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Uusimmat julkaisut - 1960-luku

Result of your query: 298 products

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VA: - Doo Wop Across America - Good News 2CD
The latest edition of our hugely popular 'Doo Wop Across America' series this time featuring the R&B group sounds of New Orleans.

Featuring the fantastic R&B sounds of: The Hawks; The Spiders; The Sha-Weez; Sugar Boy Crawford & His Cane Cutters; The Barons. Out of all the groups, The Spiders were the biggest to come out of the city and all their hits are here, including: 'I Didn't Want To Do It'; 'You're The One'; 'I'm Slipping In' and more.

Hear the original versions of: 'Jock-A-Mo' by Sugar Boy Crawford and 'Witchcraft' by The Spiders that was later recorded by Elvis (the pelvis) Presley.
Jasmine Records 2014 CD 15.00 €
VA: - Dues Paid - The Bluestime Story
By the late 1960s the blues was no longer the primary music of black America. Following the rise of doo wop, rock’n’roll and soul, blues was increasingly viewed as old people’s music. Fortunately for blues musicians, they maintained a strong following amongst people of their own age and were being lauded by a generation of rock musicians who saw the blues as the well from which their own music had sprung. British bands such as the Rolling Stones, Fleetwood Mac and Cream made their debt to the blues well-known, whilst American acts who did the same also became successful.

With this new spotlight being shone on established blues artists, record companies began to record some of them. One of the most active was ABC’s Bluesway label which was run by producer Bob Thiele. Bluesway’s greatest success was with B.B. King, who became the face and sound of his generation of blues men, while others such as John Lee Hooker, T-Bone Walker and Otis Spann all made excellent records which updated their sound.

When Bob Thiele started his jazz label Flying Dutchman in 1969, he set up the Bluestime imprint at the same time, bringing with him many of the artists he had worked with at Bluesway. Bluestime was short-lived and most of the releases have been out of print since the 1970s. On discovering the master tapes, we decided to start reissuing them.

We begin with this compilation of tracks from Bluestime LPs. T-Bone Walker’s “Every Day I Have The Blues” album is wonderful, as are his appearances on albums by the Super Black Blues Band supergroup, which also featured Joe Turner and Otis Spann, whose performances are equally adept. Spann’s recordings are historically important as he died soon after they were cut. Of the more unusual material is an ebullient performance from Eddie “Cleanhead” Vinson. We have included a track from Malcolm & Chris, a pair of white blues revivalists who were discovered and produced by B.B. King.

Look out for more explorations of the Bluestime catalogue soon.

By Dean Rudland (Ace Records)

Ace Records 2013 CD 18.00 €
VA: - Dusty Heard Them Here First
Dusty Springfield had exceptional taste. Her song choices were always consistently high in quality, and she wasn’t afraid to look to long-forgotten B-sides, demos and album tracks for material. Given her reputation for perfection, it’s no surprise there were so few duds in her catalogue. That so much of it was culled from American soul and R&B artists may be news to many. As Malcolm Baumgart writes in the booklet, “Dusty’s expertise as an interpretive singer prevented her from being viewed as a cover artist,” and it’s hard to believe songs such as ‘Am I the Same Girl?’ and ‘Now That You’re My Baby’ were not written exclusively for the British icon. Britain had a history of pulling from America’s R&B, soul and pop stashes, but whereas groups such as the Beatles, Herman’s Hermits and the Moody Blues gave their American covers a very British slant, Dusty’s interpretations sounded neither overtly British nor American. It all just sounded like Dusty. It’s hard to think of another singer able to so effortlessly and convincingly claim so many top-notch covers as their own.

“Dusty Heard Them Here First” compiles 24 US songs that Dusty covered during her long career. A quick peek at the tracklist reveals her unabashed affection for soul. She wore her love of Motown loud and proud, taking on heavy-hitters such as the Velvelettes’ ‘Needle In A Haystack’, the Miracles’ ‘You’ve Really Got A Hold On Me’ and Marvin Gaye’s ‘Can I Get A Witness’. She also idolised Baby Washington, covering four songs from her repertoire, including ‘Doodlin’’ featured here. Compiler Mick Patrick also notes Dusty’s fondness for songwriters Carole King and Gerry Goffin, writing, “Dusty cut enough numbers from [their] catalogue to fill an entire LP”. The Honey Bees’ original of Goffin and King’s ‘Some Of Your Lovin’’ is a tough one to beat, but Dusty came very, very close. Her decision to cover Norma Tanega’s ‘No Stranger Am I’ was likely due to more than just her interest in the song. Norma and Dusty were dating at the time she recorded this for the B-side of ‘I Close My Eyes And Count To Ten’ in 1968. By the 70s she was tapping Evie Sands and Lesley Gore for material. It’s easy to hear why she selected Lesley’s ‘Love Me By Name’, so powerful and full of feeling. But then again, the same can be said for ‘Turn Me Around’ (Chi Coltrane), ‘Packin’ Up’ (Margie Hendrix), ‘Every Ounce Of Strength’ (Carla Thomas) and practically every single song on “Dusty Heard Them Here First”. This is one of those rare instances when it’s just too tough to choose between original and cover; both are wonderful, you be the judge.

By Sheila Burgel (Ace Records)

Ace Records 2014 CD 18.00 €
VA: - Elvis Sound Vol. 2
30 rare Elvis soundalike trax performed by original artists. A lot of good and rare stuff from the 50's and early 60's!!! Included is a 36 pages de luxe booklet!
Classics Records 2013 CD 17.00 €
VA: - Era Northern Soul
Herb Newman’s Era Label was well established in Los Angeles by the time the soul era came about. With over 150 singles behind him by the time our musical story starts in 1962, Herb was a record label veteran. Originally more at home with straight pop records, Herb only occasionally dabbled in black music.

Era’s biggest hit by a black singer was Jewel Akens’ ‘The Birds And The Bees’, which was pure pop but came out of a notable session by accomplished soul group the Turn Arounds. Two great sides by the group feature here, along with the full story behind that hit. But Akens could sing soul as well as pop; a great late 60s stomper, ‘Your Good Lovin’’, written and produced by Eddie Daniels, debuts on this CD. We also found a little-known New Breed R&B gem from one of Jewel’s more obscure groups, the Composers.

Herb Newman already had a future soul star on his roster in the young Brenda Holloway who recorded as half of the Soul-Mates earlier in 1963. A track by the Lovemates, another boy/girl duo featuring Brenda, is also included, along with her 1964 solo outing for Catch.

Another future soul chart-maker was Jimmy Lewis who had just one Era release, arranged by Northern Soul hero James Carmichael. Jesse Davis’ ‘Gonna Hang On In There Girl’ was a rare soulful departure for the nightclub singer but the Sherlie Matthews composition sounds awesome when blasted out of the speakers at Northern gatherings. Wigan (and elsewhere) favourites are provided by Othello Robertson’s ‘So In Luv’ and Billy Watkins’ ‘The Ice-Man’ and there are alternate versions of ‘A Slice Of The Pie’ and ‘Meet Me At Midnight’, each arguably better than the Jewel Akens and Cindy Lynn originals.

Further unissued manna comes from the H.B. Barnum-arranged ‘Dance With Me’ by Billy Watkins and excellent alternate readings of ‘Stand There Mountain’ and ‘The Blue Shadow’ by ex-vocal group singer Vince Howard; Herb Newman had previously cut the songs on pop acts. There are Popcorn classics from the very colourful Bruce Cloud (check out the sleevenotes on him) and the glamorous and equally newsworthy Carol Connors. Both sides of Steve Flanagan’s Stafford monster ‘I’ve Arrived’ sound great alongside Melvin Boyd’s killer version of ‘Exit Loneliness, Enter Love’, produced by Miles Grayson. We throw light on Steve Flanagan’s identity but are still scouring the internet for Melvin Boyd.

