Sam Cooke – Bring It On Home To Me [Live]
Got ‘SHOOK’ this morning. Powerful.
Got ‘SHOOK’ this morning. Powerful.
Special day..Our son is 13. I love the kid more than words can express…Fabian, this one’s all yours.
The Miracles -Christmas Everyday
Tried to lay this one down yesterday but my ‘service’ provider wasn’t up to the job of providing the ‘service’ that I pay top dollar for so I’m throwing it down early and plan on doubling up with a next piece later today when I return from starting work on a new and very interesting project that is exciting me.
Sliding out of the 50’s Doo Wop and into the 60’s Soul with this 1963 Motown cut from…The Miracles led, (of course), by one of the great singers…William ‘Smokey’ Robinson…
Tales From The Underground #6
Solomon Burke – Words
Locked into the Soul/Rhythm&Blues selection at the moment so rolling with this superb slice of 1963 musicology from Singer supreme, Preacher and ‘King Of Rock and Soul’, Solomon Burke. Soul pioneer who began recording in 1956 for New York’s famed Apollo label before moving to Atlantic in 1961 whereapoun he recorded some of the most enduring cuts of the early Soul period. A Cat whose culinary skills are as legendary as his singing. Today’s cut was recorded for and released on Atlantic in 1963.
(Solomon Burke – You Can Make It If You Try)
“He who knows nothing, loves nothing. He who can do nothing understands nothing. But he who understands also loves, notices, sees….The more knowledge is inherent in a thing, the greater the love….Anyone who imagines that all fruits ripen at the same time as the strawberries knows nothing about grapes. – Paracelsus
1963 cut from the ‘King Of Rock and Soul’ on the Atlantic label
(Irma Thomas – Ruler Of My Heart)
Love the way the SoulBoy is shaping up….Soul and Reggae are the two musical languages that I am fiercely passionate about..I like many genres and almost all styles but nothing connects with the I like these two. Maybe it’s because I was brought up with them? especially Soul, the sweet sounds of Jamaica didn’t make an appearance until I was 3 or 4 years old but Soul is in my flesh, blood and bones…prenatal style !!
Seems like the Soul Kitchen’s hotting up with every cut so i’ll keep up the pressure with this piece from the superb Irma Thomas..well known to Soul Cats and Kittens for many a fine slice, (this being one of them), ‘The Queen of New Orleans Soul’ started out singing in a Baptist Church choir as a teenager but it wasn’t until 1960 that she ‘waxed her first side’. Like all the great New Orleans Soul singers of the sixties it was on the pioneering label Minit that she really begun to cut loose under the wing and watchful eye of the legendary Allen Toussaint, producer, arranger, songwriter and piano maestro whose contribution to the emerging sound now known as Soul deserves, (and gets), honourable recognition. Today’s cut was reinterpreted by the ‘Big O’ for his first solo outing ‘Pain In My Heart’ and as good as that is, for me, this one reaches out even further. 1963 recording on the Minit label. Already featured twice on themusicologist, (#150/ #359 Irma Thomas oozes Soul.
Terry Callier #3
(Terry Callier – Look At Me Now)
Mr Callier’s first recording. Released as a 45 in 1963 !!
