Thursday, September 29, 2011

Fan Club Newsletter #66 - January 1980

This is one of my favorite Carpenters Fan Club Newsletters as it speaks of Karen's solo album...

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Greetings Friends!

The Carpenter family wish to convey their warmest thanks for all the beautiful cards and gifts, and hope you all enjoyed the Holidays with your families and friends.

Our local radio stations provided us with many happy listening hours of Christmas Portrait music over the festive season.

Karen has made several return trips to New York in connection with her recordings, and we can anticipate release of her solo album sometime in March. She is in New York now, working on the final segments, but until completion stage it cannot be determined which track will be chosen for the initial single release, so watch for it soon.

Richard and Karen recently participated in the popular TV show 20/20 with Herb Alpert, which is due to air shortly, but no date is set at present time.

You will be happy to know tentative plans are in the making for a Carpenters Special some time in the Spring. Taping is scheduled to begin next month, but there is no information on the theme or guests as this letter goes to press.

Showing signs of having benefited greatly from his overdue hiatus, Richard plans on returning to the studios with Karen when she returns from New York, to resume work on their next album which will embrace some of the music they will feature in their Special.

Richard recently made two different type records! He's thoroughly enjoyed being involved with his cars and attending car auctions. Over the Thanksgiving weekend he paid a record price for a 1966 Mustang Convertible, and sold his 1959 Chrysler 300 for a record price.

Regarding the information I conveyed to you in the #65 newsletter pertaining to the Japanese LP The Carpenters First Ten Years, Alfa Records have since advised me of an error on the price. This should have been Y4,800 NOT Y4,500 plus Y5,000 for shipping etc. They wish to apologize for any inconvenience incurred by the error, but those who ordered would be wise to send the balance of Y300 promptly to ensure delivery of same.

Alfa Records have also compiled two new Carpenters releases which may interest you collectors. Both albums are entitled Sound Capsule Carpenters Vol. 1 and Vol. 2. Price for each recording is Y2,500 plus Y2,800 for shipping and handling.

Indicative of the appreciation of the Singles 1974-1978 released in England last year, it has already achieved Platinum status!

Many hours of preparation and research has finally culminated in a very nice souvenir book (now in mailing process) as a token of gratitude from the Carpenters for your faithful support during the first decade of their recording career. Enjoy!

These books will not be sold outside the fanclub, so anyone who wishes further copies for friends, can obtain them from the fanclub for $X.XX for USA members, and $X.XX for members residing outside the States. The price includes shipping and handling.

The Carpenter homestead in Downey is an annual spectacle as the Holiday Season approaches, but this year was even more spectacular with the addition of a life-size Snoopy positioned on the red carpeted porch accompanying an enormous frosty reindeer (complete with gift wrapped packages) suspended over the porch railings. Dad Carpenter who supervises the decorating was awarded first prize in the form of a plaque presented by Chaney Realtors for the "Gallery Of Homes Christmas Decoration Contest". The usual stream of visitors filed past to view the magnificent sight.

As I have no further news just now, I'll include the answers to some of your questions:

Q. Does Karen hope for better promotion for her solo LP than previous Carpenters releases of recent years, and will she do a promo tour?
A. There is a possibility Karen might do a short promo tour. She feels A & M are behind them, and she and Richard feel very proud of being selected American Top 40's #1 Recording Duo of the past decade.
 Q. Have Karen and Richard ever met Barbra Streisand?
A. Yes, many times. 
Q. How many cars does Karen have now?
A. Three: 1956 Thunderbird Convertible, 1972 Mercedes, 1979 Jaguar XJS. 
Q. On which tracks did Karen play drums on the Horizon album?
A. Please Mr. Postman and Happy. 
Q. Did Karen and Richard see Grease, did they like it, and would they ever consider participating in a similar type film?
A. They both saw it, enjoyed it and would consider such a venture if the opportunity arose.
Q. Is Karen going to appear on Loveboat or Fantasy Island?
A. She is interested in appearing if a suitable script is offered. 
Q. Is it possible K&R might do a USA Singles 1974-1978 release?
A. They have no plans for this at the present time. 
Q. Did Karen visit Studio 54 while in New York?
A. She was invited, but had to decline due to pressure of work.
 Q. Will the Carpenters be touring in 1980?
A. There is a slight possibility, but no concrete plans at present.

The Carpenters Christmas Portrait album cover was reproduced for their personalized Christmas cards this year. As their hand written message inside the card was so meaningful, one was mailed to our hostages in Iran. To reflect their message seems a fitting conclusion to this letter: "For a warm and full season, we send you our wishes for Peace among men, and Love throughout the world". Karen & Richard.

Everyone connected with our duo warmly endorses their message.

Happy New Year! Rosina.


  1. I always loved the newsletters, although in light of what we now know, it was really P.R. - the truth about Karen was very different. I think that is why Carpenters fans took her death extremely hard.

    The gem of truth I am enjoying about is that on Horizon album, Karen played drums for "Happy" and just one other track about a postman.

    I have always believed "Happy" to be the strongest track on this album and I wondered what else Tony Peluso could have contributed. This song to me had the sophistication of rhythm and structure that reminded us of the earliest Carpenters "experiments" on the first two albums or so. Karen really shone when things got off-beat - voice and drum working together in an exciting way.

    It seems appropriate that Karen drummed it. And maybe Richard would now like the album (and "Theres a Kind of Hush") better if this had suggested a direction

  2. I find the comment interesting about Karen declining a visit to Studio 54 due to the pressures of work. I got a different impression from what was said in the Ray Coleman book.