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PHILLY FEST ...

Tuesday, 10 April 2012 16:32 Bill Buckley E-mailPrintPDF

phillyThe celebrations for Philadelphia International's 40th anniversary gather momentum with the release of a wonderful 4 CD box set of TOM MOULTON Philly mixes.

Released on Harmless Records, 'PHILADELPHIA INTERNATIONAL CLASSICS: THE TOM MOULTON REMIXES' has just hit the sales racks and it's a must for all soul collectors.

Master mixer MOULTON has been involved with the Philadelphia International label since its onset and in 1977 his groundbreaking eight track double LP, 'Philadelphia Classics' became an overnight success.

This new box set features all eight of those original MOULTON mixes and adds 7 'lost' ones (mixed back in the day and unavailable till now); then there are 16 brand new MOULTON mixes of unashamed Philadelphia classics like THE O'JAYS' 'Backstabbers', ARCHIE BELL AND THE DRELLS' 'Let's Groove' and THE JONES GIRLS' 'Nights Over Egypt'. Lesser known gems have been tweaked too and they include ROBERT UPCHURCH'S 'The Devil Made Me Do It' and BILLY PAUL'S version of 'The Whole Town's Laughing At Me'.

MOULTON'S mixing philosophy was simple...essentially don't fix something that ain't broke! So rather than take liberties with already great material, the man chose to extend instrumental passages, accentuate percussive breaks and highlight the hooks and the results pleasured disco denizens all over the world. Witness that MOULTON mastery at its very best on his ten minute mix of LOU RAWLS' 'You'll Never Find Another Love Like Mine'. It's one of 32 wonderful Philly moments and almost rivalled by a tweak of THE INTRUDERS' '(Win, Place Or Show) She's A Winner'. Here MOULTON does take one small liberty. He loses the atmospheric race track sounds that clutter the intro of the original. It works, allowing the beauty of the strings and the plaintive vocal of LITTLE SONNY to stand out.

'PHILADELPHIA INTERNATIONAL CLASSICS: THE TOM MOULTON REMIXES' is out now on HARMLESS RECORDS.

Last Updated on Tuesday, 10 April 2012 16:40

 

SANTANA'S BACK!

Tuesday, 10 April 2012 09:01 Charles Waring E-mailPrintPDF

Santana

Moustachioed Latin guitar god, CARLOS SANTANA, releases a new album, 'Shape Shifter,' via his own Sony-distributed Starfaith label on May 14th. Unlike his most recent studio recordings – which yielded numerous Grammies and big global hits – this new 13-track set (his 36th album) is mainly instrumental and coincides with a two-year residency at Las Vegas' House Of Blues venue.

 

Interestingly, Santana has dedicated the album to Native Americans and following on from President Barack Obama's signing of the 2009 Native American Apology Resolution – as well as the Australian government's apology in 2008 to its Aboriginal people, says: "I encourage any and all countries (that have not as yet done so) to acknowledge the first people of their land, and make this a collective global effort."

 

 

 

 

CAROLE KING BONANZA ..

Tuesday, 10 April 2012 07:40 Bill Buckley E-mailPrintPDF

kingFans of the great CAROLE KING – indeed all fans of quality pop tinged with the hues of blue-eyed soul – will be delighted to learn that Rockingale Records (part of the Concord group) have just reissued four of her in-demand albums from the late seventies.

They are 1977's 'Simple Things', '78's 'Welcome Home', 'Touch The Sky' from 1979 and 1980's 'Pearls' and it's that last one that will prove of most interest to soul collectors. The album is a quirky retrospective of some of the best songs she wrote with her one-time husband GERRY GOFFIN. Featured songs include 'One Fine Day', 'Chains', 'Oh No Not My Baby', 'Hey Girl' and the ever-wonderful 'Goin' Back' – best known to soulsters perhaps in its DUSTY SPRINGFIELD incarnation. Here – sung by the writer – the lyric takes on a new poignancy.

Goodies on the other three LPs include the introspective 'Time Alone' on 'Simple Things' and the similarly themed 'Time Gone By' from 'Touch The Sky'. Enjoy too some tasty sax work from the underrated ERNIE WATTS on 'Welcome Home'.

All four albums are available now.

Last Updated on Tuesday, 10 April 2012 07:44

 

DELLS DOUBLE...

Monday, 09 April 2012 16:00 Bill Buckley E-mailPrintPDF

dells_1Celebration of THE DELLS' 60th anniversary continues with the release of two in-demand albums which the group cut in the 70s for Mercury Records. The quintet had signed with Mercury in 1975 where their first release was an album of songs from the movie 'No Way Back'. Its lack of success prompted the Mercury execs to send THE DELLS over to Philadelphia to work under the aegis of famed Philly production team THE HARRIS MACHINE (essentially NORMAN HARRIS, EARL YOUNG and RON BAKER).

Ironically back in '71 KENNY GAMBLE and LEON HUFF had wanted to make THE DELLS the lead act on their new Philadelphia International label. The duo had written a whole album of songs specifically for the veteran group, but LEONARD CHESS refused to let them go, so GAMBLE and HUFF recorded the set with HAROLD MELVIN and the BLUENOTES ... and the rest... well!

Anyway, THE DELLS eventually arrived at Sigma Sound at the start of 1977 and working with the HARRIS MACHINE on a whole bunch of new songs they recorded the album 'They Said It Couldn't Be Done, But We Did It'. The set wonderfully mixes THE DELLS' signature harmony sound with slick, fully orchestrated Philly production values. The searing ballad 'Could It Be' rivals their best Chess work while up tempo stuff like 'Teaser' and the LP's title cut are delights. Sadly, despite its quality, the album stalled at no. 20 on the R&B chart as the Mercury promo people poured their resources into marketing the OHIO PLAYERS.

dells_2Nine months later Mercury released THE DELLS' second Philly-recorded album, 'Love Connection'. Again it's a quality soul album featuring wonderful cuts like the gutsy 'Don't Trick Me, Treat Me' and the RON TYSON- penned ballad, 'Private Property'. Listen up too to the doo-wop throw back 'Wasted Years'. Written by the group's MARVIN JUNIOR, it's an unashamed tribute to their musical roots. Again though, the LP was unsuccessful in the sales' stakes and their contract with Mercury was terminated. Now's the opportunity for all real soul fans to discover what they missed back in 1977.

THE DELLS; THEY SAID IT COULDN'T BE DONE, BUT WE DID IT' and 'LOVE CONNECTION' are out now on soulmusicrecords.com

Last Updated on Monday, 09 April 2012 16:04

 

APOLOGIES

Monday, 09 April 2012 07:52 Bill Buckley E-mailPrintPDF

For the last few days SOULANDJAZZANDFUNK - the world's biggest and brightest UK-based soul music web site - has been unavailable. No, we weren't the victims of an anonymous, anarchist hacking group - rather, we were hit by some complictaed technical problems. Anyway, we're back now and firing on all soul cylinders. Rest assured here @ SOULJAZZANDFUNK you'll continue to get the very best soul coverage. Upcoming in the next few days - reviews and features on the DELLS, INCOGNITO, a very special PHILADELPHIA INTERNATIONAL box set and much much more.

 

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