Category Archives: R&B

ESTHER PHILLIPS-BABY I’M FOR REAL!

ESTHER PHILLIPS-BABY I’M FOR REAL! Despite releasing eighteen albums during a career that lasted thirty-five years, most people haven’t heard Esther Phillips. That’s a great shame, because they’re as yet, unaware of one of the most talented, versatile and underrated singers of her generation. She possessed a totally unique, voice. During her career,  Esther sang blues, country, …

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MUSIC CITY VOCAL GROUPS-ROCK ’N’ ROLL IT, MAMBO, STROLL IT.

MUSIC CITY VOCAL GROUPS-ROCK ’N’ ROLL IT, MAMBO, STROLL IT. Earlier this year, Ace Records released Music City Vocal Groups-Greasy Love Songs Of Teenage Romance, Regret, Hope and Despair in June 2014. It featured fifty tracks from the Music City Vaults. Released to critical acclaim, Music City Vocal Groups-Greasy Love Songs Of Teenage Romance, Regret, …

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AIN’T THAT THE TRUTH-THE RIC AND RON STORY VOLUME 2.

AIN’T THAT THE TRUTH-THE RIC AND RON STORY VOLUME 2. Having founded the Ric and Ron labels in 1958, Joe Ruffino spent the next four years, transforming them into two of New Orleans’ premier independent R&B labels. During this period, artists of the calibre of Professor Longhair, Irma Thomas, Johnny Adams, Eddie Bo and Eddie …

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LOUISIANA SWAMP BLUES.

LOUISIANA SWAMP BLUES. One of the most eagerly awaited box sets of 2014 is JSP Records Louisiana Swamp Blues. It’s a four disc that features 102 slices of swamp blues and zydeco. Compiled by Neil Slaven, Louisiana Swamp Blues features contributions from the great and good of Louisiana blues and zydeco.  Across Louisiana Swamp Blues’ …

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CRACKING THE COSIMO CODE-60S NEW ORLEANS R&B AND SOUL.

CRACKING THE COSIMO CODE-60S NEW ORLEANS R&B AND SOUL. Between 1956 and 1968, Cosimo Matassa owned what was the most important recording studio in New Orleans. Situated at 521-525 Governor Nichols Street, Cosimo Matassa’s studios were where some of the most important soul and R&B to come out of New Orleans was recorded. Cosimo Matassa’s …

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DJ SNOWBOY PRESENTS THE GOOD FOOT.

DJ SNOWBOY PRESENTS THE GOOD FOOT. Mark Cotgrove was just fourteen when he made his DJ-ing debut. This was at Deanes School, in Thundersley, Essex. The future DJ Snowboy assisted his metalwork teacher on the wheels of steel. This could’ve, and should’ve, been the start of his DJ-ing career. It wasn’t. By the time Mark …

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NO MORE DOGGIN’ THE RPM STORY VOLUME 1 1950-53.

NO MORE DOGGIN’ THE RPM STORY VOLUME 1 1950-53. Jules Bihari, a Hollywood based musical entrepreneur, founded Modern Music with his brothers Saul, Joe and Lester in 1944. Little did anyone realise, that within a few years the nascent Modern Music would become one of the most successful independent labels. Modern Music made its name …

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RARE PSYCH MOOGS AND BRASS 1969-1981-MUSIC FROM THE SONOTON LIBRARY.

RARE PSYCH MOOGS AND BRASS 1969-1981-MUSIC FROM THE SONOTON LIBRARY.  Mention KPM, De Woife, Amphonic, Conroy and Sonoton to most people, and they’ll have no idea what you’re talking about. However, mention it to several generations of sample-hungry hip hop producers and crate-digging DJs, and their eyes will light up. Their eyes will also have …

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PEE WEE CRAYTON-TEXAS BLUES JUMPIN’ IN LOS ANGELES.

PEE WEE CRAYTON-TEXAS BLUES JUMPIN’ IN LOS ANGELES. Musically, Pee Wee Crayton was a late developer. He only started playing the guitar seriously in 1935, when he was twenty-one. That just so happened to coincide with Pee Wee Crayton moving to Los Angeles.  He’d moved to Los Angeles from Rockdale, Texas. That had been home …

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KEB DARGE AND LITTLE EDITH’S LEGENDARY WILD ROCKERS 4.

