Fair Use disclaimer

All music presented on this site is shared under the premise of "fair use"; this site is solely intended for the purpose of education and critique. If you are a rights holder to any of the music presented and wish for it to be removed, simply contact me directly and it will be taken down.

Sunday, January 31, 2010

FONTELLA BASS & TINA TURNER - POOR LITTLE FOOL


As I was deciding which record to feature today, it dawned on me that there are very few female DUO records from this era; certainly much less common than male soul duo's. What a treat that we hear two of the greatest female singers TOGETHER on this disc!

Driven along by their sublime vocals and some truly epic baritone guitar, this song is a superb example of the early sixties St. Louis sound.

from 1963...

FONTELLA BASS & TINA TURNER - POOR LITTLE FOOL

Friday, January 29, 2010

THE EMBERS - WHERE DID I GO WRONG


The phenomena of "beach music" is fascinating; almost like an American version of the Northern Soul cult, and many times the two intertwine (such as on this record). Still popular in South Carolina beach towns, beach music playlists range from early r&b, rockabilly, Motown, NOLA; basically anything that people can dance the shag to.

The Embers (here led by singer Jackie Gore) are a group (although judging by their website, no members are original) that are still active, regularly gigging around the southern beach resorts. I was very surprised to learn that they are and were an all white group!

A few years back I bought some records from a lady who was transplanted from South Carolina to right here in the bay area. She was probably in her late sixties, and still very beautiful. Told me stories about what it was like back in the early sixties in Myrtle Beach, including the night she risked all social taboos and danced all night with Otis Redding. She had this record and played it for me and danced around a little bit, then had a change of heart and decided to keep it. Was I upset? No way! I knew another copy would come up. Not to mention meeting her and hearing her stories was worth far more to me anyway.

from 1969...

THE EMBERS - WHERE DID I GO WRONG

Thursday, January 28, 2010

THE MARK KEYS - MY SWEET BABY


This is another one of those records (similar to 'You Don't Love Me" by Epitome Of Sound, featured recently) that sounds like it was recorded either underwater, on another planet, or in a dream.

Co-writer Dave Hamilton was a Detroit musician who also owned the studio and label that released this record. He played guitar on a number of Motown sessions (as well as John Lee Hooker's immortal "Boom Boom") before striking out on his own, founding TCB studios in 1965.

This appears to be the only release from this Detroit group. No other details...I'm guessing the year.

from 1968...

THE MARK KEYS - MY SWEET BABY

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

RUBY LEE - I'M GONNA PUT A WATCH ON YOU (24 HOURS A DAY)


Talk about a mysterious record!

Well loved on the mod/ soul scene, but no one seems to know where or when it came from. The label is sure mysterious; no address, not even a producer listed. Maybe it's from New Orleans, maybe it's from another planet... I'm GUESSING the year.

As always, please write if you know any more.

from 1964...

RUBY LEE - I'M GONNA PUT A WATCH ON YOU (24 HOURS A DAY)

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

NOLAN PORTER - IF I COULD ONLY BE SURE


Los Angeles native Nolan found himself in some interesting company for the backing band on this session- former Mothers Of Invention members Jimmy Carl Black (drums), Roy Estrada (bass) (from the original lineup), and Lowell George (guitar) (from a late period lineup and also the founder of Little Feat, who Nolan also guested with!) after their acrimonious parting of ways with Frank Zappa.

Not surprising, as the Mothers musicians got their start playing r&b in clubs in southern California. These guys did a fine job on this record that has a last gasp of the late 60's sound.

I really dig Nolan's pleading vocals and lyrics on this excellent record.

from 1972...

NOLAN PORTER - IF I COULD ONLY BE SURE

Monday, January 25, 2010

LOS SHAKERS - ADORABLE LOLA


If this isn't a cure for your Monday blues, I'm afraid it's hopeless. This is the type of song that I could sit transfixed and listen to over and over again for hours.