Although Era started out a million miles away from black music, by the late 60s it had embraced it and utilised some of its most accomplished talents.

By Ady Croasdell (Ace Records)
Ace Records 2013 CD 18.00 €
VA: - Eteenpäin! Suomi-Jazz 1960-1975 3CD
Nimimerkki Pessimisti kirjoitti Rytmi-lehden numerossa 6/1960 synkästi: "Minne menet Suomen jazz? Tällä hetkellä vastaus näyttää olevan tuhoisan yksinkertainen: Kuolemaan. Suomessa jazz on henkihieverissään."

Nimimerkin ennustus ei onneksi toteutunut. Päinvastoin, sillä 1960-luku merkitsi suurta muutosta suomalaisessa jazzissa. Ripeä kehitys jatkui 1970-luvulla, jolloin suomalainen jazz vakiinnutti asemansa musiikin kentässä kansainvälisestikin.
Artie Music 2013 2-CD 30.00 €
VA: - Evolution Of Ska 2CD
A unique collection, which traces the development of West Indian music from the mid-'50s Calypso and Mento, through Jamaican R&B to early '60s Bluebeat, and the dawn of Ska.

Includes some of the earliest recordings by a number of subsequent Reggae superstars, most notably Prince Buster, Jimmy Cliff, Derrick Morgan, Owen Gray, Clancy Eccles, Byron Lee and 'The Godfather of Ska' himself, Laurel Aitken.

Many of these sides were massive Jamaican hits, most notably: 'Boogie Rock'; 'Fat Man'; 'Easy Snapping'; 'Time to Pray'; 'Little Vilma'; 'Dumplin's'; 'Oh Carolina'; 'Bartender'; 'Hurricane Hattie' and more.

Greatly improved sound quality on many of these recordings.
Jasmine Records 2013 CD 15.00 €
VA: - Finders Keepers - Motown Girls 1961-67
It was Ace Records’ good fortune in 2009 to become the first independent record company in the world to acquire the rights to release previously unissued Motown material from the 1960s. Our tenth and latest Motown project is “Finders Keeper”, a compilation titled for the Marvelettes’ 1964 recording that first surfaced on the British Tamla Motown logo in 1980.

Women were a fundamental part of Motown’s early success: Raynoma Gordy was contributing harmonies and arranging skills before the company even got going; Janie Bradford co-wrote what became Motown’s most covered song, ‘Money (That’s What I Want)’; Mable John was Berry Gordy’s chauffeur as well as the first female artist he signed; Mary Wells was the first to take a Motown label record into the charts ... and the list goes on.

In this, Ace’s first various artists Motown CD, we focus on the company’s female acts – the well-known ones, the not-so-famous but much loved and a couple about whom we know next to nothing at all. It’s a half-and-half mixture of previously issued and unreleased titles. In the case of the reissued titles, we’ve taken the road less travelled and selected tracks which we feel haven’t had the attention they deserve down the years, amongst them very rare 45s from the Andantes and Saundra Mallett.

Collectors will particularly relish the dozen unissued tunes, which include superb offerings from Motown heroines Brenda Holloway, Martha and the Vandellas, Gladys Knight and Kim Weston and gems by the lesser-known Carolyn Crawford, Hattie Littles, LaBrenda Ben, Liz Lands and Linda Griner. We’ve even managed to dig up tracks by a couple of girls who’ve never had a track out before: Thelma Brown and Anita Knorl.

To spotlight just one track of special interest, ‘When Somebody Loves You (You’re Never Alone)’ by Gladys Knight and the Pips is so well-known to Motown fans that it’s hard to believe it’s never been released before. One of the first songs completed by the group after they signed to Motown in early 1966, it sat on the shelf for over a year before they returned to it and re-recorded their vocals in the summer of ’67. Then it was put back on the shelf where it’s been ever since – apart from numerous outings on collectors’ cassettes and CDs, sourced from an acetate that found its way into the public domain. We are delighted to be able to offer a legitimate issue of this classic mid-60s Motown track for the very first time, fully re-mastered from the original tape and sounding better than ever.

Elsewhere, the set includes some prime Motown stompers (‘Let Love Live’), torchy ballads (‘It’s Too Soon To Know’), R&B (‘My Black Belt’) and jazz (‘I Gotta Right To Sing The Blues’) – something for everyone, we hope.

By Keith Hughes and Mick Patrick (Ace Records)
Ace Records 2013 CD 18.00 €
VA: - Forgotten 45's 1960-1962 3CD
The Forgotten 45s 1960-1962 follows hot on the heels of The Forgotten 45s 1957-1959, Fantastic Voyage’s previous survey of The Ones That Got Away, which has already proved a bigger-seller and been the subject of an enthusiastic review in The Daily Mirror.

Not every record that’s released can be a hit. Not every record that’s released deserves to be a hit, but frequently records that do aren’t and that’s what this set is all about. Three CDs, packed full of great records that should have been hits, but weren’t. Reflecting the musical preferences of the era, the featured styles run the gamut of R&B, doo wop, soul, rock & roll, country, and mainstream pop. Some of the tracks will never have been on legitimately released CDs before; all will give listening pleasure to collectors and pop music fans alike.

Artists, labels and other pundits could reasonably have expected these recording to be UK hit singles, but they were denied that success. The reason may be apparent with hindsight: the timely release of a rival version, or the listening public starting to fall out of love with the artist, or their style of music. But other misses are harder to fathom, and of course it is this unpredictability that goes a long way to explain our fascination with hit records.

Some of the featured tracks have become favourite oldies despite never making our charts (“Sticks And Stones”, “Last Night”, “Hello Walls”, “Pledging My Love”), some are wannabe hits by name artists whose chart pedigree is not in doubt (Pat Boone, Alma Cogan, Jackie Wilson, Bobby Darin, Craig Douglas, the Platters) and some were “new kids on the block” from both sides of the Atlantic, whose releases should have done so much better.

A fascinating parallel narrative when considered alongside hits-of-the-year compilations, like Fantastic Voyage’s exhaustive British Hit Parade series, The Forgotten 45s 1960-1962, and its companion set The Forgotten 45s 1957-1959, give collectors the chance to fill those holes in their archives which they’ve always meant to fill, but haven’t, and will give impulse CD buyers a thrilling reminder of records that passed consumers by in the heyday of pop music.
Fantastic Voyage 2013 2-CD 17.00 €
VA: - Foxy R&B Richard Stamz Chicago Blues
Richard Stamz was a colourful R&B and soul DJ who operated in Chicago throughout the 50s and 60s. A slick, jive talker who hosted a groundbreaking black TV show in the city in 1956, his on-air persona ran from crown prince to royal highness. Around 1960 he took over the Cobra/Artistic/Abco studio and the Paso label, which he continued to run alongside his own Foxy operation.

Bluesman Harold Burrage was already at Paso; he and Stamz began working closely together, with Burrage recording, composing songs, playing sessions and even voicing ads for Stamz’s radio show. Burrage’s 45s for Paso and Foxy are superb examples of early 60s blues as it moved towards soul. His extremely rare original version of Betty Everett’s ‘Please Love Me’ will be of great interest to new breed R&B fans, as will many of the tracks on these largely uncharted labels.

Blues fans will be thrilled by the presence of some of Howlin’ Wolf’s sidemen in the Willie Williams band, including guitarist Hubert Sumlin; the outfit provides three previously unreleased blues instrumentals. Influential guitarist Freddy Robinson appears as a session-man on many tracks. His own 45 from the Queen label is also included, one side in an alternate take.

