Be Bop Wino Pages

Joan Selects - the complete Joan Selects Collection

Big Ten Inchers - 78rpm rips by El Enmascarado

Attention Mac Users!

Mac users have been experiencing problems in unpacking the WinRAR archives used on this blog. Two solutions have been suggested.

1. Use The Unarchiver - - see comments on Little Esther Bad Baad Girl post for details.

2. Use Keka - - see comments on Johnny Otis Presents post.

Sunday, 29 March 2020

Elmore James and the Broom Dusters - Blues After Hours (Crown CLP 5168)

Side 1:
01) Dust My Blues
02) Sunnyland
03) Mean And Evil
04) Dark And Dreary
05) Standing At The Crossroads

Side 2:
01) Happy Home
02) No Love In My Heart
03) Blues Before Sunrise
04) I Was A Fool
05) Goodbye Baby

You know, there are often hidden treasures to be found in the virtual bargain basement of the virtual Be Bop Wino record store for there is much musical delight to be found in the unlikeliest looking of albums. And then there's this. Cheapo budget label? Check. Magnificently sleazy cover? Take another look! Now tear your eyes away from the gal at the bar and check out the tracks on the back. Only ten, and they were all five or six years old when this platter was issued.

It's 1960, you see, and Elmore James is currently recording for Bobby Robinson's Fire label in New York. In the last couple of years he's had sides out on Chief and Vee-Jay which were recorded in Chicago, but the tracks on this LP date back a few years to when Elmore was being recorded by the Bihari brothers and these sides were being issued on the Flair label. And now they've made it to the Biharis' budget priced Crown label, complete with lurid cover and thick cardboard sleeve.

But hey, you can't judge a book by its cover (clue to upcoming post) and when you get this sucker back home and pop it on the Dansette, you immediately realise that you are in the presence of genius. This is one hell of an album and although there are only 10 tracks, every one is a winner. And then some, for the final two tracks are gobsmackingly brilliant.

And it's thanks to Marv for reconstructing and sending this album in. I've been working on another LP project over the last couple of days, but as soon as I listened to these tracks (just yesterday afternoon) I dropped everything and started on this post instead. While I've been cobbling together the information for these words of wisdom I've been repeatedly playing the album and am now a hopeless Elmore James addict. It's time for you to surrender to the impassioned vocals and slide guitar of one of the great blues performers, so grab this, pump up the volume, and have a Sunday blues blast.

Recording And Original Release Details:

Dark And Dreary - recorded in Chicago, August 1953. Personnel: Elmore James (vocals, guitar); Boyd Atkins (baritone sax); J.T. Brown (tenor sax); Johnny Jones (piano); Ransom Knowling (bass); Odie Payne (drums).

Rock My Baby Right / Dark And Dreary - Elmore James and His Broomdusters - Flair 1048 - 1954

Sunnyland, Standing At The Crossroads, Mean And Evil, Happy Home, No Love In My Heart - recorded in Culver City, California, in August / September 1954. Personnel: Elmore James (vocals, guitar) with the Maxwell Davis Band: James Parr (trumpet); Maxwell Davis (tenor sax); Jewell Grant (baritone sax); Willard McDaniel (piano); Ralph "Chuck" Hamilton (bass); Jesse Sailes (drums).

Sunny Land / Standing At The Crossroads - Elmore James and His "Broomdusters" - Flair 1057 - October 1954

Late Hours At Midnight / The Way You Treat Me (aka "Mean And Evil" on this LP) - Flair 1062 - March (?) 1955

Happy Home / No Love In My Heart - Elmore James and His "Broomdusters" - Flair 1069 - May 1955

Dust My Blues, Blues Before Sunrise, I Was A Fool, Goodbye Baby - recorded in New Orleans, summer 1955. Personnel: Elmore James (vocals, guitar) with Edward Frank (piano); Frank Fields (bass); Earl Palmer (drums). Vocal Group - The Don Ralke singers dubbed onto "Goodbye Baby" in Los Angeles.
Dust My Blues / I Was A Fool - Elmore James and His "Broomdusters" - Flair 1074 - August 1955

Blues Before Sunrise / Good Bye (aka "Goodbye Baby" on this LP) - Elmore James and His "Broom Dusters" - Flair 1079 - November 1955

Elsewhere On The Blog:

Two collections of Meteor and Flair sides including alternate takes. You'll find "Rock My Baby Right" and "Late Hours At Midnight" on these LPs. Both posts have new download links.

