Roy Headrick

Austin, Texas

Recorded with Sonobeat in 1967
One non-commercial demo album release on Sonobeat Records in 1975
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Roy Headrick's Sonosong demo album master tape (1967)

Austin singer/songwriter Roy Headrick holds the distinction of being the first composer who records a demo album for Sonobeat's publishing arm, Sonosong Music, but the last whose album is actually pressed and distributed. Roy's album, appropriately entitled Songs from the Catalog of Sonosong Music Company: Roy Headrick, Composer, features 13 original compositions, all sung by Roy self-accompanied on standard guitar. Roy's material is a mixture of Americana and country-folk, consisting mostly of story-songs, but later in his career, Roy turns to country. His songs are heartfelt and feature clever lyrics.

Roy's recording sessions are conducted at Sonobeat co-founder Bill Josey Sr.'s home off Highway 290 in northeast Austin at the end of November 1967, in the Josey family living room, since Sonobeat has no studio facility at the time. The tracks are engineered by Bill Sr. and Rim Kelley (Bill Josey Jr.) using an Ampex 354 quarter-inch 2-track recorder and a pair of ElectroVoice 665 dynamic microphones, one for guitar and the other for Roy's vocals. Both the Ampex and the mikes are borrowed from KAZZ-FM, where both Bill Sr. and Rim work as general manager and deejay, respectively.

Roy's album isn't pressed and distributed until 1971. Bill Sr. distibutes copies from the limited run of about 100 vinyl copies to Nashville country labels in hopes that a song or two might be selected for a well-known artist to cover; however, there's no indication in the Sonobeat archives that any national label or artist – country or otherwise – records any of the tunes. Like all of Sonobeat's non-commercial demo album releases, Roy's is issued in a plain white jacket. Despite using Sonobeat's "Surrounding Sound Stereo" logo on the album label, the album is pressed only in a monaural version, as are all of Sonosong's demo albums. Oddly, though, the master tapes in Sonobeat's archives are stereo mixes.

While music is clearly Roy's passion, he goes on to a career in the City of Austin's planning department. Today, at age 82 and based in Georgetown, Texas, Roy continues to write and record new songs. Many are available on SoundCloud and iTunes and are easy to find by searching for Roy's name.

Roy Headrick personnel

Roy Headrick: guitar and vocals

Sonobeat song demo album WEJ-289M/WEJ-290M (1971)

Songs from the Catalog of Sonosong Music Company: Roy Headrick, Composer
Side 1:
   That Old Dog (Roy Headrick) • 5:15
   Peace of Mind (Roy Headrick) • 3:01
   Wishing (Roy Headrick) • 3:30
   Is God Dead? (Roy Headrick) • 3:27
   Lonesome Eyes (Roy Headrick/Terry May) • 3:46
   Little Blue Bird (Roy Headrick) • 3:46
Side 2:
   Too Bad (Roy Headrick) • 6:15
   You're Just a Dreamer (Roy Headrick) • 3:53
   Leave Me (Roy Headrick) • 2:18
   How Do You Do? (Roy Headrick) • 5:20
   There's Only One of You (Roy Headrick) • 3:00
   Don't Look at Me That Way (Roy Headrick) • 5:20
   Is the Grass So Much Greener? (Roy Headrick) • 3:00

Issued on unknown date in spring 1971* • WEJ-289M/WEJ-290M
Produced by Bill Josey Sr.
Engineered by Bill Josey Sr. and Rim Kelley
Recorded at the Josey home in northeast Austin, Texas, on November 28, 1967
Recording equipment: ElectroVoice 665 microphones, Ampex 354 quarter-inch 2-track tape deck, custom 6-channel portable FET stereo mixer, Scotch 201 tape stock
Vinyl collector information for WEJ-289M/WEJ-290M

Approximately 100 copies pressed
Lacquers mastered and vinyl copies pressed by Sidney J. Wakefield & Company, Phoenix, Arizona
Pressed only in monaural version
Plain white jacket
Label blanks printed by Powell Offset Services, Austin, Texas
In the dead wax:
   Side 1: 13898, WEJ-289M, and HEC
   Side 2: 13898, WEJ-290M, and HEC
   "HEC" in the matrix number are the initials of the mastering engineer at Sidney J. Wakefield & Company

Unissued Sonobeat recordings

There are no unissued songs by Roy Headrick in the Sonobeat archives


New stereo mixes of material previously issued only in monaural

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Final word

Not only is Roy's the first song demo album Sonobeat records and last Sonobeat releases, the album holds the dubious distinction of being held second longest in the can from recording date to release date. The David Flack Quorum's Sonobeat album, Mindbender, holds the record: six years from first session in 1970 to release in 1976!

Roy Headrick's Sonosong demo album is issued in Sonobeat's "trademark" rubber-stamped white jacket
No song lengths are given on the label of Roy's demo album