Soul connoisseurs revere Shreveport-born BETTYE SWANN. For sure in a brief career (just 11 years) she never enjoyed massive notoriety but her soulful tones, a mix of sweetness warmth and vulnerability endeared her to many. Of course, her still wonderful ‘Make Me Yours’ almost made it but not quite; but, as ever, Joe Public’s loss is the real soul collectors gain. And those collectors will be delighted to learn that SOUL 4 REAL RECORDS have just issued two of Bettye’s gems back to back on 7” vinyl.
The tunes are her version of the Motown standard ‘This Old Heart Of Mine’ coupled with the searing ballad ‘Either You Love Me Or Leave Me’. Both were recorded in Nashville and produced by Brad Shapiro but her then label, Atlantic, saw little merit in them and they lay in the vaults till they resurfaced on an Atlantic retrospective in 2014. We believe (but don’t quote us in it!) that this Soul 4 Real coupling the first time the songs have appeared on vinyl.
If you know the recording, you’ll know that Ms Swann’s version of ‘Heart’ slows the song right down and is prefaced by a short, bitter/sweet monologue. ‘Either You Love Me Or Leave Me’ is in the same deep soul vein and both prove what soul connoisseurs have long known – Bettye Swann was a supreme soul stylist.
This Soul 4 Real Bettye Swann single is out now. These singles usually sell out quickly but you can learn more @ www.soul4real.es