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Sunday, May 31, 2020

Sweet/ mellow soul mixtape for you!

I'm turning 45 (RPM) in less than a week, so it seems like a good time to celebrate with a handful of favorite mellow/ sweet soul 45's. Anyone who knows me is well aware of my deep love affair with the small records with the big hole! 2 more (high quality audio) mixes coming up within the next week. As always, music (art) heals. Listen, share, repeat.

You Don’t Have To Worry - Doris & Kelley
I Won’t Do Anything - Lezli Valentine
Love’s Gonna Do You In - The Autographs
The Time Is Right For Love - Bobby Reed
Run To Me - Sheryl Swope
In My Opinion - The Vandals
So I Can Love You - The Emotions
I Fooled You This Time - Gene Chandler
It’s You - Hal & Brenda
These Arms Of Mine - Otis Redding
Then You Can Tell Me Goodbye - The Casinos
He Will Break Your Heart - Jerry Butler
Part Of Me - Johnny Adams
Soldier Of Love - Arthur Alexander
Sometimes I Wonder - Major Lance
It’s Just Your Way - Jan Bradley
Cry To Me - Solomon Burke
Echo - Brenda Holloway
My Love-Is - Little Willie John
Trouble Man - Marvin Gaye
Open Our Eyes - Funkadelic


Saturday, May 9, 2020

Little Richard, RIP

Thank you for everything, Richard. 

(originally posted 7/2009)

Little Richard cut some great sides in the period after he went lighter on religion and went back to the devil's music (including the great deep soul cut "I Don't Know What You've Got'...which features Hendrix on guitar) but it took Larry Williams as producer to get some of that old fire out of the Georgia Peach once again.

This red hot number is one of the many great cuts from 1967's "The Explosive Little Richard" which is an excellent album from start to finish. Practically every cut is a great dancer, but Okeh records chose wisely when they issued this one as the single. Unfortunately, it didn't revive Richard's career (as it should have).

(originally posted sometime in 2007)

Every time I hear the intro to this great record, it reminds me of the flamboyant Little Richard interview in the 1973 Jimi Hendrix film where he claims that Jimi was ALREADY a star when he met him and was a member of Richard's band. As the luscious guitar intro proves, even though Jimi was playing in the Curtis Mayfield style at the time of this recording, he was a musician of grace, taste, finesse and a giant TALENT.

Allegedly Jimi's time with Richard was cut short due to the amount of attention Jimi was receiving on the bandstand which infuriated the star of the show, but fortunately he stuck around long enough to cut this one and only single.

For nearly five years (late '57 until 1962) Little Richard had left the sinners life of secular music, and became a preacher. It wasn't until an offer to tour England in '62 came on the table (thanks to Don Arden, villain of yesterday's post)that Richard made a return to his signature secular sounds.

This record shows off beautifully how well Richard can SING. Everyone knows that he can peel the paint off of the wall with the shouts, but damn does he put in a stellar vocal performance here.

from 1965...


Friday, May 8, 2020


(Originally posted 8/21/09)

It's a real mystery as to how a record this great could be released by a nationally distributed label and languish in obscurity, but there are hundreds of examples of this kinda injustice. It's a great song, the arrangement cooks, and Alder Ray's vocal performance hits the stratosphere.

When I first wrote about this one, there wasn't much info available about Alder Ray, but I've since learned that she was a member of The Delicates, a Los Angeles girl group. She released a few other singles, all of which failed to catch on, but remain sought ought by collectors. Alder certainly deserved better. This song was written by Los Angeles soul singer/ songwriter Fred Hughes (not to be confused with Oakland, CA's Freddie Hughes). This is another all time favorite side of mine.

from 1966...


Wednesday, May 6, 2020


(originally posted 7/21/09)

If I was forced to compile a '20 favorite 45's' list, this one would undoubtedly be near the top.

This scorcher was released right around the time that tiny little Swan records went belly up, limiting any chances of much promotion, and more than likely very few got pressed. This song is yet another example of one that with the right exposure probably could have been a massive hit. The song was written by the late great General Johnson, he of The Showmen and Chairmen Of The Board.

The 3 Degrees were formed in Philadelphia in 1963 and went through several lineup changes (I believe this is their final record with the original lineup) before settling into their hit making 70's pop-soul sound.

from 1966...