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Manhattan-born Lotti Golden has had a fascinating career; as a high school honors student, she was signed to a publishing deal with Bob Crewe's Saturday Music company. Songs written about her experiences in the New York City of the late '60's resulted in the Crewe-produced cult classic LP Motor-Cycle. This single is from the same era but was not included on the album.
Lotti went on to record another album (for GRT), got into the rock scribe bag for Creem and Crawdaddy, and, in a startling transformation became an early architect of the NYC electro-hip hop scene in the early '80's. Lotti wrote and produced numerous hits for many artists in the '80's and '90's urban music scene.
This single takes two classic hard-hitting soul jams, adds a strong touch of boogaloo, and showcases Lotti's incredibly powerful and punchy vocals at the forefront. She was all of 18 years old when this single was cut!
LOTTI GOLDEN - SOCK IT TO ME BABY / IT'S YOUR THING
There were several groups with the same name, this particular one was Chicago based. The only other thing I know about them is that their other single on Kellmac ("What'cha Gonna Do") sells for over $8000 when it turns up! "What'cha Gonna Do" is a cool uptempo track, but this beautiful mid-tempo number is highlighted by glorious vocals cutting through a very murky production, resulting in one of those other-worldly soul tracks that sounds as if it's being eamed in from somewhere far, far away.
This is the final single from this Memphis family group (lead vocalist Barbara, Roberta, Betty, and Maurice Brown). The group is perhaps best known for their mid '60's releases on Stax ("I Don't Want Trouble" was one of the very first 45's I featured here back in 2007). In lesser hands, this song could fall victim to a rather generic blues track, but between Barbara's powerhouse lead vocal, excellent harmony by her sisters and some DRIVING musicianship, this record COOKS.
Barbara recorded a few more singles as a solo artist, but her recording career ended in 1972.
If one were to judge this record simply by the intro, it may be a turn
off. While the girls sing the "yeah's" in cool harmony, it may lead the
listener to think the record may be a lesser effort than it is. As soon
as the verse kicks in, the lyrics transcend the simplicity of the intro
and chorus, not only with the words but also the somewhat gloomy melody
over the stomping beats. No surprise that George Clinton was involved;
the melody has his indelible stamp all over it!
Lee Maye was not the modest type; while he had far more success as a major league baseball player, he had a parallel career as a singer and he was quoted as saying, "I am the best singing athlete that ever lived. I am not bragging. It's just a fact.”
Lee's musical career began in Los Angeles in the late '50's doo wop scene, and among other achievements, he sings backup on Richard Berry's original recording of 'Louie Louie".
Lee certainly had a gorgeous falsetto, as we hear on this lovely Huey Meaux produced version of a song made famous by Rick Nelson; the arrangement here finds the song turned inside out, and brings a new depth to the lyrics that Nelson's (great) version only hinted at.
"Indian Rope Man" and the LP that it was drawn from (Richard P. Havens) was released in the spring of 1969; just a few short months before his triumphant opening set at the Woodstock Festival, captured on celluloid for all eternity.
This track is a real gas- Richie's droning, opening tuned guitar proved to be a great match for a droning, psychedelic backing track; the bass player and drummer kick up a groove that's kinda like the 1970 James Brown band slowed down from 45 RPM to 33.
"I'm Movin' On" was originally written an recorded by country artist Hank Snow in 1950; Hank's original version was a straight blues but performed in a style that was far more western swing than the all and out R&B raver that we hear here.
Ray Charles revived the number in 1959, and I would venture to guess that Johnny Nash's version was based on Brother Ray's.
Johnny Nash had an interesting career; he started out as a teen idol in the late '50's (and was often paired up with Paul Anka), and saw a comeback in the early '70's when he famously incorporated reggae into his sound. The period in-between (such as this record) realized some great soul singles that never became the hits they deserved to be; specifically this one and 'Love Ain't Nothin'" (a past 45 of the day).
