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Space Age Music Maker

Sir Julian Gould


  • Born Julius Goldberg 21 January 1915, New York City, New York
  • Died February 1977, Miami, Florida

Knighted only in his own mind, Sir Julian--he dropped his last name somewhere around the end of the 1950s could be pyrotechnical or pallid, depending on what the venue called for. Unfortunately, most of his recordings tend toward the latter, but his Thirteen Fingers album ranks among the very best organ albums of the Space Age Pop era.

Background information on Sir Julian is spotty. In his teens, he played piano with a group known as "The Swingsters" that included the young Frank Sinatra. He moved to Los Angeles and played the Wurlitzer at the Orpheum Theater, back in the days when the grand movie houses featured live shows and the organists got marquee billing. He earned a master's degree in music at UCLA, writing a thesis on "The History of Rhythm." At some point he migrated from theater organ to electric organ and started a nightclub act. Somewhere in the late 1950s, he settled in Miami, and at one point worked as the musical director for the local Playboy Club. If you have more details on his career, email me at editor@spaceagepop.com.

His two RCA albums are by far the most interesting of those I've heard. Both feature Sir Julian backed by guitar, bongos, drums, and bass, and showcase both his nimble fingerwork and a solid sense of swing. Organ in Orbit on United Artists is not bad, either, with three Gould originals the best cuts on the album. Love is Blue is a decent sampler of late 60s hits, with a cover of Quincy Jones' "In the Heat of the Night" that growls and simmers with plenty of soul.


Recordings

  • Ain't Misbehavin': A Tribute to Fats Waller, Design DLP-26
  • Music for Togetherness, Design DLP-27
  • The Thirteen Fingers Of Sir Julian, RCA Victor LPM 2372
  • A Knight At The Organ, RCA Victor LSP 2591
  • 50 Fabulous Organ Favorites, United Artists UAL 3346
  • Organ In Orbit, United Artists UAL 3334
  • Plays the Score from Lionel Bart's New Musical "La Strada," United Artists UAS 6688
  • Love Is Blue, Unart S 21029
  • Cocktails In Manhattan (The Julian Gould Trio), Grand Prix Series K-149


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