Tough-voiced blues singers Mary Johnson and Flora D provide excellent R&B sides that complement the male contenders from Burrage, Lee “Shot” Williams and Detroit Jr. The uptempo decks of these discs are avidly hunted by new breed collectors. The Ideals and Ze-Majestics represent the vocal group side with R&B-flavoured numbers. The other previously unheard masters include a good R&B dance tempo song from Tony Gideon of the Daylighters, a jazz-influenced groover from Loretta Branch and the rare and mysterious Robert & The Rockin’ Robins singing about ‘Romeo Joe’.

Musicologists Richard Shurman and Patrick Roberts, the author of a book on Richard Stamz’s life, provide fascinating musical and entertaining sociological facts about the recordings and the man. Stamz’s daughter Phyllis has given the compilers and writers access to the family’s memorabilia which illustrates the package, providing a taster of Chicago musical life at the dawn of the 60s.

By Ady Croasdell (Ace Records)

Ace Records 2013 CD 18.00 €
VA: - Granpa's Gully Rock Vol. 4
25 Dynamic R&B Gems
Floridita Records 2013 CD 15.00 €
VA: - Hall Of Fame Vol. 3
Our Fame vault excavation continues to be the gift that keeps on giving for southern soul fans. And what better way could there be to start another soul-filled year than with a new volume of “Hall Of Fame”. The previous two volumes of the series presented a cross-section of exceptional, and mostly unissued, material from the vaults of Fame studios from the prime years of Rick Hall’s funky building on Avalon Avenue in Muscle Shoals. The previous volumes mixed male and female vocalists and added a smattering of groups, but this one concentrates on the recordings by the great male singers who passed through Fame’s doors in the mid to late 60s.

A sizeable portion of the tracks featured here only came to light during our ongoing research. Most of the artists have appeared previously in our series and will need no further introduction, but it’s a pleasure to be able to add to their number by bringing you thrilling selections from Herman Moore, Billy & Clyde, Dan Brantley and Roy Lee Johnson.

How good and how pleasant it is to be able to again bring you almost two dozen fine slabs of vintage southern soul on CD for the first time. Almost all of them date from the period that most would consider to be Fame’s golden era for soul (1966-68), and the few that don’t are just as compelling. 20 of the 24 have never been issued in any form until now. The release of this third volume concludes the “Hall Of Fame” series but not of Ace’s Fame reissue programme, I’m happy to say. There are still several more projects in the pipeline, so you can look forward to musical visits to Northern Alabama for some while yet.

By Tony Rounce (Ace Records)
Ace Records 2014 CD 18.00 €
VA: - House Rent Party Vol. 2
Rent House Records 2013 LP 15.00 €
VA: - I'll Go Crazy - The Federal Records Story 2CD
One Day Music 2013 2-CD 9.00 €
VA: - In The Mood
The Embassy label occupied a unique place in the British pop scene of the 1950 & ‘60s, releasing cover versions of current pop hits which were sold exclusively through the Woolworths chain of stores, and their recordings have become increasingly collectable in recent years, to the extent that Acrobat have released complete collections of the 45rpm singles from 1960, 61 and 52. However, Embassy also made EPs and LPs which covered a wider spread of repertoire to take advantage of the presence they had in stores which addressed the mass market. This included instrumental material of all kinds, including their covers of instrumental chart hits, and this collection pulls together 32 examples of their top quality recordings, usually made by the top session musicians in the British industry, released under a variety of identities. It makes for very enjoyable listening, as well as being a collectable snapshot of their eclectic output from that era.
Acrobat Music 2013 CD 13.00 €
VA: - Infamous InstroMonsters of Rock'n'Roll Vol. 3 1957-1962
It’s time for Instromonsters again and be careful, after two successful volumes we're at Volume Three and it's packed full with twenty one high octane instrumental rock'n'rollers. On this volume we focus not only on the North American instrumental pioneers but also on some great bands and artists from early 1960s Europe.
El Toro Records 2013 CD 15.00 €
VA: - It's Saturday Night! 3CD Starday Dixie Rockabilly 1955-1961
It’s Saturday Night!, an exciting collection of rockabilly recordings from the same label. Starday Records was launched in Beaumont, Texas, in the early 1950s, with perfect timing to catch the first wave of the rockabilly tsunami that would sweep the Southern states of America between 1954 and 1958…and the Texas teenagers with their distinctive cat music were just as ready to rock as those being captured by Sam Phillips at Sun Records in Tennessee.

A cult label for rockabilly collectors worldwide – if not the holy grail of all rockabilly record labels – Starday embraced the new teenage music enthusiastically, introducing the likes of Sonny Fisher and Sleepy LaBeef, as well as revitalising the careers of veterans such as Link Davis, Bill Mack and Leon Payne. In addition, household-names-in-waiting such as George Jones, Big Bopper and Link Wray would also cut their teeth with the little Texas label.

Following the 1970s rockabilly revival, even more of these artists were to become internationally famous with their renown being directly attributable to their time with Starday/Dixie; Fisher, LaBeef, Rudy Grayzell, Glenn Barber and Joe Poovey, all enjoyed extended musical careers courtesy of their insatiable European fans, while those that were unable to tour became absent heroes whose 1950s recordings could still fill dance floors decades after they were laid down.

It’s Saturday Night!: Starday – Dixie Rockabilly 1955-1961 presents over one hundred examples of these enduring sounds; arguably the most exciting rockabilly tracks you will ever hear and, certainly, the most impressive set of tracks recorded by any Southern indie label except legendary Sun Records (and there are many record collectors who would argue that that statement is still four words too long!)
Fantastic Voyage 2012 2-CD 17.00 €
VA: - Jamaica Selects Jump Blues Strictly For You 3CD
Fantastic Voyage takes another dip into the bubbling cauldron of R&B which sewed the seeds for ska on Jamaica’s sound systems in the 1940s and 50s, lashing together 85 sizzling biscuits from that formative, feet-finding era.It’s well established that the US R&B which started bombarding the island through radio after World War II was picked up by sound systems such as Clement ‘Coxsone’ Dodd and Prince Buster, germinating into ska after mating with the Caribbean’s own calypso and other local musical strains.

The records being produced in America’s Southern states and cities like New Orleans were loosely termed ‘shuffle blues’; contagious, jumping and bulging with animated incitements to party, dance or get down and dirty, many boasting some of the most caterwaulingly volcanic saxophone solos known to man.The tracks presented on Jamaica Selects Jump Blues Strictly For You straddle the shuffle blues panorama over three CDs (many making their debut in this format). The first disc’s The Roots Of Shuffle Blues (1944-1951) takes off like a rocket with names including post-war godfather Louis Jordan, Joe Liggins and his Honeydrippers, Roy Milton, Sherman Williams, Dave Bartholomew, Lowell Fulson, Jimmy Liggins, Amos Millburn, Roy Brown and T-Bone Walker.

