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Any Major Soul 1971

February 20th, 2014 Leave a comment Go to comments

Any Major Soul 1971

It has been a while since we last had a Any Major Soul post — back in October — so let’s remedy that by continuing our year-by-year journey through soul music with the year 1971.

The thing kicks off with Chris Hills, a multi-instrumentalist and arranger whom we previously encountered on The Ghetto Vol. 1 (one of my all-time favourite mixes on this blog) with the opening track of his excellent  Everything Is Everything: Comin’ Out Of The Ghetto album, which was co-produced by jazz flautist Herbie Mann. The LP might have suggested the artist’s emergence from the projects, but more likely Hills had just visited, for he was white. The vocals on “Talkin’ About Soul”, which issues a roll-call of’60s soul legends and sounds like it, are by Chico Walters.

Another white act on this mix are the Flaming Ember, whose singer-drummer Jerry Plunk once left a comment here to thank me for posting the group’s music, on the Any Major Soul 1970-71 mix four years ago.

The Flaming Ember are, of course, best known for their great hit “Westbound #9”. Likewise, The Presidents are best remembered for their 1970 hit “5-10-15-20 (25-30 Years of Love)”. The featured song here, “Sweet Magic”, is one of those happiness-inducing soul songs that were such a hallmark of early ’70s soul. The Presidents, as the name hints at, came from Washington D.C., and were produced by fellow Washingtonian Van McCoy.

The early 1970s provided the good years for the doomed Holland-Dozier-Holland  labels, Invictus and Hot Wax, which the songwriting trio founded after leaving Motown. Among H-D-H artists featured here are the Flaming Ember, The Honey Cone, The 8th Day and Glass House (there was no space for Freda Payne, Chairmen of the Board or Parliament).

The 8th Day in 1971 was the group 100 Proof (Aged in Soul) by another name. After the pseudonymous had minor hits with “She’s Not Just Another Woman” and the song featured here, “You’ve Got To Crawl (Before You Can Walk)”, H-D-H put together a proper 8th Day group, but that incarnation enjoyed only modest success.

Lolleatta Holloway is probably best known for her 1980 disco hit “Love Sensation”, which was sampled so liberally for Black Box’s 1989 hit “Ride On Time”, including Holloway’s vocals (albeit uncredited). But before all that, Holloway was a superb soul singer. Alas, she died in 2011.

The Detroit trio Love Peace & Happiness were short-lived, releasing only two LPs, but the three members — former Marvelettes member Ann Bogan (she replaced Gladys Horton in 1968) and Leslie and Melvin Wilson — found greater success after they were absorbed into the reconstituted New Birth, who went on to have a string of hits throughout the 1970s.

The mix ends with a track by Frankie Beverley’s Raw Soul, a forerunner of the mighty Maze. At this point Frankie was still in Philadelphia, were he had previously led, with little success, a group called The Butlers (they featured on Any Major Soul 1960-63). In 1971 Beverley made some personnel changes to Raw Soul, moved to San Francisco and was discovered there by Marvin Gaye. The band changed its name, at Gaye’s suggestion, to Maze in 1976.

As always: CD-R length, covers, PW in comments

1. Chris Hills – Talkin’ Bout Soul
2. Tommy Tate – I Remember
3. The Presidents – Sweet Magic
4. The Whatnauts – I Dig Your Act
5. William Bell – I Can’t Make It (All By Myself)
6. Honey Cone – Blessed Be Our Love
7. The Flirtations – Little Darling (I Need You)
8. The 8th Day – You’ve Got To Crawl (Before You Can Walk)
9. Loleatta Holloway – Our Love
10. Margie Joseph – I’ll Always Love You
11. Donnie Elbert – Can’t Get Over Losing You
12. Bobby Byrd – It’s I Who Love You (Not Him Anymore)
13. Labelle – Time And Love
14. Madeline Bell – Sweet Lovin’
15. The New Rotary Connection – Hey, Love
16. Shuggie Otis – Sweet Thang
17. S.O.U.L. – Memphis Underground
18. Love Peace & Happiness – Strip Me Naked
19. The Dells – Freedom Means
20. Melba Moore – Look What You’re Doing To The Man
21. Vessie Simmons – Baby Me
22. The Glass House – I Surrendered
23. Flaming Ember – The Empty Crowded Room
24. Frankie Beverly’s Raw Soul – Color Blind

GET IT!

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  1. halfhearteddude
    February 20th, 2014 at 07:25 | #1

    PW = amdwhah

  2. Jim
    February 20th, 2014 at 16:44 | #2

    I freaking LOVE these soul compilations – thank you, thank you, THANK YOU.

  3. February 20th, 2014 at 17:16 | #3

    Cosign the above. Magnificent stuff. Need to go back and pick up a few of the others I missed.

  4. soulguru
    February 21st, 2014 at 14:51 | #4

    Soul music at its best! Thank you for bringing great quality music to the masses. Much appreciated.

  5. HW
    February 21st, 2014 at 19:19 | #5

    THANK YOU so much, Dude. Please continue with these compilations – by which I mean don’t ever, ever stop. Ever. Simply magnificent.

  6. richsoul
    February 24th, 2014 at 17:30 | #6

    Great, appreciate the gems and the covers are always great. Thank you.

  7. dogbreath
    February 25th, 2014 at 17:13 | #7

    Thanks for putting in the time and hard work so we can enjoy. We do dig your act!

  8. Emil
    February 27th, 2014 at 18:46 | #8

    Tks a lot for this new delivery! Could you pls re-up The Ghetto 1 in Zippy? Tks in advance!

  9. halfhearteddude
    February 27th, 2014 at 19:37 | #9

    It’s up now.

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