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Thursday, December 31, 2009

The Temptations -- Zoom

This is the last post in 2009. Its title sums up everything I have to say about the past year: Zooooooom! Over it was! Moreover, the song is from the TEmptations album 1990, a year I remember very well. We partied into that new year with our good friends back home in Germany, and we had a fantastic time ...

So, here is my Happy New Year to everyone! I hope we all are going to be happy, healthy and wealthy in 2010!



Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Getting Ready For The Party!






Dancing Into 2010


Who's making Love -- Johnnie Taylor
Vietnam -- Desmond Dekker
Funk It Up -- Miami
Get On Up -- Tyrone Davis
Boogie On Reggae Woman -- Stevie Wonder
The Hustle --  Van McCoy
Live It Up -- Isley Brothers
Pick Up The Pieces -- Average White Band
You're The Song I Always Wanted To Sing -- Timmy Thomas
You Can Get It If You Really Want -- Jimmy Cliff
Don't Take Away The Music -- Tavares
Rock Steady -- Aretha Franklin
Best O My Love -- Emotions

***
Any Suggestions?


Monday, December 28, 2009

Robert Winters and Fall -- Magic Man

This cut is from an 80's CD, but the title track is literally drenched in 70's feeling -- so much so, that I had no problem including it into my sweet and slow collection. Usually, I consider the 80's the era of the decline in "real" music; looks like there are some exceptional exceptions from this observation, however.

(Get the CD here!)


Sunday, December 27, 2009

J. J. and G -- That's What I Get For Loving You

I don't have the slightest clue on who this group might be ... If anyone knows, please let me know, though. I came across this song today via the shuffle option at my i-tunes library, and it caught my attention right away: nice melody, pretty good singing -- and kind of just right for a lazy Sunday afternoon.




Saturday, December 26, 2009

Executive Suite -- Your Love Is Paradise




Back to normal. Finally! Here's a big sigh from one housewife freed from kitchen duty ...
Christmas is a romantic thing, I know. But I definitely prefer the kind  of romance in my life that involves more yearning and less eating.
Executive Suite's Your Love Is Paradise is right after my taste: close your eyes, listen, and ahhhhhhhh! Adieu Christmas!





Friday, December 25, 2009

R.I.P James Brown (May 3, 1933 – December 25, 2006)

What would Raggedy's old blog be without her friends who are the source of never-ending inspiration?
Today, I'd like to thank ((Soletaker)) for his reminding me that it has been three years ago today since the great J.B.   has left us.

R.I.P


We still love you!







I also want to say thanks to ((emmenie)) for her input on all matters Blues. And a big thank you goes out to ((Sawyer)) for his keeping me in touch with the (music)world as it is today. Big, big thanks also to ((Gildog)) from All Soul And Funk and all the other wonderful blogs that keep the music -- including the memories attached to it -- coming!

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

My Christmas Gift Has Arrived!


You all may remember my post about Jimmy Jackson's album Rolling Dice. I've heard his voice -- and ever since, I loved it. But when I was trying to find some biographical material about Jimmy, it became painfully clear that Jimmy Jackson is one of the many great artists who seemed to have disappeared without a trace from the history of Soul music. 
I kept searching nevertheless ... and this is my Christmas gift -- I got lucky.
I saw a YouTube post by his grandson -- and your ever so daring Raggedy sent him a message. The young men was kind enough to answer me and even put me in contact with his father, Jimmy's son. I couldn't believe it!
Jimmy's son agreed to my posting the short biography he's sent me. And I will post it today -- the day before Christmas eve.
Sadly enough, Jimmy Jackson is no longer with us. May his soul rest in peace. His voice sure brought much joy into my life.

Many thanks to his son and grandson for their generosity!



Here is what his son told me:


"My son informed me that you were looking for information on Jimmy Jackson for your blog. Here is a quick Bio on him. Hopefully it will help you. He would have loved to know that his music was still being enjoyed and discussed.
Jimmy Jackson was born in August 1948 in the lower east side of New York. He attended school in New York city before attending St Paul's University in Virgina where he was a star football player. Once he returned to New York, he had a brief professional football career before an injury ended his football playing days.
After football, he began to focus on a career in law enforcement and singing R&B. After a short time he was signed with Motown Records where he recorded several songs that went un-noticed. He became somewhat concerned that he would never get the personal attention that he needed because of the focus on other Motown recording artists.
It was at that time that he decided to sign with Budda Records. While at Budda records he enjoyed some success including having a single Rolling Dice be nominated for a Grammy. He made numerous appearances at the Apollo and became the opening artist for Melba Moore. He also appeared on Soap Factory Disco which was a nationally syndicated show similar to Soul Train and American Band Stand.
During this time he continued his career in Law Enforcement and was known as the Singing Cop (locally). He continued to perform locally for years, but returned to his love of football as a Head Coach for a minor professional team. Unfortunately, he became chronically ill and passed away four years ago shortly before seeing his youngest child get married.
Hopefully this will help. Please send me a link to your blog so that I can see the work that you are doing to keep artists like Jimmy alive by sharing their talents. I don't know if you have heard his Rolling Dice. Here is a link; someone put it on YouTube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2y6i4IZq-J4
Keep up the great work."

