Sunday Shout-Out: BizarreRecords.com
[Every Sunday, we give a little hype to a fellow blog, website or other source for all things related to weird music and the people who love it. Check the tag “Sunday Shout-Out” for other recommendations.]
Here at TWBITW, we try to keep the focus squarely on the music. Well, and on the videos, and OK, sometimes the outfits, but mostly on the music. Rarely do we address the subject of album cover art, which of course can often be just as weird or weirder than the contents of the album itself. So thank the Internet Gods for BizarreRecords.com, which since 1996 has lovingly cataloged the cover art of hundreds (thousands?) of bargain-bin gems and garage-sale treasures. Most of the covers speak for themselves, but site creator Nick DiFonzo is also kind enough to upload liner notes, post sample tracks, and even hunt down publicity photos or links to the collectors’ site GEMM.com, in case you absolutely have to obtain your very own copy of Tell It Like It Is: A Folk Musical About God.
DiFonzo’s most famous discovery is probably Joyce Drake, whose 1983 country/gospel album Joyce has become a kind of Internet shorthand for ridiculous album art. Jeff Bridges even went on Ellen and showed Joyce as part of his own collection of bad album art—but we’re pretty sure Bizarre Records gets credit for unearthing her first.
If you can’t get enough of this stuff, DiFonzo has compiled over 200 of the best/worst album covers into a book, Seriously Bad Album Covers!, which is sadly out of print but still available (last we checked) via the BizarreRecords.com website. You can also keep tabs on the latest Bizarre album covers on Facebook. Like all good curators, DiFonzo doesn’t post new finds often, but when he does, they’re always pure gold.