41 of 42 people found the following review helpful
on 8 November 2002
The sound of early 60s r&b is all the rage on the UK mod club circuit - primarily at such venues as The Hideaway Club in Manchester, but also 'down south' at London's Money's Getting' Cheaper & Shotgun, all packed out with a mod & soul crowd eager to keep the dancefloor full.
It's the sound of the original mod scene, but to many, it's also sound of today's mod scene. It's the bridge between the blues acts of the 50s, and the more mainstream soul of the 60s.
The rise in interest in r&b hasn't passed the Kent label by. Last year they released the essential 'New Breed Of R&B', focusing on the original Kent label & the sound of Manchester's Hideaway club, compiled by the Hideaway team with Kent's Ady Croasdell.
It was always going to be hard to follow that up, but they have done...in style, and with a little help from more of the mod scene's favourite dj's.
'New Breed Rhythm & Blues' is indeed compiled by some of the mod scene's biggest draws - Roger Banks, Damian Hewitt, Paul Welsby & Kent's Ady Croasdell, and focuses on the King label, with tracks drawn predominantly (but not exclusively) from the years 1962 to 1964. And to be perfectly honest, it's a 'must own' album for any r&b fan.
The album starts with the stormin 'Burnt Toast & Black Coffee' by Mike Pedicin - pure raw r&b, setting the scene for the preceding 23 tracks! Picking tracks is difficult, as there really aren't any weak ones on there. You'll doubtless be familiar with the much played 'I'm Shakin' by Little Willie John. Hideaway regulars will be pleased by the inclusion of Freddy King's 'Some Other Day, Some Other Time' (Freddy's uptempo blues stormer 'Now I've Got A Woman' is also on here).
Personal favourites are James Duncan's 'Three Little Pigs' (check out that guitar!), The 5 Royales' 'Think' and Bobby King's 'Thanks Mr Postman', a pop song bursting to escape it's r&b confines!
Like all Kent compilations - liner notes and packaging are immaculate, more of a history lesson than track descriptions!
There have been some excellent soul/r&b collections out this year. But this, alongside the 'New Breed Of R&B' (from last year), falls into the 'essential purchase' category for any self respecting r&b fan. It isn't going to be to everyone's taste...it's a large step away from 'northern' (if that's your thing). But it's certainly my thing!
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
As Northern Soul lovers began to expand their musical horizons - it didn't take British Mods long to work out that a rich (and similar) vein of bopping gold was to be mined in America's Blues and Rhythm 'n' Blues - especially if you concentrated on the King and Federal labels - whose rosters contained some storming names. And that's where this fab little British CD from 2002 comes in. Compiled by experts/genre lovers (at Ace Records) for British dancers to shake their talcum tail feather to in nightclubs up and down Blighty - good names like Adrian Croasdell, Paul Wellsby, Damian Hewitt and Roger Banks have been involved in this first Volume - and what a corker it is too. Here are the Club A-Go-Go details...
UK released July 2002 - "King New Breed Rhythm & Blues" on Ace/Kent-Soul CDKEND 210 (Barcode 029667221023) breaks down as follows (62:53 minutes):
1. Burnt Toast And Black Coffee - MIKE PEDICIN (1961, Federal 12417, A)
2. I'm Shakin' - LITTLE WILLIE JOHN (1960, Federal 5342, A)
3. Thanks Mr. Postman - BOBBY KING (1962, Federal 12449 and Federal 12473, A)
4. Just A Little Bit - TINY TOPSY (1959, Federal 12357, A)
5. Had You Told It Like It Was (It Wouldn't Be Like It Is) - ALBERT KING (1963, King 5751, A)
6. You're Welcome To The Club - LEE "SHOT" WILLIAMS (1964, Federal 12522, A)
7. Not Much (Do You Baby) - ROSEMARY (Previously Unreleased Alternate Version of Federal 12447 recorded 1961)
8. Now I've Got A Woman - FREDDY KING (1964, Federal 12529, A)
9. Three Little Pigs - JAMES DUNCAN (1964, King 5966, A)
10. Don't Be So Mean - WILLIAM PATTON (1967, King 6116, A)