Memphis bluesman Rosco(e) Gordon DID NOT give up the music business
when he moved to Queens, NY in 1962 as stated on Wikipedia. Rosco made
fewer records during the time he and his wife owned and operated a
laundry business, but he also cut THIS- in my opinion his greatest ever
"You Got My Bait" has a haunting hook that just
sticks in my head all day, along with some absolutely devastating vocals
and piano from Rosco. Add the super snappy drumming (sounds like
Bernard Purdie) and that KILLER twangy guitar and VOILA! An incendiary
While Loma was a Los Angeles label (in fact, it was a Warner Brothers offshoot specifically set up for soul releases), this particular group seems to have been from Ohio (perhaps their two releases were licensed to the label?). There are several groups that recorded under this name in the '60's and '70's, and the story gets very confusing.
Whoever they were, this is one GROOVIN' slice of soul...
Anna King's time spent singing secular music was incredibly brief (1961-1965), but she cut some incredible records on her own, in addition to working side by side with James Brown. This was her debut, and it matches her raw, powerful voice (which at times is completely unrestrained here) with a slick production that was undoubtedly influenced by the then-recent crossover success of Etta James' "At Last" (also released in '61). The chorus of the song is also VERY similar to Chuck Jackson's "I Don't Want To Cry", another 1961 release, and also one co-written by Luther Dixon (whose name is listed on the label here as a co-writer as well).
After her incredible double sider from '65 ("Mama's Got A Bag Of Her Own" b/w "Sally", a past 45 of the day), Anna went back to singing gospel music exclusively,
eventually giving up singing altogether in 1976 to become a minister.
records producer Luther Dixon discovered her singing with a gospel
group in 1961 and persuaded her to perform secular material; she had a
few releases before replacing Tammi Terrell in the James Brown group
(she also cut a few sides on her own during this time). While he isn't credited as a producer here, Luther Dixon probably is.
only things I know about this group is that they were from Greensboro,
North Carolina, and that female singer Gin (Virginia Massey) joined up
with a group called The African Americans to become Gin & The
Gents. This (glorious) 45 was their only release, although the Gents
became The Versatile Gents around 1968.
This is a
downright perfect one off record; "Boy And Girl" is a gorgeous sweet
soul number with incredible harmonies; it's longer than your average single of the era, but personally I don't want it to ever end. Especially on a Sunday.
The details of this group/ record are completely unknown, all signs point to it being an L.A studio musician concoction... Whatever the story, it's an excellent example of the folk-rock-morphing-into-psychedelia kinda sound.
This record has been a holy grail of sorts for me since, oh, around 1990 when I first read about it in the book Jimi Hendrix: Electric Gypsy. In those days, of course, there was no internet so the possibilities of being able to hear this incredibly scarce record were close to impossible! Luckily, some time in the mid '90's I finally got to hear it, on a 5th or so generation cassette copy with tape hiss as loud as the music! Both sides lived up to and in fact, surpassed my expectations. It's a great record.
There are conflicting stories about authorship of "My Diary" (Arthur Lee is credited on the record, while Rosa Lee insists that she and Hendrix wrote the song) and also the year of recording (Rosa Lee claims 1964). The most likely story is that, in early 1965, young "Jimmy" Hendrix was on tour with Little Richard & The Upsetters when he decided to go AWOL in Los Angeles. Hendrix is said to have met Rosa Lee Brooks while they were both in the crowd at an Ike & Tina Turner show, and that night marked the beginning of a fleeting romance that lasted until Jimmy headed back to New York City. Rosa Lee knew Billy Revis, head of a small studio/ record label, who she and Hendrix persuaded to cut the single. Legend has it that when Rosa Lee picked up Arthur Lee to go to the recording session, Hendrix immediately became jealous and the situation became tense (the two reconnected a few years later without rivalry). Arthur's backing vocal is clearly heard on the record, and Hendrix lays down some of the greatest guitar work of his entire life on this track. The flip side, "Utee" was written in the studio and features a red hot Hendrix break. The record was announced in the Billboard Magazine in June of 1965, but other than a few rumblings in L.A, never went anywhere. Within a few months, Arthur Lee formed the group that, by the fall of 1965, became Love. Hendrix struggled along in New York for another year and some months until fate brought him into the lap of Animals bassist Chas Chandler, who took him to London and helped make him a star. Rosa Lee Brooks has kept on singing, but this seems to be her only release. And what a release it is! (note: both sides were issued on the excellent Hendrix box set West Coast Seattle Boy a few years back, but it doesn't diminish the thrill of owning and sharing the actual 45 one bit).