Now my people think that I just fake it,
I know I do things they don’t understand,
So I’ve got to show ’em I can take it yeah,
I’ve got to show ’em I can be a man,
Still there’s somethings that never have appealed to me,
Like standing out in front of a crowd,
Well people just you wait and see,
I’m gonna give you reason to be proud,
I’m gonna make it some day,
I’m gonna make it somehow,
Then I’ll be able to say hey,
Take a look at me know,
Yeah look at me know,
Well now my woman thinks I’m just a dreamer,
And she’s right about me I suppose,
But I could never, never, never be a schemer,
I don’t know the things a schemer knows,
But I do know there’s a better day coming up soon,
And baby just you wait and see,
I’ll find us a light in this darkness,
If you just have faith in me,
I’m gonna make it some day yeah,
Gonna make it somehow,
I’ll be able to say yeah, yeah, yeah
Baby look at me know,
Look at me know,
Look at me know,
Look at me know
(Ernestine Anderson – Keep An Eye On Love)
Cats…apologies for leaving you all ‘hanging’ for this final slice..my excuse is that it has been ‘on me like a rash’ for the last couple of weeks and I haven’t been able to find the time for themusicologist. The Project is taking up most of my time leaving precious little for Mod/ernist musings although the combination of the two has produced the latest addition to the Tribute Tees below. Available in two colours, sizes from Small to XLarge and THREE cuts ‘Dubplate’, ‘Classic’, and ‘Double A’, (American Apparel) see Tribute Tees for further information
Final cut on the Mod/ernist theme..and I’m wrapping it up with this fine piece by extraordinary singer Ernestine Anderson whose long career stretches back to the early 50’s when as a teenager she toured with the, (legendary), Johnny Otis band and then Lionel Hampton’s. Essentially a Jazz singer but I’m sure she could ‘sit down’ on any piece of music with effortless ease. Recorded and released in 1963 it won’t come as a surprise to those who know this cut but for those who don’t know it, (as well as them that do),
Released on New York’s Sue Label (another slice of the Juggy Murray pie), and in the UK on the Mod/ernist’s most cherished Red & Yellow label of the same name. Apparently it didn’t get much play at the time, (according to my sources), but for me this piece is ‘well modern’ and If I had been on the wheels of steel back then it would have been one of themusicologist’s choice plays….what’s ironic is the timing of today’s cut. I have honestly tried my best to ‘Keep an Eye’ but all my efforts have been in vain…
(Charlie & Inez Foxx – MockingBird)
Penultimate day of the Mod/ernist theme, (honest guvnuh !!), and then it’s onto musicolological pastures new. Hard for me to leave this theme as I love the music and am really enjoying the dialogue.
Couldn’t complete a mod/ernist theme without including this one from Charlie & Inez Foxx…1963 cut on Juggy Murrays Symbol label. BIG, BIG tune from back in the day.
(Barbara Lewis – Hello Stranger)
Laszlo Moholy-Nagy, a pioneer typographer, photographer, and designer of the modern movement and a master at the Bauhaus in Weimar, may have come closest to defining the Modernist who in his opinion was;
“an idealist and a realist using the language of the poet and the businessman. He thinks in terms of need and function. He is able to analyze his problems, but his fantasy is boundless.”
“The basis of style is the appropriation and reorganisation by the subject of elements in the objective world which would otherwise determine and constrict him. The Mod/ernist combined previously disparate elements to create himself into a metaphor, the appropriateness of which was apparent only to themselves. Like the surrealists they underestimated the ability of the dominant culture to absorb the subversive image and sustain the impact of the anarchic imagination. The magical transformations of the commodities had been mysterious and were often invisible to the neutral observer and no amount of stylistic incantation could possibly effect the oppresive economic mode by which they had been produced”.
Today’s 1963 cut is another Mod/ernist classic but this time courtesy of female vocalist Barbara Lewis..BIG tune on the scene and one of themusicologist’s earliest musical memories. Ranking tune that never fails to hit the spot.
(Chris Kenner – Land Of 1000 Dances)
Sliding out of the Jamaican selection into one from New Orleans featuring a Cat who is perhaps best known to Mod/ernists for his 1961 cut ‘I Like It Like That’.
Popularised by Wilson Pickett in 1966 this, the 1963 original, speaks volumes for what distinquished the Mod/ernist from the Mods. Hold this quote from an ‘information panel’ on the subject by musicologist Johnny Spencer, (he of the magnificent project)
“By 1964 the Mods had arrived and it was all over for the Modernists, the faces that had piloted this new paradigm of liberty for British youth, a liberation that was carried in the mind from generation to generation. Mods, generally the younger siblings of the Modernists, could not claim the originality of their predecessors, although they shared many of their preferences, smart clothes, Soul music etc, they came to a ready made situation, the territory had been won, what they chose to do was enjoy it. They were more casual and this led to a lack of vigilance, a dropping of the guard, and soon the media and corporate interests were in there, bleeding, filleting and gutting this new market and threat to the status quo. Masses of newer converts, ‘tickets’, were soon sold the concept of Mod: an outfit, pop idols and an attitude, it was small wonder that by 1965 the entire movement was dead, and with the age of the ‘Skinhead’, who also shared a subtle common bond with an emerging, oppressed black culture, the first real and enduring anti-fashion movement started”.
Today’s cut is based on a spiritual entitled ‘Children Go Where I Send You’, further evidence of the debt owed to the Gospel tradition by the new music emerging out of the urban experience of big cities such as New Orleans, Chicago, New York, Detroit and Memphis where migration had a major impact. Recorded for and released on the fabulous Minit label which had already scored with Mod/ernists by releasing cuts like the above mentioned ‘I Like It Like That’, Ernie K Doe’s ‘Mother In Law’ and Benny Spellman’s ‘Fortune Teller’, (To name but Three)..written by Chris Kenner and Fats Domino.