Recommended Purchases:

Ace CDCHM 1043

Mid-price extended edition of "Blues After Hours" with 8 bonus tracks and notes by Dave Sax.

Ace CDCHD 583

28 track compilation of Meteor / Flair / Modern sides plus the Trumpet issue of "Dust My Broom" - a terrific compilation. I've had this one for many years and it remains one of my favourite Ace compilations.

Thanks to Joan K for the scans of the Flair singles. Thanks to the original uploaders of the artwork on this reconstructed LP. Many thanks to Marv for "Blues After Hours."

Saturday, 28 March 2020

Sonny Thompson - Mellow Blues For The Late Hours (King LP 655)

Side 1:
01) Mellow Blues (Part 1)
02) Palmetto
03) Clang, Clang, Clang
04) Sugar Cane
05) Cat On The Keys (Part 1)
06) Cat On The Keys (Part 2)
07) Cotton Ball
08) Single Shot

Side 2:
01) Smoke Stack Blues
02) Real, Real Fine
03) Let's Move
04) Behind The Sun
05) Blues Mambo
06) First Base
07) Gum Shoe
08) Frog Legs

Released in October 1959, this King collection of Sonny Thompson instrumentals doesn't consist solely of late night, closing time "slows", there are some shufflers and jumpers in here too. It's the echo drenched sleazy sax and piano after hours instros that appeal to me but the tracks aimed at the dance crowd are also worth a listen.

I've reconstructed the album using tracks from various reissue compilations kicking around in my collection plus artwork found on the internet. My thanks to the original uploaders. Note that some of the tracks on this album were originally released as two part singles. In such cases I have assumed that the "part 1" from these singles are the tracks featured on the LP. The release details of the singles are given below. The information was gathered from, and Billboard magazine which can be searched via google.

Original Release Details:

Sugar Cane / I'm Coming Back Home To Stay - King 4345 - April 1950

After Sundown / Frog Legs - King 4364 - June 1950

Nightfall / Palmetto - King 4384 - July 1950

Smoke Stack Blues / Uncle Sam Blues - King 4431 - March 1951

Mellow Blues (Part 1) / Mellow Blues (Part 2) - King 4488 - December 1951

I'll Drown In My Tears / Clang, Clang, Clang - King 4527 - April 1952

Let's Call It A Day / Blues Mambo - King 4541 - June 1952

Real, Real Fine (Part 1) / Real, Real Fine (Part 2) - King 4554 - October 1952

Let's Move / My Heart Needs Someone - King 4657 - September 1953

I'm Beggin' And Pleadin' / Single Shot - King 4718 - May 1954

Cotton Ball (Part 1) / Cotton Ball (Part 2) - King 4729 - July 1954

Cat On The Keys (Part 1) / Cat On The Keys (Part 2) - King 4746 - October 1954

Behind The Sun (Part 1) / Behind The Sun (Part 2) - King 4791 - April 1955

First Base / Lonely Moon - King 4809 - July 1955

Gum Shoe / Stop, Come See Me - King 5055 - June 1957

Elsewhere On The Blog:

Cat On The Keys

A 1980s Swingtime collection with quite a few tracks in common with the Mellow Blues For The Late Hours LP. The original post in 2007 has a write up on the career of Sonny Thompson and can be found here:

The LP was later re-upped with more complete artwork in 2017 here:

There are now updated download links on both of these posts.

For an in-depth look at a couple of Sonny Thompson 78 rpm singles thanks to El Enmascarado, go to the following posts which still have working links for your listening pleasure -

I see my write up on "Cotton Ball" inadvertently anticipated the feel of the "Mellow Blues For The Late Hours" LP. The comments are worth reading!

A Request!

This was the second Sonny Thompson LP released on King. The first Sonny LP, "Moody Blues - Play Only After Midnight" was released in April 1958. I have the tracks to reconstruct it except one - "Low Down" which was released on the single King 4992 b/w "Lost In This Great Big City" in December 1956. If anyone out there has a decent rip of "Low Down" and is willing to see it posted on the blog, please get in touch via email.

