Jensen's third album (...available here...), was produced and arranged by Don Costa for his Don Costa Productions Inc. The record was released by Jensen himself in mid/late 1976 on a personal label created on purpose, the evocative Record Club of Honolulu.

In 1978 Jensen had a small part in a TV movie entitled "The Islander". I desperately tried to find a copy of this movie or at least more information about it, but all I could come up with is this short synopsis.

During 1979 Jensen worked on a new album with Bartolome 'Bart' Bascone, a veteran Island musician, conductor, composer and arranger best known for his novelty song "Who Is the Lolo (Who Stole My Pakalolo)", which Don Ho recorded and made a radio hit in 1977. "The Writer" (...available here...) was probably released the same year on Giant Records, another one-off label created by Jensen himself.

During the early '80s Jensen appeared on The Mike Douglas Show when it was broadcast from Hawaii, and guested on a few episodes of Magnum P.I.

Around the same time, a new single appeared out of the blue on, ehm, Bluewater Records, and - as you already guessed - "Honolulu Girls / On the Beach" is the subject of this post


Here's the track list for this 7" single:

01. Honolulu Girls (3:18)
02. On the Beach (3:04)

Both tracks were remastered from the original vinyl in April 2018 and are available in FLAC lossless format, along with scans of the original item.

Please have a look at the comments for the download link.



"Honolulu Girls / On the Beach" was released on Bluewater Records with catalogue number BW 1040 sometime in the early '80s. Unfortunately only very few information about this Hawaiian label run by legendary Tom Moffatt is available on the Internet.

My copy comes in a simple white paper sleeve and I guess this is how it was originally released. Date of publication is not written anywhere on the center labels, neither there are hints about it in the run-out grooves... Anyway, according to Discogs, other Bluewater singles with a lower catalogue number were released in 1980 and 1981, so I guess that a 1982-84 release date is correct.



Both tracks on the record were produced by Frank Day. No other credit is available, but I suppose that they were written by Jensen himself, or at least the lyrics seems to suit his style and suggest that he has to be credited for them.

The songs share a very similar musical structure and include extended saxophone solos. Unfortunately, like many other music recorded in the '80s, they seem quite dated now and they don't share the same freshness of other material recorded by Jensen during the previous decade.

Anyway, once again they showcase common themes of the life on the Islands and are a testament to the author's positive personality and attitude.


The following clips offer a complete preview of the remastered single, enjoy "Honolulu Girls" and "On the Beach"!






More information about Dick Jensen is available here:

http://archives.starbulletin.com/2006/06/22/news/story02.html

http://the.honoluluadvertiser.com/article/2006/Jun/22/il/FP606220304.html

http://www.oahuislandnews.com/May05/Home.htm

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dick_Jensen

I'm currently compiling a Dick Jensen biography, the first part of this work-in-progress covers the period 1942-1972 and is available here.

I'm also trying to compile a Dick Jensen exhaustive discography, my work-in-progress is available here.

Last but not least, I'm also trying to build a collection of Dick Jensen pictures and memorabilia, my work-in-progress is available here.

All my posts dedicated to Dick Jensen on this blog are available here.


If you have other useful information about this post, or if you spot any dead links, please get in touch with me at stereocandies [at] hotmail [dot] com or leave a comment in the box below, thank you!

1 comment:

  1. DOWNLOAD LINK

    http://www.mediafire.com/?njt...

    If you download this file please consider leaving a comment, your feedback is important!

    Please let me know if the link is broken and I'll do my best to quickly fix it.

    ReplyDelete

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