VAN MORRISON WANTS A DANISH
Irish singer-songwriter George Ivan Morrison was part of a number of bands and a number of labels (including Decca Records) for quite a while one of his producers convinced him to work solo under Bang Records. During his initial recording sessions, Van believed that he was going to have his eight songs released as four singles, and was surprised and annoyed to find that what he had written and performed as stand-alone pieces (including his first big American hit “Brown Eyed Girl”) were now squished together on one album with legendarily horrible psychedelic cover art and the doofy name Blowin’ Your Mind!
This was just the beginning of a business relationship between Morrison and Bang Records (and the Berns family that ran it) that could be charitably described as “problematic.” Complications of the deal largely prevented Van Morrison from doing live performances during his stay in America, a situation that was both artistically frustrating and financially painful for the young singer.
Morrison eventually started recording with Warner Brothers, who liked him enough to buy him out of his Bang contract and sever his ties with the obnoxious Berns forever… except he was still required to cut them one more album. Enormously pissed off, Morrison traveled to an NYC studio to cut a half-hour-long, 31-track album of completely improvised nonsense songs, including such surefire hits as “The Big Royalty Check,” “Here Comes Dumb George,” “Freaky If You Got This Far,” and the classic “Want A Danish.” Bang sat on the recordings until a mid-nineties compilation of early NYC-based Van Morrison demos and curiosities, when it released the entire collection (popularly known as “The Contractual Obligation Album” or simply “Revenge”) as a CD.