1 Come On Little Baby - The Kings
2 Every Night About This Time - The Sophomores
3 It's Too Late Now - The Cufflinks
4 Never - The Dundees
5 Tree In The Meadow - The Carnations
6 Tomorrow Night - The Serenaders
7 Until You - The Delmonicos
8 In The Morning - The Tornadoes
9 Girl Friend – The Five Scalders
1 Why Go On Pretending - The Haven Knights
2 I'm In Love - The Velvet Angels
3 Here I Am Broken Hearted - The Roomates
4 Nellie - The Invictas
5 I Love You Really I Do - The Tantones
6 Juke Box Rock 'n' Roll - The Marigolds
7 I've Been Dreaming - The Rogues
8 Crying My Heart Out - The Masters
Blue Island - The
Number four in Joan’s new series, and perhaps the best yet? Over to Joan –
In this volume there’s something for everyone. The Cufflinks from South Central Los Angeles, of "Guided Missile" fame show that they have mastery of the slow ballad as well. The extremely scarce and collectible "Never" by the Dundees, has namesake Carlyle Dundee on lead. Very few of these have ever surfaced, and most collectors have never even seen it over the last 30 years.
"Tree in the Meadow" is a dreamy early 1950's ballad from the
record company. The Serenaders’ rendition
of Lonnie Johnson's "Tomorrow Night" is a most credible
send-up, incidentally is also extremely scarce on Detroit's
The Five Scalders, also from
are represented here on Volume Four with Girl Friend on Detroit's
Drummond marque. The Tornadoes on Chicago's
legendary Chess label, are one of just a few doo wop groups on Chess (other
than the Moonglows and Flamingoes), with their "Four O'Clock In The
Johnny Bragg takes the lead on the Marigolds up tempo "Juke Box Rock 'N' Roll". Bragg had his singing roots in the legendary Sun records Prisonaires vocal group, where he was lead harmony. Also in Volume 4 an interesting acapella issue with "I'm In Love" by the Velvet Angels, who by all accounts were the reformed Diablos several years after the original Nolan Strong and the Diablos disbanded. Rumor has it that Nolan Strong was in the harmony on this one, but not as lead vocalist.
Boogiewoody takes you through Joan’s platters that matter and tells you why this is one hell of a comp:
“Come On Little Baby” by The Kings is a breathless rush of 1950s adrenalin complete with searing sax that lasts about ten seconds then we’re straight into the kind of vocal group track that Joan knows I love – a 1950s reworking of a sophisticated ballad – “Every Night About this Time” which is an old Ink Spots number, here given the dreamy treatment by The Sophomores. And we’re gonna stay in dreamland for the next few tracks, so close your eyes and relax baby ‘cos here come The Cufflinks on Dootsie Williams’ Dooto label with a slab of pure 1950s longing – “It’s Too Late Now.” Yeah, she wants you back but you’ve found somebody else so you can tell her you’re through – or are you?
The slow numbers continue with “Never” which may be the ultimate “we’re through” song in which a terrific lead vocal by Carlyle Dundee soars triumphantly over an out of tune piano. We’re stayin’ sentimental with “Tree In The Meadow” by The Carnations which comes with an Ink Spots style guitar intro and there’s no “so long and get lost baby” sentiments here – just a plain and simple “I’ll Love You Forever.”
And now for an over the top vocal group version of “Tomorrow Night” a song which was a huge hit for Lonnie Johnson in 1948 and that was kind of unlikely ‘cos Lonnie was an innovative blues guitarist and vocalist and “Tomorrow Night” was a piece of Tin Pan Alley pop written in 1939. And I simply don’t know what to make of this out to lunch version by The Serenaders, whomsoever they might have been … I think I like it. Judge for yourselves.
Things sure liven up with an obviously worn to a frazzle disc of “Until You” by The Delmonicos, who kind of remind me of Dion and the Belmonts. Go for it, guys! And then …
Phew, things speed up a bit now with “Girl Friend” which is a basic piece of teen pop with a great sax player on there in among the generic infantile lyrics. Second half coming up …
More sentimental teen type stuff from The Haven Knights but these guys have class. And now here’s some pure vocal joy – a brilliant acapella performance from The Velvet Angels with “I’m In Love.” There’s a definite heavy gospel influence on this one. And here’s where the art of the compilation kicks in as Joan keeps it unaccompanied with The Roomates showing off their chops on “Here I Am Broken Hearted.” The lyrics might seem trite but what a performance!
And now for a full yackety sax driven R&B performance of “Nellie” by The Invictas which shifts the mood nicely and we stay up tempo with the Tantones and their slightly weird falsetto lead vocal on another R&B stomper – “I Love You Really I Do.” This is deep doo wop and I love it!
Right, it’s time for a one hundred per cent stone classic piece of rockin’ rhythm and blues. Yes, it’s The Marigolds led by the incomparable Johnny Bragg on a genuine blaster “Juke Box Rock ‘n’ Roll.” There are no words to describe the sheer genius of this one.
Gettin’ near the end and the scene shifts to a public toilet where we find The Rogues plus rhythm and sax squeezed into a cubicle with a microphone as they frantically belt out “I’ve Been Dreaming.” All good things must indeed come to an end so how does Joan bring this work of art to a close? Well, there’s a big, big sentimental ending with “Crying My Heart Out” by the solid gone The Masters. Can’t top that? Oh yes you can, if you’re as deeply into this kind of music as Joan is. “
by The Rannels evokes a whole lost era of rock ‘n’ roll and r&b in a couple
of minutes of sheer artistry. And that’s it folks. A long lost decade summed up
in eighteen obscure and semi obscure records. That’s what I call a compilation!
Ripped in various bit rates.
01 - The Kings - Come On Little Baby - 1958 - Jalo 203
02 - The Sophomores - Every Night About This Time - 1956 - Dawn 216
03 - The Cufflinks - It'S Too Late Now 1957 - Dooto 422
04 - The Dundees - Never – 1954 - Space 201
05 - The Carnations - Tree In The Meadow - 1952
06 - The Serenaders - Tomorrow Night - 1952 JVB 2001
07 - The Delmonicos - Until You – 1964 - Musictone 6122
08 - The Tornadoes - In The Morning - 1956 - Chess 1649
09 - The Five Scalders - Girl Friend – 1956 - Drummond 4-3001
10 - The Haven Knights - Why Go On Pretending – 1957 - Atlas 1092
11 - The Velvet Angels - I'm In Love – 1964 - Medieval 201 (The Diablos, acapella)
12 - The Roomates - Here Am I Broken Hearted - Unreleased
13 - The Invictas - Nellie – 1959 - Jack Bee 1003
14 - The Tantones - I love you really I do – 1956 - Lamp 2002
15 - The Marigolds - Juke Box Rock 'n' Roll – 1956 - Excello 2091
16 - The Rogues - I've Been Dreamin - 1958 -
1056 Old Town
17 - The Masters - Crying My Heart Out - 1958 Le Sage 713
18 - The Rannels -
Island – 1963 - Boss 2122
With thanks to Joan.
With thanks to Joan.