Thursday, 26 March 2020

Gabe's Dirty Blues re-up

01) Fever - Little Willie John
02) Walkin' The Blues - Champion Jack Dupree
03) Sick & Tired - Lula Reed
04) Shake 'em Up, Baby - Roy Brown
05) Work With Me Annie - Hank Ballard and The Midnighters
06) Cherry Wine - Little Esther Phillips
07) 60-Minute Man - Billy Ward & The Dominoes
08) Ride, Jockey, Ride - The Lamplighters
09) Keep On Churnin' - Wynonie Harris
10) Rocket 69 - Todd Rhodes
11) 10-Inch Record - Bull Moose Jackson
12) Black Diamond - Roy Brown
13) Jealous Love - Lula Reed
14) Bloodshot Eyes - Wynonie Harris
15) Sexy Ways - Hank Ballard & The Midnighters
16) Salty Dog - The Lamplighters
17) Monkey, Hips and Rice - The 5 Royales
18) T-99 - Tiny Bradshaw
19) Rock Love - Lula Reed
20) Wasn't That Good - Wynonie Harris
21) Annie Had A Baby - Hank Ballard & The Midnighters
22) Girl From Kokomo - Roy Brown
23) All Around the World - Little Willie John
24) I Want a Bow-Legged Woman - Bull Moose Jackson
25) Quiet Whiskey - Wynonie Harris
26) Use What You Got - Freddy King
27) Queen Of Diamonds - Roy Brown
28) Loving Machine - Wynonie Harris
29) Shake That Thing - Wynonie Harris
30) Adam Come Get Your Rib - Wynonie Harris

Continuing the King Comp re-ups, we come to Gabe's Dirty Blues which was donated to the blog by "Issaquah" over a decade ago. Originally there was a WAV version divided into smaller files, but that kind of disappeared in one of my periodic hard drive blow ups. The mp3 version is still very much with us so once again we can enjoy tales of Gabe's sleazy dive bars in Seattle and his jukebox stocked with naughty R&B records. Download includes full artwork plus a pdf document giving the background to the hunt for a vinyl copy of this collection, the ripping of the sides, and Gabe's immaculate taste in music.

Wednesday, 25 March 2020

Battle Of The Blues (King) - All 4 Volumes Re-upped

Side 1 (Roy Brown):
01) Boogie At Midnight
02) Big Town
03) Bar Room Blues
04) Love Don't Love Nobody
05) Miss Fanny Brown
06) Lolly Pop Mama
07) I've Got The Last Laugh Now

Side 2 (Wynonie Harris):
01) Bloodshot Eyes
02) Good Rockin' Tonight
03) Loving Machine
04) Shake That Thing
05) I Feel That Old Age Coming On
06) All She Wants To Do Is Rock
07) Good Morning Judge

Side 1 (Roy Brown):
01) Hard Luck Blues
02) Dreamin' Blues
03) 'Long About Sundown
04) Double Crossin' Woman
05) Sweet Peach - Roy Brown
06) Wrong Woman Blues
07) Brown Angel

Side 2 (Wynonie Harris):
01) Man, Have I Got Troubles
02) I'll Never Give Up
03) Here Comes The Night
04) Luscious Woman
05) Drinking Blues
06) Nearer My God To Thee
07) Tremblin'

Side 1 (Eddie Vinson):
01) Person To Person
02) I'm Weak But I'm Willing
03) Somebody Done Stole My Cherry Red
04) Queen Bee
05) Featherbed Mama
06) I Trusted You Baby
07) No Good Woman
08) Ashes On My Pillow

Side 2 (Jimmy Witherspoon):
01) The Last Mile
02) 24 Sad Hours
03) Blues In Trouble
04) Sad Life
05) Don't Tell Me How
06) Foolish Prayer
07) Highway To Happiness
08) I Done Told You

Side 1:
01) Big Mouth Gal - Eddie "Cleanhead" Vinson
02) Bring It Back - Wynonie Harris
03) If You Don't Think I'm Sinking - Eddie "Cleanhead" Vinson
04) Trouble At Midnight - Roy Brown
05) Peas And Rice - Eddie "Cleanhead" Vinson
06) Rock Mr Blues - Wynonie Harris

Side 2:
01) Lonesome Train - Eddie "Cleanhead" Vinson
02) Old Age Boogie - Roy Brown
03) Bald Headed Blues - Eddie "Cleanhead" Vinson
04) Grandma Plays The Numbers - Wynonie Harris
05) Good Bread Alley - Eddie "Cleanhead" Vinson
06) Queen Of Diamonds - Roy Brown

I've had a couple of  requests for re-ups recently - one for King Records comps and another for Earl Bostic LPs.

