Soul Fantasy

Monday, December 23, 2013

Brook Benton - Christmas Makes The Town

There are no words to describe how I feel when I hear Brook Benton. Brook Benton for me is the King of soul music with the greatest voice. For this reason I decided to choose a song which fits the days of Christmas.

From this excellent Christmas CD , which has been released by Sleigh Bells Records, I chose the song "Christmas Makes The Town".

 Note: The above posted track is not played in full.

Saturday, December 21, 2013

Maxine Nightingale - Lead me on

Maxine Nightingale is a british R&B and soul singer. She was born in London on November 2,1952. I remember the moment when my friend Nicolas Drosos played to me the song "Lead me on" at his house. It has been many many years since my friend Nicolas brought to my attention this song. So I had the opportunity to find it in Athens some days ago. For this reason I decided to present it on my blog.

"Lead me on" is a popular song written by Ali Willis (Lyrics) and David Lasley (music). It was recorded in 1978 and was included on the third album of Maxine Nightingale entitled "Love Lines" which was issued in the UK and Europe.

The label United Artists delayed to release it as a single and for this reason it did not enter in the UK chart. However another label named Windsong Records released it as a single in US in 1979. The album that was released in the US was also named "Lead me on".

The same year "Lead me on" reached #37 on Billboard R&B chart. It also peaked #1 on Billboard Easy Listening Chart.

Note: The above posted single is not played in full

Sunday, December 15, 2013

Rock and Rye - Let love stay

Rock and Rye is an obscure group. Probably the members of the group were Robbie Rye, Richard Michael Hill,  Steve and Mike Blum.
The group had influences from rock, pop and funk music. In the early 80s, they released a single entitled "Let Love Stay / I Hear Your Name". Both songs were recorded at Autumn Music Place, in Monterey California. The musicians were Robbie Rye on drums and vocals, Steve Blum on keyboards and Mike Blum on guitar.
I have chosen the song "Let Love Stay". It was written by Mike Blum, Steve Blum, Michael Hill and Robbie Rye.

Note: The above posted single is not played in full.

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Jim Mancel - Easy life 1981

Jim Mancel is a singer from Canada. He appeared in 1970 when he released a single entitled "I could give you the world". It was released on Polydor Records. Later he joined the rock group named Chester. Chester was formed in late 1972 by Glen Morrow. Then he followed a solo career and released a single entitled "Let the phone ring / Jenny" on Celebration Records in 1975. He collaborated with the guitarist, keyboartist Glen Morrow from the group Chester. Jim Mancell and Glen Morrow wrote both songs.

Then he released another single entitled "Just be yourself" which was written again by Jim and Glen. It was released on Change Records in 1977.
Three years later he sang for the group called The Northern Light Orchestra. He performed the song "We had a dream (The dream song)" and he was also co-songwriter, co-producer and co-arranger.
At the same time he released another single entitled "Heart of a lion". It was released on Quality Records. It was written by Jim Mancel, John Marmora and Barry Gee. Produced and arranged by Jim Mancel and John Marmora.

Next year, he collaborated with the Longo Brothers. He released a single entitled "Easy Life" on People City Music. This song was written by Frank and Larry Longo.

Produced and arranged by Jim Mancel and John Marmora.

I don't have further information concerning Jim Mancel's career after 1981.
I must mention that I have presented four times The Longo Brothers. First it was the single "Looking for love" and the second time the instrumentals "Manhattan / Nightwalk". Then I presented the single "Nightlife / Coast to coast" and the album of Patti Janetta 1981.

Note: The above posted singles are not played in full

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Blue Mitchell - Summer Soft 1978 Lp

What can I say for him ? Blue Mitchell was a great trumpet player. He was one of the best melodic players. He was unlucky, because he died in an early age. He was born in Miami on March 1930 and he died in Los Angeles on May 21, 1979 from cancer. I could say that today he would have been  the biggest trumpet player in the world if he had the opportunity to show more of his talent. He released 27 albums and he collaborated with other artists for over 60 albums. However, I will focus on the album which was in fact the last one in his career. The album entitled "Summer Soft" was released in 1978 on ABC Impulse Records.  It must have been 1997 or 1998 when I acquired this album. I bought it in Athens and it kept me company for many nights.

