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.

Monday 29 January 2018

Joan's Comps - Some New Links

There have been several requests recently for updated links for six of Joan's compilations of crackly 45's (the only way to listen to R&B and Rock 'n' Roll!). The re-ups are: Joan Selects Volume 19; Joan Selects Volume 10; Joan Selects Encore Appearance; Joan Selects Encore Appearance Volume 2; Joan Spins Again Volume 2; Joan Spins Again Volume 3. New links plus tracklists below -

01 Rufus Hunter and the Masters - Purple Stew - Aladdin 45-3440
02 The Halos - Nag - 7 Arts S 709
03 Vito and the Salutations - Unchained Melody - Herald H-583
04 Andre Williams - Pass The Biscuits Please - Fortune 839X
05 The Lamplighters - Be Bop Wino - Federal 45-12152
06 The Chips - Rubber Biscuit - Josie 45-803
07 The Marcels - Friendly Loans - Colpix CP 651
08 The Marquees - Hey Little School Girl - Okeh 4-7096
09 The Pentagons - Silly Dilly - Specialty 644
10 The Imperials - Shimmy, Shimmy, Ko-Ko-Bop - End 1060
11 Richard Berry and the Pharoes - Louie, Louie - Flip 45-321
12 The Chalets - Fat - Fat - Fat! Mom - Mi - O - True-Lite 1001
13 The Chandeliers - Dancing In The Congo - Angle Tone 529-3
14 The Monotones - The Legend Of Sleepy Hollow - Argo 5321
15 The Spaniels - Play It Cool - Vee Jay VJ-1116
16 The Stereos - I Really Love You - Cub K9095
17 The Fascinators - Fried Chicken & Macaroni - Capitol 45-CL-15062
18 The Three Friends - Dedicated (To The Songs I Love) - Imperial X5763
19 The Cellos - The Be-Bop Mouse - Apollo 516-45
20 The Belmonts – Street Corner Symphony
21 Sheriff and the Revels - Shomblor - Vee Jay VJ 306
22 Rick and The Keens - Peanuts - Le Cam 721
23 12 Year Old Richard Lanham - On Your Radio - Acme 45-A-712
24 The Devotions - Rip Van Winkle - Roulette R-4541
25 Nino and The Ebb Tides - Jukebox Saturday Night - Madison M166
26 The Olympics - Western Movies - Demon FF-1508
27 The Delroys - Bermuda Shorts - Apollo 514
28 The Dandeliers - Chop Chop Boom - States 147
29 The Savoys - Yacka Hoom Boom - Combo 75
30 The Capris - Morse Code Of Love - Ambient Sound 02697
31 The Visuals - The Submarine Race - Popular #115

01 - John Brim - Gary Stomp - Parrot 799B
02 - Roosevelt Sykes - Security Blues - United 129
03 - Piano Red - Rockin' with Red - RCA Victor 50-0099
04 - Fats Domino - Korea Blues - Imperial 5099
05 - Memphis Slim - Mother Earth - Premium 867
06 - Ray Charles and the Maxim Trio - Rockin' Chair Blues
07 - Ivory Joe Hunter - All States Boogie - King
08 - Doctor Ross - Chicago Breakdown - Sun 193
09 - Slim Harpo - Rainin' In My Heart - Excello 2273
10 - J.T. Brown - Dumb Woman Blues - Meteor 5016
11 - Otis Spann - Five Spot - Checker 807
12 - James Sugarboy Crawford - She's Gotta Wobble (When She Walks) - Imperial 45x5424
13 - Big Boy Groves - I Got A New Car - Spark 114
14 - Johnny Moore's Three Blazers - Dragnet Blues - Modern 910
15 - Dr. Ross - Cat Squirrel - Fortune 857
16 - Jerry McCain - My Next Door Neighbor - Excello
17 - Cecil Gant - I Wonder - Gilt Edge 501
18 - John Lee Hooker - 609 Boogie - Chance CH-1122
19 - Wee Willie Wayne - I Remember - Imperial 5355
20 - Buddy Boy Hawkins - Voice Throwin' Blues
21 - J.T. Brown - Sax-ony Boogie - Meteor 5016
22 - Smiley Lewis - Lille Mae - Imperial 5194
23 - BB King - Miss Martha King - Bullet 309
24 - The Blues Rockers - Johnny Mae - Excello 2062
25 - Dr. Ross - Come Back Baby - Sun 193
26 - JB Lenoir - Eisenhower Blues - Parrot 802
27 - Elmore James - Country Boogie - Checker 777
28 - Little Walter - Roller Coaster - Checker 817
29 - Marie Adams - I'm Gonna Play The Honky Tonks - Peacock 1583
30 - Hal Page - Thunderbird - J & S 1601
31 - James Wayne - Tend To Your Business - Sittin In With 588
32 - Memphis Minnie - Me and my chauffeur - Checker 771
33 - Peg 'N' Whistle Red - A To Z Blues
34 - Percy Mayfield - Please Send Me Someone To Love - Specialty 375
35 - Lightning Hopkins - My California - Aladdin 3262
36 - Johnny Ace And Big Mama Thornton - Yes, Baby - Duke 118
37 - Kokomo Arnold - Milk Cow Blues
38 - Blow-Top Lynn - School Boy Blues - RCA 50-0110
39 - Little Walter Jacops - Muskadine Blues - Regal 3296
40 - Harmonica Fats - Tore Up - Darcy 5000

