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Incomparable Soul Vocalist - Big Top Recordings

4.3 out of 5 stars 9 customer reviews

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Audio CD, 22 Feb 2010
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Product details

  • Audio CD (22 Feb. 2010)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Ace Records
  • ASIN: B00347ZYLG
  • Other Editions: Audio CD
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 151,527 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)
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Track Listings

Disc: 1

  1. REACH OUT FOR ME
  2. THE LAST ONE TO BE LOVED
  3. PLEASE, STOP THE WEDDING
  4. THE PANIC IS ON
  5. NO OTHER GUY
  6. UNSATISFIED
  7. MAGIC POTION
  8. PARK AVENUE
  9. (THERE'S) ALWAYS SOMETHING THERE TO REMIND ME
  10. IF I NEVER GET TO LOVE YOU
  11. IT AIN'T NO USE
  12. WALK ON BY
  13. A TIME TO LOVE - A TIME TO CRY
  14. KENTUCKY BLUEBIRD (SEND A MESSAGE TO MARTHA)
  15. THANK YOU ANYWAY (MR D.J.)
  16. WHAT AM I CRYING FOR
  17. WOULDN'T THAT BE SOMETHING
  18. YOU BETTER LET HIM GO
  19. WHO IS IT NOW
  20. JUST BE A WOMAN
  21. ANY TIME
  22. THIS NIGHT
  23. LITTLE GIRL
  24. LOVE BUILD A FENCE
  25. UNSATISFIED (ALT TAKE AND EXTENDED)
  26. IF I NEVER GET TO LOVE YOU

Product description

Product Description

* Lou Johnson cut a CDs worth of great NYC Brill Building and 1650 Broadway soul, mainly ballads, for the rich and successful Big Top label. His work is as good as any singer of the era and he also happens to be compiler Harboro Horace's favourite vocalist of all time; Lou's talents are quite rightly praised to the hilt.

* On this CD Kent have every known Big Top recording, including five unreleased acetates and a non 45 LP track from an album that was never officially released.

* There is the original and a great previously unheard vocal take of Lou's Northern Soul dance classic `Unsatisfied'. Plus his stunning original version of Roy Hamilton's revered 45 `The Panic Is On' which outshines even that great record.

* Writers Bacharach and David used Lou for the male interpretations of their great 60s soul ballads which were often hits for Dionne Warwick. Lou's more uncompromising style meant they didn't sell so spectacularly but they were more than the equal in performance. `Reach Out For Me', `The Last One To Be Loved' and `Kentucky Bluebird (Message To Martha)' are taken to another level of artistry and emotion.

* Unheralded song-writing team Giant, Baum and Kaye, who had considerable success with Elvis Presley, provide the majority of the songs. Their relationship with Lou was the artistic high point of both participants' careers.

* Several years in the making, this compilation is a must for every serious soul fan and every lover of 60s soulful vocals on impeccably crafted songs.

Customer Reviews

4.3 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
I have been a fan of lou's since the sixties and had only managed to get a few singles and this was well worth the wait. I met Lou in the sixties and he was a really nice man. Brilliant CD now all I am waiting for is for Tamla Motown or Hip O Select to do a CD of Marv Johnsons Motown recordings and I will be a very happy man. I must say once again well done to Amazon for sending the Cds out so quickly.
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Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
this guy very underated love the smooth tones of his voice his way of telling a story is magic
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By Amazon Customer TOP 1000 REVIEWER on 25 Feb. 2010
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
I've waited along time for a Lou Johnson compilation (thanks Kent/Ace) and it's very good overall. I prefer the more uptempo/norhern soul tracks, these are all exceptional -'Reach out for me', 'Unsatisfied', 'Magic Potion', 'There's always something...', 'If i never get to love you', 'Wouldn't that be something' and my favourite 'You better let him go'. Quite a few of the tracks are the original recordings of famous B.Bacharach songs (All terrific). There are afew ballads that aren't as good (not my cup of tea), there are 6 unissued tracks (1 an alt. version) of the 5 remaining unissued tracks 'Just be a woman' stands out as does the shambolic, (but i like it) 'Who is it now'. Overall a very good cd.

PS. Having listened to this several times now i feel it deserves 4.5 instead of just 4 stars.
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Format: Audio CD
Lou Johnson must have wondered what he was doing wrong as his Bacharach songs were hitting for others.At the time he (Bacharach) was signed to the Kapp label along with the Giant Baum & Kaye trio whose songs were not unlike many Bacharach songs with many recorded by Elvis.
Bacharach also wrote for Babs Tino whose complete output along with her label mate Barbara Chandler is now available on the Cat King Cole label.If I Never Get To Love You was recorded by both Babs Tino and Lou Johnson
The only Lou Johnson recordings available in the U K were singles which were of songs promptly covered by others like Sandie Shaw,Adam Faith and the Koobas so few would realise that Johnson had made the first versions
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Format: Audio CD
If you are interested in real soul music, this has got to be one of the best CD's available. The CD notes are excellent, the songs are mostly excellent and Lou Johnson has a way of interpreting songs that make you want to listen. I'm guilty of neglecting his singles in my collection in recent years, but they are all included here and sound as good as ever. If only Lou had stayed with Burt Bacharach & Hal David, we might have had even more classics to listen to. That is not to say the other songs are not up to scratch, but Bacharach/David were on a roll and might have taken Lou to a much higher level.
'The last one to be loved' is worth the cost of the CD on its own. Lou manages to add more feeling to this song than even Dionne Warwick ever did - and that's quite a compliment.
The person who gave this CD a lowly 2 stars doesn't understand soul music!
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