It was recorded at ABC Recording Studios, Los Angeles in 1977, CA. Many great artists accompanied Blue Mitchell on the album. Some of them were Harold Land, Herman Riley and Eddie Harris on sax, Richard Tee, Cedar Walton and Bobby Lyle on piano, Lee Ritenour on guitar, James Gadson on drums and Paulinho Da Costa on percussion. Background vocals by Julia Waters, Maxine Waters, Oren Waters and Luther Waters. Produced by Esmond Edwards.

Harold Land on sax

I have chosen two tracks entitled "Summer Soft" and "30 Degrees to the wind".
 "Summer Soft" original recording by Stevie Wonder. It was written by Stevie Wonder and was included on the album "Songs in the key of life". Harold Land plays saxophone on both songs. I must mention at that time Blue Mitchell and Harold Land were playing together.
"30 Degrees to the wind" was written by Cedar Walton and Susan Brickell. Cedar Walton recorded this song for himself in 1981 on the album Cedar Walton Solo.

"Summer Soft" Sample

"30 Degrees to the wind" Sample

Note: The above posted tracks are not played in full

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Gloria Bagwell - Hello baby

Ron Henderson Jr on stage

First of all, I want to thank Ron Henderson Jr. singer, guitarist, songwriter and producer for all his info. 

Ron Henderson Jr and the late Duke Hall collaborated with Gloria Bagwell for a sort time. Although Gloria Bagwell had a great voice, she disappeared from the music scene. In the early 80s, Gloria released a single entitled "Hello baby / Can't be your lady" on Bill Jones Records. Both songs were produced by Duke Hall and Ron Henderson Jr.
The flip side "Can't be your lady" was written by Ron Henderson Jr. However the vinyl mentions the names of Ron Jr. and Duke Hall. Duke Hall used to put his name on the label as a songwriter.

This song is a funky sound like all the typical funky songs of the early 80s.

The other song of the vinyl "Hello baby" is a beautiful ballad. It is worthy to note that some people learnt from Dottie Pearson the song "Hello baby". I had the opportunity to mention Dottie Pearson when I presented my article about Ron Henderson Sr. on my blog. In 2006 the label Grapevine released a CD named "House made of love" by Dottie Pearson. In this CD, it was included the nice song "Hello baby" .

Dottie Pearson is more known today as the gospel star Dottie Peoples. I must mention that this version is not the first, because the first recording and release was by Gloria Bagwell.

"Hello Baby" was written by the late Duke Hall.

Except for the two versions of the "Hello Baby", there are two more by Cristi Zastrow and Ron Henderson Sr. Cristi was the girlfriend of Duke Hall. She was also singer of the group called Living Color in the late 70s. In 1987 Christi Zastrow  released a single as a solo singer entitled "Hello baby" on the label of Ron Henderson Sr.named Choice Cut Records. In fact this single is the last one of the label.
Ron Henderson Sr. recently recorded this song. You can hear it here.

Note: The above posted tracks are not played in full

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Steve Jason & Ruby "J" - It's about time 45"


Steve Jason was a singer and songwriter from Philadelphia. In the late 60's Steve along with the keyboardist, songwriter Ted "Butch" Barbella, the guitarist Dennis Jason, the bassist Norm Conrad and the drummer Jerry Gilbert formed the pop/rock group named Goliath. They released an album in 1969 on ABC Records. It was recorded at Sigma Sound Studios, Philadelphia. Steve Jason under the name of Steve D'Mingo co-wrote some songs together with Butch Barbella.
Later in the mid 70s, Steve with Jerry Brown and Butch Barbella performed together in a 9 piece original show band called Mazrine Stone, playing showrooms throughout the country.
Steve and Butch Barbella continued to collaborate together. So in the early 80s, Steve Jason along with the female singer called Ruby "J" released an album on Atlantic City Records. Her real name is Betsy Jean. She has performed for about 30 years in various bands. She has collaborated with Ernie White and T.J.Tindell.