1)  The Spiedels - Dear Joan  Release:  Crosley  201 (1958)
2)  The Gems - Talk About The Weather   Release: Drexel 901 (1954)
3)  The De-Vaurs - Boy In Mexico   Release: Moon 105 (1959)
4)  Ferris and the Wheels -  He Was A Fortune Teller  Release:  United Artists 458  (1962)
5)  The Whirlwinds - Heartbeat  Release:  Phillips 40139  (1967)
6)  The Four Plaid Throats - My Inspiration  Release:  Mercury 70143
7)  The Four Buddies - Ooh-Ow  Release:  Savoy 888  (1953)
8)  The Valaquons - Teardrops  Release:  Laguna 102 (1964)
9)   Mary Edwards & The Saxons - Oh! Oh! Mama   Release: Meteor 5031 (1956)
10)  Bo Diddley and the Carnations - Don't Let It Go  Release:
11)   Joey and the Lexingtons - Tears From My Eyes  Release:  Dunes 2029  (1962)
12)   The Metrotones -  Skitter Skatter  Release:  Reserve 116  (1954)
13)   The Jets - Heaven Above Me  Release:  Gee 1020  (1956)
14)   The  Rhythm Masters - Until Now   Release: Bennett 1949
15)   The Roamers -  I'll Never Get Over You  Release:  Savoy 1147 (1955)
16)   The Videls - We Belong Together  Release: Musicnote 117  (1963)
17)   The Blue Dots - My Very Own  Release: Hurricane 104  (1959)
18)   The Marshall Brothers - Why Make A Fool Out Of Me  Release: Savoy 873 (1952)
19)    The Quarternotes - Hold Me Darling  Release: Little Star 112 (1962)
20)   The Crystals - My Heart's Desire   Release: Apollo 462  (1954) (also known as the Opals)
21)   The Mighty Dukes - Why Can't I Have You   Release: Duke 104  (1952)
22)    The Velvetones - Penalty Of Love  Release: D 1649  (1959)
23)   The Daylighters - I Love The Life I Live Release:
24)  The Nic-Nacs -  I Found Me A Sugar Daddy  Release: RPM 313  (1949)
25)   The Mixers - Casanova  Release: Bold 102 (1959)
26)   The Velvet Angels - I'm In Love  Release:  Medieval 201
27)  The Dikes - Dont Leave Me Poor  Release: Federal 12249  (1955)
28)   The Marvells - Did She Leave You  Release: Magnet 1005  (1959)
29)  The Empires - Sittin' On Top Of The World  Release:
30)   The Twigs - Lover Boy  Release:  Hollywood 1026  (1954)
31)   The Four Buddies - You Mean Everything To Me  Release: Club 51  103  (1956)
32)   The Riffs -  Little Girl  Release: Sunny 22 (1964)
33)   The Impressors - Do You Love Her  Release: Cub 9010  (1958)
34)   The Lyrics - I'm In Love  Release:  Hy-Tone  111  (1958)
35)   The Quarternotes - Hold Me Darling  Release: Little Star 112  (1962)

