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Mark Barry "Mark Barry" (London)

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Steal Away the Night: An Ozzy Osbourne Day-by-Day
Steal Away the Night: An Ozzy Osbourne Day-by-Day
by Martin Popoff
Edition: Hardcover
Price: £20.40

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars "...Cracks In The Pavement..." - Steal Away The Night: An Ozzy Osbourne Day-By-Day (2014 Backbeat Books), 27 Feb. 2015
Backbeat Books have made a smart choice in MARTIN POPOFF to helm their Ozfest "Steal Away The Night". Author of a staggering 45 books on Rock (and especially Metal) and one-time Editor/Chief Bottle Washer at the "Brave Words & Bloody Knuckles" Metal magazine for 14 years - he's also contributed to both Record Collector and American Goldmine Price Guides extensively and has how own website. Canadian Popoff knows his way around a dead bat's ear and a chainsaw (never mind his video work with Prog-Rockers Rush).

Published in September 2014 - the first thing that hits about this OZZY OSBOURNE Day-By-Day coffee-table-sized hardback tome - is the visuals. Across 250 tall pages - every twofer spread has a photo or a poster or an album sleeve, press advert, concert shot, reams of memorabilia, tee-shirts, picture discs, British 45's on Jet Records, magazine covers, backstage passes, sculptures and holiday ornaments (you heard me) - this Book is properly crammed to its black-hearted gunnels with superb visuals. Then there's his various stage outfits - capes, upside-down crosses, tassels, studded belts, leather trousers, fangs, ridiculous Eighties hair-dos and onwards into his Nineties and Naughties resurgence alongside Metal Gods Black Sabbath (there's full-colour plates of Randy Rhoads - sadly lost to us in 1982). And amidst all that visual drama are comments from Lee Kerslake (formerly of Uriah Heep) on joining the band, Quiet Riot's Kelly Garni on Randy Rhoads, Brad Gillis on the crazy Tours, Bob Daisley on mixing the albums and Zakk Wylde on Ozzfest.

Born 3 December 1948 in Aston, Birmingham, England (4th of six children) - Ozzy's career is chronicled in a Date fashion beginning with early influences like The Beatles and Zeppelin's debut album in January 1969, which of course changed the Rock Universe into Metal. When 13 February 1970 sees the release of Black Sabbath's doom-laden debut - the details really start to kick in and go on into success, ridicule at the hands of critics, worship at the knob by fans, band quarrels, missed gigs, alcoholism and many very honest appraisals (by himself) of his mental health and his lifetime struggles with it. Popoff's interviews with Ozzy are often hilarious and blasted throughout with a couldn't-give-a-toss-what-people-think attitude and searing honesty that endears him to so many. There's a selective pictorial Discography on Page 242.

One of the great theatrical wildmen of Rock - Ozzy Osbourne has deserved such a book - and Martin Popoff has done the Blizzard proud...

PS: This sucker is large and heavy - watch out for those P&P rates...

Ladies & Gentlemen... Mr B.B King
Ladies & Gentlemen... Mr B.B King
Price: £29.14

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars "...Everyday I Have The Blues..." - Ladies & Gentlemen...Mr. B.B. King by B.B. KING (2012 4CD and 10CD Box Set Remasters), 25 Feb. 2015
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
Considering his iconic status - a properly decent box set chronicling Mississippi's B.B. King has been a long time coming (his Blues career has now reached the staggering longevity of 66 years). But at least you can say that Universal have finally done the great man proud (especially on the mammoth 10-disc set). Here are Woke Up This Morning details...