Except for the album, they released a single entitled "It's about time / Yesterday's Children" on the same label. The song "Yesterday's Children" was first written for the self-titled album Goliath in 1969. I have chosen the song "It's about time" which was written by Ted Butch Barbella. Produced by Steve Jason and A.Capobianco.

Sadly, I must mention that Steve Jason has passed away. Butch Barbella has formed a band called Streets Of The Bronx Band.

Note: The above posted single is not played in full.

Sunday, October 13, 2013

Tony Joe White - We'll live on love 1978

Tony Joe White is a guitarist, singer and songwriter of folk, rock and pop music. He has been for many decades in the music scene. He became known in the 60s with two songs entitled "Polk Salad Annie" and "Rainy Night in Georgia". Both songs were written by him. However "Rainy Night in Georgia" became  mostly known by Brook Benton in the late 60s. 

In 1976 he released an album named "Eyes" on 20th Century Records. In my opinion it is one of his best albums. After this album he left from 20th Century Records and went to Arista Records. At that time he released two singles entitled "We'll live on love" in 1978 and "It must be love" in 1979 on Arista Records. Both songs were first recorded in 1976. The first song was included on the album "Eyes" in 1976 and the second was released as a flip side single of "Susie Q".
Today I have the opportunity to present "We'll live on love" which was released on Arista Records in 1978.

Produced by Pete Carr. Horns arranged by Harrison Calloway from Muscle Shoals Horns. My copy includes (Mono-Stereo) versions of "We'll live on love". 

I want to mention that there is another single which was released in the same year and includes the song "You and me baby" as a flip side  of  "We'll live on love". Finally I must note the songs "Susie Q" and "It must be love" were included on the album "Eyes" in 1976 which was only released in Holland and Germany.

Note: The above posted single is not played in full.

Saturday, September 28, 2013

Gregg Jackson - One for the road 1982 Lp


Hello my friends. I remember several years ago when my friend Nicolas Drosos gave me a CD which included a radio show from England. The radio internet show was called I heard it immediately and later I heard the song "One for the road". I was hearing it for one hour continuously. I called my friend George Polychroniou, who is a huge collector in Greece. George said to me : "You are crazy". As I remember, I tried to find the title of this song but nothing. I searched the song as "One for the road or One from the road" in the web, but I didn't find anything.
This album was an unknown album in the world. Several days later, I came in contact with my friend and collector John Ridley. I asked him if he had the album. The fact that I got a positive answer was very exciting because I finally had the opportunity to hear this masterpiece.
Later in 2006, I saw the album for the first time on ebay. It was sold for over of $400. Despite trying to buy this album, my effort was not successful, because I could not spend so much money.
It has been many years since I saw the album. A year ago I got the opportunity to buy it without spending a lot of  money. I was very lucky.

Gregg Jackson began his music career at a very young age of 6 performing in Gospel choirs, dance troupes and shows. He studied under the direction of the famous Boston Pops artist Anna Maria Santorelli. In the early 80s he formed his own band called Gregg Jackson & Strike Force Band. He released an album on KYP Productions Inc. It was recorded at Normandy Sound Inc, Warren, Rhode Island.
The members of Strike Force Band were Steve Brown on drums, Mergy Ford on bass, David Prout on guitar and Al Dinotti on keyboards. I want to thank Gregg Jackson for his info.
Also the artists Kevin Falvey on keyboards and trumpet, Deric Dyer on saxophone, Ronnie Rose on percussion appeared on the album. Background vocals by Kevin Falvey, Ronnie Rose and Suzy Lee. 

I chose three (3) trcaks. Of course the self-titled song "One for the road" in which Deric Dyer with his saxophone accompanies Gregg Jackson on vocals.

Deric Dyer

The second song is entitled "Your Love". Excellent mid-tempo. I love it.

Finally I have chosen the song "Dizzy Dancin" which I have edited and is a little different from the version of the album.

Today he has formed his own band called Gregg Jackson & The Mojo Band. The group has been together for about 15 years. At this time the members of the group are Gregg Jackson on vocals, Steve Bolanda on guitar, Harry Burns on bass and Brian Cunningham on drums.
I must note that Kevin Falvey founded the American Standard Band and played in it for more than 10 years. He also managed rock bands. Falvey toured internationally and recorded with several musical artists, including Joe Cocker. Sadly he died on December 29, 1999.

