Norton recently took a rocket ride into the vaults of El Saturn Research and arrived back on Earth with a motherlode of unissued early R&B, doo wop, soul and general weirdness featuring Sun Ra and his Arkestra backing a variety of artists.
Liner Note Authors: Michael D. Anderson; Billy Miller.
The Second Stop Is Jupiter is the companion volume to Interplanetary Melodies in that many of the same tunes are on both discs in previously released and unreleased form. There's just a bit more of a "rehearsal" aspect to this volume, with some song breakdowns and a bit of arrangement discussion. The space references are a bit more overt as well, with "Spaceship Lullaby" and "Second Stop Is Jupiter" both containing elements that would end up in the Arkestra tunes "Rocket Number Nine" and "Interplanetary Music." Juanita Rogers' "I'm So Glad You Love Me" is more of her pure '50s teenage romance, but the swinging arrangement of the issued single is fantastic. "Stuff Like That There" is another track that's kind of surprising to hear Sun Ra sing. Ra fans suspected that there was material like this awaiting release. This opening salvo of compilations from Norton is a great start. ~ Sean Westergaard