CD2’s The Golden Years Of Shuffle Blues (1951-1954) is emblazoned with the likes of Oscar McLollie, Chuck Higgins, Rosco Gordon, Fats Domino, Ruth Brown, Jack Dupree, Chuck Willis, Guitar Slim, the Charms, Marvin & Johnny, Tommy Ridgley, Earl Curry, Floyd Dixon, the Rocking Brothers and, of course, Louis Jordan. By CD3’s The Big Three Take Over (1955-1960) the rhythm firing on the upbeat over walking bass is blueprinting the ska spring with names such as Nappy Brown, Plas Johnson, the Penguins, Mello-Harps, Big Joe Turner, Shirley & Lee, Vince Monroe, Smiley Lewis, Lloyd Price, Ivory Joe Hunter, Professor Longhair, Clyde McPhatter, Johnny Otis, Earl Hooker, Ernie Freeman and Hal Paige & The Wailers.These discs should come with a warning: lethal rocking and leaping skank blueprints running amok, beautifully presented with knowledgeable, fact-packed annotation.
Fantastic Voyage 2012 2-CD 18.00 €
VA: - Jerk Boom Bam Vol. 10
Killer new LP of greasy late-1950s & early-1960s R&B &soul dance blasters!!
Jerk Boom Bam 2013 LP 17.00 €
VA: - Jerk Boom Bam Vol. 7
Greasy Rhythm & Blues And Nasty Soul Party
Jerk Boom Bam 2013 LP 17.00 €
VA: - Jerk Boom Bam Vol. 8
Greasy Rhythm & Blues And Nasty Soul Party
Jerk Boom Bam 2013 LP 17.00 €
VA: - Jerk Boom Bam Vol. 9
Greasy Rhythm & Blues And Nasty Soul Party
Jerk Boom Bam 2013 LP 17.00 €
VA: - Jim Jam Gems Vol. 1
Stag-O-Lee Records 2013 10" LP 17.00 €
VA: - Jim Jam Gems Vol. 2
Stag-O-Lee Records 2013 10" LP 17.00 €
VA: - Joe Meek - Twangy Guitars, Reverb And Heavenly Choirs 2CD
Long before he'd evolved into a fully-fledged cult figure, Joe Meek was the UK's first fully independent record producer.

This unique 2CD set traces his career from his earliest sessions, as a sound balance engineer in the mid-'50s, to his emergence as a major songwriter and hit maker in the early '60s.

It includes many of Meek's biggest records, including five UK # 1s by, Anne Shelton, Lonnie Donegan, Frankie Vaughan, Emile Ford and John Leyton, plus several other major million selling hits! Indeed, more than half of the sixty sides included herein were significant UK hits.

This set also includes several collectors' rarities, previously unavailable on CD, most notably Gary Miller's unfeasibly-rare 'Moby Dick'. John Fraser's 'Golden Cage' and Geoff Goddard's 'Girl Bride'.

If you are looking for what is by far the most interesting Joe Meek-related compilation for years then this is it!
Jasmine Records 2013 CD 15.00 €
VA: - Joe Meek Telstar: Anthology 3CD
In 2005, the story of maverick producer Joe Meek hit the West End stage as Telstar, and a film of the same name premiered in 2009. All this helped introduce a new generation to the sounds that came out of his studio half a century ago at 304 Holloway Road, north London in an era when Britain lagged a long way behind the States in cutting-edge recording.

‘Telstar’, credited to house band the Tornados and named after a just-launched communications satellite, changed all that. By making Number 1 on both sides of the Atlantic in December 1962 – the first and only record by a pre-Beatles UK group to top the Billboard chart – it put the UK, and Joe Meek in particular, on the map. Sadly, the royalties would be delayed by a court case alleging plagiarism launched by a French composer. This would be settled in Meek’s favour in February 1967, three weeks after his death.

Meek created musical magic in his home studio above a shop. Some of the futuristic sounds he was responsible for would not have sounded out of place in the synthesiser-dominated Eighties, and he was undoubtedly years ahead of his time.

He’d served in the Royal Air Force as a radar technician after World War II, then worked as a television engineer before getting a job at IBC, one of only two recording studios in London not attached to a record label. He moved to the other independent studio, Lansdowne, in 1957, working on some of Lonnie Donegan’s skiffle hits.

All this, plus a growing interest in songwriting, set him up nicely to go it alone, which he did in 1960. His first hit, ‘Angela Jones’, by singer Michael Cox, came out on his own Triumph imprint, but he soon decided to concentrate on creating music and leave the marketing to labels he licensed his productions to.

The following year would see him top the UK charts thanks to John Leyton and ‘Johnny Remember Me’. The combination of the singing actor and a song written by young hopeful Geoff Goddard proved irresistible, the arrangement by another young talent Charles Blackwell featuring strings and choir – all recorded in the living room, bathroom and toilet of Meek’s three-floor flat!

The bands and artists Meek produced varied widely. The Fabulous Flee Rekkers were Britain’s answer to Johnny and the Hurricanes and were led by tenor saxophonist Peter Fleerakkers. Their best-known member was drummer Mickey Waller, who went on to back Rod Stewart after the group broke up in 1963. The Outlaws featured future Deep Purple guitarist Ritchie Blackmore and Chas & Dave’s Chas Hodges, and were used as a backing band; they also feature here in their own right.

Meek’s willingness to experiment was unique in the days before stereo had become the industry standard. The opportunity for experimentation was limited, as it could ruin recordings, but Meek was willing to use devices like limiters and compressors to create a sound all his own. Many of his artists showed longevity, a tribute to his talent-spotting abilities. Mike Berry’s ‘Tribute To Buddy Holly’, included here, was the first of five Top 40 hits in a sequence extending from 1961 to 1980.

Others featured here had their highpoints to come. Cliff Bennett & the Rebel Rousers would hit later in the Sixties with a cover of the Beatles’ ‘Got To Get You Into My Life’, while shock-rocker Screaming Lord Sutch – a UK version of Screamin’ Jay Hawkins – went from rock to politics. Birmingham-born musicians Ken Lewis and John Carter, featured here fronting Carter-Lewis and the Southerners, would go on to find success with third singer Perry Ford as the Ivy League.

The final triumph for Joe Meek came in 1964 when the Honeycombs’ stomping ‘Have I The Right’, released on Pye, gave him another Number 1. But that year also saw him fall out with Geoff Goddard, while his private life, at a time when homosexuality was illegal, was difficult to say the least. He ended his own life in February 1967 by shooting himself in his studio, a tortured genius to the end.

Even though he could not play a conventional instrument, Joe Meek gave much to popular music. His ratio of hits to releases, 45 from 245, stands up to anyone’s in any era, but the fact that he was a maverick operating outside the system makes it even more impressive. He created an early concept album called ‘I Hear A New World’ that was well ahead of its time, although it would remain unreleased for some years. The tracks here credited to the Blue Men are from this project.

Some say that, had he lived, Meek would have continued to innovate. ‘Joe would have been in his element with a multi-track machine,’ said Outlaw Chas Hodges, who described the Beatles’ recordings as sounding like ‘rough demos’ when compared with Meek’s creations. Use your own ears and tune in to ‘Telstar’ and much, much more…you just might agree!
Not Now Music 2013 2-CD 9.00 €
VA: - Just For A Day - The Apollo Records Story 3CD
Apollo Records came from humble beginnings but, through the hard work and dedication of its founders, it became an influential record label in America during the Forties and Fifties. New York-based Apollo went toe-to-toe with larger labels in the era to break artists across numerous genres, most notably doo-wop, gospel and blues, in its near-two decade existence.

Born in the Rainbow Record Shop in downtown Harlem, near the theatre whose name it would share, Apollo Records was founded by husband-and-wife duo Isaac and Bess Berman, along with colleagues Hy Siegel and Sam Schneider. It was Bess who drove the label from the off, taking responsibility for the day-to-day running of Apollo despite Siegel’s initial role of President.

The label’s location amid arguably the country’s most vibrant music scene meant it unearthed gems from the off – and none was more precious than Dinah Washington. The woman who would become known as ‘Queen of the Juke Boxes’ cut a number of tracks for Apollo during its earliest years.

Among the numbers recorded by the 21-year old were ‘Mellow Mama Blues’ (disc one), ‘My Voot Is Really Vout’ (disc three) and ‘Pacific Coast Blues’ (disc two). Even on her maiden studio outing, the young Washington displayed a talent and a soulfulness that belied her age. She would soon be snapped up by the larger Mercury Records and became one of the most influential artists of her time.