When the names (Dan) Penn & (Spooner) Oldham appear on a record label, it's practically a guarantee that it's gonna be excellent.
This record certainly holds up that standard to a very high degree; more unusually, the a-side is a swinging Detroit-style soul track from these folks that are much better known for the kind of deep soul sounds that we hear on the b-side.
The Fame Recording Co. in Muscle Shoals cut an exceptionally high number of excellent records in the '60's, and the production (Rick Hall) and musicianship was top shelf. I'm gonna speculate that Dan Penn is the harmony voice heard on both sides.
It's very hard to believe that this is the only record from James Barnett (which it seems to be). The man was gifted with a supremely expressive and powerful voice! Records just don't get any better than this, do they?
Singer Spanky Wilson moved from Pittsburg, PA to Los Angeles to begin her career, and has lived and performed in France for the last 28 years.
"You" is a raw, funky track that was initially the b-side when the record was released, but over time it has foreshadowed the original a-side in the track that collector's seek out (it was also recently reissued on 7"). "Love Land' is a very nice ballad that shows off the range of Spanky's vocals, with another surprisingly raw production from H.B Barnum.
This is one of those records that I like to describe as a "grower"; the first few times I heard it, I thought it was good, but it didn't completely grab me. However, the more I've listened to it, the subtlety of the song and the earthy, direct vocals of San Francisco's Claude Huey have completely won me over. Everything about this record is REAL; the bare bones production, the pitch perfect female backing vocals, and the sweet sentiment of the song.
The "Osborne" listed as the writer is Jesse Osborne, aka Ozz of Ozz & The Sperlings legend (his "Can You Qualify b/w Daddy Rollin' Stone" is probably my all time fave bay area soul 45). Ozz helped Claude (a lifelong pal) begin a career in music after Claude's time in the Air Force. He released 5 singles before calling it quits in 1970.
This Detroit record was originally released with the group name Players, but as another group from Chicago with the same name had just released a minor hit ("He'll Be Back"), the record was withdrawn and given a new group name.
This seems to be the only release from the group, and "Guilty" is a majestic ballad an amazing, propulsive drum track; PURE Detroit soul. The flip side, "Giving Up Your Love" was co-written by Detroit soul legend Steve Mancha, and it's a catchy track with another superb production.
THE TWENTIE GRANS - GUILTY
b/w GIVING UP YOUR LOVE (IS LIKE GIVING UP THE WORLD)
Does ANYBODY know anything about this record/ performer?
than the fact that it's a masterpiece of song arrangement and was a
northern soul staple in the early days of the scene, this is one of
those big "head scratcher" records; the name Tari Stevens never appeared again on any known release (could be someone else under a pseudonym). While the label says 1963, the Monarch Pressing plant number dates the pressing to September 1966. Super K productions were the same fellas who started the bubblegum music movement in '67 with a home base at Buddah Records.
TARI STEVENS - (YOUR LOVE WAS JUST A ) FALSE ALARM
Wade Flemons had a very interesting career, and he died way too young in 1993 at age 53. Born in Kansas, his family moved to Michigan when he was young. Wade became a performing musician while still a teenager, and by age age he was signed to Chicago's Vee Jay label, where he released many fine r&b singles.