01 - The Velvetones - Glory Of Love - Release:  Aladdin 45-3372
02 - The Enchanters - True Love Gone - Release:  Coral 8-61756
03 - The Swans - Wedding Bells, Oh Wedding Bells - Release:  Fortune 813
04 - The Corvets - I'm Going To Cry - Release:  Moon 100
05 - The Jayhawks - Counting My Teardrops - Release: Flash 104
06 - The Esquires - Only The Angels Know - Release: Hi-Po 103
07 - The Squires - A Dream Come True - Release:  Kicks 1-F
08 - The Diablos - The Wind - Release:  Fortune 511
09 - The Ink Spots - If I Didn't Care - Release: Decca 9-23632
10 - The Medallions - The Letter - Release:  Dootone 347
11 - The Delicardos - Letter To A School Girl - Release: Elgey 1001
12 - The Tellers - Tears Fell From My Eyes - Release: Fire 1038
13 - The Supremes - Just For You and I - Release:  Ace 534
14 - The Dukes - I'll Find Her - Release: Imperial x5385
15 - The Velvitones - A Prayer At Gettysburgh - Release: Milmart 113x45
16 - The Gates -  Summer Night Love - Release: Peach 716
17 - The Five Willows - Dolores 1 - Release:  Allen 1002x45
18 - The Teardrops - Come Back To Me - Release: Sampson 634-A
19 - The Quintones - The Lonely Telephone - Release: Jordan 1601
20 - The Ink Spots - We Three (My Echo, My Shadow and Me) - Release:  Decca 9-23634
21 - The Equallos -  Beneath The Sun - Release: M & M
22 - The Rockaways - I'm Not Going Steady - Release: Epic 9226
23 - The El Pollos - These Four Letters - Release: Studio St. 999
24 - The Twisters - This Is The End - Release: Sunset 501
25 - The Gainors - The Secret - Release: Cameo 151
26 - The Spinners -  My Love and Your Love - Release: Rhythm 125
27 - The Blue Jays - Write Me A Letter - Release: BlueJay  1002
28 - The Esquires - My Dearest, My Darling - Release: Odyssey
29 - The Melotones - Prayer Of Love - Release: Lee Tone 700
30 - The Smoothtones - Bring Back Your Love (To Me) - Release:  Jem 412-45
31 - The Jupiters - It Takes Two - Release: Planet X  9621
32 - The Ebonaires -  Love Call - Release: Lena L-1001
33 - The Lovers - A Lonely Island - Release: Derby 1030
34 - The Execs - Walking In The Rain - Release: Fargo 1055
35 - The Velvetones -  Found My Love - Release: Aladdin 45-3391
36 - The Five Embers -  Please Come Home - Release:  Gem 224
37 - The Blenders - It Takes Time - Release:  AFO 305
38 - The Five Kids - Carolyn - Release: Maxwell 101 (2 known copies)
39 - The Whispers - Are You Sorry - Release: Gotham G-7-312
40 - The Ink Spots - When You Come To The End Of The Day - Release: King 45--1425

1 - The Twilighters - Half Angel  MGM 55014 1955
2 - The Caverliers - Dynaflow   Atlas 1031 1954
3 - The Demens - The Greatest of Them All  Teenage 1008 1957
4 - The Five Bells - Please Remember My Heart   Stolper 100
5 - The Mello-Drops - I Want Your Love Imperial Unreleased
6 - The Crystals - Squeeze Me Baby   Luna 101 1954
7 - The Gazelles - Pretty Baby, Baby   Gotham 315 1956
8 - The Five Hollywood Blue Jays - So Worried  Recorded In Hollywood 185 1951
9 - The Hornets - Crying Over You   Flash 125  1957
10 - The Billy Dawn Quartet - You Will Always Find Me True Firefly 332  
11 - The Gems - The Darkest Night   Drexel 909 1956
12 - The Love Notes - Treat Me Right   
13 - The Dukes - Come On And Rock    Imperial (Unreleased)
14 - The Shadows - Bop-Alena    Delta 1509  1958
15 - The Belvederes - We Two   Baton 217 1955
16 - The True-Tones - Why Oh Why   
17 - The Bombers - Two Time Heart   Orpheus 1105  1956
18 - The Marylanders - Good Old 99   Jubilee 5114  1953

1 - The Duponts - Must Be Falling In Love  Winley 212 / Savoy 1552 (1958) (F/b Little Anthony Gourdine)
2 - The Carnations - The Angels Sent You To Me  Savoy 1172 (1955)
3 - The V-8s - Pretty Girl  Most 711 (1959)
4 - The Orients - Shouldn't I  Laurie 3232  (1964)
5 - The Hi-Liters  - Feelin' Allright This Morning Vee Jay (Unreleased) (1958)   
6 - The Centenniels - The Wayward Wind  Dot 16180  (1961)
7 - The Concords - You Can't Stay Here  Harlem 2332  (1955)
8 - The Calvaes - Anna Morcora   Checker 928  (1959) (F/b Oscar Boyd)
9 - The Five Embers - Love Tears  Gem 227  (1955)
10 - The King Odum Four - All Of Me   Derby 
11 - The Gentlemen - Baby Don't Go  Apollo 470  (1954)
12 - The Thrillers - 'Lizabeth  Herald 432  (1954)
13 - Little June and the Januarys - Hello  Salem 188  (1959)
14 - The Masterkeys - Mr. Blues Abbey 2017   
15 - The Impalas - Why  Corvet 1017  (1958)
16 - The Invictas - Gone So Long  Jack Bee 1003  (1959)
17 - The Five Stars - Sweet Names Note (1956)  
18 - The Four Buddies - Sweet Tooth For My Baby  Savoy 866  (1952)

Monday 22 January 2018

LaVern Baker - Real Gone Gal

Side 1:
01. How Can You Leave A Man Like This?
02. Jim Dandy
03. My Happiness Forever
04. Fee Fi Fo Fum
05. Jim Dandy Got Married
06. Substitute
07. Whipper Snapper
08. Voodoo Voodoo

Side 2:
01. I Cried A Tear
02. He's A Real Gone Guy
03. I Waited Too Long
04. Tiny Tim
05. Shake A Hand
06. Bumble Bee
07. Hey Memphis
08. See See Rider

Born in Chicago in 1929, Dolores Baker did not have to look beyond her family for musical inspiration. Her aunt was Merline Johnson (The Yas Yas Girl) who recorded many blues sides in Chicago in the late 1930's and early '40's for labels such as Bluebird, Vocalion and the original OKeh. A more distant relative was major blues singer Memphis Minnie. 