Released September 2012 - "Ladies & Gentlemen...Mr. B.B. King" comes in 2 forms - a 4CD Box Set and a 10CD version - and to confuse matters both are rather lazily given the same title. The 10-disc Box Set is catalogue number Universal 0600753384992 (Barcode 600753384992) - while this review is for the 4CD version on Universal 0600753390863 (Barcode 600753390863) and that set breaks down as follows:

Disc 1 (1949-1964) - 77:67 minutes:
1. Miss Martha King (1949 USA 78" on Bullet 309, A)
2. When You Baby Packs Up And Goes (1949 USA 78" on Bullet 309, B-side to "Miss Martha King")
3. B.B. Boogie (1950 USA 78" on RPM 304, A)
4. She's Dynamite (1951 USA 78" on RPM 323, A)
5. Three O'Clock Blues (1951, USA 7" single on RPM 349, A)
6. Woke Up This Morning (1953, RPM 380, A)
7. Blind Love (1953, RPM 395, A)
8 When My Heart Beats Like A Hammer (1954, RPM 412, A)
9. You Upset Me Baby (1954, RPM 416, A)
10. Ten Long Years (1955, RPM 437, A)
11. Bad Luck (1956, RPM 468, A)
12. Troubles, Troubles, Troubles (1957, RPM 492, A)
13. Early In The Morning (1957, RPM 492, A)
14. Everyday I Have The Blues (1959, Kent 327, A)
15. (I've) Got A Right To Love My Baby (1960, Kent 333, A)
16. It's My Own Fault (1960, Kent 333, B-side to "(I've) Got A Right To Love My Baby")
17. Walking Dr. Bill (1960, Kent 350, A)
18. Rock Me Baby (1964, Kent 393, A)
19. You Ask Me (1962, ABC-Paramount 10316, A - and the US LP "Mr. Blues" on ABC-Paramount ABC-456)
20. Blues At Midnight (1962, ABC-Paramount 10334, A - and the US LP "Mr. Blues" on ABC-Paramount ABC-456)
21. Sneakin' Around (1963, ABC-Paramount 10361, A - and the US LP "Mr. Blues" on ABC-Paramount ABC-456)
22. How Blue Can You Get? (1964, ABC-Paramount 10527, A)
23. I Wonder Why - PREVIOUSLY UNRELEASED September 1963 Recording
24. Please Accept My Love (1964, ABC-Paramount 10527, B-side of "How Blue Can You Get?")
25. Help The Poor (1964, ABC-Paramount 10552, A)
26. Never Trust A Woman (1964, ABC-Paramount 10599, A)

Disc 2 (1964-1969) - 76:53 minutes:
1. Everyday I Have The Blues (Live)
2. Sweet Little Angel (Live)
3. Please Love Me (Live) - Tracks 1 to 3 from the 1965 USA LP "Live At The Regal" on ABC-Paramount ABC-509
4. All Over Again (1965, ABC-Paramount 10724, A - also on the 1968 US LP "His Best/The Electric B.B. King" on Bluesway BLS 6022)
5. Tired On Your Jive (1965, ABC-Paramount 10675, A - also on the 1968 US LP "His Best/The Electric B.B. King" on Bluesway BLS 6022)
6. Cherry Red (from the 1966 US LP "Confessin' The Blues" on ABC-Paramount ABC-528)
7. Don't Answer The Door, Parts 1&2 (1966, ABC 10856, A - also on the 1968 US LP "His Best/The Electric B.B. King" on Bluesway BLS 6022)
8. Night Life (1966, ABC 10889, A)
9. Gambler's Blues (Live) (from the 1967 US LP "Blues Is King" on Bluesway BLS 6001)
10. Sweet Sixteen, Parts 1&2 (1967, Bluesway 61012, A&B-sides)
11. Worried Dream (1967, Bluesway 61007, A)
12. Paying The Cost To Be The Boss (1968, Bluesway 61015, A - also on the US LP "Blues On Top Of Blues" on Bluesway BLS 6011)
13. Watch Yourself
14. Lucille - tracks 13 and 14 are both from the 1968 US LP "Lucille" on Bluesway BLS 6016)
15. Why I Sing The Blues (1969, Bluesway 61024, A - also on the 1969 US LP "Live And Well" on Bluesway BLS 6031)
16. Confessin' The Blues (1969, Bluesway 61035, B-side of "So Excited" - also on the 1969 US LP "Completely Well" on Bluesway BLS 6037)
17. The Thrill Is Gone (1969, Bluesway 61032, A - also on the 1969 US LP "Completely Well" on Bluesway BLS 6037)