Los Shakers were from Uruguay, and brothers Hugo and Osvaldo abandoned a budding successful career in jazz when they heard the Beatles. These guys were YOUNG when they started (they were teens when they became professional jazz musicians) and the original lineup released three INCREDIBLE albums and a handful of singles (this is one of their non-LP tracks). Their 1967 album (which is essentially an answer to the Beatles Sgt Pepper LP) titled "La Conferencia Secreta Del Toto's Bar" is simply the best underheard/ relatively unknown rock n roll (although it incorporates strong South American elements and even a few jazzy passages) album of the sixties. I would argue 'til I'm blue in the face about that! Los Shakers took a strong Beatles influence and didn't merely copy, but used their love for the Beatles to unlock their own creativity.

Beatle-esque harmonies over a tropicalia sound; it doesn't get any better than 'Adorable Lola".

from 1967...

LOS SHAKERS - ADORABLE LOLA

Sunday, January 24, 2010

COMING SOON to San Jose- If you like girl group, power pop, roots...Magic Christian/ Careless Hearts & The Bang!



I must say I am STOKED to be a part of this lineup (times three; I play guitar in both the Bang and Careless Hearts, plus I'm DJ'ing before and inbetween bands).

Magic Christian features Cyril Jordan (Flamin' Groovies) and Clem Burke (Blondie) and they are KILLER!

MELLOW FELLOWS - MY BABY NEEDS ME


Another mystery group; as always, if you know anything about them, please write!

Here we have a perfectly executed song with SMOOTH vocals over such a splendid shuffle.

from 1968...

MELLOW FELLOWS - MY BABY NEEDS ME

Saturday, January 23, 2010

PAT LEWIS - NO ONE TO LOVE


I WISH I could say I was lucky enough to own an original of this record; in fact, I find it one of only a choice few 45's that truly deserves its incredibly high price tag (almost always over $2000).

So, unless I get extremely lucky digging one day, I'll be very satisfied with a bootleg-repro copy of this incredible record.

I'm a MASSIVE fan of the Solid Hit/ Revilot records stable (especially the early productions of George Clinton, as this one is). The records have SO much feel to them, as well as a very SPOOKY aura. This one is no exception, with Pat Lewis always stellar vocals mixed with powerful strings and underneath it all a superb song.

from 1967...

PAT LEWIS - NO ONE TO LOVE

Friday, January 22, 2010

THE GUESS WHO - IT'S MY PRIDE


A friend of the blog wrote the other day and asked for some psych/ garage; I am happy to oblige. Granted my collection of that stuff is smaller than my soul collection, but I love a good psych/beat song as much as the next guy/gal.

This Canadian monster was recorded during a non-hit period for this group that hit big in '65 with 'Shakin' All Over" and then achieved massive success in the late 60's/70's.

In my humble opinion, this and "Shakin" are their two finest blasts, bar none.

TO MY FRIENDS IN EUROPE- I will be visiting quite a few countries in April/ May, then again in July working with a band, and would love to book some DJ gigs on my off nights. I have something booked in London (exciting!) and please contact me if you can help elsewhere.

from 1967...

THE GUESS WHO - IT'S MY PRIDE

Thursday, January 21, 2010

TONY CLARKE - (THEY CALL ME A) WRONG MAN b/w (NO CONCEPTION) NO SENSE OF DIRECTION


This, the final single before his tragic death (allegedly in a domestic dispute) in 1970 concludes the three absolutely brilliant records released by Tony Clarke that have been featured on this blog ("Landslide" and "The Entertainer" are past entries). While all other Clarke entries were recorded in Chicago, this one was cut in Detroit and it burns strong with motor city fuel (both sides also features some of my all time favorite guitar breaks).

"(They Call Me A) Wrong Man" plays out like a one man show; the record starts out with Tony cooly explaining his life, which later explodes into a dramatic and powerful conclusion matched with a backing band that follows him every step of the way. Records simply DO NOT get better than this one. Flip side "(No Conception) No Sense Of Direction" is an excellent uptempo stomper that continues in the theme of the a side.

