Some Really Good Mono Recordings on Vinyl ?

Finally got my Miyajima Zero cartridge installed!  Now, all I need are some Great Mono records. Looking for great recommendations.  What are your favorites?  (favorites that are not unobtainium)...

I do have the Beatles in Mono box set; it’s excellent!   Thanks, I’ll take a look at the Dylan box set 

The early Dylan recordings are relatively high in sound quality (far better than The Beatles), perhaps because they were done so simply. A couple of mics, mic pre-amps, a mixer, and a 2-track-1/2" recorder, all tube of course. Those albums on stereo LP’s sound absurd: his voice in the middle, harmonica in one speaker, guitar in the other. And some tracks with the locations scrambled differently.

I have some stereo recordings with the drumset spread all the way across the soundstage: floor tom far right, hi-hat far left, everything else spread in-between. In commercial Rock recording, capturing and reproducing instruments and vocals true-to-life is not necessarily the objective.

Most of the early (pre-’68 or so) Kinks, Yardbirds (1st album with Eric Clapton and Jeff Beck, 2nd with Jeff only, 3rd with Jeff and Jimmy Page, 4th with Page only) , Beach Boys, etc. albums were mixed only to mono only. The "stereo" LP’s of monaural recordings were simply electronically-manipulated to simulate stereo, and are atrocious sounding.

The self-titled debut Procol Harum album was mixed only to mono, and issued in England that way. In the U.S., Deram issued it in fake stereo. Look for the UK original on Regal Zonophone. An average album sonically, musically brilliant!

@bdp24 ,

Surprised you own The Beatles "Mono Box"?


I have an extra sealed Dylan "Mono Box" if you’re interested.

@slaw, I understand why I can be viewed as a Beatles basher, and for that I have only myself to blame. I in fact love both Rubber Soul and Revolver, and many individual songs on their other albums. I also love the "Paperback Writer"/"Rain" single, not originally on any album. Also the "Penny Lane"/"Strawberry Fields" single.

But I absolutely hate Sgt. Pepper, in which I find they focused on the overall concept, not the songs themselves. That it continues to be pronounced "The Best Rock ’n’ Roll Album Of All" bewilders me. I also really dislike Abbey Road, which is probably mystifying to many. What can I say?! Get Back/Let It Be is absolutely unlistenable, just dreadful. Compare it with it's contemporary, The Band's Music From Big Pink. What a contrast! Excellent songs, three great lead singers, the best individual musicians and ensemble playing in Rock 'n' Rock. Just as The Beatles were dying, The Band were there to lead the way forward.

George Harrison is one of my favorite guitarists, but his love of the damn sitar ruined him as a player. Terrible singer, though. Ringo’s playing---originally very cool---took the same course as did that of Keith Moon: he got sluggish as got older (and started drinking heavily), dragging down the feel of the band. Paul’s a great bassist and good songwriter, and an okay singer. John was a good rhythm guitarist (a dead art), but a not-so-good songwriter, as became obvious when he was left to his own devices (including his songs on the later Beatles albums, after Paul and he had stopped collorating). All in my opinion, of course.

But The Beatles boxset needs to be owned just as a "Soundtrack Of Our Lives" documentary, and because of their importance in Rock ’n’ Roll history, not to mention their cultural impact. I think that importance and impact has led many to be a little too uncritical of their music, viewing it and them as a Sacred Cow, above any and all criticism.

@bdp24 ,

You know, all the talk on this forum about (getting along or having made a point that is perceived as too rough)..... has had me thinking for a long time about equating this to what bands go through. They have their own ideas, egos, and have to try and come to some consencess in order to go forward and produce good music/songs. 

Music is such a personal thing. I wonder why there seems to be the knowledge of how much (in-fighting) there is among bands, and not expect the same type of thing to happen here among music lovers?

Of course we should be civil but still..........

Agreeing to disagree. Disagreements are even deeper amongst band members, as music is often all they have. To become a successful musician requires a lot of sacrifice, and an acceptance of the possibility of a life lived in virtual poverty, not unlike the vow Priests take. Their very sense of self-worth and identity are inexorably tied to the music they make.

There are many examples of inter-band squabbles: John and Paul, Ray and Dave Davies, The Don and Phil Everly, Phil and Dave Alvin, Dave Edmunds and Nick Lowe, Levon Helm and Robbie Robertson, Flatt and Scruggs, Buddy Holly and The Crickets, Roy Wood and Jeff Lynne immediately come to mind. There are thousands of others.

Canned Heat's debut on Sundazed.
Heavy by Iron Butterfly
Pet Sounds by The Beach Boys
Long coveted by collectors was RAM by Paul McCartney in Mono. It has now been re issued in Mono.