Another future superstar to cut their teeth for Apollo was Wynonie Harris, an R&B powerhouse and founding figure of rock ‘n’ roll. Having travelled the United States in a bid to establish himself, Harris turned up at – of all places – the Apollo Theatre in Harlem in the mid Forties. Among the tracks Harris recorded for the label were ‘I Gotta Lyin' Woman’, ‘Young And Wild’ and ‘She's Gone With The Wind’; all three can be found on this collection. The musicians’ strike of 1942-44 postponed Harris’ success, and he went on to enjoy a string of R&B chart-topping hits on both the Decca and King labels.

Artists had to make their name through live performance and public appearances if they wanted to get noticed. Such was the tactic of 35-year old Mahalia Jackson, who arrived at Apollo in 1946.

Jackson wasted no time in justifying the lofty moniker of ‘Queen of Gospel’, bestowed upon her as she played the circuit. In 1948 she recorded and released ‘Move On Up A Little Higher’, which sold eight million. Apollo struggled to meet demand and Bess Berman soon deposed Siegel as head of the label. Jackson would stay at Apollo for nearly a decade, recording tracks such as ‘She Said It Would’ (disc three) and ‘Nobody Knows The Trouble I’ve Seen’ (disc one) before departing for Columbia in 1954 and going on to win four Grammy awards.

But it wasn’t just solo stars that made it on Apollo. Bess Berman showed she was adept at spotting collective talent when she renamed gospel vocal group the Selah Jubilee Singers the Larks in 1950. They went on to bag a number of Top 10 R&B hits, including ‘Little Side Car’ (disc three) in ’51. Buoyed by this success, Berman took another gospel group, the Royal Sons Quintet, and rechristened them the Five Royales. They would enjoy even greater success, most notably with ‘Dedicated To The One I Love’, a track that would go on to hit for both the Shirelles and the Mamas and the Papas in the Sixties.

While the name of the game was commercial success, characters like ‘Champion’ Jack Dupree gave Apollo a large helping of credibility. A gritty and authentic musician who loved his trade, the veteran New Orleans-born singer-pianist was renowned for his witty lyricism and gritty tone. He cut about a dozen country-blues tracks for Apollo, including ‘Deacon’s Party’, ‘Old Woman Blues’ (both disc one) and ‘Come Back Baby’ (disc three), but would achieve greater success on Atlantic.

With a mixture of cult, critical and commercial success, Apollo maintained a respectable output across the Forties and Fifties. But the early Sixties were blighted by Bess’ ill health and copyright lawsuits pertaining to Apollo’s crediting of Mahalia Jackson recordings. It was ultimately, however, the departure of artists like Jackson, the Five Royales and Wynonie Harris to other labels that proved too much for Apollo, which shut its doors in 1962.

But Bess Berman could look back on her work in that period and be proud, not least of the achievement of becoming the first woman to head a record label in a male-dominated era. More than that, this three-disc selection, with its assortment of artists and musical genres, illustrates the strength of the label’s catalogue in all its glory.
One Day Music 2014 2-CD 9.00 €
VA: - Kent's Cellar Of Soul Vol. 3
We present for your delectation 26 mid to late 60s classic soul tracks, only six of which are currently on Ace CDs. Inevitably many are uptempo but the CD is designed to capture the spirit of 60s soul rather than its later UK dance-centric revision. Several were R&B hits and a few made the Pop Hot 100 too. Most were released in the UK, some on groovy little labels such as Action, Spark, Soul City, Direction, B&C and Pama. They were the type of records the pirate radio stations would plug from their off-shore floating studios. It was mod music in the sense of new, hip and in the groove, rather than of any elite, exclusive in-crowd. If it was groovy you bought it.

I remember exotic names such as Cliff Nobles & Co, the Maskman & the Agents and Peggy Scott & Jo Jo Benson being raved about on the radio. When you got your newly released records home you’d play the top side a few times and then try out the flip – always a worthwhile exercise. With the Show Stoppers you got ‘What Can A Man Do’ as a big, big bonus.

Fellow compiler Tony Rounce and I grew up in the exciting times of late 60s Britain, so it is inevitable that this compilation has some Anglo Saxon nuances. Gene Latter was born in Wales and his great 60s soul pastiche ‘Sign On The Dotted Line’ was recorded in London. It gained a US release on Liberty but it was the spins in the clubs of the UK on the Spark label that won it admirers who danced to its gritty grooves. The Show Stoppers also found fame through the UK clubs and went to #11 with their ‘House Party’ top-side without even denting the US R&B charts. Brenton Wood had a hit on all the record sales listings, but surprisingly reached the highest over here.

Cliff Nobles’ ‘The Horse’ was an instrumental that had that indefinable something which made it stand out from the rest; there are probably legions of fans who never knew the song’s title. Bill Moss’ funky ‘Sock It To ‘Em Soul Brother’ is a fine example of early rap and something of a period piece with it’s eulogising of OJ Simpson for his football rather than courtroom skills. Jesse James’ first R&B hit ‘Believe In Me Baby’ didn’t get a UK release; possibly just as well as there are some heavy sexual problems featured towards the end.

There’s girly group soul from the Ikettes and Inspirations, funky stuff from Clarence Carter, Thelma Jones and Lowell Fulsom and soulful balladry from Carl Henderson, the Ad Libs and Bob & Earl. The soul group roots of Northern Soul are demonstrated by the Platters, Esquires, Showmen and Volumes, while Ruby Andrews and J.J. Barnes feature the subtler productions that were the foundation stones of the 70s modern soul scene.

No false categories are needed; it’s all truly great soul music that will be appreciated by any music lover.

By Ady Croasdell (Ace Records)
Ace Records 2014 CD 18.00 €
VA: - Later Alligator 2LP Louisiana Rock'n'Roll
Fantastic Voyage continues its mission to unearth and collate America’s huge regional rock ‘n’ roll heritages by heading down to Louisiana for Later Alligator, a rare gumbo blend of Big Easy R&B, Cajun country, rampant blues-boogie and Bayou swing, served up over four sides brimming with lesser-heard originals and mouth-watering obscurities.

Compiled by Lucky Parker in conjunction with Wild Wax Show DJ ‘Jailhouse’ John Alexander, Later Alligator deftly demonstrates the fabulous range of styles running rampant in the Pelican State in the 1950s-60s, kicking off with Louisiana’s most infamous son, Jerry Lee Lewis. The unmistakably rolling ‘Lewis Boogie’ was originally the flip of post-scandal statement, ‘The Return Of Jerry Lee Lewis’. Fellow rockers include ‘Suzie-Q’ titan Dale Hawkins, Bobby Charles [with the title track], Rod Bernard, Roy Brown, Frankie Ford, Fats Domino, Chris Kenner, Tibby Edwards, Johnny Ray Harris, Champion Jack Dupree, Mickey Gilley, Clarence ‘Bon Ton’ Garlow and many more.

Several tracks are drawn from the local independent labels including Goldband, Jin, Ace, Ram and Vin, introducing a fervently attractive streak for record collectors. As with all Fantastic Voyage expeditionary releases, the set’s allure is further hot-wired by oddities and curios, here including a 13-year-old Dolly Parton wailing ‘Puppy Love’ or the Cajun accordion swamp gas of Cleveland Crochet’s ‘Sugar Bee’. Strangest of all is Jay Chevalier, crooning about the Cuban missile crisis over guitar and bongos before a major explosion at the end.

There’s a tangible spirit and energy coursing through these tracks rarely found in today’s music which was even unique to the state of Louisiana back then; it’s own brand of spiced-up, cross-fertilising rock ‘n’ roll and country twang, all bathed in steamy swamp fever. To have so many towering examples gathered together on one set is cause for celebration and no-holds-barred whoopee.
Fantastic Voyage 2013 LP 25.00 €
VA: - Let The Music Play - Black America Sings Bacharach & David
Our “Black America Sings…” series has already turned the soulful spotlight on the compositions of Bob Dylan, Lennon & McCartney and Otis Redding. Now it’s the turn of Bacharach and David.