This is The title track from Rollin' Dice which was nominated for a Grammy

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Love Unlimited Orchestra -- It May Be Winter Outside

Barry White's music doesn't need any words to explain what it is about: Keeping that Spring feeling in your hearts. Mission accomplished, Barry!




Monday, December 21, 2009

The Temptations -- Memories

This time of the year is predestined for reminiscing, remembering and revisiting those moments of days past that left lasting memories in our lives -- just as The Temptations describe in one of their best recordings: Memories. Dennis Edwards' powerful voice, in a way, reflects the power such memories possess. They come rolling into your thoughts like the crescent waves of the ocean and carry you away ...
Without doubt, Memories is a masterpiece of contemporary music, and The Temptations sure did justice to the poetic nature of the song. That Dennis came to be the lead singer on Memories definitely added the finishing touch to this classic beauty ...

Memories, The Temptations (A Song For You, 1975)



Memories 
composed/produced by:  Baldwin, Donald/David Batteau/Jeffrey Bowen/Don Freeman/Kathy Wakefield


Wish that I could wind
Like a spiral stair through time
To your body next to mine
Warm and satisfied
Wish that I could catch
A night train to the past
Climb aboard and hear you ask
Darling come inside

Memories, memories
Sweet memories
Of days gone by, that made me cry
Memories, memories
Sweet memories
That made me sad, that take me back to you
Memories, memories
Ah, ah, ah, ah, ah, ah, ah (aw baby)
Ba, ba, ba, ba, ba, ba, ba, ba, by-ah
Ba, ba, ba, ba, ba, ba, ba, ba, by-ah

Watching falling stars
On the grass by my old car
Making love there in the dark
Thinking we're alone
Old man shined his light
Trying not to act suprised
He left hard and all uptight
Told us to get on home

Ooh, ooh, memories, memories
Sweet memories
Of love we shared
Of love we shared
Memories, memories
Sweet memories
Of love we shared
We will never share them again
Memories, memories
Ah, ah, ah, ah, ah, ah, ah
Ba, ba, ba, ba, ba, ba, ba, ba, by-ah
Ba, ba, ba, ba, ba, ba, ba, ba, by-ah

[Instrumental]

Wish that I could wind
Like a spiral stair through time
To your body next to mine
Warm and satisfied
Wish that I could catch
A night train to the past
Climb aboard and hear you ask
Darling come inside

Ooh, ooh, memories, memories
Sweet memories
Of days gone by, that made me cry
Memories, memories
Sweet memories
That made me sad, that take me back to you
Memories, memories
Ah, ah, ah, ah, ah, ah, ah
Ba, ba, ba, ba, ba, ba, ba, ba, by-ah
Ba, ba, ba, ba, ba, ba, ba, ba, by-ah



Sunday, December 20, 2009

The Christmas Spirit: Love! Peace! Faith!

Christmas is all about love and peace and faith ... so let's get together and say it:







Saturday, December 19, 2009

Temptations -- Memories vs. The Manhattans -- The Way We Were (Memories)



I came across the wonderful version of this song by the great Manhattans a few days ago -- never even knew they'd covered it. Since the Temptations version has always been one of my favorites by them, I (of course) had to listen to them back to back. Result: I can't decide which one I like best.
P.S.: The Manhattans actually combined the first strophe of the Tempts "Memories" with "The Way We Were", using it at the beginning and the end of their version. So, it's not a cover of the song; more like a partial cover. But I like the way the Manhattans sing this part better than the Tempts' version. (Thanks Darcy)

"Wish that I could wind

Like a spiral stair through time
To your body next to mine
Warm and satisfied
Wish that I could catch
A night train to the past
Climb aboard and hear you ask
Darling come inside ..."


The Temptations with Dennis as lead

The Manhattans


Friday, December 18, 2009

Chuck Jackson -- Human, I Can't Break Away, Slowly But Surely



Dammit! That's what I said about 10 seconds into this song. I've always loved Chuck Jackson's voice. But when I heard this track, my heart was beating a little faster than it normally does: Chuck really puts quite some emotions into his delivery of Human. 
Like so many artists, Chuck Jackson is associated with a couple of well-known (and well worn) songs, such as Any Day Now and Tell Her I'm Not Home, while he had much more good material beside these popular titles.
I particularly like his 1974 album Through All Times from which both tracks are taken. His voice seems to have mellowed when he recorded the album, but he still sounds -- and sings -- better than many a top-selling artist of this era.