Disc 3 (1970-1983) - 73:57 minutes:
1. Nobody Loves Me But My Mother (1970, ABC 11290, A - also on the LP "Indianola Mississippi Seeds" on ABC Records ABC-713)
2. Chains And Things (1970, ABC 11280, A - also on the LP "Indianola Mississippi Seeds" on ABC Records ABC-713)
3. Hummingbird (1970, ABC 11268, A - also on the LP "Indianola Mississippi Seeds" on ABC Records ABC-713)
4. Worry, Worry (Live) (from the 1971 LP "Live At Cook County Jail" on ABC Records ABC 723)
5. Ghetto Woman (1971, ABC 11310, A - also on the 1971 LP "In London" on ABC Records ABC-730)
6. Ain't Nobody Home (1971, ABC 11316, A - also on the 1971 LP "In London" on ABC Records ABC-730)
7. Guess Who (1972, ABC 11330, A - also on the 1972 LP "Guess Who" on ABC Records ABC 759)
8. I Like To Live The Love (1973, ABC 11406, A - also on the 1973 LP "To Know You Is To Love You" on ABC Records ABCX-794)
9. Lucille Talks Back
10. Don't Make Me Pay For His Mistakes - tracks 9 and 10 from the 1975 LP "Lucille Talks Back" on ABC Records ABCD 898
11. Let The Good Times Roll (Live) (1976, ABC-Impulse 31006, A - also on the 1976 2LP Bobby Bland and B.B. King set "Together Again...Live" on ABC Records ASD 9317)
12. Mother Fuyer (from the 1977 LP "King Size" on ABC Records AB 977)
13. When It All Comes Down (I'll Still Be Around) (from the 1978 LP "Midnight Believer" on ABC Records AA 1061)
14. Better Not Look Down (1979, MCA 41062, A - also on the 1979 LP "Take It Home" on MCA Records MCA 3151)
15. There Must Be A Better World Somewhere (1981, MCA 51101, A - also on the 1981 LP "There Must Be A Better World Somewhere" on MCA Records MCA 5162)
16. Nightlife/Please Send Me Someone To Love (from the 1982 LP "Love Me Tender" on MCA Records MCA 5307)
17. Make Love To Me (from the 1983 LP "Blues `N' Jazz" on MCA Records MCA 27119)

Disc 4 (1984-2008) - 79:20 minutes:
1. Into The Night (1985, MCA 52530, A - also on the 1985 LP "Six Silver Strings" on MCA Records MCA 5616)
2. When Love Comes To Town [credited as U2 with B.B. KING] (1988, Island 7-99225, A - also on the U2 1988 double-album "Rattle And Hum" on Island 91003)
3. Take Off Your Shoes (from the 1989 LP "King Of The Blues: 1989" on MCA Records MCAD 42183)
4. I'm Moving On
5. There Is Always One More Time - tracks 4 and 5 from 1991 album "There Is Always One More Time" on MCA Records MCAD 10295)
6. Monday Morning Blues (Blues For Mr. G) (from the 1991 album "Garfield: Am I Cool Or What?" on GRP Records GRD 9641)
7. Playin' With My Friends [with ROBERT CRAY] (from the 1993 album "Blues Summit" on MCA Records MCA 10710)
8. Confessin' The Blues (from the 1997 album "Deuces Wild" on MCA Records MCA 11711)
9. Blues Man
10. I'll Survive - tracks 9 and 10 from the 1998 album "Blues On The Bayou" on MCA Records MCA 11879)
11. Caldonia
12. Ain't That Just Like A Woman - tracks 11 and 12 from the 1999 album "Let The Good Times Roll: The Music Of Louis Jordan" on MCA Records 088 112 042)
13. Monday Woman (from the 1999 album "Makin' Love Is Good For You" on MCA Records 088 112 241)
14. Ten Long Years [ERIC CLAPTON with B.B. KING] (from the 2000 album "Riding With The King" on Reprise 9 47612-2)
15. Early In The Morning [with VAN MORRISON] (from the 2005 album "80" on Geffen B0005263-02)
16. Key To The Highway (Live) (from the 2006 album "Live" on Geffen B0009770-02)
17. See That Grave Is Kept Clean (from the 2008 album "One Kind Favor" on Geffen B0011791-02)