Burt Bacharach’s music and the lyrics of Hal David have been appreciated by black American artists for over 50 years. Dionne Warwick was the first to record many of their songs and by doing so made them visible to others as a source of hits or album tracks. The pair had no finer interpreter than Warwick– with the possible exception of her male counterpart Lou Johnson – but all the acts included here demonstrate the quality of their work.

The song titles here speak for themselves, and the reputations of the artists are enough to guarantee quality performances. Every listener will have their own favourites. I have more than a few, but am especially fond of Dionne Warwick’s original demo of ‘Make It Easy On Yourself’, Ruby & the Romantics’ ‘I Cry Alone’ and Isaac Hayes’ elegant elongation of ‘I Just Don’t Know What To Do With Myself’. There are many other highlights, but if these three tracks can’t sell you on the project, nothing will.

Plans are underway to extend the “Black America Sings…” series, with the next instalment due later this year. In the meantime, here are two dozen of Bacharach and David’s best-known compositions performed by some of the finest soul artists of the 1960s and 70s.

By Tony Rounce (Ace Records)
Ace Records 2014 CD 18.00 €
VA: - Link Wray - The King Of Distortion meets The Red Line Rebels
Righteous 2013 CD 17.00 €
VA: - London American Label Year By Year 1964
1964 was not a great year to be an American chart hopeful. After an indifferent start in ’63, the Beatles had finally come, seen and conquered the US Hot 100. If your chances of scoring a decent-sized hit weren’t already hindered by the Fab Four’s domination of the Top 20, there was the mighty rearguard of the Dave Clark Five, Herman’s Hermits, the Animals, Freddie and the Dreamers, Petula Clark and anyone else who sang with a British twang to contend with. If the majority of American singers and musicians started to feel like strangers in their homeland courtesy of post-Beatlemania pandemonium, you can hardly blame them.

Fortunately, despite the chart success of UK acts, there was still plenty of great American music being made, and a lot found its way into British ears courtesy of the London-American label. Not as much as in previous years – as London now had stiff competition for US product from Stateside and Pye International – but enough to make the 1964 entry in our “Year By Year” series as varied and enjoyable as the previous volumes.

1964 was a watershed year for London. They lost representation of several labels that had been vital components of their catalogue. Some, such as Atlantic, gained their own identity elsewhere within the Decca organisation. Others – Sun, Specialty, Cadence – more or less ceased to function. Dot Records, a major player in London’s past success, moved across town to Pye. But the London A&R division kept on with Monument, Philles, Kapp and other important US repertoire sources, and actually managed to rack up more UK hits than they had the previous year.

Our collection gives you the gist of how London faced up to the challenge of 1964. Early soul classics from Solomon Burke, Otis Redding and the Drifters; examples of Phil Spector’s Wall Of Sound from the Crystals and the Ronettes; Buddy Holly clones Ray Ruff and David Box; Elvis soundalike Terry Stafford; boss instrumentals courtesy of Willie Mitchell, the Baja Marimba Band and Bill Black’s Combo; country hits from Jerry Wallace and Ned Miller; and even some American Merseybeat from Washington DC’s Chartmakers, All this and Jerry Lee and Satchmo too – what’s not to love?

As ever, the booklet is full of label illustrations, reviews, sheet music and copious track-by-track annotation. Wherever possible, London’s own original tape sources have been used to preserve authenticity. It’s taken longer to pull this volume together than any previous one, but we are sure the end product will justify the wait for London American collectors and all fans of mid-60s US pop.

By Tony Rounce (Ace Records)
Ace Records 2013 CD 18.00 €
VA: - London American Story - Rarities 2LP
One Day Music 2013 LP 25.00 €
VA: - Lonesome Road - The Jamie Records Story 2CD
50 original recordings from Jamie Records 1957-1962
One Day Music 2013 CD 9.00 €
VA: - Long Lost Honkers & Twangers
As compilation CDs of 1960s instrumentals go, this one is pretty special. Actually, it’s unique, as half of the 26 tracks have never been released before. It’s just like going back to the heady days of the early 60s and buying a brand new LP of exciting instrumentals that are entirely new to you. Is that Christmas or what?

So what goodies have we conjured up for you? How about the fascinating original demo of ‘Walk Don’t Run’ showing the Ventures still busily working out exactly how the arrangement should go, and it’s every bit as thrilling as the band’s later hit recording. Plus there’s another four unreleased titles from the world’s premier instrumental group: the Latin-spiced ‘The Spur’ and ‘Sabrosa’, plus the fine Danny Hamilton compositions ‘Murfreesboro’ and ‘Run Don’t Walk’. If that’s not enough for Ventures fans, we’ve also added two hitherto unknown performances from their later star guitarist Gerry McGee working uncredited on a Billy Joe & the Checkmates 45 from 1963.

The Fireballs are represented by two typically superb tracks – an instrumental version of their memorable vocal outing ‘Ain’t That Rain’ and a bright, sunshine treatment of ‘La Pobracita’ which is so much better that the version they waxed under the name of the String-A-Longs. There are also two from the Rondels who enjoyed a US Top 100 hit with ‘Back Beat No.1’ in 1961: the wild sax-feast ‘Showboat’ and the unworldly beat of ‘Zombie’.

The Reveliers are much respected in surf music circles for their ‘Hangin’ Five’ / ‘Patch’ 45 on G-Clef. ‘Patch’ is included here as well the dynamic ‘White Water’ and ‘Flat Tyre’, both previously unissued. There are two unreleased recordings from the Titans who are feted in instrumental circles for the blistering power of their ‘Reveille Rock’ and ‘Noplace Special’ 45s. Here we feature a super version of the South African favourite ‘Skokiaan’ and an unexpectedly moving treatment of the Everly Brothers’ ‘Crying In The Rain’.

There’s also a whole bunch of exhilarating rarities, including Johnny & the Hurricanes’ final instrumental 45, ‘The Psychedelic Worm’ and ‘Red River Rock ’67’, which we have never seen on CD before; Richie Allen (alias Richie Podolor) exploring the twangy depths of his Danelectro along with an uncredited Sandy Nelson on drums for the little-known ‘Goochy Bamba’; the Ramrods’ barmy bagpipe extravaganza ‘Loch Lomond Rock’; surfing rarities like the Impacts’ ‘Tor-Chula’ and the Avantis’ ‘Wax ‘Em Down’; the catchy ‘Car Hop’ hot-rod fave from the Exports; the Gigolos with the twangy ‘Night Creature’; and finally the cross-genre cult classic ‘Ghost Train’ from the Swanks – as wild and raw as it gets, and taken from the original master tape, natch.

The 20-page booklet features comprehensive notes by myself and fellow Pipeline Magazine co-editor Alan Taylor based on in-depth interviews with original members of the bands, plus many never-before-seen photos. There are just 1,500 being pressed and once they’re gone they’re gone. So, fellow instro fans, do not hang around on this one.

By Dave Burke Pipeline Magazine (Ace Records)
Ace Records 2013 CD 23.00 €
VA: - Love And Fury - Gems From The Decca Vaults UK 3CD
One Day Music 2013 2-CD 10.00 €
VA: - Love Me Do And The Birth Of The Beat 2CD
asmine is proud to present this superb 2CD set featuring many of the artist and tracks that helped to inspire The Beatles and the emerging beat group scene in the early '60s.

Enjoy the early recordings from such iconic pop stars as Cliff Richard, Marty Wilde, Joe Brown and Johnny Kidd plus The Beatles first single, 'Love Me Do'/'P.S. I Love You' and their early recordings with Tony Sheridan.