KEB DARGE AND LITTLE EDITH’S LEGENDARY WILD ROCKERS 4. A lot has happened to Keb Darge and Little Edith since the release of Keb Darge and Little Edith’s Legendary Wild Rockers 3, in June 2013. The village in the Philippines, where Keb Darge and Little Edith live, was destroyed by a typhoon. Nothing was heard …

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MOD JAZZ, AND THEN SOME!

MOD JAZZ, AND THEN SOME! It doesn’t seem like eighteen years since Kent Soul released the first instalment in the Mod Jazz series. However, that’s the case. 30th September 1996 was when Mod Jazz first hit the shops. Released to critical acclaim, Mod Jazz was a commercial success. Mod Jazz was music for attendees of …

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ARTHUR PRYSOCK-TOO LATE BABY-THE OLD TOWN SINGLES 1958-66.

ARTHUR PRYSOCK-TOO LATE BABY-THE OLD TOWN SINGLES 1958-66. Although Arthur Prysock’s career lasted six decades, the most successful period of his career was the eight years he spent at Old Town Records. Between 1958 and 1966, Arthur Prysock released twenty-four singles. There’s also the small matter of nine albums. From Arthur’s debut album was I …

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ASHFORD AND SIMPSON-HIGH RISE.

ASHFORD AND SIMPSON-HIGH RISE. By 1983, Ashford and Simpson were about to release their eleventh album, High Rise. It was their second album for their new record label Capitol Records. High Rise was also the followup to their 1982 concept album Street Opera, which dealt with the problems couples face in economically tough times. Street Opera dealt …

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JAH WOBBLE PRESENTS: PJ HIGGINS-INSPIRATION.

JAH WOBBLE PRESENTS: PJ HIGGINS-INSPIRATION. During a career that’s spanned nearly forty years, Jah Wobble has always sought to create groundbreaking music. This has been the case since Jah’s solo career began in the late-seventies. Back then, Jah was a bassist, singer, songwriter and poet. However, Jah’s breakthrough came when he joined John Lydon’s post-punk …

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WAYNE COCHRAN-GOIN’ BACK TO MIAMI-THE SOUL SIDES 1965-1970.

WAYNE COCHRAN-GOIN’ BACK TO MIAMI-THE SOUL SIDES 1965-1970. Unmistakable. That describes the outlandish outfits Wayne Cochran wore on-stage. Then there was his glistening peroxide bouffant. Wayne certainly grabbed your attention. Especially his music. It ranged from the raunchiest R&B to country soul and even biker funk. Eclectic described Wayne Cochran’s music. That’s obvious when you …

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COME SPY WITH US-THE SECRET AGENT SONGBOOK.

COME SPY WITH US-THE SECRET AGENT SONGBOOK. For many people, the fifties and sixties were the golden age of both the spy novel and film. That’s no surprise. This was the post war era. The Iron Curtain separated Eastern and Western Europe. Suspicion and paranoia were common place. Especially after the defection of Philby, Burgess …

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SWAMP POP BY THE BAYOU.

SWAMP POP BY THE BAYOU. When the first compilation of Swamp Pop was released back in the early seventies, it was a genre without a name. So, the compilation was simply called, The Other Sound Of The South. Then Bill Millar coined the term Swamp Pop. That day, a new musical genre was born. Swamp …

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OTIS SPANN-SWEET GIANT OF THE BLUES.

OTIS SPANN-SWEET GIANT OF THE BLUES. For many people, Otis Spann will always be remembered as Muddy Waters’ pianist. Granted Otis spent fifteen years as a member of Muddy Waters’ band. However, there’s much more to Otis Spann’s career that that. Much more. No wonder. Otis Spann was without doubt, one of the greatest postwar …

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MONICA AZULL-I LIKE IT.

MONICA AZULL-I LIKE IT. I Like It. That’s not just the title of Monica Axull’s new single, but what anyone whose heard the single so far, thinks of it. Monica Azull many people believe, is a star in the waiting.  She looks like she’s on the cusp of a successful career. She’s come a long …

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MOVEMENTS 6.

MOVEMENTS 6. One of the longest running compilation series is Movements, compiled by Tobias Kirkmayer. The first instalment in the series, Movements was released back in 2005 on Perfect Toy Records. In an ever crowded compilation market, Movements was well received. A year later, in 2006, came Movements. Then nothing. Four long years passed without …

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