The 8 x 10" shaped Black Box Set cuts a classy dash as does the 64-page Hardback Book on the inside. ASHLEY KAHN (Music Journalist and author of a book on "Kind Of Blue" by Miles Davis) provides us with an affectionate and informative introduction to the Blues Legend on Pages 1 to 13 - while Pages 14 to 40 are taken up with a "B.B. King Recording Career" assessment by DICK SHURMAN (Grammy-Winning Producer and Blues Historian). The text is peppered throughout with beautifully rendered black and white and colour photos from varying stages in his life, concert tickets, American concert posters, there's a shot of an enamoured Bono of U2 on stage with our Hero and there's even a repro photo of that rare 78" on Bullet from 1949. Pages 42 through to the end give a very detailed track-by-track breakdown - musicians, writers, times, vinyl and CD credits etc. Each of the CDs is housed in a period photo card sleeve with all four sitting in a centre hollow.

The entire set has been compiled by two experienced names in quality reissues - BILL LEVENSON and ANDY McKAIE. The audio rocks too. ELIOT KISSILEFF carried out the tape transfers while SETH FOSTER did the mastering - and the remasters as you can imagine are superb throughout (Disc 4 features beautifully recorded tracks anyway). The first few sides are dubbed from 78" so have crackle - but much of the RPM, Kent and ABC-Paramount tapes are clearly in great shape.

The historic 78"s cease crackling by the time the mournful "Three O'Clock Blues" kicks in on Track 5, Disc 1. "Woke Up This Morning" gives us some excellent bopping R'n'B - followed by two more RPM nuggets "Blind Love" and the mooching "When My Heart Beat Like A Hammer". Up next is surely one of the fan's faves - the witty "You Upset My Baby" with its "twenty eight in the waist...forty-four in the hips..." lyrics - and it still sounds cool a full sixty years after the event. By the time you get the Sixties ABC-Paramount material like "Blues At Midnight" and "Sneakin' Around" - the Production values go through the roof - these tracks sounding just amazing even if his guitar style is a tad drowned out by huge amounts of brass-band backing.

Disc 2 opens with a trio from the legendary "Live At The Regal Theatre" set which Mobile Fidelity once give the Gold CD treatment too ("Sweet Little Angel" sounds particularly awesome as do the screams of the little girls eager to get at B.B. when he saucily sings about "spreading her wings..."). One of the great things about Box sets like this is the discoveries - and one of them is the Stereo take of "All Over Again" - a forgotten mid-tempo piece about "letters in the morning" and "being better off dead" - the audio quality on this track alone is fabulous (lovely guitar licks too). He goes deep Blues on his cover of Joe Turner's "Cherry Red" and Britain's Fleetwood Mac must surely have had the slow shuffle-cymbals-and-echoed-guitar Blues of "Don't Answer The Door Parts 1 & 2" on repeat play in some London bedsit.

Disc 3 starts with the Seventies and it's easy to hear why three tracks appear from the wickedly good "Indianola Mississippi Seeds" LP (on Probe Records in the UK). One of my all time craves is "Chains And Things" - picked off the album as a 7" single in the UK on Probe PRO 516 in February 1971 (with "King's Special" on the B-side). The A is a slinky almost Steely Dan "Do It Again" vibe which features no less than Carole King on Piano - it's brilliant. The other choice is "Hummingbird" written by Leon Russell and featuring its creator on Piano with Joe Walsh on Rhythm Guitar (James Gang, Eagles). Other interesting cuts include the Instrumental "Lucille Talks Back" and his stab at Funk in "Mother Fuyer". The Soulful strings of "Ghetto Woman" and brassy swagger of Jerry Ragovoy's "Ain't Nobody Home" come from the "In London" album which featured a huge array of talent - Gary Wright of Spooky Tooth on Keyboards, Dr. John on Piano, Bobby Keys (of The Rolling Stones) on saxophone with Klaus Voorman on bass (of "Revolver" fame") and Ringo Starr (of some Liverpool band) on Drums. "When It All Comes Down (I'll Still Be Around)" features Joe sample of The Crusaders with "Make Love To Me" ending Disc 3 in a shuffling Jazz/R'n'B fashion (sensational Production and the band cooking).