Human (Any Day Now, 1962)

I Can't Break Away 

Slowly But Surely

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Muddy Waters -- Smokestack Lightning (1954)

Blues on Thursday! 





Everyone knows that my favorite bluesman is -- and will always be -- the Wolf. But when I came across this recording of his Smokestack Lightning by Muddy, I was almost tempted to step out on him. (I didn't, though. The Wolf is still my main man.)
For the whole album, please head over to Don't Ask Me .. I Don't Know. It is incredible!

For ((emmenie))! Muddy live ...


Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Ollie And The Nightingales -- I Got A Feeling, You're Leaving Me



Unfortunately, I am quite busy (again) and there's not much time left for in-depth posts. I feel only half as bad as I ought to, though, because music is not so much about writing about it  than it is about listening to it. I do want to share these two songs by Ollie And The Nightingales with you, so you will hear some tight harmonies that are one of a kind. Ollie's great too, but in my opinion the Nightingales are the main attraction.

You're Leaving Me

I've Got The Feeling

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Otis Clay -- Is It Over, Home Is Where The Heart Is, Pouring Water On A Drowning Man



Otis Clay is my favorite Hi-Records artist. And I say "is" -- not "is one of." He's got everything in his singing that meets my expectations of excellence. One can easily trace his Gospel roots (to which he has returned a while ago) and enjoy all the secular feelings that come with Deep Soul of the finest kind.
His singing is steeped in gritty, emotional urgency, and there is no-one who could do it better.

Pouring Water On A Drowning Man

Home Is Where The Heart Is

Is It Over

Read a detailed biography here!

Monday, December 14, 2009

Larry Davis -- The Years Go Passing By




A little Blues on a Monday -- especially when it comes with a guitar like this -- cannot be wrong.
When I first heard this song, I wasn't quite sure whether to label it Deep Soul or Blues ... It doesn't really matter, I know. So I began digging around (as usual) and found out that Larry Davis is yet another bluesman I hadn't heard of up to now. (I also found another great blues blog to add to my blogroll.) I just can't believe how much music is out there, waiting for me to find it.

So, I am posting the only song I know by Larry Davis today, hoping that the rest of his music is as appealing as this song. I will definitely check his music out.



A short bio from allmusic.com
"Anyone who associates "Texas Flood" only with Stevie Ray Vaughan has never auditioned Larry Davis' version. Davis debuted on vinyl in 1958 with the song, his superlative Duke Records original remaining definitive to this day despite Vaughan's impassioned revival many years down the road.
 Davis grew up in Little Rock, AR, giving up the drums to play bass. Forging an intermittent partnership with guitarist Fenton Robinson during the mid-'50s, the pair signed with Don Robey's Duke label on the recommendation of Bobby Bland. Three Davis 45s resulted, including "Texas Flood" and "Angels in Houston," before Robey cut Davis loose. From there, Davis was forced to make the most of limited opportunities in the studio. He lived in St. Louis for a spell and took up the guitar under Albert King's tutelage while playing bass in King's band.


A handful of singles for Virgo and Kent and a serious 1972 motorcycle accident that temporarily paralyzed Davis' left side preceded an impressive 1982 album for Rooster Blues, Funny Stuff, produced by Gateway City mainstay Oliver Sain. But follow-up options remained hard to come by: few blues fans could find a copy of the guitarist's 1987 Pulsar LP I Ain't Beggin' Nobody.
Finally, in 1992, Ron Levy's Bulleye Blues logo issued a first-class Davis set, Sooner or Later, that skillfully showcased his rich, booming vocals and concise, Albert King-influenced guitar. Unfortunately, it came later rather than sooner: Davis died of cancer in the spring of 1994."  (allmusic.com)


Sunday, December 13, 2009

Tomorrow's Promise -- You're Sweet, You're Fine, You're Everything

For all those in love
!
You'll find the song on this compilation. 


Saturday, December 12, 2009

The Webs -- It's So Hard To Break A Habit

The other day, someone in the network was asking for this song, calling it "magnificent." How true that is. I couldn't remember the song -- and now that I re-discovered this gem, I had to share it with you all. The track is available on Dave Godin's Deep Soul Treasures: Taken from Our Vaults, Vol 4





With the holidays just days away, this collection would definitely make for a great gift to any Deep Soul lover.

The Webs, It's So Hard To Break A Habit

Friday, December 11, 2009

The Soft! The Creamy! The Velvety! Part 5: Brenton Wood


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What can I say? Brenton Wood's voice has that velvety feel to it that I love so much. It also comes with a touch of creaminess. Until not too long ago, virtually the only song I knew by him was Give Me Some Kind Of Sign. That's Brenton's  most played title. In the meantime I have found quite a few beautiful songs by him showcasing his soft, creamy voice.