Mike Terry was the arranger of this record (in addition to arranging a dizzying array of other great Detroit 45's); Mike was also the baritone sax player who played incredible breaks on countless Motown hits. His horn was one of the defining sounds of Motown records, yet for some reason he wasn't part of "Standing In The Shadows Of Motown"; a travesty. He passed away in 2008.

from 1968...

TONY CLARKE - (THEY CALL ME A) WRONG MAN


b/w (NO CONCEPTION) NO SENSE OF DIRECTION

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

VICKI ANDERSON - NO MORE HEARTACHES NO MORE PAIN


Acknowledged by James Brown himself as the finest singer he had ever witnessed, Vicki was an on again/ off again member of the James Brown revue (and was also married to JB's main man Bobby Byrd.) This BLAZING track (written by JB and Byrd) finds Vicki soaring to incredible heights with the always stellar James Brown production and backing band.

from 1970...

VICKI ANDERSON - NO MORE HEARTACHES NO MORE PAIN

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

CHRIS CLARK - DO RIGHT BABY DO RIGHT


Six feet tall, blonde and drop dead gorgeous, Chris Clark was also the first white woman to be signed to Motown (and for damn good reason!). Her incredibly sultry and powerful vocals are the thing of legend (all time monster "Love's Gone Bad' was featured here a few years back). Sadly, she never received the fame she deserved.

This record is her debut single, and I absolutely love the slow burning feel; top notch musicians, top notch singer, ace song.

California born and bred, Chris now lives about 60 miles north of where I do, and while I missed a performance she gave a few years back (sadly, didn't hear about it til after the fact) I'm hoping she will come out and perform again. And Chris, if you happen to be looking, we will gladly offer up our group THE BANG to back you up (we already have "Love's Gone Bad" on our set list)!!!!

from 1965...

CHRIS CLARK - DO RIGHT BABY DO RIGHT

Monday, January 18, 2010

DARROW FLETCHER - WHAT IS THIS b/w DOLLY BABY


Darrow Fletcher is another artist who I have been slowly covering their entire discography within this blog. This record was cut in what was his fifth year as a recording artist at the age of 19! Yes, Darrow was a child prodigy, and his records as a teen and young adult radiate with absoulte brilliance.

from 1971...

Thursday, January 14, 2010

TRADE MARTIN - MOANIN'


Behold, one of the most incredible blue eyed soul records ever recorded. Trade Martin is best know as the writer of 'Take Me For A Little While" (which is the actual A side of this record) as covered by Evie Sands, Vanilla Fudge, etc.

The middle section/ breakdown in this record is one of my favorite 30 seconds of music, ever.

I'll be out of town for a few days (and I am sans laptop) so posts will resume on Monday. Have a great weekend!

from 1967...

TRADE MARTIN - MOANIN'

MAJOR LANCE - INVESTIGATE


...And another installment in the Major Lance story, which has been ongoing since the beginning of this blog.

A great record; I absolutely love the dramatic feel of the verses meshed with the poppy feel of the chorus. Simply more Chicago genius. But wait; this one is produced by Billy Sherrill...does that mean it was recorded in Nashville???? Hmmm....

from 1966...

MAJOR LANCE - INVESTIGATE

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

FONTELLA BASS - LUCKY IN LOVE


While Fontella never had the type of chart success (not to mention pop crossover) as she did with "rescue Me", there are a number of other great, overlooked records in her discography including this one which is a real fave of mine. Another stellar piece in the Chicago soul puzzle. Adding up the the output from the likes of Chess records, productions and recordings of groundbreakers Gene Chandler, Syl Johnson and Curtis Mayfield (among others), productions of Carl Davis and Gerald Simms (among others) usually when I hear people argue Stax vs Motown, I always throw in "but don't forget about CHICAGO"!

from 1967...