Dolores' first musical experience was singing in her Baptist church choir but as early as the age of ten she was appearing in amateur nights in Chicago clubs. Upon reaching the age of seventeen she was able to sign a professional contract at one of the major clubs, the Club DeLisa where she appeared regularly in reviews.

Back in the early 1940's one of the most popular acts to appear at the DeLisa had been Little Miss Cornshucks (real name Mildred Jorman) who would take to the stage dressed as a little bitty country gal straight off the farm, barefooted, in braids and ribbons and carrying a basket. She would then wow audiences with ballads like "So Long," "Try A Little Tenderness" and "For Old Time's Sake." When Dolores arrived at the DeLisa, Little Miss Cornshucks had already left the Chicago scene and was touring nationally. The future Lavern Baker was seen as a suitable replacement and thus she became "Little Miss Sharecropper," a Cornshucks look alike.

Dolores was saddled with the "Sharecropper" image for a number of years, not only at the DeLisa, but around other Chicago venues like the Miramont Ballroom, Ralph's Place and the Crown Propeller Lounge. Her earliest recordings were made under the name of "Little Miss Sharecropper" - a couple of sides with the Eddie Penigar Orchestra for RCA in early 1949, and a session for National in late 1950 or early 1951.

In March and April 1951 she recorded some sides with Maurice King & His Wolverines, the first of which "Good Daddy" appeared on Columbia while the next two, "I Want A Lavender Cadillac" and "Make It Good" came out on the Columbia R&B subsidiary OKeh. Dolores was billed as Bea Baker on these records. The Wolverines were the house band at the Flame Show Bar in Detroit which became Dolores' base. Another regular act at the Flame was Johnnie Ray whom she befriended.

In the spring of 1952 she joined another Detroit band, that of Todd Rhodes, as vocalist and in July and October of that year she and the Rhodes band recorded sides for King - "Trying," "Pig Latin Blues," "Lost Child" and "Must I Cry Again" which were issued between September 1952 and February 1953. Dolores was now "LaVern Baker" and was billed thus on the King discs, none of which made any noise on the national charts although there was some success on the regional charts. "Trying" was number seven in the Cash Box New Orleans chart on 18th October 1952, number six in Savannah, number seven in Dallas and number ten in San Francisco. At the end of November "Trying" was number one in San Francisco.

When LaVern started recording for Atlantic in June 1953, her career entered a new phase with not only hits on the national R&B charts, but also appearances in the national pop charts. I like to think of LaVern Baker as being part of the "Third Wave" of Atlantic artists. The first wave, if you like, would be Tiny Grimes, Joe Morris and Frank Culley, whose jazzy jump helped give the label a solid start in the late 1940's. In the first half of the 1950's a "second wave" including Ruth Brown, The Clovers, Joe Turner and The Drifters established Atlantic as the top selling R&B label in the USA. The third wave of artists including Ray Charles, The Coasters, LaVern Baker, Chuck Willis and Clyde McPhatter, not only kept Atlantic as the pre-eminent R&B label in the second half of the 1950's they also made serious inroads into the much more lucrative pop market.

As  you can hear on this collection Atlantic started using more pop oriented material and arrangements on many of their records in a conscious attempt to break into the top forty. LaVern's first big pop hit was "Tweedlee Dee" which reached number 14 in early 1955 but which was outsold by a cover version by Georgia Gibbs which reached number two.

In October 1956 "I Can't Love You Enough" made it to number 22 in the Billboard pop chart. Two months later LaVern was back in the top twenty with a rock and roll / R&B classic - "Jim Dandy" which was originally the B Side of "Tra La La," a trite pop confection in the vein of "Tweedlee Dee." In December 1958 LaVern had her biggest hit with a big beat ballad (in waltz time!) - "I Cried A Tear" which reached number six. Another big production weepie "I Waited Too Long" reached number thirty-three in January 1959. LaVern had two more records which scraped into the top forty in the early sixties - "Saved" (number thirty-seven in January 1961) and "See See Rider" (number thirty-four in May 1963.)

Above: LaVern in the Alan Freed film "Rock, Rock, Rock!"

This collection is not a "greatest hits" or even "best of" collection. Missing are "Tweedlee Dee," "Bop-Ting-A-Ling," "Play It Fair" and the classic R&B torch song "Soul On Fire." As I've indicated already there are lots of pop type numbers, from the juvenile "Tweedlee Dee" type (as in "Fee Fee Fi Fo Fum") to big beat ballads such as "My Happiness Forever" and "I Cried a Tear" with a few hard rockers thrown in with the two "Jim Dandy" numbers and the raucous-in-the-extreme "Voodoo Voodoo." The revivals of "Shake A Hand" and "See See Rider" are also very listenable, so all in all this is an LP that has grown on me over the years despite my initial disappointment at the "poppiness" of many of the tracks.