Fully detailed liner notes with biography and career achievements for many of the major artists.
Jasmine Records 2013 CD 15.00 €
VA: - Midnight Special - The Oriole Records Story 2CD
Oriole Records was the first British record label. It was founded in 1925 by the Levy family, who built up their business from an east London record shop, and had its own distribution system, recording studio and pressing facilities. It enjoyed a fruitful first decade of operation but lay dormant until 1950, when Morris Levy revived it. It started its rebirth by licensing from the American Mercury Records label, before turning to British acts.

Early hitmakers included the Chas McDevitt Skiffle Group with the Number 5 ‘Freight Train’, featuring Nancy Whiskey on vocals, and Liverpool-born former Butlins Redcoat Russ Hamilton’s ‘We Will Make Love’, which reached Number 2 in the UK singles chart in 1957. Oriole also produced cover versions of chart hits, released on the budget Embassy Records label through Woolworths stores.

The stakes rose considerably when John Schroeder joined in December 1961. His brief was to develop Oriole, the only independent record company at the time, into a rival for major labels like EMI, whence he had come after carving a reputation as Cliff Richard producer Norrie Paramor’s songwriting sidekick. It was, he admitted, ‘Quite a daunting proposition.’

His first hits came with singer Clinton Ford, who mixed country with comedy, followed by Maureen Evans. Her ‘Like I Do’ made Number 3, sold a quarter of a million records and inspired Paramor to send Schroeder a personal note saying: Congratulations on “Like I Do”. Please leave some space in the charts for me!’

The Spotniks, an instrumental group from Sweden, introduced themselves to Oriole when their manager heard the label’s sponsored show on Radio Luxembourg. They made the Top 30 with ‘Orange Blossom Special’, promoted by an appearance in space suits on BBC-TV’s Top Of The Pops (this was in the era of the space race between America and the Soviet Union). They would follow up with an equally unlikely cover, ‘Hava Nagila’; this did even better, but the gimmick inevitably faded.

Other signings of note included Susan Singer (Helen Shapiro’s cousin) and the Dowlands, a duo produced by maverick Joe Meek in an independent deal. Jackie Trent was another discovery, a talented singer-songwriter who would eventually team personally and professionally with Tony Hatch.

Among the people who approached Oriole but didn’t make it were Jonathan King, a chart-topper a few short years later with “Everyone’s Gone To The Moon’, and Galt McDermott, Canadian composer of the hit Sixties musical Hair.

Oriole and Schroeder’s place in the history books was assured when they became the first record label to bring Motown to Britain. Schroeder took label boss Berry Gordy and vice president Barney Ales to dinner at the Talk of the Town nightclub to seal the deal. He had something in common with Gordy in that they were both successful songwriters, Schroeder having penned Helen Shapiro’s first hits.

‘I knew we had a mammoth task ahead of us,’ Schroeder later explained, ‘but I also knew the sheer talent featured on this label could not help but eventually register. It was only a matter of time.’ Oriole released nineteen Motown discs in total on their black and white Oriole American label, but were stymied by the lack of domestic airplay for the music.

Schroeder had the courage to begin the operation with three singles released simultaneously in September 1962 – Mary Wells’ ‘You Beat Me To The Punch’, The Contours’ ‘Do You Love Me’ and the Marvelettes’ ‘Beechwood 4-5789’, all featured here. For two years he and his team worked on Motown’s music. But no sooner had they tasted real success with Stevie Wonder’s ‘Fingertips Part 2’, than the licensing contract expired and Motown moved on to EMI Records.

John Schroeder’s next move, in July 1963, was to thrust Oriole into the thick of domestic pop by taking a mobile recording unit to Liverpool and recording two albums of local talent entitled ‘This Is Mersey Beat Vol 1 and 2’. Many bands got their first break this way, but while Schroeder met both John Lennon and Beatles manager Brian Epstein he was inevitably beaten to the biggest names by his wealthier rivals.

Oriole ceased to exist in 1964 when American recording giant Columbia bought the company and renamed it CBS Records. The attraction was Oriole’s record pressing factory in Aston Clinton Buckinghamshire. John Schroeder had, by then, moved on to Pye Records where he would produce Status Quo and Man, among many others. He has written about his Oriole years in a book, Sex & Violins (Pen Press), which is much recommended.

Oriole worked hard to compete with the ‘big boys’, but ultimately the stakes were too high for a family firm. The music they brought to the market was, however, fascinating, and still has the capacity to entertain half a century later.
One Day Music 2013 2-CD 8.00 €
VA: - Nasty Rockabilly 20 LP Box
Volumes 1 - 20 in one box. 20 LPs in one box. Limited pressing of 200 copies made.
Be Sharp Records 2014 LP-Box 290.00 €
VA: - New Breed Blues With Black Popcorn
Make way for a brand new selection of collectables, curios and rug-cutters for R&B fans who feel the beat and need new sounds to scratch their itch.

Tracks such as Marva Josie’s ‘You Lied’, Sinner Strong’s ‘Don’t Knock It’ and the Idols’ ‘Just A Little Bit More’ seem to have been around for an eternity without being properly comped, whereas ‘Why Oh Why’ by Austin Taylor, ‘Well I Done Got Over It’ from Bobby Mitchell and Dolores Johnson’s ‘What Kind Of Man Are You’ are currently raising eyebrows and overdrafts. J.J. Jackson’s ‘Oo-Ma-Liddy’, Little Johnny Taylor’s ‘Somewhere Down The Line’ and Etta James’ ‘Nobody Loves You Like Me’ are perfect for this CD.

Kent’s forte is the previously unissued humdinger and here we have a handful of the best to tempt even the most OVO (original vinyl only) of collectors to shell out for this piquant package. Two gems from earlier Ace CDs can be found in Art Wheeler’s Downey side ‘Baby We’re Through’ and Carl Edmondson & the Charmaines’ Fraternity number ‘Baby Please Don’t Go’, while the more recently issued 45 of ‘I Ain’t Talkin’’ comes from last year’s CD of Kent Harris’ R&B productions.

Inevitably it’s the debutantes that will steal the show and attract the more traditional R&B fan. There is a pounding blues by Freddie North from Bob Holmes’ tapes, when he was working with Freddie along with Slim Harpo in Nashville in the late 60s. From Los Angeles there is Adolph Jacobs’ unreleased Class recording ‘Cannibal Stew’ that sounds like the Coasters and might even have them singing behind him (he was their guitarist at the time). Then we have a taster for the forthcoming Ace CD of Richard Stamz’s Chicago blues productions, with a fine mover from Tony Gideon called ‘So Strange’.

Finally, there is a track that put me into a state of frenzy, ‘When You See Me Hurt’ by Carl Lester & the Showstoppers – 2 minutes 30 of unadulterated hip-shaking heartbreak. I must have one now!

By Ady Croasdell (Ace Records)
Ace Records 2013 CD 18.00 €
VA: - Nippon Girls
By popular demand, the series kicks off with “Nippon Girls”, a celebration of the female side of Japan’s 1960s pop scene. The LP comprises a dozen highlights from the CD of the same title issued on our Big Beat International logo a couple of years back, one of our recent top sellers. Compiled by DJ Sheila Burgel, a former Tokyo resident, the “Nippon Girls” CD raised a few eyebrows here at Ace HQ, but girl-pop maven Sheila knew what she was doing. The collection drew rave reviews, becoming something of a left-field hit with the club crowd and young hipster types.