FONTELLA BASS - LUCKY IN LOVE

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

KOOL & THE GANG - CHOCOLATE BUTTERMILK


While I wish I could say that my records come completely from digging, that simply would not be the case (although this one MAY have, I simply can't remember). I spend a lot of time trolling ebay and always have the maximum 100 saved searches going at all times. A few weeks ago while looking at 45's, I saw this one going for quite a bit of dough and thought "wait a second, I THINK I have that on the shelf!". Of course as I often state, value is never a deciding factor in what goes on this blog; there have been quite a few gems that can be had for a few dollars featured, and the amount of 45's that can be purchased for next to nothing that are GREAT MUSIC is staggering.

Admittedly, I had even forgotten what this jam even SOUNDED like, so imagine my surprise when I slapped it on the turntable and heard this amazing "Soulful Strut" style shufflin' instrument dance happily out of my speakers. The poor, neglected record found itself moved to the front of high priority transfers, so here you go.

Formed as a jazz outfit in 1964, Kool & The Gang of course went on to massive success after morphing into a funk outfit in the late 60's; this single was pulled from the New Jersey group's 1969 debut LP.

from 1969...

KOOL & THE GANG - CHOCOLATE BUTTERMILK

Monday, January 11, 2010

EDDIE BO - GOTTA HAVE MORE


Just realized it's been over a month since there's been an Eddie Bo post (and that is simply too long of a gap!)

Here we find Eddie in full on crooning mode with an excellent NOLA backing (very reminiscent of Allan Toussaint, musically).

The Blue Jay label was one owned by Eddie, and the label design is one of my faves.

New Orleans vocal group The Barons make their vinyl debut on this side as well; for some odd reason, vocal groups were not part of the NOLA culture as they were in other cities during this era.

from 1964...

EDDIE BO - GOTTA HAVE MORE

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Hello Europe...

Hi to all my friends in Europe-

I will be working in many European countries throughout the year, and I would love to try and book some DJ gigs on my nights off; please write to me directly (dereksdaily45@gmail.com) if you would like to help. It will be great to meet you!

Derek

JIMMY HOLIDAY - HOW CAN I FORGET


This is one of those tracks that sounds as if it's being broadcast by a radio transmission from far away (a swamp? another planet, perhaps?) with a murky, dreamlike sound. You just KNOW a record like that is gonna be lovable (kinda like "Quarter To Three" by Gary US Bonds, right?), and this record does not disappoint, with deep southern soul vocals and a lush arrangement, washed in some of the lowest fidelity reverb this side of the Jaynetts "Sally Go Round The Roses"

Jimmy Holiday's greatest commercial success was as the co-writer of "Put A Little Love In Your Heart".

Sadly, he died in 1987, at age 53.

from 1963...

JIMMY HOLIDAY - HOW CAN I FORGET

Saturday, January 9, 2010

CAROL FRAN - I'M GONNA TRY


This is one of those records that when I hear it, I'm amazed that something this intense can even exist, and after that point I accept it and just realize how thankful I am that records like this WERE made, as they are the juice that keeps this blog going.

From Lafayette, LA, Carol Fran became a professional musician at 15 years old (1948) in a career that found her performing all over Louisiana, not only as a featured performer but also as backing pianist for the likes of Lazy Lester and Slim Harpo. Her piano playing on this record is chilling, and her vocals are simply out of this world (especially the "he should be pulling a rabbit out of a hat" line- good GOD what a performance). When this record was cut, Carol was briefly based in new York City, and this is actually the flip side of "Crying In The Chapel" (which was made into a huge hit by Elvis Presley, stealing Carol's possibility of getting a hit with the record).

Carol is still performing!

from 1964...

CAROL FRAN - I'M GONNA TRY

Friday, January 8, 2010

TRIBUTE TO WILLIE MITCHELL: SYL JOHNSON - TAKE ME TO THE RIVER


Had to think about it for a few days, but along with the classic Al Green sides, this tracks stands up in my opinion as the ultimate expression of the production genius of Willie Mitchell.

Taking cues from not only southern soul but also with a strong country flavor, Mitchell productions always swung in slow motion with a smoky, down home feel that, if a record had an odor, would smell like the finest barbecue.