Many years after these recordings were made Atlantic producer Jerry Wexler wrote to author Charlie Gillett on the subject of the use of vocal group choruses on records by Chuck Willis, Clyde McPhatter and LaVern Baker - "I could kick my ass every time I hear those tunes; attribute it to insecurity and fright, trying to survive in the land of the Hilltoppers and Pat Boone." (Making Tracks: The Story of Atlantic Records by Charlie Gillett). 

Way, way back Joan K sent in some cover scans and label shots of LaVern Baker records. Here are some of the big records that aren't on this collection!

There are more of Joan's scans in the "The Story Behind The Tracks" section below.

LaVern's last Atlantic session was in April 1964. From 1965 through to 1969 she recorded for Brunswick. In 1970 LaVern toured US bases in Vietnam where she contracted a heart and lung condition which required medication for the rest of her life. The condition reached critical point while LaVern was performing in Hong Kong where she was hospitalised. Taking the advice of one of the doctors, she went to the warmer climate of the Philippines to recuperate and take up performing again. She stayed for 20 years, performing in US forces clubs and becoming entertainment director at the Marine Staff NCO Club for the Seventh Fleet. Visits to the US were rare but in 1990 she returned to take over from Ruth Brown in the hit musical "Black And Blue" in New York.

Once back in the USA she started recording again, bringing out a live album titled "Live In Hollywood" and a studio album "Woke Up This Morning." However, her health problems became worse, necessitating the amputation of both legs in 1994 (she kept on performing) and in 1997 she succumbed to the effects of her long standing cardiovascular disease, passing away on March 10th.

The story behind the tracks on "Real Gone Gal"

How Can You Leave A Man Like This? - recorded in New York on June 19th 1953. Personnel: Lavern Baker (vocal) with Freddie Mitchell (tenor sax); Ernest "Pinky" Williams (baritone sax); Hank Jones (piano); Jimmy Lewis (guitar); Lloyd Trotman (bass;) Sylvester Payne (drums); Gene Redd (arranger).

Released on Atlantic 1004, B-Side of "Soul On Fire" in August 1953.

Jim Dandy, My Happiness Forever, Fee Fee Fi Fo Fum, were recorded in New York on December 21st 1955. Personnel: LaVern Baker (vocals) with unknown band and The Gliders (vocal group).

My Happiness Forever released on Atlantic 1087, B-Side of "Get Up Get Up (You Sleepy Head)" in February 1956.

Fee Fee Fi Fo Fum released on Atlantic 1093, b/w "I'll Do The Same For You" in May 1956.

Jim Dandy released on Atlantic 1116, b/w "Tra La La" in November 1956.

Jim Dandy Got Married - recorded in Los Angeles (?) on March 15th 1957. Personnel: LaVern Baker (vocals) with Ernie Freeman's Orchestra - Harry "Sweets" Edison, John Anderson (trumpets); Billy Johnson (alto sax); Plas Johnson (tenor sax); Ernie Freeman (piano); Irving Ashby (guitar); Joe Comfort (bass); Ray Martinez (drums); unknown vocal group.

Released on Atlantic 1136, b/w "The Game Of Love (A-One and A-Two)" in April 1957.

Substitute and Whipper Snapper recorded in New York on December 18th 1957. Personnel: LaVern Baker (vocals) with Howard Biggs' Orchestra - Taft Jordan, Melvin "Red" Solomon (trumpets); Sam "The Man" Taylor (tenor sax); Harry Breuer (xylophone); Mike Stoller, Moe Wechsler (piano); Allen Hanlon (guitar); Wendell Marshall (bass); Joe Marshall (drums); The Cookies (vocal group); Howard Biggs (arranger, director).

Substitute released on Atlantic 1176, b/w "Learning To Love" in February 1958.

Whipper Snapper released on Atlantic 1189, B-Side of "Harbor Lights" in June 1958.

Voodoo Voodoo and I Cried A Tear recorded in New York on September 11th 1958. Personnel: LaVern Baker (vocals) with Reggie Obrecht's Orchestra -Urbie Green (trombone); Leon Cohen (alto sax); King Curtis (tenor sax); unknown (vibes); Ernie Hayes (piano); Everett Barksdale, Al Caiola (guitars); Milt Hinton (bass); Panama Francis (drums); Bill Marine, Marcia Neil, Jerry Parker, Mike Stewart (choir); Reggie Obrecht (arranger, director).

I Cried A Tear released on Atlantic 2007, b/w "Dix-A-Billy" in November 1958.

Voodoo Voodoo released on Atlantic 2119, B-Side of Hey Memphis in September 1961.

He's A Real Gone Guy recorded in New York on December 18th 1958. Personnel: LaVern Baker (vocals) with King Curtis (tenor sax); Ernie Hayes (piano); Everett Barksdale, Billy Mure (guitars); Wendell Marshall (bass); Belton Evans (drums); unknown (vocal group); Phil Moore (arranger, director).

