Early Soul Classics – Various Artists

£8.50

Early Soul Classics Vol 1

Various Artists

The first volume of great early original R&B / Soul classics of the 1950s through to the early 1960s from the best artists of that era, and what great period it was, with many of those artists pioneers of the R&B scene which exists to this day, as this genre of music is as popular now as it has ever been.

This digitally re-mastered compilation CD of original records should provide hours of pleasurable listening for all fans of this musical scene.

 

Track Listing

Disc 1
1 You’ve Really Got A Hold On Me 02:59 Smokey Robinson & The Miracles
2 At Last 03:02 Etta James
3 Poison Ivy 02:43 The Coasters
4 Buttered Popcorn 02:57 Diana Ross & The Supremes
5 First Taste Of Love 02:32 Ben E. King
6 Letter Full Of Tears 02:51 Gladys Knight & The Pips
7 Dance With Me 02:26 The Drifters
8 Drown In My Own Tears 03:23 Ray Charles
9 Saved 02:39 LaVern Baker
10 Don’t Let Her Take My Baby 02:22 Mitty Collier
11 Flip Flop & Fly 02:52 Big Joe Turner
12 Baby It’s You 02:42 The Shirelles
13 Love, Love, Love 02:04 The Clovers
14 Bye Bye Baby 02:56 Mary Wells
15 You Send Me 02:48 Sam Cooke
16 Shout Parts 1 & 2 04:44 The Isley Brothers
17 Mashed Potatoes 03:28 Nat Kendricks & The Swans
18 Tra La La La La 02:41 Ike & Tina Turner
19 Long Lonely Nights 02:26 Clyde McPhatter
20 Two Lovers 02:47 Mary Wells
21 Gee Whiz (Look At His Eyes) 02:22 Carla Thomas
22 Tears On My Pillow 02:19 Little Anthony & The Imperials
23 (Night Time Is) The Right Time 03:28 Ray Charles
24 Lucky Lips 02:08 Ruth Brown
25 Tipitina 02:40 Professor Longhair
26 Going Back To Where I Belong 02:28 Sugar Pie DeSanto
Disc 2
1 The Midnight Hour 03:03 Ray Charles
2 Soul On Fire 03:03 LaVern Baker
3 The Chill Is On 02:47 Big Joe Turner
4 Don’t Make Me Over 02:47 Dionne Warwick
5 Fool Fool Fool 02:33 The Clovers
6 Please Mr. Postman 02:30 The Marvelettes
7 Wheel Of Fortune 02:52 The Cardinals
8 A Fool In Love 02:41 Ike & Tina Turner
9 A Beggar For Your Kisses 02:58 The Diamonds
10 I’ll Bring It Home To You 03:05 Carla Thomas
11 Money Honey 02:48 Clyde McPhatter
12 I’ll Have to Let Him Go 02:50 Martha Reeves & The Vandellas
13 Jam Up 02:48 Tommy Ridgely & His Band
14 Shopping for Clothes 03:01 The Coasters
15 Sh Boom 02:27 The Chords
16 Seven Day Fool 03:02 Etta James
17 The Applejack 03:09 Joe Morris
18 Just Out of Reach (of My Two Empty Arms) 02:50 Solomon Burke
19 Drinkin’ Wine Spo-Dee-O-Dee 03:16 Stick McGhee & His Buddies
20 Oh What A Dream 02:55 Ruth Brown
21 Midnight Special 02:45 Tiny Grimes
22 Bumble Bee 02:30 LaVern Baker
23 There Goes My Baby 02:12 Ben E King with The Drifters
24 I Got A Woman 02:54 Ray Charles
25 Along Came Jones 03:00 The Coasters
26 There’s No Other Like My Baby 02:32 The Crystals
Disc 3
1 Corrine Corinna 02:54 Big Joe Turner
2 Play It Fair 02:59 LaVern Baker
3 Ruby Baby 02:26 The Drifters
4 Mama He Treats Your Daughter Mean 02:56 Ruth Brown
5 Lonely Avenue 02:36 Ray Charles
6 Mashed Potato Time 02:33 Dee Dee Sharp
7 Searchin’ 02:46 The Coasters
8 Soldier Boy 02:41 The Shirelles
9 C C Rider 02:35 Chuck Willis
10 He’s A Rebel 02:34 The Crystals
11 Treasure Of Love 02:11 Clyde McPhatter
12 I Gotta Get Away From It All 03:15 Mitty Collier
13 Devil Or Angel 02:28 The Clovers
14 My Baby Won’t Come Back 02:27 Martha Reeves & The Vandellas
15 Smokey Joes Cafe 02:47 The Robins
16 Cry To Me 02:34 Solomon Burke
17 If You See Bill 02:59 Tammy Montgomery
18 Empty Arms 02:43 Ivory Joe Hunter
19 I Want To Know 03:03 Sugar Pie DeSanto
20 The Door Is Still Open 02:59 The Cardinals
21 My Heart Went Do Dat Da 02:16 Barbara Lewis
22 Spanish Harlem 02:53 Ben E. King
23 The Chicken And The Hawk 02:41 Big Joe Turner
24 In Paradise 02:35 The Cookies
25 Teardrops From My Eyes 02:54 Ruth Brown
26 The Twist 02:36 Chubby Checker
Disc 4
1 Do Re Me 02:01 Lee Dorsey
2 I Cried A Tear 02:37 LaVern Baker
3 Every Beat Of My Heart 02:06 Gladys Knight & The Pips
4 The One Who Really Loves You 02:28 Mary Wells
5 Hang Up My Rock And Roll Shoes 02:20 Chuck Willis
6 Hurt 02:30 Timi Yuro
7 Charlie Brown 02:22 The Coasters
8 Uptown 02:24 The Crystals
9 What’d I Say 05:08 Ray Charles
10 Stagger Lee 02:24 Lloyd Price
11 Save The Last Dance For Me 02:30 The Drifters
12 Can’t Let You Go 02:45 Sugar Pie DeSanto
13 Don’t You Know I Love You 03:06 The Clovers
14 Candy 02:42 Big Maybelle
15 Don’t Play That Song (You Lied) 02:54 Ben E. King
16 I’m Blue (The Gong-Gong Song) 02:31 The Ikettes
17 Any Day Now 02:29 Sam Cooke WithThe Soul Stirrers
18 Wild Wild Young Men 02:32 Ruth Brown
19 Honey Hush 02:29 Big Joe Turner
20 All In My Mind 02:36 Maxine Brown
21 Whatcha Gonno Do? 02:47 Clyde McPhatter & The Drifters
22 Ting a Ling 03:06 The Clovers
23 Tonight’s The Night 01:47 The Chiffons
24 I’ll Save The Last Dance For You 02:13 Damita Jo
25 Mess Around 02:43 Ray Charles
26 Let’s Twist Again 02:19 Chubby Checker