(Major Lance – The Monkey Time)
Following yesterday’s dynamic duo of, (an extract from), Johnny Spencer’s excellent ‘Mod/ernist’ critique combined with the equally inspirational Miracles cut I would like to continue by quoting from a piece by Dick Hebdige who wrote a paper, (presumably for a thesis), in 1974 called ‘Style Of The Mods’. The majority of it, (as the title suggests), involves ‘Mods’ which is a different subject but obviously connected.
“All youth styles are threatened with the eventual neutralisation of any oppositional meaning. Mods were particularly susceptible to this combination of limited acceptance and full blooded commercial exploitation. According to George Melly the progenitors of this style appear to have been a group of working class dandies, possibly descended from the devotees of the Italianate style known through the rag trade world as ‘modern’ who were dedicated to clothes and lived in London. Only gradually and with popularisation did this group accumulate other distinctive identity symbols, (The Scooter, Pills and music). By 1963, the all night R&B clubs held this group firmly to Soho and Central London”.
In my personal experience the ‘Modernist’ of the early 1960’s steadfastedly refuses to align themselves with the ‘Mod’ movement that followed even though between 1962-1965, they shared many of the same clubs, dancehalls, venues and of course music. The ‘Modernist’ was not all all interested in imitation and therefore the music had to be Authentic. Be it Modern Jazz, Early Soul, Rhythm & Blues, Blues or the sounds of Jamaica that were beginning to be heard in and around London’s clubs at the time so NO English band imitating R&B would ever have been taken seriously. An exception may have been Georgie Fame’s Blue Fames who were BIG downstairs at the Flamingo but NEVER groups like The Animals, The Who, The Stones, Small Faces etc..they would be considered MOD bands.
Today’s slice of modernist musicology is courtesy of Major Lance whose vocal sound helped revitalise the sound of Black America. Mainly it must be said down to one man…Curtis Mayfield who in 1963 was at the forefront of the OKeh label’s re-emergance as a serious force to be reckoned with. This cut I know for a fact was a firm favourite downstairs at THE club for hip cats of the time ‘The Scene’ , (located in Ham Yard Soho). Arranged by Johnny Pate and produced by Carl Davis
Hold this quote on the cut from Robert Pruter’s definitive book on the subject ‘Chicago Soul’.
“On May 8th 1963, Lance went into the studio again and made what has to be considered recording history. He did three songs; ‘Monkey Time’, ‘Please Don’t Say No More’ and ‘Mama Didn’t Know’, the latter an answer to Curtis Mayfield’s Jan Bradley hit, (or the much more obscure Fascinations cut), from earlier in the year ‘Mama Didn’t Lie’. Monkey time was paired with ‘Mama Didn’t Know’ for Lance’s second release on OKeh, and the record became a monster hit during the summer and early fall, eventually selling more than a million copies. ‘Monkey Time’, featuring the classic brassy sound that distinguished later OKeh hits, launched the OKeh label and popularized a dance of the same name.”
(Jackie Opel – Eternal Love)
This week’s theme is a tribute to Sir Coxsone Dodd’s Jamaican musical powerhouse..Studio 1. Clement Seymour Dodd was a genuine music lover who set up his sound system ‘Downbeat The Ruler to play Rhythm & Blues after returning from a trip to America in 1954. It wasn’t until 1963 however that he setup the first Recording studio to be owned by a ‘Man on the street’ the legendary Studio 1.
Almost every Jamaican singer or musician of note has at one time passed through the Brentford Road studio and although many were unhappy with the financial arrangements I hope that none would argue that the man was a Giant in the progress of Jamaican musicology.
So without further delay hold this 1963 cut from the majestic and already featured on themusicologist, Jackie Opel with a piece from the earliest days of Studio 1 featuring The cream of Jamaica’s musicians The Skatalites.
(Etta James – Something’s Got A Hold On Me)
Fourth slice of the Live & Direct….and one you may not have heard before? A rousing performance overflowing with Soul, Blues, Rhythm and emotion from a Songstress who certainly tore the house down from beginning to end at the New Era Club in Nashville Tennesee over two performances during September 1963. Taken from the album ‘Rocks The House’….nuff said.
