musicology #231

communication #9

(Jimmy Ruffin – What Becomes Of The Brokenhearted)

A song that we, (should), all know delivered with pathos by one of the great Soul singers about a subject that is plainly close to my heart. Older brother of the Temptation’s member David, Jimmy hasn’t received the acclaim he deserves. This version, (the original), has the spoken intro which was removed for the final mix that made it onto the 45, (can’t understand why?)

Lyrics by James Dean, music composed by William Weatherspoon and Paul Riser, music played by the Funk Brothers, background vocals by The Originals, (Freddie Gorman, Walter Gaines, Hank Dixon, Joe Stubbs), and the Adantes, (Jackie Hicks, Marlene Barrow, Louvain Demps), song produced by Weatherspoon and William Stevenson.

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musicology #146

SpectrumOfLove #6

(Flowers – For Real)

the final piece of the ‘Spectrum’ discovered me in complete synchronicity just after the birth of my first child in 1995. it nailed exactly how I felt/feel and, for me, is the benchmark against which all songs and performances on the subject are measured.

It’s one from my personal top 10 tunes of all time and words don’t do it justice so all I will add is that for themusicologist it defines love.

Not often do I recommend CD’s but the one this is borrowed from, (Keb Darge’s Soul Spectrum II), delivers Value, there are at least 5 killers on there that you would have to pay an arm and a leg for to get them on vinyl so if you like your Soul my advice would be to buy it.

p.s starting tomorrow on themusicologists it’s ‘Round 2’ of a previous theme concerning the vocal arts…six pieces a week from each category, female/group/male…

musicology #143

SpectrumOfLove #3

(Maxine Brown – Heaven In Your Arms)

we’ve heard two from the fellas and now its time for the ladies to step into the arena…and who better than Miss Maxine Brown, Soul singer supreme, who’s delicious voice could charm the birds straight out of the trees….

for themusicologist Maxine Brown is one of the greatest Soul singers never, (commercially), known, (and there are MANY), ..her phrasing and timing is perfection. as witnessed on this piece of early, (1961), Big Apple flavoured Soul from the NoMar label. it’s not the first time Maxine has featured on themusicologist, having already laid one, (musicology #39), down on an earlier duets theme with Wand label mate Chuck Jackson but this time she’s centre stage.

musicology #101

sixartist, sixtune, sixweekspecial #24

(Impressions – Never Too Much Love)

you know what…I’m angry. angry with the mountain of useless information that is burying wisdom. why? allow me to break it down…today I ran a search for Curtis Mayfield lyrics. first stop lyrics.com. can you believe Curtis wasn’t even listed !!! let me say that again…..not even listed…

my conclusion..waste of time unless youre looking for the words to popular, (commercial), songs.

only way to do it then is for me to transcribe them myself…there are a few sites with some lyrics on them but I won’t waste your time linking them so in future I won’t be promoting any ‘lyrics’ sites on themusicologist

if anything it has strengthened my resolve to fly the flag for artists like Curtis and keep them in the public domain…back to the music with this uncomplicated plea for unity from 1963. if you think about it who else was writing and performing songs as deep as this at that time?

“after silence that which comes closest to expressing the inexpressible is music.”
-aldous huxley-

.. listen them lyrics

too much love, too much love,
never in this world will there be too much love

never too much love, too much love,
never in this world will there be too much love

an old story told now passed from me to you
in simple little words to get my meaning through

young and old I feel will understand
take heed everybody to a wonderful plan
we all know how, get together right now
clap your hands, sing and shout

never too much love, too much love,
never in this world will there be too much love

never too much love, too much love,
never in this world will there be too much love

maybe you don’t know how to sing or express words the way you like to say
but everybody I know can clap their hands and make a new friend everyday

never too much love, too much love,
never in this world will there be too much love

never too much love, too much love,
never in this world will there be too much love

Curtis Mayfield, Rest In Peace secure in the knowledge that your legacy and inspiration lives on.

musicology #100

sixartist, sixtune, sixweekspecial #23

(Impressions – Young Mod’s Forgotten Story)

landmark day today .. 100 posts on themusicologist. especially synchronistic that it’s fallen on Curtis Mayfield’s ‘watch’.

Iv’e banged on enough times during the time we have shared together on themusicologist about how much the man’s music and lyrics have meant to me as babe in arms, young boy, adolescent, teenager, young man, and now as man, (a title you can’t claim before 33 according to the ancients !!), so I’m not going to wax too lyrical today as Curtis says it all with this cut about the end of an era….

“Shall I tell it like it is, aint none of your business…YES IT IS..”

lyrics DON Curtis…lyrics

arranged by Curtis, legendary musicologist Johnnie Pate and rising soul star Donnie Hathaway…

musicology #99

sixartist, sixtune, sixweekspecial #22

(Curtis Mayfield – Kung Fu)

I enjoy and get great pleasure out of themusicologist but, (and it’s a price I’m prepared to pay), it takes up a lot of my time and doesn’t keep the wolves from banging on the family door. the bastards are circling, baying for blood and by the look in their eyes they sense victory…

what the wolves haven’t accounted for is, (with music as the proverbial shield and buckler), the determination to ride this wave of uncertainty and pass through this phase of insecurity not only in one piece but stronger, fitter and wiser, holding firm and not giving up as I continue the journey on the road to freedom with these words ringing in my heart and mind.

The wise man builds his house upon the rock while the foolish man builds his house apoun the ever shifting sand.

this cut is taken from the man’s beautifully crafted 1974 album Sweet Exorcist.

musicology #98

sixartist, sixtune, sixweekspecial #21

(Jerry Butler&Curtis Mayfield – Find Yourself Another Girl)

round 3 of the Curtis Mayfield selection.as well as hard hitting lyricist and social commentator Curtis’s love songs are beyond compare. a genuine poet whose ability to tap into affairs of the heart deserves mention.

singing lead on this is original Impressions lead singer Jerry ‘The Ice Man’ Butler whose nickname is reported to have come from a performance where the p.a cut out and rather than stop Jerry continued to sing, (that and the way in which he performed emotion drenched soul scorchers without breaking sweat)

it was Jerry that insisted on Curtis replacing Phil Upchurch when he left Jerry’s touring band in 1961 to chase fame on the back of his Mod/R&B classic ‘You Can’t Sit Down’

Curtis was only sixteen at the time which is amazing considering the songs he went on to write over the following two years. this is one of those foundation soul cuts from that year..Curtis not only co-wrote it but it’s also him harmonizing and playing guitar.

musicology at it’s finest from two of Soul’s vanguards in perfect harmony