What I wasn't expecting was the quality of Disc 4 - the later stuff. Excluding a terrible Eighties production on "Into The Night" (opening track) - from "When Love Comes To Town" onwards its good all the way with an array of famous names contributing excellence - Robert Cray, Marty Stewart, Dr. John, Arthur Adam, Joe Sample, Eric Clapton, Van Morrison and of course Ireland's U2. "Confessin' The Blues" is particularly chunky (Marty Stewart on Guitar and Vocals with Bill Payne of Little Feat on Keyboards) while Van Morrison puts in a spirited performance on the Traditional "Early In The Morning". Joe Sample of The Crusaders (sadly passed away recently) contributed "I'm Moving On" to that album while Arthur Adam plays guitar on the cut. One of the best true Blues tunes on the whole box is "There Is Always One More Time" - beautifully produced by Stewart Levine. Dr. John plays piano on the two Louis Jordan cover versions and turns up again on the Blind Lemon Jefferson/Furry Lewis CD finisher "See That My Grave Is Kept Clean". It's an impressive way to end the Box - still doing it after all these years and endless decades...

Some consider him a lightweight in terms of playing technique - some feel his live stuff far outweighs the recorded - but whatever you look at B.B. King - this is a lovingly crafted Box Set that deserves several listens in order to appreciate the sheer breath of his recording career.

Aged 89 in 2015 - B.B. King is still with us - still doing it - still playing the Blues. And that in itself is a testament to his incredible musical career. "I'll Survive" - he sings - ain't that the truth...

Bad News Is Coming
Bad News Is Coming
Offered by Fulfillment Express
Price: £5.73

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars "...Raggedy And Dirty..." - Bad News Is Coming by LUTHER ALLISON (2001 "Blues Classics - Remastered & Revisited" CD Reissue), 24 Feb. 2015
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Bad News Is Coming (Audio CD)
On the evidence of this fab little CD reissue - Chicago's Luther Allison played some of the meanest and grittiest Seventies blues imaginable - and lucky for us was also possessed of a dirty low-down voice to match his fiery axework. Think of a black Jeff Beck circa 1972 with a tassels suede jacket, a spliff in his mouth, a Hendrix lean back pose as he plays and a Fender Stratocaster he wants to hurt - and you're there. "Bad News Is Coming" is his debut LP and a bit of a mule-kicking blinder it is too...

This ballsy uncompromising album first appeared in late 1972 on Motown's Gordy label imprint in the USA and has been remastered here as part of Universal's superlative "Blues Classics - Revisited & Remastered" Series (see list below) - bolstered up with four corking Bonus Tracks from the original sessions. Here is the Rooster in the Barn Yard details...

USA released in April 2001 - "Bad News Is Coming" by LUTHER ALLISON on Universal/Motown 440 013 407-2 (Barcode 044001340727) is an expanded CD remaster and breaks down as follows (56:10 minutes):

1. The Little Red Rooster [Willie Dixon song - Howlin' Wolf cover]
2. Evil Is Going On [Willie Dixon song - Howlin' Wolf cover]
3. Raggedy And Dirty [Luther Allison/Joe Peraino/Robert Kreinar/Andrew Smith/Ray Goodman song]
4. Rock Me Baby [B.B. King/Joe Bihari song - B.B. King cover]
5. Bad News Is Coming [Joe Peraino/Luther Allison/Paul White song] - Side 2
6. Cut You A-Loose [Mel London cover]
7. Dust My Broom [Elmore James cover]
Tracks 1 to 7 are his debut album "Bad News Is Coming" - released December 1972 in the USA on Motown/Gordy G 964L (No UK release).

