VARIOUS: Good, Good Feeling – More Motown Girls (Ace)

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That legendary Motown vault continues to give! Who’d have thought that the Gordy empire’s archive had any more treasures to yield. Well it does, as this wonderful, new 25 tracker from Ace records proves. As you can see  from the collection’s subtitle, ‘Good, Good Feeling’ focuses on the distaff side of the Motown roster and amongst the big names on the set are Gladys Knight (with the Pips, of course), Martha and the Vandellas, Kim Weston, the Velvelettes and the Brenda Holloway. Of the rest, Motown connoisseurs  will recognize names like Debbie Dean, the Lewis Sisters, Blinky, Chris Clark, Ann Bogan, Anita Knorl, LaBrenda Ben, Oma Heard, Little Lisa, Barbara McNair, Yvonne Fair and Hattie Littles.

Ms Littles’ 1963 ‘When I Was In School’ is one of six tracks on the album that has never been issued in any format before and is sure to excite collectors and lovers of that raw, magical early Motown studio sound. The other “previously unissued” tracks are the Vandellas’ ‘This Love I Got (a typically strident dancer), Brenda Hollway’s ‘Good, Good feeling’ (for which the album is named!), Barbara McNair’s ‘Watching A Plane In The Sky’ ( a Tom Baird song), Connie Haines’ ‘In The Neighbourhood’ (a Motown standard recorded by many, notably Jimmy Ruffin) and the Lewis Sisters’ ‘My World Is Crumbling’ (better known in a Brenda Holloway version).

The rest of the collection has either been previously available in  download form  only (remember those 2016 “Motown Unreleased” download offers?), or on ‘Cellarful Of Motown’ collections or, as in the case of the Velvelettes’ ‘A Love So Deep Inside’ and Kim Weston’s ‘Drop in the Bucket’ on long-deleted career-spanning anthologies.

So, yes, not the usual “all previously unreleased” collection, but everything here is rare and now nigh on impossible to find in tangible format. Motown collectors will be delighted to have all these tunes presented like this and, as ever, the Ace sleeve notes are first rate – an anorak’s delight!

(BB) 4/5