So let's start off with some King Comps, and the "Battle Of The Blues" series. These are in fairly low bitrates (192 kbps) and were ripped from m4a files sent in by Joan many years ago. The series was revived on the blog in 2016, so here they are again, and despite the low bitrate there's still plenty of whomp in the bomp on these suckers. Blues blast ahoy!

Coming soon - Gabe's Dirty Blues, new rips of some Old King Gold collections, enough Bostic to drive any normal person insane, and whatever else Be Bop Wino can come up with.

Stay safe out there in rockin' rhythm land.

Sunday, 22 March 2020

Rockin' n' Reelin' With The Cadets (Crown CLP 5015)

Side 1:
01) Stranded In The Jungle
02) I Want You
03) So Will I
04) I'll Be Spinning
05) Fools Rush In
06) Annie Met Henry

Side 2:
01) Heartbreak Hotel
02) Dancin' Dan
03) Church Bells May Ring
04) I Got Loaded
05) Rollin' Stone
06) Smack Dab In The Middle

Thanks to Marv for another Crown LP reconstruction. "Rockin' n' Reelin' With The Cadets" was issued in 1957 and may have been a reissue of Modern 1215 although there is uncertainty over whether the Modern release actually made it to the record shops.

This is one of the earlier Crown LPs and the presentation is classier than that of the Marvin & Johnny LP which was featured a few posts ago. The back cover doesn't consist of a generic paper list of other Crown releases carelessly glued on to the cardboard sleeve, and the front cover has a rather good photo of  The Cadets. Heck, there are even sleeve notes! So perhaps this particular platter won't be lurking in the bargain basement as it looks good enough to make it to the Vocal Groups browser in the main part of the virtual Be Bop Wino record shop.

As for The Cadets themselves, well they recorded for RPM as The Jacks, as well as being The Cadets on Modern. There's only one Jacks track on this compilation, the absolutely glorious "Smack Dab In The Middle" which features a lead vocal by one of the great R&B group bass singers, Will "Dub" Jones who later became a member of The Coasters.

The Cadets had a smoother, more professional sound than most of their fellow Los Angeles vocal groups which, combined with tight instrumental backing, resulted in some top class R&B discs. One possible problem though - a lot of their output consisted of cover versions of popular R&B and rock 'n' roll tracks, which means that The Cadets were never really famed for their own readily identifiable sound. A listen to the tracks on this LP, however, shows that the covers were very good indeed. Their biggest hit "Stranded In The Jungle" was originally recorded by The Jayhawks on Flash Records, but The Cadets version is for me the better of the two and ended up outselling the original.

As is usual when it comes to group sounds, I'll refer you to Marv Goldberg's site for the lowdown on who sang what and when -

Original Single Releases:

All singles released by The Cadets except RPM 428 by The Jacks.

Why Don't You Write Me? / Smack Dab In The Middle - The Jacks - RPM 428 - April 1955

Rollin' Stone / Fine Lookin' Baby - Modern 960 - May 1955

So Will I / Annie Met Henry - Modern 969 - September 1955

Church Bells May Ring / Heartbreak Hotel - Modern 985 - February 1956

Stranded In The Jungle / I Want You - Modern 994 - June 1956

Dancin' Dan / I Got Loaded - Modern 1000 - September 1956

I'll Be Spinning / Fools Rush In - Modern 1006 - November 1956

Recommended Purchase:

The Cadets Meet The Jacks - Stranded In The Jungle (Ace CDCHD 534)

When it comes to West Coast vocal group action, always turn to Ace!
Dub Jones is hereby inducted into the Be Bop Wino Hall Of Fame.
Thanks again to Marv for supplying the blog with great R&B sounds.