Released on Atlantic LP 8071 "See See Rider" in March 1963.

I Waited Too Long recorded in New York on March 12th 1959. Personnel: LaVern Baker (vocals) with Budd Johnson (alto sax); King Curtis (tenor sax); Phil Kraus (xylophone); Howard Biggs (piano); Mickey Baker, Wally Richardson, Neil Sedaka (guitars); Wendell Marshall (bass); Sticks Evans (drums); Elise Bretton, Gene Cowell, Leon Hurst, Marylin Palmer, Maria-Neil Patterson, Gene Steck, Dick Williams (chorus); Chuck Sagle (arranger, director).

Released on Atlantic 2021, b/w "You're Teasing Me" in March 1959.

Tiny Tim recorded in New York on May 14th 1959. Personnel: LaVern Baker (vocals) with 2 unknown (trumpets); Budd Johnson (tenor, baritone sax); unknown (piano); Mickey Baker, Bill Suyker (guitars); Milt Hinton (bass); Sticks Evans (drums); unknown (vocal group); Chuck Sagle (arranger, director).

Released on Atlantic 2041, b/w "For Love Of You"  in October 1959.

Shake a Hand recorded in New York, December 11th, 1959. Personnel: LaVern Baker (vocals) with Doc Severinsen (trumpet); Phil Bodner, Romeo Penque (reeds); Moe Wechsler (piano); Mundell Lowe, Bucky Pizzarelli (guitars); Abie Baker (bass); Sticks Evans (drums); Jose Martinez (congas); Stephen Berrios (percussion); Elise Bretton, Jerome Graff, Don McLeod, Gretchen Rhodes, Alan Sokoloff, David Vogel (choir); Richard Wess (arranger, director).

Released on Atlantic 2048, b/w "Manana" in January 1960.

Bumble Bee recorded in New York on August 17th 1960. Personnel: LaVern Baker (vocals) with Haywood Henry (baritone sax); Al Sears (tenor sax); Bert Keyes (piano); Ernie Hayes (organ); Mickey Baker, Carl Lynch (guitars); Abie Baker (bass); Shep Shepherd (drums); Ed Barnes, Malcolm Dodds, Winfield Scott, Nat Smith (vocal group); Jesse Stone (arranger, director).

Released on Atlantic 2077, b/w "My Time Will Come" in October 1960.

Hey Memphis recorded in New York on September 1st 1961. Personnel: LaVern Baker (vocals) with Joe Venuto (vibes); Mike Spencer (piano); Mickey Baker, Bucky Pizzarelli, Richard Ziegler (guitars); Leonard Gaskin (bass); Gary Chester (drums); unknown (vocal chorus); Fred Norman (arranger, director).

Released on Atlantic 2119, b/w Voodoo Voodoo in September 1961.

See See Rider recorded in New York on September 26th 1962. Personnel: LaVern Baker (vocals) with Buddy Lucas (tenor sax); Paul Griffin (piano); Ernie Hayes (organ); Everett Barksdale, Carl Lynch, Joe Richardson (guitars); Russ Saunders (bass); Sticks Evans (drums); unknown (washboard); unknown (vocal group); Ray Ellis (arranger, director).

Released on Atlantic 2167, b/w "The Story Of My Love (I Had A Dream)" in November 1962.

Above: Atlantic LP 8007 from July 1957


Online sources: Billboard (via Google Books) and Cash Box provide original release information, reviews and chart data. More issue information can be found on and - these two websites have thousands of original label shots and LP cover scans. Session information for certain artists and labels (including Savoy and Atlantic) is available on

Marv Goldberg has a short article on LaVern Baker which includes an excellent discography here:

Printed scources; session and release information is on the Bruyninckx discography.

R&B sales information can be found in "Big Al Pavlow's The R & B Book." My copy is disintegrating through repeated use.

Pop chart information is from "The Billboard Book of USA Top 40 Hits" by Joel Whitburn.

I also consulted "Making Tracks: The Story Of Atlantic Records" by Charlie Gillett (Souvenir Press 1988).

The best account I found of LaVern Baker's life was in "Blue Rhythms: Six Lives In Rhythm And Blues" by Chip Deffa (Da Capo Press, 2000).

"Blue Rhythms" has profiles of six R&B artists interviewed by Chip Deffaa in the late 1980's and 1990's - Ruth Brown, LaVern Baker, Little Jimmy Scott, Charles Brown, Floyd Dixon and Jimmy Witherspoon. At the time of publication 5 out of the 6 were still performing. Sadly all are now deceased. A highly recommended book, R&B fans.