10. The Stumble [Freddie King cover]
11. Sweet Home Chicago [Robert Johnson cover]
12. It's Been A Long Time [Luther Allison song]
13. Take My Love (I Want To Give It All To You) [Mertis John song]

With all arrangements by Luther Allison, the album was recorded between February and August 1972 and produced by JOE PERIANO. The Band for the Sessions was:
LUTHER ALLISON - Lead Vocals and Guitar
RAY GOODMAN - Rhythm Guitar
PAUL WHITE - Piano and Organ
ANDREW SMITH - Drums and Bass

SUHA GUR - one of Universal's top engineers - has given the remaster a fantastic quality with audio clarity on all of the tracks - pumping, muscular and superbly clear. Play only the opening bars of "The Little Red Rooster" which is essentially Rock-Blues and immediately you're kicked in the gut by the power of his playing and the wonderful muscle in the transfer. He powers down into a Harmonica and Piano Beat Blues with the second Howlin' Wolf classic on Side 1 - "Evil Is Going On" (great work from Garfield Angove and Paul White). Allison growls, "Another mule might be kicking in your stall..." as he allows Angove to dominate "Evil" with warbling harmonica. Things now get downright Funky with Organ/Harmonica battles on "Raggedy And Dirty" and a wicked rhythm section (this will surely turn up on some Kent-Soul/BGP CD as a Funky/Blues discovery). Allison closes the side with Soulful Robert Cray type fretwork on B.B. King's "Rock Me Baby" - his excellent band supplementing the licks with Piano fills and warm Bass runs.

"Bad News Is Coming" is kind of Albert King at Stax territory - a slow piano beat allows aching lyrics and guitar fills to come to the fore (very nice Blues). We return to harder guitar on "Cut You A-Loose" and finish on a slashing version of the Elmore James classic "Dust My Broom" - making you wish you could have seen this band in full flow in a bar somewhere about one in the morning. The extras are surprisingly good opening with an Instrumental version of Freddie King's "The Stumble" and a jaunty go at Robert Johnson's "Sweet Home Chicago". But best is the near eleven-minute "It's Been A Long Time" where he gets to stretch out on the guitar while Paul White plinks away on the piano. Great stuff...

Probably because it was a label more associated with Diana Ross, Marvin Gaye and Smokey Robinson - "Bad News Is Coming" and its 1974 follow-up "Luther's Blues" (also on Gordy and also in this series of CD reissues) simply got lost in the mix. No one seems to have noticed - which is astonishing given the quality of both albums. Perhaps if it had been on the Rare Earth label with the groups Rare Earth, The Undisputed Truth and Rustix - then the Rock crowd might have noticed it more. But like it's tasty follow up "Luther's Blues" - "Bad News Is Coming:" is a hard-to-find vinyl album for Motown collectors and I'd argue a real discovery for Blues enthusiasts (the CD is dirt cheap too).

In the early Fifties Luther Allison formed a band with his brother Ollie and called their group (cue a drumroll) -The Rolling Stones. You see how smart those British boys were - and how they and Led Zeppelin were always nicking the best ideas. A criminally forgotten guitarist in the pantheon of Blues Men - give this Luther Allison CD a go. It's recommended like grits and groceries...

Titles in Universal's "Blues Classics Remastered & Revisited" Series are:
1. Bad News Is Coming - LUTHER ALLISON (1972)
2. Luther's Blues - LUTHER ALLISON (1974)
3. Two Steps From The Blues - BOBBY BLAND (1961)
4. The Real Folk Blues/More Real Folk Blues - JOHN LEE HOOKER (1966 and 1991)
5. The Real Folk Blues/More Real Folk Blues - HOWLIN' WOLF (1966 and 1967)
6. Tell Mama: The Complete Muscle Shoals Sessions - ETTA JAMES (1968)
7. Live At San Quentin - B.B. KING (1990)
8. At Newport - MUDDY WATERS (1960)
9. The Real Folk Blues/More Real Folk Blues - MUDDY WATERS (1965 and 1967)
10. Fathers & Sons - MUDDY WATERS [with Paul Butterfield and Friends] (1969)
11. The Real Folk Blues/More Of The Real Folk Blues - SONNY BOY WILLIAMSON (1966 and 1967)

Physical Graffiti
Physical Graffiti
Price: £16.59

15 of 16 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars "...Custard Pie..." - Physical Graffiti by LED ZEPPELIN (2015 "40th Anniversary Deluxe Edition" 3CD Remasters), 24 Feb. 2015
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Physical Graffiti (Audio CD)
Zeppelin fans have been licking their lips for this one - and almost 40 years to the day (the original double-album was released 24 February 1975) - here it is on Monday 23 February 2015 - clambering up the ascending ledges of my stereo with the big balls of a well-hung King Kong primate sporting a naughty look in his brownstone-sized die-cut eyes (and that's just Side 1). This "40th Anniversary Deluxe Edition" is not without its problems though in my opinion (packaging and questionable extras) - but it is still a thing of double-album beauty - it really is. Here are the forty years gone...