Best Thing That I've Ever Had  boasts a playful guitar in addition to Brenton's smooth vocals. Better Believe It is Philly Sound through and through, and the perfect mixture of velvet and cream makes Lovin' You such a pleasure to listen to. 



Thursday, December 10, 2009

Little Johnny Taylor -- My Special Rose, You're Not The Only One

Blues On Thursday!



You're Not The Only One

My Special Rose



Little Johnny Taylor is best known for his slow blues smashes "Part Time Love" (Galaxy Records, 1963) and "Everybody Knows About My Good Thing" (Ronn Records, 1971). 
He is not the Johnnie Taylor, however. (The latter contributed to their being mixed up when he covered "Part Time Love" for Stax.)
In 1950, Little Johnny Taylor came to Los Angeles where he sang with the Mighty Clouds of Joy before going secular. His first charting recording was "You'll Need Another Favor," a tune strongly reminiscent of the great Bobby Blue Bland sound.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Howard Tate -- Pride, Wrong Number


Wednesday seems to be the perfect day for a bit of Deep Soul. Howard Tate is one of the truly underrated singers. Why, with a voice like his and some pretty good material, he didn't make it to the top, is yet another mystery waiting to be demystified, so to speak.
Here's a chunk of his biography from http://www.starpulse.com/Music/Tate,_Howard/Biography/#
"Highly regarded by soul music cultists and virtually unknown by anybody else, Howard Tate had some minor success with the Verve label in the late '60s. The singer brought a lot of blues and gospel to his phrasing, but what made him palatable to the modern R&B audience (and, to a lesser degree, pop fans) was the Northeast soul production of Jerry Ragovoy, who also wrote much of Tate's material. Howard made the R&B Top 20 three times in the late '60s (with "Ain't Nobody Home," "Stop," and "Look at Granny Run Run"). However, he's most famous to rock audiences as the original performer of "Get It While You Can," which became one of Janis Joplin's signature tunes."
Pride

Wrong Number

She's A Burglar



Please check out Howard Tate's CD releases!

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

The Delfonics -- Can You Remember

Alright -- yesterday's post was slanted to the rough 'n tough side. So, today I'll offer some soft 'n sweet music. The Delfonics are exceptional in that they keep even the almost kitschy songs from actually sounding kitschy. Their Can You Remember is just about the right track to listen to on a grey and rainy San Antonio day ...


Monday, December 7, 2009

Millie Jackson -- All The Way Lover, If Loving You Is Wrong (I Don't Want To Be Right) 1&2



I am aware that I am walking on thin ice, so to speak, with my pick of the day. Millie has always enjoyed the reputation of being the "raunchy" version of Gladys Knight. So, please, if you're objecting to anything less than appropriate -- then don't listen to this song.
Raunchy or not -- All The Way Lover shows what a great vocalist and actress (in a way) Millie is. She not only sings the song, but also seems to act it ... I just love Millie.
For those who shouldn't know her knock-out version of Luther Ingram's If Loving You Is Wrong, I think it's high time to get treated to a superb rendition of it. In the blink of an eye, she makes the song her own.   

Sing Millie! Sing!


All The Way Lover 

If Loving You Is Wrong (parts 1 and 2)


Saturday, December 5, 2009

The Soft! The Creamy! The Velvety! Part 4: Louis Price

Photobucket


Now, this voice is one of the most creamy voices ever. He was once singing with my favorites The Temptations -- but in my opinion, he was not really the voice one would expect to hear in a Temptations song. Although I dare say that no other version of A Song For You ever comes close to the one by Louis.
I wonder, whether I'll ever be able to listen only once to this rendition of the song. I usually re-play it at least three times in a row.

Ladies and gentlemen! Here's the best rendition of a beautiful, beautiful song!
Mr. Louis Price leading The Temptations



From The Temptations' album Bare Back, That's When You Need Love

Friday, December 4, 2009

Cornelius Brothers & Sister Rose -- Too Late To Turn Back Now, Treat Her Like A Lady





Cornelius Brothers and Sister Rose was soul singing family from Florida. Their best known hit may be Too Late To Turn Back (1972). Their first hit with the pop charts, however, came in 1971 with Treat Her Like A Lady. Both songs were written by Eddie Cornelius and received a gold disc award. 
Treat Her Like A Lady

Too Late To Turn Back Now


Thursday, December 3, 2009

Howlin' Wolf, Bobby Blue Bland, Little Walter, Muddy Waters

Photobucket
It's Thursday again. Is it possible that weeks are getting shorter? It feels like it ..


Since I am a little busy again (don't ask me why) I will post a bag o' favorites without many words.


Howlin' Wolf  -- Tail Dragger

Bobby Blue Bland --  Sweet Loving

Little Walter -- Sad Hours

Muddy Waters -- I Believe I'll Go Back Home

Wednesday, December 2, 2009