As for recommended listening, well, there's a multiplicity of compilations of LaVern Baker's work. A quick look at a certain website named after a South American river and you're spoiled for choice. I must confess to being intrigued by the Avid R&B issue "LaVern Baker - Four Classic Albums" which contains her four 1950's Atlantic LP's on 2 CD's.: "La Vern," "Rock & Roll," "Sings Bessie Smith" and "Blues Ballads." It's available at a budget price and looks like one to watch out for. Jasmine Records have one of their usual "Complete Singles A's & B's" issues - "It's So Fine" covers 1953 - 1959, so not quite the complete Atlantic oeuvre. There are plenty of other compilations of her Atlantic tracks around, so happy hunting!

Monday 15 January 2018

Joe Houston Re-ups

Side 1:
01. Thunder Storm *
02. Trouble, Trouble, Trouble
03. Hurricane **
04. Tough Enough
05. Windy City Hop
06. Earthquake ***

Side 2:
01. Jump The Blues
02. Guided Missile
03. Good-Bye Little Girl
04. Wee, Wee Hours
05. Bobby Sox Ramble

* this is the 78rpm version of "Hurricane."

** this track is not "Hurricane" but is in fact an alternate take of "Bobby Sox Ramble."

*** this track is "Atom Bomb." (Imperial 5213)

The full explanation of the wrong attributions on "Earthquake" is to be found in the cover notes on the Saxophonograph LP "Rockin' 'n' Boppin'."

In response to a request here is a new link to the Pathe Marconi LP of Joe Houston's Imperial sides - "Earthquake."

The link to the Saxophonograph collection of Joe Houston's sides for various labels had also expired, so here we go - 

Side 1
01. Rockin' 'n' Boppin'
02. Flying Home
03. Walking Home
04. Earthquake
05. Waycross Mama Blues
06. Moody
07. Hurricane
08. Go Joe Go

Side 2
01. Cornbread & Cabbage
02. Jay's Boogie
03. Doin' The Lindy Hop
04. Boogie Woogie Woman
05. Hog Maws Part 2
06. Dig It
07. Shtiggy Boom
08. Joe's Gone
09. The Hully

There have been a few posts about Joe Houston on Be Bop Wino over the years. Here's a quick guide -

Joe Houston - Earthquake - includes outline of Joe's career and recommended listening.

Joe Houston - Rockin' 'n' Boppin' - scans from Joan K, plus details of original issues of the tracks.

Rock And Roll With Joe Houston And His Rockets - the Tops LP, with reference to the story of that budget label.

Joe Houston - Doin' The Twist - exploitation a go go from the Crown label plus El Enmascarado's set up for ripping vinyl and shellac.

Joe Houston Special! - last year's attempt at keeping the Joe Houston links up to date. Out of date already!

As I mentioned a couple of posts ago I am currently operating without a turntable, but don't worry folks there's still a supply of previously unposted material to keep us going. There's a couple of "new" LP's heading this way soon, so keep tuned to the Be Bop Wino station.

Thursday 11 January 2018

Twist With Jimmy McCracklin (Crown LP 5244) Re-Upped

Side 1:
01. I Can't Tell
02. I'm Gonna Tell Your Mother
03. My Mother Says
04. That Ain't Right
05. Please Forgive

Side 2:
01. Couldn't Be A Dream
02. Oh Baby
03. You Don't Seem To Understand
04. Reelin' And Rockin' Twist

With many thanks to El Enmascarado who sent in this 1962 Crown LP which was originally posted on the 7th December 2010.

The original post is here -

Go to it now for the fascinating details of how to do the twist, and if you happen to own a record company, how to pass off your back catalogue of old R&B tracks as the latest dance craze. There's also a fairly lengthy summary of the R&B years of Jimmy McCracklin and the CDs and tracks to look out for and a link to The Hound's article on Jimmy's guitarist Lafayette "The Thing" Thomas.

Yes, this is as fine an example of low budget exploitation as you could find, but it is also a nice little collection of some of Jimmy's R&B recordings for Modern in 1954-55, plus "Reelin' And Rockin'" from 1950. Scratched vinyl, a low bit rate, but surprisingly good sound quality as I found when I compared it to these excellent Ace CDs of Jimmy's Modern recordings -

Ace CDCHD 720

Ace CDCHD 993

More rockin' and boppin' re-ups, plus new stuff in the pipeline. Stay tuned!

Wednesday 10 January 2018

Nashville Jumps (R&B From Bullet 1946-1953) Re-Upped

Side One:
01. Nashville Jumps - Cecil Gant
02. Loose As A Goose - Cecil Gant
03. Lightning Struck The Poorhouse - Wynonie Harris
04. Dig This Boogie - Wynonie Harris
05. Anna Mae - Cecil Gant
06. No Good Woman Blues - Rudy Greene
07. Going Down Slow - St. Louis Jimmy
08. Buzzard Pie - Rudy Greene

Side Two:
01. I Got The Blues - B.B. King
02. Miss Martha King - B.B. King
03. Take A Swing With Me - B.B. King
04. When Your Baby Packs Up And Goes - B.B. King
05. Nobility Boogie - Red Miller Trio
06. Candy Man Blues - Roosevelt Sykes
07. My Baby Left Me - Little Eddie
08. Certainly All - Guitar Slim

In answer to a re-up request, here's "Nashville Jumps" with two new download links. The original post from March 2013 with information, recommended further reading and interesting comments below the line can be found here:

This collection contains B.B. King's first recordings.