11. I Say, I Love You - JOHNNY WATSON (1963, King 5833, A)
12. My Kinda Girl - HANNIBAL (1963, King 5837, A, written by Jonny Watson)
13. You're Using Me - THE KING PINS (1964, Federal 12519, A)
14. I Found Out - BOBBY BYRD (1963, Federal 12486, A)
15. Hard Forgetting Memories - MARY JOHNSON (1963, Federal 12506, A)
16. It's Easy Child - LULA REED & FREDDY KING with SONNY THOMPSON 7 His Orchestra (1962, Federal 12477, A)
17. Think - The "5" ROYALES (1957, King 5053, A)
18. Pneumonia - JOE TEX (1956, King 4980, B-side of "Get Way Back")
19. I Don't Know About You - LLOYD NOLAN (1962, King 5680, A)
20. You Don't Want Me Around - MIKE WILLIAMS (1966, King 6067, A)
21. Bad Girl - THE FABULOUS DENOS (1964, King 5908, A)
22. I'm Better Off Now (Than I Was Before) - THE PREMIERS (1966, King 6061, B-side of "She's Always There")
23. Some Other Day, Some Other Time - FREDDY KING (1964, Federal 12532, A)
24. She Made My Blood Run Cold - IKE TURNER (1957, Federal 12297, A)
ADRIAN CROADELL gives wonderfully detailed and affectionate mini histories of each song in the 12-page booklet - who wrote them - who featured in the mix - their place in musical history etc. There are superb photos of LULA REED, THE FABULOUS DENOS and FREDDY KING (with fans Bill Millar and Ray Topping) - whose tracks are amongst the highlights on here. And the remasters from original analogue tapes have been carried by the vastly experienced DUNCAN COWELL - a Sound Engineer who must have over 400 remaster credits to his name - if not more. These tracks sound fabulous - full of Sixties atmosphere and King Production values.
Hand-picked for both musical and rarity value - this is a CD that barely puts a foot wrong. It opens with the bopping Saxophone and Drums R&B of "Burnt Toast And Black Coffee" - a tune that captures the crossover of R&B into early Sixties Soul. But things really swing into cool action with "I'm Shakin'" by Little Willie John with its speeded-up "Fever" feel. The hip choice kicks in with Tiny Topsy's fantastic "Just A Little Bit" - a lady with a huge growling voice and a frame to match (not unlike LaVern Baker).
Two total winners turn up midways - the unlikely sounding "Three Little Pigs" which has that neck-jerking Sixties beat that's half R'n'B half Motown ("...huffin' and puffin' have mercy...") - utterly brill. And shortly after that is Johnny (Guitar) Watson cutting a monkey shine on the cool guitar bop of "I Say, I Love You" where he admits to his lady that he's been something of a "dirty dog" with other women in the locale. James Shaw (aka Hannibal) gives it some groovy Wilson Pickett gravel vocals on the "been around the world" song "My Kinda Girl".
It's strange to hear Bobby Byrd sing but he's a great set of expressive lungs on the lightweight "I Found Out" while Phil Spector drama comes to the fore on Mary Johnson's obscure "Hard Forgetting Memories". Speaking of fabulous lungs - a huge dancer favourite is the Dinah Washington vocals of Lula Reed duetting here with Freddy King on "It's Easy Child" - a cool mid-tempo piano and drum shuffle. You immediately "Think" of James Brown who took the "5" Royales tune and practically launched his career on it (and for a 1957 song - it's staggering how borderline Soul it is without knowing it). Tex's "Pneumonia" has some aggressive lyrics towards his baby while the finger-clicking "I Don't Know About You" by the obscure Lloyd Nolan has an effortless Sixties cool about it. The lovely "Bad Girl" by The Fabulous Denos is the kind of 45 that would surely trade hands for serious money - a wicked little tune.
Further compilations appeared in the shape of 2012's "New Breed R&B Volume 2" on Kent-Soul CDKEND 373, 2008's "New Breed R&B With Added Popcorn" on Kent-Soul CDKEND 291, 2013's "New Breed Blues With Popcorn" on Kent-Soul CDKEND 393 - while earlier goodies can be found on 2001's "New Breed R&B: Soulful 60's Blues For Today's Dancers" on Kent-Soul CDKEND 199.
"I guess I'll investigate..." - Mike Pedicin sang on "Burnt Toast And Black Coffee". I think that Sixties hipster was on to something...