Friday, 20 March 2020

Roy Brown - Boogie At Midnight

Side 1:
01) Mighty Mighty Man
02) Boogie At Midnight
03) Cadillac Baby
04) Hard Luck Blues
05) Love Don't Love Nobody
06) Too Much Lovin' Ain't No Good
07) Big Town
08) Rock-A-Bye Baby

Side 2:
01) Answer To Big Town
02) Ain't No Rockin' No More
03) My Gal From Kokomo
04) Fannie Brown Got Married
05) Black Diamond
06) Shake 'Em Up Baby
07) Adorable One
08) Good Looking And Foxy Too

As Mr Pacino is wont to say, "Hoo Hah!" Here's another Charly comp of King (and De Luxe) sides which I bought many years ago and somehow never got round to digitising. A few years back I posted a Gusto 2LP set on Roy Brown and thought that there was no need to add this one, but on closer examination I see that this LP has some previously unissued sides (all excellent) plus some sides from Roy's late 1950s return to the King label. Besides that there's another Dave Gibson at Nozbig cover and, well, the whole thing is just a load of fun.

The usual extra info on the original issues on singles of the tracks is below plus there's a link to the Gusto 2 LP post which has been updated with new download links. We'll be rockin' through self isolation here on Be Bop Wino. Requested re-ups, more from Marv, and perhaps a few surprises coming along. Stay safe, folks.

Original Issues:

Mighty, Mighty Man / Miss Fanny Brown - De Luxe 1128 - February 1948

Boogie At Midnight / The Blues Got Me Again - De Luxe 3300 - November 1949

Hard Luck Blues / New Rebecca - De Luxe 3304 - June 1950

Love Don't Love Nobody / Dreaming Blues - De Luxe 3306 - September 1950

'Long About Sundown / Cadillac Baby - De Luxe 3308 - September 1950

 Billboard 9th September 1950

Train Time Blues / Big Town - De Luxe 3318 - July 1951

Gal From Kokomo / Ain't It A Shame - King 4731 - August 1954

Black Diamond / Worried Life Blues - King 4743 - October 1954

Fanny Brown Got Married / Queen Of Diamonds - King 4761 - December 1954

Shake 'Em Up Baby / Letter To Baby - King 4816 - July 1955

Good Looking And Foxy Too / Hard Luck Blues - King 5218 - July 1959

Ain't No Rocking No More / School Bell Rock - King 5247 - September 1959

Adorable One / Ain't Got No Blues Today - King 5333 - April 1960

Too Much Lovin' Ain't No Good; Rock-A-Bye Baby; Answer To Big Town - all previously unissued

The above post includes a write up on the career of Roy Brown. It's well worth grabbing this 2LP set from Gusto which was one of the first R&B records I bought back in the late 1970s. New download links have been added!

For rockin' high jinx - just follow the linx!

Wednesday, 18 March 2020

The Soul Of The Falcons

Side A:
01) Since You've Been Gone
02) Something Hit Me
03) I Found A Love
04) We Met In A Dream
05) Short & Nappy
06) I Got A Feeling
07) Love The Way You Walk
08) Searching For You Baby

Side B:
01) I Ain't No Cryin' Man
02) Round & Round
03) You've Got A Friend
04) Skinny Girl
05) Love At First Sight
06) Never Find Another Girl Like You
07) Stick By You
08) Swim

Thanks to Charlie B for donating this LP to the blog. This Relic collection is the third LP they issued of Falcons material (according to the sleevenotes) and by this stage they were digging deep into hitherto unissued material ...
So what you get here is raw (very raw!) vocal group rhythm 'n' blues from the streets of Detroit. Betcha thought that Fortune Records discs were the roughest R&B you could hear from the Motor City ... well hold that thought as you listen to this collection of demos, rehearsals, alternate takes and completely canned tracks recorded by The Falcons for labels such as Lu Pine and Kudo which were owned by their manager Robert West.

It is of course noteworthy that Mr. West was the uncle of THE Eddie Floyd, lead tenor on 5 of these tracks. Joe Stubbs, brother of the Four Top's Levi Stubbs leads on 3 of the tracks, the group backs Little Bee, Earl Martin and Joltin' Joe Howard (a Detroit DJ) on 5 more tracks, and finally there are three tracks on which the Falcons are led by Carlis "Sonny" Monroe, but that is a completely different lineup of the group.