Tuesday 9 January 2018

Screaming Saxophones Have A Ball

Side One:
01. Have A Ball - Joe Houston Orchestra
02. Houston's Hot House - Joe Houston Orchestra
03. Leo's Boogie - Leo Parker And His Mad Lads
04. Cool Leo - Leo Parker And His Mad Lads
05. SOS - Charlie Singleton And His Band
06. Please Don't Leave Me Here - Charlie Singleton And His Band
07. Artistry In Mood - Joe Thomas And His Orchestra

Side Two:
01. Tearing Hair - Joe Thomas And His Orchestra
02. Turntable - Morris Lane And His Combo
03. What Did Sam Say - Paul Bascomb And His Orchestra
04. Ain't Nothin' Shakin' - Paul Bascomb And His Orchestra
05. Forty-Nine-Fifty - Bumps Myers Sextet
06. Memphis Hop - Bumps Myers Sextet
07. September Song - Morris Lane And His Combo

As I'm currently operating without a turntable, the next few posts will consist mainly of revivals of material posted in the earliest days of the blog with upgraded artwork and updated information. In addition I have a few other "projects" in mid development, so Be Bop Wino will keep going despite the (temporary) equipment crisis.

"Screaming Saxophones Have A Ball" was originally posted in August 2008 back when I still hadn't mastered the art of scanning a complete LP cover. This time round you get improved artwork plus additional information on these mainly obscure sides. If ever an LP embodied the ethos of Be Bop Wino it was this one with its mix of jazzers and early R&B tenor sax men all blowing fit to bust.

The notes on the back cover are very readable and I've added some more info below, although details remain somewhat hazy for a few of these sides. Here we go -

Have A Ball / Houston's Hot House by The Joe Houston Orchestra (Modern 850), released in December 1951. Recorded in Baton Rouge in the autumn of 1951. Personnel: Walter Miller (trumpet) ; August "Dimes" Dupont (alto sax); Joe Houston (tenor sax); Marian McKinley (piano); Robert Gray (bass); Robert Byrd (drums); Lois Butler (vocal on "Have A Ball").

Cool Leo / Leo's Boogie by Leo Parker And His Mad Lads (United 141), released in January 1953. Recorded in Chicago on November 15th, 1952. Personnel: Leo Parker (baritone sax); Andy Johnson (piano); Remo Biondi (guitar, violin); Ira Pettiford (bass); Jack Parker (drums).

Please Don't Leave Me Here To Cry / S.O.S. by Charlie Singleton and His Band (Lee 208). Release date unknown. Recorded in New York 1950-51. Personnel: Charlie Singleton (tenor sax); unknown (baritone sax); Gildo Mahones (piano); unknown (guitar); Martin Rivera (bass); John Godfrey (drums); Jake Vaughan (vocal on "Please Don't Leave Me Here To Cry").

Tearing Hair by Joe Thomas, His Sax and His Orchestra (King 4318). Other side was "My Baby Done Left Me." Released in October 1949. Recorded in New York on May 21st, 1949. Personnel: Joe Thomas (tenor sax) with Emmett Berry and John Grimes (trumpets); Dickie Harris (trombone); Ben Kynard (baritone sax); George Rhodes (piano); George Duvivier (bass); Joe Marshall (drums).

Artistry In Moods by Joe Thomas, His Sax and His Orchestra (King 4339). Other side was "Wham-A-Lam." Released in February 1950. Recorded in New York on November 28th, 1949. Personnel: Joe Thomas (tenor sax) with Emmett Berry and John Grimes (trumpets); Dickie Harris (trombone); Ben Kynard (baritone sax); George Rhodes (piano); George Duvivier (bass); Joe Marshall (drums).

September Song / Turntable by Morris Lane and his Combo (Continental 6074), released in August 1948. Reviewed in Billboard, August 28th, 1948. Recording date unknown - thought to be in early 1947. Personnel: Morris Lane (tenor sax) with unknown small combo.

Ain't Nothin' Shakin' / What Did Sam Say? (London 17002) by Paul Bascomb and His Orchestra. Release date unknown, probably in 1949. Recorded in New York, 1949. Personnel: Eddie Lewis (trumpet); Frank Porter, Tommy Waters (alto saxes); Paul Bascomb (tenor sax,vocal); Harold Wallace (baritone sax); Duke Jordan (piano); James McCray (bass); George DeHart (drums).

Memphis Hop / Forty-Nine-Fifty (Selective 106) by the Bumps Myers Sextet. Release date unknown, possibly August 1949. Recorded in Los Angeles in May / June 1949. Personnel: Bumps Myers (tenor sax) with unknown small combo.

Ride that riff, baby!