Ultra Swank - Retro Adventures


Lounge Gothic – A New Music Genre Begins to Emerge

In the Atomic Age retro scene, there have always been folk with a taste for the gothic. You can thank The Cramps. One of the first punk acts to use the word “gothic” to promote themselves in the 1970s, The Cramps went on to influence what would eventually become the post-punk Goth scene. However, unlike Siouxsie and The Banshees, Bauhaus, and other Goth scene progenitors,...

Appreciating Exotica Jazz
August 12th, 2015 in Music

Appreciating Exotica Jazz

Exotica jazz is no longer well-known to the average joe. It’s a genre of jazz that is based on exotic locales and sounds that emerged after WWII, predominately within the span of the 1950s to mid-1960s. The music was influenced heavily by Asian, tropical islands, South American, and African sounds, whether native beats or sounds of nature. Many men and women musicians emerged after the...

The Cocktail Nation Podcast

The Cocktail Nation

Let Robert Drasnin Inspire You to Collect Vinyl Again

People still dig vinyl records. Of course, you, as a swinging Lounge Revivalist, knew that already. A big deal was made this year when Jack White cut a live version of the title track to his album Lazaretto, rushed it to press, and had the vinyl in-store for sale the same day. And fans, and a lot of the media, acted like they’d never heard...

Cocktail Nation – The Interviews 2

From the Sydney Penthouse the Lounge Lothario has been working overtime putting in the long distance calls across the globe to find you the craziest cats of the retro scene along with the legends who cohabit the swank universe that is the Cocktail Nation. In this edition the Lounge Leader talks magazines with Tiki Magazine founding father Nick Camara, art with El Gato Gomez and,...

The Beatles Fifty Years Later
February 9th, 2014 in Music

The Beatles Fifty Years Later

With the 50th Anniversary of the British invasion of America via the Beatles upon us, I thought it apropos to take a walk down Memory Lane, remembering the highlights of Beatlemania in my own life. When the Beatles hit the Mainland in 1964, I had just turned six years old and my whole world was getting through 1st grade without getting my knuckles rapped by...

Guitar Legend: Al Viola
January 28th, 2014 in Interview

Guitar Legend: Al Viola

In 1992, I was performing extensively under the stage name Jimmy Ross through Orange and Los Angeles Counties as a solo pianist/vocalist entertainer and occasionally in jazz trio and quartet settings. I had just started a double emphasis graduate program in piano and vocal performance at California State University. I was performing two nights a week across the street from where Diana Krall was performing,...

A Revision of Italian Pop of the 1950s & 1960s

If you are familiar with Faith No More, then you probably know exactly who Mike Patton, the lead singer, is. Since the 1990s, Patton has worked on a multitude of projects and solo albums, including his 2010 release Mondo Cane. Mondo Cane is Patton’s version of Italian pop from the 1950s and 1960s, but with his own twist to the music. Patton was inspired by...

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