The classic (but not the original) lineup of The Falcons was - Joe Stubbs, Eddie Floyd, Mack Rice, Willie Schofield and Lance Finnie. This was the group which had the R&B and pop hit with "You're So Fine" in the summer of 1959. The disc was originally released on the Robert West owned Flick label but as it started to take off West cut a deal with the United Artists owned Unart label, resulting in  a ten week stay in the Pop Top 40 chart, peaking at number 17.

Wilson Pickett was another alumnus of The Falcons, but he ain't here, as far as I can tell. The demo of "The Swim" on this LP has Joe Stubbs on lead vocal and not The Wicked Pickett as on the 1962 released version, which was the B-Side of The Falcon's big R&B hit "I Found A Love" on which Pickett also sang lead. The version of "I Found A Love" on this LP has Carlis "Sonny" Monroe on lead which brings us to the final version of The Falcons.

The classic Falcons broke up in the spring of 1963 and West, anxious to keep the name of his hit group alive, simply transferred the name to another of his groups, The Fabulous Playboys who were already an established if not particularly successful recording act. Their lead singer was Carlis "Sonny" Monroe and he can be heard on 3 tracks on this collection - "I Found A Love," "Love The Way You Walk," and "Stick By You." These tracks which all feature a basic piano accompaniment, probably originate from the same rehearsal session. This version of The Falcons lasted until 1970.

For the full story of The Falcons, the comings and goings, the label hopping, and the shooting of Robert West (non fatal) in a dispute over the management of Mary Wells, get yourself over to Marv Goldberg's site here - . The sleevenotes on the back cover of this LP are also very informative.
 Track Details:

01) Since You've Been Gone - The Falcons (Eddie Floyd) - unreleased
02) Something Hit Me - The Falcons with Little Bee - unreleased
03) I Found A Love - The Falcons II (Carlis Monroe) - rehearsal tape
04) We Met In A Dream - The Falcons with Earl Martin - unreleased
05) Short & Nappy - The Falcons (Eddie Floyd) rec. 15th April 1962 - unreleased
06) I Got A Feeling - The Falcons (Joe Stubbs) - unreleased
07) Love The Way You Walk - The Falcons II (Carlis Monroe) - rehearsal tape
08) Searching For You Baby - The Falcons with Joltin' Joe Howard - (demo?) Kudo 666 (1958)
09) I Ain't No Cryin' Man - The Falcons (Joe Stubbs) - unreleased
10) Round & Round - The Falcons (Eddie Floyd)- unreleased
11) You've Got A Friend - The Falcons with Earl Martin - unreleased
12) Skinny Girl - The Falcons (Eddie Floyd) rec. 15th April 1962 - unreleased
13) Love At First Sight - The Falcons with Little Bee - unreleased
14) Never Find Another Girl Like You - The Falcons (Eddie Floyd) - unreleased
15) Stick By You - The Falcons II (Carlis Monroe) - rehearsal tape
16) Swim - The Falcons (Joe Stubbs) - demo of Lu-Pine 103

Thanks once again to Charlie B for the sounds and scans of this raw but righteous LP.

Monday, 16 March 2020

Marvin & Johnny (Crown LP 5381)

Side 1:
01) Cherry Pie
02) Ain't That Right
03) Tell Me Darling (Long Tall Marvin)
04) Sometimes I Wonder
05) Sweet Potato

Side 2:
01) Tick Tock
02) Have Mercy Miss Percy (Long Tall Marvin)
03) Dear One
04) Will You Love Me
05) I Wanna

Sometimes I think of the Be Bop Wino blog as a kind of ersatz radio station, at other times I think of it as a virtual record shop. So you're walking down the street in a slightly louche quarter of a big city and you come across a shop with "Be Bop Wino - New 'n' Second Hand Records" on a faded sign above the window which contains a selection of LP sleeves beckoning, yes, beckoning, to your inner rhythmatic urges. You've just got to go in, and it's an Aladdin's cave of vinyl and even shellac and maybe some 'zines such as "Blues & Rhythm" and a few fly blown, dust covered copies of "Kicks."

Despite the slightly run down appearance of the shop which has perhaps seen better days (as has its owner), you get the impression that it is a carefully curated emporium, with the browsers clearly labelled as "Blues" or "R&B" or "Vocal Groups" or "Instrumentals" or "Soul Jazz" or "Swing."