Note: The above posted tracks are not played in full

Sunday, September 15, 2013

Betty Richardson - Pulse Beat 1984 LP

This album was one of my top secrets. I had the opportunity to find it in 2009. In my opinion, it is one of the best modern soul albums. I had first seen the single "It's over / Special love" on Firmus Records on ebay. I think, if I remember right, it was in 2007. Since then I tried to collect anything concerning Betty Richardson. 
Betty Richardson started singing professionally at the age of 15 with her sister Jackie. She went on a solo career and she also joined the Silhouettes with the arranger, composer and pianist Doug Riley. They appeared at the Toronto nightclub, the Blue Note. She was also original cast member of the musical Hair in Toronto and Australian Hair company.
When the musical "Hair" closed, Betty worked with Wayne St.John and they recorded some songs in the mid 70s in Toronto. Wayne St.John had previously collaborated with Betty on "Hair".
She did many TV music/comedy series with Martin Short, Andy Williams, George Kirby, Ray Stevens. She was also on background vocals on many TV/Radio commercials. She got a call to do some backgrounds for John Finley of John Lee & the Checkmates at the Pears Avenue Blue Note Club for six weeks. She met Kingsley Ettienne (he was the keyboard player for John Finley) and formed a group called ‘Formula Five’ which included Kingsley, B.Richardson, Reggie Evans, Rodney Appleby and Liberty Silver. Liberty left and they eventually dissolved.
Later she met the late Milan Kymlicka who was a well know CBC composer. He was canadian arranger, composer and conductor of Czechoslovakian birth. He produced her album “Pulse Beat”. The album was released on Firmus Records in 1984. Betty Richardson collaborated with Doug Riley for one more time. The following musicians appeared on the album: Doug Riley, Lou Pomanti and Ray Parker on keyboards, Brian Russell and R.Mann on guitars, Tom Szcezniak on bass, Brian Leonard and K.McKenzie on drums, Russell Hartenberger on percussion and Vern Dorge on saxophone. Background vocals by Colina Phillips, L.Silver, Jackie Richardson, Betty Richardson and S.Williams.

The album except for "Special Love" includes some great songs such as "Heading in the right direction" and "Nighty night". Both songs are covers. 

As I told you at the beginning, I started to collect records by Betty Richardson. So I managed to buy two records 45" which was included on the album. The first single "It's over / Special love" on Firmus Records. The same single was released on A&M Records in 1983 and was pressed in Canada, which I also have it. Radio stations played the song ‘Special Love’ that was on their playlist on a daily basis for over a year.

The second single that I have bought is called "I never knew his name / It always takes two" and was released on the same label, Firmus Records.

The song "Nighty night" was released as a single entitled "Nighty night / This is a man" on Firmus records. This song was original recorded and composed by Carlyle Miller in 1977. I also tried to buy it without however any success.

For a short time the two sisters Betty & Jackie collaborated with Jackie's daughter Kim and formed the vocal group ‘The Richardson".

Note: The above posted tracks are not played in full

Monday, September 2, 2013

Kenny Colman - I need you 1979

Kenny Colman is a great jazz vocalist. He is more known in the USA than in Europe. He has been performing for over of five decades in the jazz music scene. Many great musicians have spoken concerning the talent of Kenny Colman.

In 1979, Kenny Colman released a jazz album on Kett Records. There are not many info for the album because the vinyl is rare and hard to find. The album was released under the name "I need you".

However it is worthy to note that the album was released on CD. The CD doesn't mention anything except for the songs of the album. I found some information concerning the musicians. Dave Moscoe on keyboard, Donald Dean on drums, John Kurnick on guitar, Rick Ricardo on Conga/Percussion, Sammy Dee on sax. Produced by Kenny Colman.

I have chosen two tracks. First an amazing song entitled "Laura" and the famous song "Feel like makin love" which was original recorded by Roberta Flack in 1974. This song has been covered by several jazz and R&B artists. Both songs have beautiful saxophone.

Note: The above posted tracks are not played in full

For more info about Kenny Colman, you can see his website.