Sheila also supplied the fascinating and scholarly liner notes, from which we learn that bikini-clad cover girl Jun Mayuzumi’s ‘Black Room’ “boasts booming bass lines and a dancefloor readiness that’s already caught the ear of freakbeat collectors, while Mie Nakao’s fuzz-rocker ‘Sharock No. 1’ takes ‘Green Onions’ as its template. ‘Tsukikage No Rendezvous’ by Keiko Mari is a tamer affair, with Latin rhythms and cute banter between Mari and her all-male chorus. J Girls were sisters Shinobu and Jun Hazuki. Their ‘Kiiro No Sekai’ was recorded in 1969 but remained under wraps until 1995’s “Cutie Pops Collection”. Reiko Ohara’s ‘Peacock Baby’ was released in 1968 and came in a mouth-watering gatefold sleeve. Mieko Hirota was a music heavyweight, close to Dusty Springfield in the ability to inspire awe with her voice. In the mid-60s, she was paired up with Kyohei Tsutsumi, one of Japan’s greatest pop writer/producers. His love of Anglo-American records is clearly audible on ‘Nagisa No Tenshi’, its backing track not very subtly swiped from ‘Cool Jerk’.”

The second side makes for an equally compelling listen. Opener Rumi Koyama was “a go-go dancer for TV show Beat Pops. Her debut single is rather square, but its jazzy flip ‘Watashi No Inori’ is just the right amount of raw and teenage. A year after the Carnabeats hit paydirt with a reading of the Zombies’ ‘I Love You’, re-titled ‘Suki Sa Suki Sa Suki Sa’, Nana Kinomi included the same song on her album “Let’s Go Nana!” with GS band Leo Beats. You can hear half-American, half-Japanese model Miki Obata struggle to hit the high notes on ‘Hatsu Koi No Letter’, but it’s considered a Japanese girl-pop staple. Ryoko Moriyama’s ‘Ame Agari No Samba’ attests to the high quality of Japanese bossa nova – as laidback and atmospheric as the Brazilian originals it emulated. Former figure skater Ayumi Ishida’s ‘Taiyou Wa Naite Iru’ is total melodrama, a whirlwind of harpsichord and strings. The star of over a hundred films, Sayuri Yoshinaga appealed to the Japanese mainstream with her modest image and ability to leave audiences in floods of tears. Her ‘Koi No Yorokobi’ is the perfect Japanese girl-pop primer – dark yet upbeat, with all-girl chorus the Schoolmates chirping in the background.”

“Nippon Girls” is highly recommended to girl group fanciers, GS groovers and anyone else with a keen ear for eclectic sounds. The LP version sports a zingy gatefold cover by designer Niall McCormack, who also created the 23-inch square poster found tucked inside.

By Mick Patrick (Ace Records)
Ace Records 2013 LP 25.00 €
VA: - Rautalankahitit - 30 Suosikkia 2CD
Warner Music 2014 CD 13.00 €
VA: - Rhythm 'n' Bluesin By The Bayou
“Rhythm’n’Bluesin’ By The Bayou”, the latest in our “By The Bayou” series, features 28 rompin’, stompin’ tracks from the blues men and women of South Louisiana. The tracks have been pulled from the vaults of leading record men J.D. Miller, Eddie Shuler and Floyd Soileau plus Rockin’ Sidney’s first disc – cut by Jake Graffagnino for his Carl label.

The sound of South Louisiana’s R&B stemmed from the Cosimo studios in New Orleans and those pioneers of the genre: Fats Domino, Smiley Lewis, Lloyd Price etc. As it spread west across the state, it gathered in the influences of zydeco, rural blues and the embryonic swamp pop, producing that distinctive amalgam which is enjoying popularity with collectors of today.

To help quench that thirst we have delved into the vaults of Miller and Shuler to locate the best previously unknown tracks and alternate takes. Also, with modern studio techniques, our engineers have breathed fresh life into some of the material that was unearthed by Flyright almost 30 years ago.

Back in the 50s and into the early 60s, this was the music of working class black people; it was what they drank to, danced to and occasionally brawled to in the bars and clubs of this corner of the USA. It also got played on the area’s black radio stations and was gobbled up by white teenagers who would adapt it into their rockabilly and swamp pop songs.

As compiler of this CD, I was as excited listening to these master tapes as I would have been had I been one of those teenagers. The music is as fresh and vibrant now as it was in those far off days. With new tracks from the artists such as Blue Charlie and Mad Dog Sheffield, the first recordings of Rockin’ Sidney, a host of other little known artists (including three numbers from two mystery women) and obscure Zydeco rockers Thaddeus Declouet and C.J. Thierry, this is an exhilarating voyage of discovery.

When you listen to the music you’ll be transported back to its heyday – imagine lying on your bed grooving to those sounds on the radio in the sultry Louisiana night, with the bullfrogs croaking in the bayou. These are the sounds of an era that is almost forgotten but is kept alive by enthusiasts for enthusiasts.

By Ian Saddler (Ace Records)
Ace Records 2013 CD 18.00 €
VA: - Rhythm 'n' Bluesin By The Bayou - Rompin' & Stompin'
Letting the good times roll again, with this second visit to the dynamic South Louisiana R&B scene there is no waver in the quality of music.

We’ve added the work of another Louisiana record man, Sam Montel from Baton Rouge, to the vast stockpile of material in the vaults of J.D. Miller, Eddie Shuler, Floyd Soileau and Jake Graffagnino.

Sam (originally Montalbano) got into the music business when his childhood friend Jimmy Clanton hit the charts. Sam became his road manager and the whole scene got into his blood. He decided to start his own record label when only 18 years old. His first release, Lester Robertson’s ‘My Girl Across Town’, is included here, as is a previously unissued outing from Robertson.

The Montel label had considerable success with artists including John Fred, Dale & Grace and the Boogie Kings, all attracting strong sales. We will be pulling out more R&B, swamp pop and rockin’ goodies from these vaults for future releases in the “By The Bayou” series.

The other label owners – J.D. Miller from Crowley, Eddie Shuler from Lake Charles, Floyd Soileau from Ville Platte and Jake Graffagnino from Opelousas– have all had recordings featured on our earlier CDs. Like Sam, they could all spot talent and got the best out of their artists. It means Ace has the opportunity to bring you dynamic tracks from an area of the USA so very rich in talent. In addition to the talents of the lead vocalists, the backing musicians on many of the tracks are also very accomplished.

Guitar Gable is heard on many titles, as is Katie Webster on piano, sax giant Lionel Torrence, drummers Jockey Etienne and Warren Storm and Lazy Lester, who would play whatever instrument was asked of him; all are featured on many of the Crowley recordings.

Classie Ballou’s band was used often at Goldband, while the Upsetters, Little Richard’s former outfit, can be heard on Lester Robertson’s tracks.

The excitement of discovering new material such as the track by Tabby Thomas, the previously unknown and romping version of ‘Flat Foot Sam’ by TV Slim and the downright nasty ‘Oh Mama (Cajun Blues)’ by Classie Ballou is undiminished. Bracketing them with other fabulous unknown recordings, unissued alternates and long deleted masterpieces is a pleasure and a privilege.

If you have rhythm in your bones and a love of the raw and rockin’ then “Rhythm’n’Bluesin’ By The Bayou – Rompin’ & Stompin’” is going transport your spirit to a Louisiana juke joint.

By Ian Saddler (Ace Records)
Ace Records 2014 CD 18.00 €
VA: - Rhythm Shack Vol. 2
Sheik Records 2013 LP 15.00 €
VA: - Rimshots & Reverb 2CD
Delta Leisure Group 2013 CD 9.00 €
VA: - Rock Til You Drop Vol. 3
Classics Records 2014 CD 17.00 €
VA: - Running Scared - The Monument Records Story 2CD
One Day Music 2014 CD 7.00 €
VA: - Saboo! Va Va Voom Vol. 3
Floridita Records 2013 LP 18.00 €
VA: - Sadaba - Spoonful Exotic Blues & Rhythm Vol. 6
Spoonful Records 2013 10" LP 18.00 €
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GOOFIN' RECORDS 30th Anniversary Party