You notice a doorway towards the rear of the shop with a hand written cardboard sign above it saying "bargain basement" and down a narrow staircase you go into a dimly lit cellar which smells slightly of damp and here they be, the bargain bins full of remaindered and second hand LPs. There's no sign of any organisation here, just browsers crammed with album sleeves. At first glance it doesn't look very promising - lots of garish cardboard sleeves in not very good condition, with promises of "Million Seller Hits," numerous invitations to a "Rock 'n' Roll Dance Party" and opportunities to "Twist" with Jimmy McCracklin or Etta James.

Unless you're one of the hip crowd, you've probably never heard of many of the artists on these albums but if you're in the know then you quickly realise that there are treasures in this most unpromising of locations.

Your eye is caught by a sleeve which is slightly less cheap looking than most of the stuff here and so you pull out this Marvin & Johnny LP which boasts a painting of the musicians. It's even got an artist's signature "Fazzio" although if truth be told the "painting" of Marvin & Johnny is in fact an airbrushed photo. Thick cardboard sleeve, no inner sleeve, no info on the back cover which is just a sheet of paper with a list of other releases on this label, Crown, and by St. Nicholas of Tosches most of them seem to be the most appalling schlock. And there's only 5 tracks on each side. But hell, it's only pennies to buy so buy it you do and once you get it home you realise you've got ten tracks of primo R&B / Rock 'n' Roll, for Crown was the budget LP outlet for the Los Angeles based Modern / RPM diskery.

And thanks to regular donor Marv for reconstituting this fine example of a cheapo LP of West Coast rhythm 'n' blues. "Marvin & Johnny" was issued in 1963 but 7 of its 10 sides were issued on singles between 1954 and 1956 on the Modern label.

"Marvin" was Marvin Phillips, once the tenor sax player in the band of The Great Gates and also one of a tenor sax duo with Emory Perry. He was friends with singer / pianist / songwriter Jesse Belvin and the pair were both members of a vocal group called Three Dots And a Dash which was formed by Big Jay McNeely to feature in his live concerts and on his recordings for Imperial in 1950-51. Belvin left the McNeely outfit and Phillips took over on lead vocals. The two were reunited as a vocal duo on Specialty Records in 1953 when they had a hit with "Dream Girl" as Jesse and Marvin.

When Belvin left for the Army, Phillips kept the vocal duo going under the name of "Marvin and Johnny" with a series of further releases on Specialty. "Johnny" was initially Carl Green (of the Turks) and then Marvin's old sax partner Emory Perry (this is the duo on the LP cover). The pair transferred over to Modern Records where they had a hit with "Tick Tock" / "Cherry Pie."

Most of the sides on this LP feature the Phillips / Perry duo. "Will You Love Me" has Rufus Anderson as "Johnny" while on "Ain't That Right" Phillips and Perry are joined by Jesse Belvin. Note that two of the tracks, "Have Mercy Miss Percy" and "Tell Me Darling" are Marvin Phillips solo efforts under the name Long Tall Marvin.

This brief article by Marv Goldberg details the various singers behind "Johnny" in the duo's 1950s recordings for Specialty, Modern and Aladdin.

 Original Releases:

Tick Tock / Cherry Pie - Modern 933 - July 1954

Ko Ko Mo / Sometimes I Wonder - Modern 949 - January 1955

Will You Love Me / Sweet Dreams - Modern 968 - September 1955

Ain't That Right / Let Me Know - Modern 974 - November 1955

Have Mercy Miss Percy / Tell Me Darling - Long Tall Marvin - Modern 933 - June 1956

Sweet Potato; I Wanna; Dear One; first issued on this LP.

Elsewhere On The Blog:

Two compilations of Aladdin sides feature some Marvin and Johnny tracks:

Recommended Purchase:

Cherry Pie - Ace CDCHD 509

Thanks once again to Marv for Marvin & Johnny.

