Curt Massey

Viewing 7 posts - 1 through 7 (of 7 total)
  • Author
    Posts
  • #4120
    Avatarrwhitney
    Participant

    I’m researching the music of composer, Curt Massey (1910-1991), who played melodica on many of his television cues on the 1960s show, Petticoat Junction. I am trying to discover specifically what melodicas he played. Also, if anyone knows of any sources for scores of his television music (incidental music, not the main themes), I’d very much appreciate knowing about them.

    #4121
    Daren BanarsëDaren Banarsë
    Keymaster

    Hi rwhitney

    Welcome to the forum

    Do you have any sound samples for us? There’s a possibility of being able to narrow down melodica models through listening. Did he record in a particular studio? Have you thought about contacting engineers he worked with? They might recall which models he preferred using.

    #4127
    Avatarrwhitney
    Participant

    Hey Daren, here’s a link to a particularly good cue of his from Petticoat Junction, which features his “melodica” at 1:05 http://youtu.be/0_lBZ-F28xI.

    I have a good lead that suggests it was actually a Clavietta, but I’ve yet to confirm it. Massey was heard on radio, tv, and recorded extensively in his own home studio, a little unusual for television composers of the 1960s, prior to the advent of the digital synth in the 1980s. A multi-instrumentalist, he played piano, trumpet, violin, and various instruments besides the melodica, and built up his tracks by playing and recording all of the parts himself. Nevertheless, it’s a great idea to see if any of the engineers he recorded with are still living. Thanks!

    #4129
    AvatarMelodica-Me
    Participant

    Hello Rwhitney, welcome I love your topic. It definitely sounds like a clavietta, I would love to know. I have never heard so much melodica on TV so I will probably spend the next few days on net flicks looking up petticoat junction videos. Do you know if he did other shows as well?
    Melodica-Me
    Monsters of Melodica

    #4130
    AvatarMelodica-Me
    Participant

    Well after a couple of hours of petticoat junction it seams there were several different Melodicas used. It sounds like he may have used a Hohner pro 36 and a piano 36 and a Clavietta. And maybe more. The clavietta seams to be in the more softer scenes and the piano 36 in the parts were they have a shuffle type groove. At one point it almost sounds like a Suzuki M37 was used, of corse all these different sounds could be that different microphones were used or different recording equipment, it really is hard to say. I remember seeing this show with my sisters when we were just kids. Funny thing is I played melodica in the late 60’s and never even put the two together. Good memories
    Melodica-Me

    #4131
    Avatarrwhitney
    Participant

    Hi Melodica-Me, it does sound to me like more than one melodica. Thanks for the suggestion about the Hohner Pro 36. As for other shows, Curt Massey also wrote the music for The Beverly Hillbillies (1962-1971), which started a year earlier than Petticoat Junction. Melodica isn’t used much there, if at all, at least during the first two seasons. He concentrated on guitar, banjo and fiddle, and there is much less underscore overall in that one. Here he is playing himself (at 21:13), and his fiddle earlier in episode 11 of season 2, “The Garden Party” http://youtu.be/-AGef7mOWh8

    #4147
    Daren BanarsëDaren Banarsë
    Keymaster

    Yes, could definitely be a Clavietta, but then again, could be another good quality melodica. As MM points out, the variations in recording technique makes it impossible to be sure, especially these old-style analogue recordings…

Viewing 7 posts - 1 through 7 (of 7 total)
  • You must be logged in to reply to this topic.
Back to top button