After Vee Jay folded in '65, there were no releases from Wade until this release on the tiny Chicago label Ramsel in 1967. In my opinion, this was his finest work; a self composed song of tremendous power and infectious drive. Seems as though this record could have easily been a smash hit had it received wider distribution. Around the same time, Wade joined forces with Maurice White in The Salty Peppers; a group which evolved into Earth, Wind And Fire by 1970. As a songwriter, Wade was a co-writer of "Stay In My Corner"; one of The Dells biggest hits in 1968. Wade remained in EW&F until Maurice fired and restructured the group in 1973. This seems to have been the end of Wade's involvement in the music biz.
"Jeanette" is easily one of the greatest could-have-been hits of the late '60's, and it's a record that has been sought out by collectors since the 1970's.
While there were several bands (including a long running reggae group) with the same name, this seems to be the only release from this Oklahoma City group that, shortly after its release, moved to California and changed their name to Southwind (the band included power pop band leader/ songwriter Moon Martin).
It's a great side; a fuzz driven, uptempo groover with odd lyrics and a catchy chorus.
The run of copies on raspberry sorbet colored vinyl are SOLD OUT! (thank you).
There's a VERY limited number of grey swirl copies available (with picture sleeve),
as long as this message is still up. Use the link below to order.
Available now! limited edition (200 copies only) colored vinyl 45 of Derek See's
new solo outing, "She Came This Way" & "McQueen (Slight Return)"
US order, postpaid: International, postpaid:
above is a portion of one of three potential picture sleeves! Preorder and you get to vote
on which one makes the cut! Amazing art by Galine Tumasova.
Cutting a mysterious figure (no known sightings until it was recently discovered she went back to her real name after the last release as Debbie Taylor
in 1975), Debbie Taylor was allegedly discovered singing in church by a
Decca records scout. Under her real name (Madie Myles) this incredible singer is out performing music again. Read more on her very nice website.
Debbie Taylor's voice is OUTRAGEOUSLY powerful; on this cut, it's almost as if she's on the verge of just completely blowing it out, yet somehow stays right on track.
Just the kind of groovy, slow burner 45 that makes easing into a new week perhaps a tad bit easier...
The Dream Girls (eventually billed as Bobbie Smith And The..., as seen here) were the first of the Detroit girl groups to record, and they were completely overshadowed by the massive groups that made their home at the Motown family of records at the dawn of the 1960's. This record is a bridge of sorts between the 1950's sound and what was beginning to happen in Detroit at the dawn of the new decade. I love how this record matches the sweet and slick with a raw, bluesy core.
I always find it impressive when groups or artists are able to adapt into other style variations during a long career. While I personally may not like the results, that's beside the point. Sounds and styles change, and a living must be made. The Pointer Sisters morphed thru soul, funk, disco, electro and pop throughout their career and had many hits along the way.
While this early side wasn't a hit per se, it's THE ONE as far as collectors, aficionado's and those who just wanna GET DOWN to some fine soulful sounds. Here we find the Oakland group teamed up with NOLA's Wardell Quezergue for this brilliant meeting of west coast and New Orleans soul. Special mention must be made of those heavenly sisterly harmonies and bass playing that deserves an award.
The story of Dee Dee Warwick is a tale with many musical highs and too many personal lows (she died about 5 years ago after battling drug addiction for most of her life). Dee Dee and her sister Dionne were discovered in the late '50's as a gospel singing duo, and along with Doris Troy became THE A-list, first called female vocalists for countless studio sessions (sadly, Dee Dee never scored the bigs hits on her own that her talent deserved). While Dionne had the smooth voice, Dee Dee could wail with the best of them, as is heard on this incredible two-sider; her debut release.
"Don't Call Me Any More" is a masterpiece of musical drama, and when Dee Dee belts out those title lyrics, it's straight from the gut. The bridge section is also one of the first American recordings that incorporates ska rhythms.
Dee Dee's version of "You're No Good" (brilliantly produced by Jerry Leiber and Mike Stoller) proceeded Betty Everett's hit version just slightly, yet Betty's version became the massive national hit. While Betty's version is great, Dee Dee's far earthier rendition conveys the lyric in a way that propels the song into far different territory.