 

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One of the numbers Lena Horne sang in her triumphant 1981 one-woman show “Lena Horne – The Lady And Her Music” was an obscure Rodgers and Hart song, the wittily risqué “A Lady Must Live”. As a dedicated fan of all things Rodgers & Hart, I wondered at first, how in heaven’s name did Lena Horne find this rare gem.

 

I should have known better. There may well be a charming bit of business behind her discovery of the song; the means of her introduction to it, however, are far less important than the realisation that Lena Horne knows a good song when she hears one. Whether a song is brought to her attention for her consideration or encountered by her by chance, it is inescapable that she will recognise a song of merit, and if her vocal personality is up to it, she will have a new song to add to her already rich repertoire. And of course the chief beneficiaries are those who are unfamiliar with a forgotten or neglected gem.

 

So it’s little wonder that, in this album, Lena Horne has chosen her songs with care and in the process has uncovered rarely heard treasures from the pop song masters of the past.

Two of them have music by Harold Arlen, who wrote the melodies – with lyrics by E Y Harburg – Lena sang in “Jamaica”, her Broadway musical first presented in 1957. One is “The Eagle & Me” also with the lyrics by Harburg from the 1944 Broadway hit, “Bloomer Girl”. The song, reflecting a social consciousness of Arlen & Harburg is a joyous paean to freedom. “Sing From My Heart”, with a lyric by Ted Koehler is a swinging come-what-may ballad first sung by Irene Dunne in a 1939 RKO film, “Love Affair”.

 

Cole Porter, represented on the album by two songs could be the source of many Lena Horne numbers that she could delight her fans with, but for this album she offers his rarely performed “Ours”, in which exotic locales are viewed as retreat for lovers. It’s from the 1936 musical “Red Hot & Blue” the other Porter song is his wonderfully ardent standby “Every Time We Say Goodbye”.

 

Vernon Duke and Ogden Nash were infrequently paired as songwriters, but when they were, the songwriting craft was in captivating hands. Such is the case for “Roundabout”, lifted from 1946’s short lived “Sweet Bye And Bye”, and inserted into the 1952 Bette Davis musical, “Two’s Company”.

 

Lena Horne, to be sure, does not disappoint those who welcome choice renditions of songs from the standard repertoire. The likes of the aforementioned “Every Time We Say Goodbye”, “A Fine Romance”,“Look To The Rainbow” and “When I Fall In Love”, fill the bill with unquestioned brilliance

 

This album also reflects Lena Horne’s willingness to find worthy newcomers, two of which – the lovely ballads “I Wish I’d Met You” and “I Won’t Leave You” featured in her warm duets with Sally Davis and Joe Williams respectively. A third is “Joy”, a bluesy, yet optimistic song featuring a bit of cheerful byplay between Nina and her musicians.

 

If there is an underlying romantic philosophy in Lena Horne’s program it is one noted by Ettore Stratta, the album’s producer, “Lena”, he explains “wasn’t interested in songs of unrequited love, they reflect the sunnier view of life”.

Indeed, for the listener this album also mirrors Lena Horne’s basic philosophy of performance: the best songs of the past and present, in renditions that make them her own.

 

More recently, Lena’s “A Fine Romance” was featured in the Australian international smach hit film “Priscilla Queen Of The Desert”.

 

Unfortunately, Lena Horne passed away on the 9th of May 2010, but her music will stay with us forever.

 

IRV LICHTMAN, DEPUTY EDITOR, BILLBOARD MAGAZINE

Track Listing

  1. I Wish I’d Met You
  2. Ours
  3. Every Time We Say Goodbye
  4. A Fine Romance
  5. Roundabout
  6. September Song
  7. Joy
  8. Close Enough For Love
  9. I Won’t Leave You Again
  10. The Eagle And Me
  11. When I Fall In Love
  12. Look To The Rainbow
  13. It Could Happen To You
  14. Sing My Heart

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