As anyone who's been checking out this blog for a while knows, I'm a MASSIVE Syl Johnson fan, and on this track he shows off his ultra-funky strained vocals in a way that practically ROARS out of the track.

At the time this record was recorded, most r&b had gone in the direction of more rhythm/ less song and as another testament to Willie Mitchell productions, the SONG is first and foremost.

Thanks for the music, Willie and may you rest in peace.

from 1975...

SYL JOHNSON - TAKE ME TO THE RIVER

Thursday, January 7, 2010

THE FANTASIONS - UNNECESSARY TEARS / THAT'S WHERE THE ACTION IS


Definitely a Chicago group, but I can't find any other info on the Fantasions. This is one of those absolutely SUBLIME double siders; "Unnecessary Tears" is an amazing ballad, and "Where The Action Is" is a superb Motown style number (with a big helping of Chicago grit!). Incredible!

from 1965...

THE FANTASIONS - UNNECESSARY TEARS

b/w THAT'S WHERE THE ACTION IS

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

WILLIE & THE HANDJIVES - GOTTA FIND A NEW LOVE


Yet another mystery...I'm guessing it a New York group? Any info is always appreciated! I really dig how the song seems like it can explode at any time but keeps itself restrained but steady.

from 1966...

WILLIE & THE HANDJIVES - GOTTA FIND A NEW LOVE

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

THE LOVETTES - I NEED A GUY


Sounding very much like a Chicago group/ production, this is the Lovettes out of Jersey City, New Jersey in a record recorded in New York City. To my ears, this song screams HIT RECORD but alas, that wasn't the case...This is the Lovettes third and final 45, as all four singers left the music business after this record was cut.

Other than the obviously gorgeous, yearning vocals, I'm a huge fan of just about any record with prominent vibraphone like this; so gorgeous!

from 1967...

THE LOVETTES - I NEED A GUY

Monday, January 4, 2010

BOBBY PARIS - PER-SO-NAL-LY


Like many others, I was quite surprised to learn that Bobby Paris is a white (actually, Puerto Rican) dude. What a voice!

I'm a massive fan of "kiss off' records like this one, and truly there are far too few of them out there (must mention Willie Tee's "First Taste Of Hurt' which is not only one of my all time favorite 45's but also another quintessential good riddance jam).

Bobby Paris had a long career of releases which spanned 1960 until 1973 but sadly, he never was able to grab a hit, although this song has been a massive favorite on the northern soul scene since the 70's.

from 1968...

BOBBY PARIS - PER-SO-NAL-LY

Saturday, January 2, 2010

KIM WESTON - I GOT WHAT YOU NEED


After leaving Motown due to royalty disputes, Kim Weston released this explosive single as her first with MGM records. As was typical during this time, MGM seemed to have no concept on promotion and this record sunk without a trace.

While Kim was always a powerful singer during the Motown years, this record shows her reaching new peaks as a powerhouse vocalist, and the backing musician manage to peel off a very convincing, Motown groove. Stellar stuff.

from 1967...

KIM WESTON - I GOT WHAT YOU NEED

Friday, January 1, 2010

AMERICAN SPRING - SHYIN' AWAY


Known either as SPRING (for their LP) or American Spring (for this 45 release), this group was made up of sisters Marilyn (Wilson) Rovell and Diane Rovell (formerly of THE HONEYS) with Brian Wilson himself behind the boards.

On first listen, this song may seem half baked and repetitious (not to mention the Rovell sisters don't have the strongest voices, although what they lack in power they make up in charm), but something about it keeps drawing me back. The chord progression is classic Brian Wilson, and his production is just magnificent (especially the oboe!) especially surprising considering this track was recorded when he was at a very bad time personally. Perhaps co-producer David Sandler truly helped him "get it together" for this session.

Sounds great to me on a new year's day, too.

from 1973...

AMERICAN SPRING - SHYIN' AWAY