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Time for holidays

I will be on holidays. Next post in late August.

Saturday, July 27, 2013

5th Anniversary

I opened this blog five years ago. Today it's the fifth anniversary. I wanna thank especially all the visitors of my blog. I would also like to thank some special people and friends who helped me last year.

Bill Bradford

First of all, I want to thank producer, songwriter and label owner Bill Bradford for all his info concerning my article Thomas Moore.

Juan Oskar
I want to thank Jay Maynes aka Juan Oskar for all his info concerning the article MayneStream - Sheri.

Finally I would like to thank the great songwriter and singer Acey McCone for all his info and his confidence to me.

In order to celebrate this day, I decided to upload a music video which includes an ultra rare 45" and a fantastic song. This record is one of my top secrets. Enjoy this masterpiece.

Friday, July 19, 2013

An Interview with Jimmy Anderson AKA James Anderson III

Three years ago I had the pleasure to present a scarce record entitled "Jimmy Anderson - You, me and love" on Olam Records in 1983. Many collectors know him as a producer and songwriter. He became known especially by his collaboration with the vocal group called The Exportations.
I had the opportunity to speak with him through email.

Jimmy Anderson (AKA James Anderson III) was born in 1947. He is a singer, composer and producer. He was more known as a composer than as a singer. He has written songs for The Exportations and Tyrone Edwards

Dionisis: When did you start your professional career and since when you've been recording ?
Jimmy Anderson: 70s. 

Dionisis: Which are your main influences and which are your favorite artists ? 
Jimmy Anderson: Smokey Robinson, Otis Redding, Bobby Womack and David Ruffin.

Dionisis: Tell me about the group Exportations. Did you work with them only as a songwriter ?
Jimmy Anderson:  I was also the manager of the group. The Exportations were five members. The brothers Arthur (Rick) Gibson, Willie (Crick) Gibson, Bernard (Bee) Gibson and Anthony (Amp) Pilgrim with Lucian (Sonny) Thomas. All could lead-sing. The younger lead-voice Bernard Gibson went with The Temptations and Dennis Edwards. 

In 1992 Dennis Edwards formed a new group called "The Temptations Review featuring Dennis Edwards". Bernard Gibson was replaced in 2006 by the late Ali-Ollie Woodson.

After of the mid 80s, the group change their name to Living Proof. They released an album on G.E.M.C Records in the late 80s.

Dionisis: How many songs have you recorded with The Exportations in the late 70s or in the 80s ?
Jimmy Anderson: I have recorded the songs "Find another day", "I want you" featuring Ernestine Johnson, "Main Ingredient", "You did it", "Party down" and played in over 9 European countries. 

Dionisis: At that time, Ernestine Johnson was another member of the group  or she collaborated only as a singer ?

Jimmy Anderson: She was featured on the B side of the single "Find another day". I also remember one of my background singers was part of "DAWN" with Tony Orlando. She was Pamela Vincent. She recorded with us four times as a member on the female group called "Brandye". 

Dionisis: On my blog three years ago, I mentioned that you have co-written the song "You did it". This song was performed by Tyrone Edwards and The Exportations. Which version was the first to be recorded ?
Jimmy Anderson: Tyrone Edwards. Tyrone also did the first version of "Find Another Day" and "Main Ingredient". I remember Tyrone released the single "You did it / Main ingredient" in 1976 or 1977 on Olam Records.

Dionisis: Do you remember anything about Olam Records from Detroit ?
Jimmy Anderson: I chose that as my record label in the 70's. I liked it because it stood for infinity.

Dionisis: How many singles have you released on your label ?
Jimmy Anderson: Tyrone's and mine of 1983.

Dionisis: The first collaboration in your career, was with Tyrone or with The Exportations ?
Jimmy Anderson: Tyrone.

Dionisis: Nowadays have you recorded any music ? 
Jimmy Anderson: Tyrone and I have some pending songs.

