Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Hey Joe - Tim Rose

The legend goes that Jimi Hendrix walked into the Cafe Wha? in New York City and was treated this slow, growling version of "Hey Joe" by little known Washingtonian folkster Tim Rose. One year later, in 1967, Jimi Hendrix "shot" to superstardom with his first hit single "Hey Joe". It was no surprise to a bitterly upset Rose that Hendrix recorded his version in a similarly slow fashion.

Officially, the song's authorship dates back to 1962 by an even lesser known singer named Billy Roberts. However, Tim Rose adamantly claims that he, and he alone, originally penned "Hey Joe".


Tim Rose singing "Hey Joe". He never received a dime in royalties. Frustrated by this lack of recognition Tim re-recorded, and re-released the song in the 1990s. His new version was called "Blue Steel .44" and went largely unnoticed.

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Somebody Oughta Turn Your Head Around - The Crystal Mansion

"Somebody Oughta Turn Your Head Around" from The Crystal Mansion's 1972 Rare Earth LP is psychedelic funk rock at its best. If the groove sounds familiar that's because Fatboy Slim sampled it for his song "In Heaven". I'm not crazy about Fatboy Slim, but I do give Norman Cook credit for unearthing some really choice vintage beats. I can't confirm Heaven's existence, but if I ever lock myself inside Slim's record vault that would be enough divine proof, for me anyway.


Friday, March 26, 2010

I Must Be Doing Something Right - Arthur Prysock

 Badass baritone Arthur Prysock croons like the smoothest scoundrel around on "I Must Be Doing Something Right", the title track off his 1968 Verve LP. It takes a certain vocal bravado to sing with this much arrogance.  Dino yes, Frankie no. If you love hating bastards then this song is for you.


Monday, March 22, 2010

The Cuckoo - JSD Band

Folk me, this is a traditional folk song? The JSD Band's "Cuckoo" single is unlike any version that I've ever heard before. It was recorded in 1974 for their Travelling Days Album. For me, this is the definitive version of the classic folk ballad. Hands down.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

How To Pick A Winner - Maurice Williams

No, I can't claim to know the secret to picking a significant other. If only romantic soothsaying could be foretold by reading record grooves! Fortunately, the secret to uncovering a winning 45 is a much less complicated affair. Simply buy anything with Allen Toussaint's name on the label, and you won't be disappointed.

Allen Toussaint is the King Midas of New Orleans R&B. Any song touched by his brilliant composing, producing, arranging or vocal talents has most certainly turned into music gold. If you've ever heard "Working In A Coalmine", "Get Out Of My Life Woman", or "Everything I Do Gonna Be Funky" then you'll understand why Toussaint was considered the quintessential hitmaker of southern soul.

"How To Pick A Winner" is a finger-popping, doo-wopping single that was recorded by Maurice Williams back in 1968. It's neglected nuggets like this that keep me digging through crates and picking for more golden finds. Enjoy!


Toussaint's "Sweet Touch of Love" was used for Axe's award winning Dark Temptation commercial.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Pasa El Tren- Los Mismos

The steam powered grooviness of 1969's "Pasa El Tren" has everything: female scats, tight drums, locomotive whistling and some serious brass action. If you're intrigued by this unique brand of Spanish psych-pop-rock you'll want to head over to finderskeepersrecords.com and checkout their "Absolute Belter" compilation. Its guaranteed to increase your musical scoville knowledge. Muy picante!
"ABSOLUTE BELTER Mid-Med-mod-rock and Spanish psychsploitation from the 'Cradle Of Spanish Pop'. Marking the 50th anniversary of one of Europes longest running Independent record labels. Featuring rare nuggets and from Soledad Miranda (Vamyros Lesbos), Los Mismos and Fusioon. Plus bizarre versions of tracks written by The Rolling Stones and David Bowie." 


Hey You (Get Off Of My Cloud)

Friday, March 12, 2010

Keep An Eye On Love - Ernestine Anderson

The sweet samba jazz of Ernestine Anderson's "Keep An Eye On Love" never fails to float my reluctant ass straight to cloud nine. The song is an irresistible heart warmer. It'll warm even the most cynical of hibernating bears and put them in a springtime mood. Pure, playful, romantic bliss.

An acoustic version that Zeep recorded during their 2008 debut.

Monday, March 8, 2010

Winter's Going- Bonnie Dobson

The final track off Bonnie Dobson's self-titled 1969 LP is one spooky example of tripped out folk-funk. "Winter's Going", despite the hopeful sounding name, is an eerie murder ballad and not meant to be included on any spring break mixes. You have been warned.


Friday, March 5, 2010

Get Yourself Together- Jerry Combs

What's more important, your boyfriend or your soul collection? That's the conundrum Jerry Combs disputes during this funky ultimatum. If I was an obsessive soul sister with more ace records like "Get Yourself Together", I'd recommend ditching the boyfriend. 
 "You say you ain't got time to cook, you won't wash to keep me clean, but you've got time to play James Brown records and read soul magazines. You better get yourself together, or else move back in your tent. Cos' I like James and I dig soul, but girl it's time that you've been told I'm the one who'll pay your rent."


Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Hot Rod Poppa - Marsha Hunt

"Hot Rod Poppa" is the creative collaboration between T.Rex's Marc Bolan and the original Brown Sugar, Marsha Hunt. Aside from being Mick Jagger's rock n' roll muse Marsha was also an accomplished actress (Hair), model, novelist and activist. This freakfunk b-side (the 45 flip to Dr. John's "I Walk On Guilded Splinters"cover) was initially released in 1969, and then again on her 1971 debut LP Woman Child.