“Heaven knows we need never be ashamed of our tears, for they are rain upon the blinding dust of earth, overlying our hard hearts. I was better after I had cried, than before .. more sorry, more aware of my own ingratitude, more gentle.”
Through the ups, downs, highs, lows, hills and gullys of my life the only ever present is the soundtrack. To put it simply I am passionate about music in a way that is sometimes frightening. I Lose all sense of time and as long as I have music as a guide no mountain is too high to climb, (and I’ve found myself at the foot of quite a few !), If truth be told I could, (and would be happy to), spend my whole life bathing in musical waters….but before I can do that I need to make my play and at the moment I’m busy setting up the next phase of the project. It had to take a back seat for the last 9 months as the threads of my life unraveled….but as they say in France…C’est La Vie and one thing’s for sure “I plan to stay a believer”.. That’s not to say that I’m completely out of the woods..that will take some time but it feels to me like I’m on the right track.
Anyway…denough of the ramblings and back to the SoulBoy with today’s beautiful piece of 1967 Vocal Group action from out of Chi’.
kicking off ladiesweek with a songbird whose recording career started in 1946 as a gospel singer, teaming up with cats like the Sunset Four and the Sam Price Trio, but it was in the summer of 1947 when Marie begun her association with Sister Rosetta Tharpe that her star began to shine bright, (a year later they cut the majestic ‘Up Above My Head, I Hear Music In The Air’)
Marie first hit the ‘secular groove’ in 1953, moved to Mercury, stayed there for a few years and then began the transition from Rhythm and Blues into ‘Soul’ with a few choice pieces on various labels that include Baton, OKeh and Diamond.
this classic song, (arranged by Bert Keyes and produced by Stan Kahan), is from her final days at Musicor and should have provided her the commercial success that she richly deserved but it wasn’t to be and so she spent the next few years working for a telephone company !! (not returning to recording until the late 70’s)
for themusicologist this is the pick of a bunch of 1965 recordings that epitomise the ‘Uptown’ Soul sound of the period. an amazing reworking of a song sung by such luminaries as Sam Cooke and Dinah Washington but of all of them this is the ‘best’. !! more than likely it’s the Cookies singing backup but Marie’s voice soars above the clouds and hits the highest heights.
after the lyrics of the socialcommentaryweek I feel like bathing in the waters of the instrumental for a while so with that in mind, this week, i’m leaving it the ‘players’ to ‘speak the universal’
first up it’s the father of ‘popular music’ Louis Armstrong accompanied by some of the greatest proponents of the New Orleans style Johnny Dodds, (clarinet), Johnny St Cyr, (Banjo), Lil Hardin, (Piano) and Kid Ory on trombone who together made up the worlds first ‘super group..known collectively as the Hot 5.