We proudly present the second round up of El Enmascarado’s rips from original R&B
78 rpm discs. The mood is more relaxed and cooler than on the somewhat more
heated Volume One of the series, with the exception of the opening blaster,
“Headhunter” by Johnny Otis. There’s plenty swingin’ and jivin’ for you cool
cats which you can download from here:
With many, many thanks to El Enmascarado for his work in
rescuing these original ten inchers, many of which are in very poor condition.
Volume Three is already shaping up, with a few of its tracks already posted and
more in the pipeline. Stay cool, you swing, jump and jive fans!
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 Derby
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 Detroit
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
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 …
OMG as they say – “Four
O’clock In the Morning” by The Tornadoes which featured in an earlier Be Bop Wino
post of Chess doo wop sides. A post which staggered drunkenly from weepy disc
to weepy disc as your lovelorn blog host sought solace in a bottle of 12 year
old Scotch while lying on the floor by the turntable … and here we are once
more, with yours truly having gone through the complete loved and lost cycle
again since that last post and now Joan comes up with this one! I ain’t gonna
make it to the end of this comp I tells ya …
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
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. “Blue Island”
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!
Both sides were recorded in Cincinnati
on July 29th, 1953.
Personnel: Bill Hardman (tp); Andrew Penn (tb); Sil Austin, Rufus Gore (ts);
Jimmy Robinson (p); Sam Jones (b); Philip Paul (d)
The record was released in October, 1953. Sil Austin made
his recording debut for the Bradshaw band at this session, having replaced Red Prysock who left earlier in the year to start a successful solo career. Thanks
are due to El Enmascarado for unearthing this 78 rpm disc.
El Enmascarado comments: “South Of The Orient/Later by Tiny
Bradshaw is on a white label promo/DJ copy. Although it looked pristine and
pretty much unplayed, it had more surface grit than I expected. That might
possibly have something to do with the disc seeming to be made out of vinyl
rather than shellac.
South Of The Orient is kind of Afro/Exotica with a mambo
beat. It's mostly piano bass and drums, although the horns play quietly in a
Later is a more straight ahead jump number. The drummer
plays brushes rather than sticks, which tend to give it a lighter feel.”
This disc was released after Tiny Bradshaw had enjoyed two
substantial instrumental R&B chart hits in 1953 – “Soft” and “Heavy Juice.”
Unfortunately “South Of The Orient” failed to live up to the success of the two
preceding Bradshaw releases. It may be that “South Of The Orient” was a little
too exotic and “jazzy” for the R&B crowd.
Billboard Magazine reviewed “South Of The Orient” thus:
“This Oriental flavoured effort bears a close kinship to some of the work being
turned out by the bopsters today, but the pulsating tempo and the bright drum
work make it a listenable hunk of wax. Good for jazz jocks.”
As for “Later” Billboard commented: “The Tiny Bradshaw ork
has a happy time with this riff instrumental that is more jazz than r&b. It
swings and it should please a lot of the cats.”
Here’s your chance to hear the two numbers that made it big
for Tiny Bradshaw in 1953. “Soft” was released in late 1952 and peaked at
number 3 in the R&B charts, spending most of spring 1953 on the best
selling list. “Heavy Juice” was a smaller hit, reaching number 9 in August
If you own the copyright of any music posted here and wish to have it removed from the blog, please contact me at the above email address and it will be removed forthwith.
Dedicated to REAL R&B, Rock'n'Roll, Blues and Jazz
This is a site dedicated to rockin' 1940s and 1950s music, ripped from vinyl. Some cuts are a bit on the rough side. If you're looking for audio perfection you're on the wrong site baby! If you like what you hear on this site please buy this kind of music. There are many reasonably priced reissues available from web dealers or perhaps from your local record shop, if it still exists. These reissues will be in far better sound quality than the vinyl rips on this site and they will usually have more up to date liner notes and info, so go out and splash a little cash now and again. Help keep those reissue labels going in these difficult times.
No in-print CDs will be posted here. In fact no CDs will be posted here. I will occasionally list recommended purchases to help you hear more from artists featured on the blog.
"The night is the corridor of history, not the history of famous people or great events, but that of the marginal, the ignored, the supressed, the unacknowledged; the history of vice, of error, of confusion, of fear, of want; the history of intoxication, of vainglory, of delusion, of dissipation, of delirium." Luc Sante - Low Life