#  I want to thank Jimmy Anderson for all his info and his help.

Note: The above posted tracks are not played in full

Thursday, July 11, 2013

1st Borne - (Self titled) Lp

The group was formed in 1970. Between 1970 and 1975 they traveled and performed in many of the top nite clubs and hotels throughout the Western United States including Reno, Las Vegas, San Francisco, Lake Tahoe, Seattle, Denver, Los Angeles and Honolulu, Hawaii.
They also played for many great artists like Blue Mitchell, Harold Land, Quinn Harris, Art Pepper, Joe Farrell, Eric Burdon, Bob Hope and many others.

Jaquetta Rae & George Stanley

Some members of the group were Jaquetta Rae on vocals, George Stanley on bass and guitar, Larry Flahive on keyboards, Bobby Dominguez on drums. They released an album on Olive Tree Records. Jaquetta Rae along with Larry Flahive wrote some songs like "I'll take care of you" and "Ain't you had enough". Both songs were produced by Jimmy Haskell. Rhythm arrangements by Larry Flahive. String arrangements by Jimmy Haskell.

Note: The above posted tracks are not played in full.

Thursday, July 4, 2013

Ron Browning - Music is a lonely life

As I have told you, I collect vinyls which include songs written by H.B.Barnum and Walter Johnson.  A day Walter Johnson brought to my attention the record 45" "Music is a lonely life" by Quinn Coleman. Some days later, I was very lucky and I found the same record on ebay by Ron Browning. It was unbelievable! The original was released by Quinn Coleman in 1983.

Ron Browning is a singer, songwriter, musician and teacher of voice. He is a member of NATS, the National Association of Teachers of Singing, NYSTA, New York Singing Teacher’s Association, and a voting member of The Grammy Foundation® and Country Music Award Association. He grew up in a musical family in the town of Vicco, Kentucky. He played piano in church at the early age. Ron did musical studies at UCLA, California State University at Northridge and the University of Kentucky.
In the 80s, he collaborated with H.B.Barnum. Ron Browning released a single entitled "Music is a lonely life / I hope we meet again next summer" on Vizion Records.

In 2006 Ron Browning released a jazz CD entitled "In A Sentimental Mood".

Note: The above posted track is not played in full

Monday, June 17, 2013

Clete Trexler - Lady 1979

Clete Trexler is a singer and songwriter of country music. Clete began playing guitar when he was eight years old. He learned with the help of his grandfather and by watching country music shows on TV. Clete is known as the "Real Deal" for his efforts to preserve true country music.
In 1979 he released a single entitled "Lady / Nothing is sweeter than you" on Bucky Records. Both songs were penned by himself. Both songs were recorded at Arthur Smith studios. I have chosen the song "Lady" because the other song is influenced from country music.

Note: The above posted single is not played in full

Sunday, June 9, 2013

George "Stardust" Green - Al Di La / Feelings

George "Stardust" Green was born in Chicago on September 6, 1923 and he grew up on the west side. He started to perform in clubs in the early 40s as a drummer and singer. In the early 50s he started to record while at the same time he was performing in clubs like club DeLissa, club Evergreen, and the Paris club. In the mid 50s he played drums in combos, notably in King Flemming Trio, in the Morris Ellis Band and with Ramsey Lewis and Eldee Young before they picked up Red Holt
Later he formed his own trio on drums and vocals, with Dolphus Dean on bass and Bob Knowles on piano. They appeared in many TV shows and many clubs in Chicago. They also released an album under the name Stardust Green and His Amaz-ing Jazz Trio on Dempsey Records.
They released another album in 1963 entitled "For all we know" under the name George "Stardust" Green on M&M Records. It was recorded live in the Huddle Lounge of Rick Casares' Pro Bowl club, in Buffalo Grove, Illinois, sometime around 1963. George "Stardust" Green and jazz singers LaVern Baker and Billy Williams were among the first African-American performers to break through the segregation barriers in South Africa in 1967.
In the mid 70s or later he released a single "Al Di La / Feelings" on FM & PM Records. This single includes a version of the Morris Albert famous song "Feelings". Both songs arranged and produced by the   late pianist Floyd Morris. Floyd Morris was owner of the label FM & PM Records.

George Stardust Green died in his home in Henderson, Nevada, on March 11, 2007. For more info about him you can see here.

Note: The above posted single is not played in full.