Saturday, 7 March 2020

Tiny Bradshaw - Breaking Up The House

Side 1:
01) Breaking Up The House
02) Walk That Mess
03) The Train Kept A-Rollin'
04) T-99
05) Bradshaw Boogie
06) Walkin' The Chalk Line
07) Mailman's Sack
08) Snaggle Tooth Ruth

Side 2:
01) Rippin' And Runnin'
02) The Blues Came Pouring Down
03) Two Dry Bones On The Pantry Shelf
04) Brad's Blues
05) Boodie Green
06) Well Oh Well
07) Newspaper Boy Blues
08) One, Two, Three, Kick Blues

A 1980s Charly comp which includes some (but not all) of Tiny Bradshaw's R&B hits from the early 1950s. The emphasis on this collection is on the vocal efforts of bandleader Bradshaw who was a fine blues shouter, plus sides featuring vocalists Tiny Kennedy and Dorena Deane.

In an earlier post of the LP "A Tribute To The Late Tiny Bradshaw" there is an overview of Bradshaw's career detailing his evolution from 1930s big band front man, through small group swing in the mid 1940s, to leader of a stomping R&B jump band when he joined King Records in late 1949. His raucous brand of hard rocking jump blues sold well in the early 1950s with "Well Oh Well" reaching number 2 in the R&B charts in May 1950 while "I'm Going To Have Myself A Ball" was at number 5 in October 1950, and "Walkin' The Chalk Line" reached number 10 in September 1951.

Billboard, July 1950

Two hits in 1953, "Soft" and "Heavy Juice" were instrumentals featuring Red Prysock on tenor sax. These set the pattern for much of the band's remaining recorded output in 1954 and 1955 as ill health (a series of strokes or heart attacks depending on who you read) forced Tiny to increasingly take a back seat as far as musical activity was concerned. The band however did keep going, with Red Prysock being replaced by Sil Austin who was in turn replaced by Noble "Thin Man" Watts on a series of good instrumental releases for the juke box crowd.

Billboard June 1954 - the last Tiny disc to see chart action

The tracks on this LP were recorded between 1950 and 1952 when Bradshaw's blues ballin' and squallin' was at its artistic and commercial height. His powerful voice was backed by a suitably powerful band which featured tenor sax man Rufus Gore and Orrington Hall on alto and baritone saxes. When Gore left he was replaced by former Tiny Grimes sax player Red Prysock although Gore would return to join Prysock and Hall in a blow the roof off the joint sax lineup.

So this LP is mostly classic Tiny although there are a couple of tracks ("Rippin' And Runnin'" and "Newspaper Boy Blues") where vocals, both male and "female" parts, are by Tiny Kennedy. There's also "One, Two, Three, Kick Blues" where the band backs bloozy chantoozy Dorena Deane. A welcome bonus is a hitherto unreleased track "Snaggle Tooth Ruth" which is lots of fun. All this and a classic 1980s Nozbig cover by Dave Gibson. What more could you want, rhythm fans?

Original Release Details:

Well Oh Well / I Hate You - King 4357 - April 1950

Boodie Green / After You've Gone - King 4376 - August 1950

Breaking Up The House / If You Don't Love Me, Tell Me So - King 4417 - December 1950

Walk That Mess / One, Two, Three, Kick Blues - King 4427 - February 1951

Two Dry Bones On The Pantry Shelf / Brad's Blues - King 4447 - April 1951

Bradshaw Boogie / Walkin' The Chalk Line - King 4457 - June 1951

T-99 / Long Time Baby - King 4487 - September 1951

The Train Kept A-Rollin' / Knockin' Blues - King 4497 - February 1952

Mailman's Sack / Newspaper Boy Blues - King 4537 - April 1952

Lay It On The Line / Rippin' And Runnin' - King 4547 - July 1952

Heavy Juice / The Blues Came Pouring Down - King 4621 - May 1953

Snaggle Tooth Ruth - first issued on this LP

Elsewhere On The Blog:

King LP of mainly instrumental sides by the Bradshaw band. Includes the two big hits featuring Red Prysock, "Soft" and "Heavy Juice." Post includes biography of Tiny Bradshaw.

Krazy Kat compilation of best of Bradshaw (no "Soft" though) quite a bit of duplication with "Breaking Up The House."

General update post on all things Tiny Bradshaw on the blog, including links to El Enmascarado's 78 rpm singles:

Scan by El Enmascarado

Above 2 scans from Joan

More R&B coming soon including loose as a goose West Coast sounds from Marv, untamed Detroit vocal group shenanigans from Charlie B and an LP by an old favourite ripped by my good self. Perhaps another look at Earl Bostic to be thrown in? Stay tuned.