(Sam Cooke – Somebody Have Mercy – Live)
New theme on themusicologist starting today concerning Live performances. Not that a recording can truly do them justice but other than being there, and in the case of the majority of artists featured during this theme who are no longer with us, it’s the best I can offer. All powerful performances…starting with the Lion…Mr Soul who has already been a major player on themusicologist over the preceeding two years, this being the second cut featured here from the infamous ‘Live at the Harlem Square’ session recorded in 1963. All I can add is that Words don’t do it justice.
(The Miracles – Mickey’s Monkey)
another slice from the 1963 selection, the year that ‘Mod’ grew out of various shadows to establish it as more than a handful of ‘dressers’/stylists/modernists into a movement. Same year that the (New) Scene opened it’s doors in Ham Yard, (Soho), to become the premier London club and forum for all things ‘mod’ and hip in the capital.
The cut is delivered in fine style by legendary Detroit vocal group The Miracles with William ‘Smokey’ Robinson on lead supported by Bobby Rogers, Marv Tarplin, childhood friend and, (along with Smokey), former 5 Chimes member Ronald White and female vocalist Claudette Rogers. The Miracles paved the way for Motown’s success in the early sixties with cuts like ‘Shop Around’, ‘You Really Got A Hold On Me’ and this one apoun which the Berry Gordy empire was built.
(Joe Hinton – You Know It Ain’t Right)
Round two of the mod/ernist musical merry go round and this time it’s courtesy of a relatively obscure vocalist by the name of Joe Hinton who up until 1958 had been a gospel singer but, it was with this one, (recorded for Don Robey’s Backbeat label in 1963), that he broke through. Going on to have a minor ‘hit’ with his version of Willie Nelson’s ‘Funny How Time Slips Away’ the following year. Unfortunately his career was cut short in 1968 after losing a battle with Skin Cancer but for themusicologist he is, (almost), immortalised by this slice of the Mod/ernist pie.
(Walter Jackson – That’s What Mama Say)
new theme on themusicologist and one that is very much a part of my musical education due to the fact that both my mum and dad were first generation mod/ernists, (1962-1966). the cuts laid down this week were all played in and around London during the above period.
first up is a piece from one of the premier ‘mod’ labels, operating out of ‘Chi’, OKeh. A label that was one of the first to focus on ‘immigrant’ music in the 1920’s recording many of the early Jazz pioneers such as Louis Armstrong, King Oliver, Sidney Bechet and Mamie Smith. After some time spent lost in the musical wilderness the company’s fortunes were reignited by employing Carl Davis in 1962 as head of A&R who had the vision to employ Curtis Mayfield as associate producer in 1963 as well as three of the best arrangers Johnny Pate, Riley Hampton and Gerald Sims who is quoted to have said
“the Chicago sound came from basically one source…Curtis Mayfield”
This one from 1963 is sung by one of themusicologist’s favourite singers, Walter Jackson. Produced by the aforementioned Carl Davis, arranged by Riley Hampton and songwriten by none other than Curtis Mayfield with, (possibly), the Impressions harmonising.
(Sam Cooke – Please Don’t Drive Me Away)
didnt throw one down yesterday, too much on me plate and there wasn’t one tune in particular that communicated the message. today is another day and already there are at least four or five cuts that I would like to lay down. so without further delay…hold this one from another of me favourite artists and communicators…the Lion, Sam Cooke. Taken from the 1963 album Night Beat featuring a sixteen year old Billy Preston on the organ…Arranged by Rene Hall.
(The Radiants – I’m In Love)
this weeks theme is dedicated to the quest for the ‘holy grail’ .. LOVE
some ‘thing’ that we all need, and if we’re lucky .. give and receive.
the love theme stretches across the full musical spectrum and I can’t think of a genre where it isn’t included in the repertoire and it’s of particular interest to themusicologist for the simple fact that I struggle to under/overstand and therefore express it.
to be honest I think it’s partly why I listen to and appreciate the musical arts to such a degree as it seems to capture the essence of this emotion like no other form of external expression, (in my humble opinion of course), and these next six, (maybe seven), pieces are examples of that.
first up is a slice of prime 1963 Soul from vocal group The Radiants whose track ‘Voice Your Choice’ was a BIG Mod/ernist tune in London’s clubs and dancehalls on release in 1964. The production has the Billy Davis ‘stamp’ written all over it, (even though there’s no mention of the cat on the label), a man whose contribution to developing Soul, as well as Coca Cola, (he wrote the famous advertising jingles), is always worthy of a mention…maybe even his own category.