- Audio CD (14 Nov. 2011)
- Number of Discs: 3
- Format: Box set
- Label: Kent / Ace
- ASIN: B005LOIEM6
- Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 22,514 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)
The Fame Studios Story, 1961-1973 Box set
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"The Fame Studios Story 1961-1973" is the lynchpin of Ace's extensive catalogue campaign spotlighting the recordings and artists associated with the Fame label and studio of Muscle Shoals, Alabama - home of the Muscle Shoals Sound.
The 75-track, 3CD set is an open-minded, celebratory overview of this world-famous institution's golden era, when under the stewardship of owner Rick Hall, Fame birthed countless recordings that have come to define Southern Soul music.
Hall's idiosyncratic engineering and production technique, and the highly-regarded session crew he employed, resulted in an unprecedented run of hits, not to mention an equal amount of astoundingly soulful misses.
The featured artists are a virtual Who's Who of 1960s soul, including Otis Redding, Aretha Franklin, Wilson Pickett, Etta James, Arthur Conley, Irma Thomas, Joe Tex, Joe Simon, Lou Rawls, Arthur Alexander and Otis Clay, alongside lesser known, yet no less worthy names such as the Blues Busters, Maurice & Mac, Spencer Wiggins, Willie Hightower, Bettye Swann and many, many others.
The set also includes several of the notable pop hits recorded at the studio by the Osmonds, Tommy Roe and Bobbie Gentry, among others. Special attention is paid to those acts closely associated with the Fame label, such as Candi Staton, Jimmy Hughes and Clarence Carter, as well as its inestimable stable of writers and producers, including Dan Penn, Spooner Oldham and George Jackson.
"The Fame Studios Story 1961-1973" is the fruit of two years' extensive research in the Fame vaults by the Ace team, with full access granted to this legendary tape and photo archive. The heavily illustrated package not only boasts over a dozen unissued tracks - including previously unheard rarities by Otis Redding and Arthur Alexander - but also comes laden with informative essays and extensive track notes, all based upon fresh interviews with many of the principals involved.
If you know anything about soul music, you know Fame, which is why "The Fame Studios Story 1961-1973" is an essential purchase.
Follows on from the recent release of Candi Staton's "Evidence: The Complete Fame Records Masters" (CDKEN2 353), which has garnered rave reviews everywhere.
Packaged in the same deluxe style as 2008's "Take Me To The River" (KENTBOX 10).
Top Customer Reviews
Well here it is - and I'm thrilled to say that "The Fame Studios Story 1961-1973" doesn’t disappoint…and will easily be up there as one of 'the' Soul reissues of 2011.
Here are the details: UK released Monday 14 November 2011 - Ace/Kent SOUL KENT BOX 12 is a 75-track 3CD Card-Wrapped Hardback Book Set and breaks down as follows:
Disc 1 – "Steal Away" (61:08 minutes):
1. You Better Move On – ARTHUR ALEXANDER (1961, Dot 16309)
2. Laugh It Off – THE TAMS (1963, ABC-Paramount 10502)
3. Night Rumble, Part 1 – THE MARK 5 (1963, ABC Paramount 10433)
4. Everybody – TOMMY ROE (1963, ABC Paramount 10478)
5. I Hope They Get Their Eyes Full – ARTHUR ALEXANDER (Unissued 1962 Fame Recording – Previously Unreleased)
6. Steal Away – JIMMY HUGHES (1964, Fame 6401)
7. Let Them Talk – DAN PENN (1964, Fame 6402)
8. Hold What You've Got – JOE TEX (1964, Dial 4001)
9. A Man Is A Mean, Mean Thing (Alternate) – BARBARA PERRY (Unissued 1965 Goldwax Recording – Previously Unreleased)
10. Fortune Teller – THE DEL-RAYS (1965, R and H 1005)
11. Funny Style – BOBBY MARCHAN (1965, Dial 4007)
12. Almost Persuaded – JUNE CONQUEST (1964, Fame 6406)
13. Too Much – THE ENTERTAINERS (1966, Chess 1951)
14.Read more ›
Firstly, to all those reissue houses in England and across the globe (you know who you are) THIS IS HOW YOU DO IT! This is an outstanding product from 'Ace Records' - as usual.
This 3 cd box set comes housed in a slip case - slightly bigger than normal sized cd (156x132mm). The 3cd's themselves are housed in a hardback book that also contains an 84 page colour booklet in it. This is extensive stuff of the highest quality. (As a graphic designer) this box set is beautifully designed and produced, its an outstanding product.
As for the music, that also is outstanding for the most part. 3 cd's, 75 tracks (10 previously unissued - including unedited versions)
Cd 1. (1961-66) - 61.19mins. Any cd that starts with 'You better move on' by Arthur Alexander is bound to be outstanding. Track 4 is an unissued track by Arthur Alexander and it's pretty good. Too many great tracks to mention here but a couple would be 'Laugh it off' The Tams and 'Steal away' Jimmy Hughes. Fantastic.
Cd 2. (1967-68) - 67.37mins. Again, so many great tracks by stellar names. Clyde Mcphatters version of 'A shot of rhythm and blues' is very good. overall fantastic stuff.
Cd 3. (1969-73) - 77.54mins. Overall good. A little bit outside my listening comfort zone - i'm more of a late 50's to late 60's person. Even to my ears, there are plenty of good/great tracks here.
Overall, this is an outstanding music product, is it worth £25? MOST DEFINITELY, highly recommended.
In total I'd say there are about 60 classic down to solid tracks on these 3CDs which isn't a bad strike rate (out of 75) however some of these will likely be already owned by the sort of person who'd be interested in a collectors set of this type. That leaves 15 sub-par tracks quite a few being located on the first half of CD1 where FAME were searching for a unique sound and sharpening their songwriting chops which leads to a pretty choppy start bar two to three deathless classics ('You Better Move On', 'Steal Away', however these have been compiled to death). Once things settle into a groove through the second half of CD1 thru to the end of CD3 the going gets alot more consistent with the odd mystifying choice such as the non-soul tracks ('David & the Giants', 'The Osmonds [!]', etc), and some sub-par soul covers ('Hey Jude' by Wilson Pickett & 'Patches' by Clarence Carter).Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Not quite up to the standard of "Take me to the River" but a similarly put together collection. A few fillers but the majority of tracks are top quality.Published on 3 Jun. 2013 by Barry L Dunsdon
What a gem!
I have various soul albums from the greats (Otis, Wilson, Marvin etc.) but this is a gold mine and will probably result in me spending a fortune on artists I had... Read more
Everything worked just great and the CD box was very good, with a lot of details to the music.
I loved it.
Mark Barry has given the full sp in his review. Just to add, it's a joy to listen to the whole collection, never mind getting it out of the pack CJ Berril! Read morePublished on 25 Jan. 2012 by St Yrieix
Excellent compilation accompanied by a book beautifully illustrated and well written.
A Must if you call yourself a fan of the southern soul music.
Take it from a longtime Florence ALabama resident, The FAME Studio Story is factual, accurate and well produced. Read morePublished on 7 Dec. 2011 by Terry