Worldwide released 23 February 2015 - "Physical Graffiti: 40th Anniversary Deluxe Edition" by LED ZEPPELIN on Atlantic/Swan Song 8122795794 (Barcode 081227957940) is a 3CD reissue set in Card Repro Art Packaging and breaks down as follows:

Disc 1 (Sides 1 and 2 of the original 2LP set) - 39:25 minutes:
1. Custard Pie
2. The Rover
3. In My Time Of Dying
4. Houses Of The Holy [Side 2]
5. Trampled Under Foot
6. Kashmir

Disc 2 (Sides 3 and 4 of the original 2LP set) - 43:34 minutes:
1. In The Light
2. Bron-Yr-Aur
3. Down By The Seaside
4. Ten Years Gone
5. Night Flight [Side 4]
6. The Wanton Song
7. Boogie With Stu
8. Black Country Woman
9. Sick Again
"Physical Graffiti" was released 24 February 1975 in the UK on Swan Song SSK 89400 and Swan Song SS 2-200 in the USA. It went to Number 1 in both countries and shipped over 8 million copies in the USA alone.

Disc 3 COMPANION AUDIO - 41:32 minutes:
1. Brandy & Coke (Trampled Under Foot) (Initial Rough Mix)
2. Sick Again (Early Version)
3. In My Time Of Dying (Initial Rough Mix)
4. Houses Of The Holy (Rough Mix With Overdubs)
5. Everybody Makes It Through (In The Light) (Early Version/In Transit)
6. Boogie With Stu (Sunset Sound Mix)
7. Driving Through Kashmir (Kashmir) (Rough Orchestra Mix)

The CD Repro packaging was always going to be a problem on this reissue and in my opinion they've gotten it only half right (at least it's an improvement on those awful Euro repros we had back in the Nineties with their piddly slips of paper on the inside). Let's be blunt about this - arguably "Physical Graffiti" had the most gorgeous LP packaging ever devised for a rock LP and the visceral impact of that for those of us who bought it in 1975 cannot be understated. That's why I find this latest offering so naff in comparison. Aligned with the other reissues - we get an awful blackened rear sleeve where someone has simply blocked out the artwork with blurred images and laughably called it alternate artwork. It's ruined the look of the rear - and the same crap has been done for CD3 on the inside. I also have to stick that peel-off track-list that was on the shrinkwrap onto the back of the cover and it just doesn't look right. The 16-page booklet of black and white and colour photos is over as soon as it starts with barely two pages of credits at the end - no appraisal, no liner notes and no history (you have to fork out huge money for the Super Deluxe Edition to get that). It does feel chunkier with the 3CDs inside and the booklet (I reversed the inner to get the white windows on the rear) but you can't help think that a reissue label of repute like Ace, Edsel, Beat Goes On, Repertoire or Esoteric would have gone to town on this prestigious release and finally given fans something they could really get their teeth into.

And what is this disclaimer bull that Page is putting in the booklets referring to the Companion Audio as being "new material recorded at the time" when its bleeding obvious that these are simply backing tracks with new guitar bits mixed in. Disc 3 has only two genuine outtakes - the short instrumental 1973 version of "Sick Again" and the February 1974 early version of "In The Light" which was originally called "Everybody Makes It Through". The others sound almost identical to me with very slight guitar changes - "In My Time Of Dying" being the worst offender where you have to wait almost the whole song to realise that the first guitar solo bit is the only change - and it's a lesser version. You can't help feel that much of Disc 3 is an elaborate con. There's also been complaints about the quality of the Download/Auto-Rip not being Hi-Res and the vinyl variant containing the same compromised artwork. But let's get to the remaster that is at least better than what went before...

The moment "Custard Pie" hits your speakers - the power of the band wallops you over the noggin - and the new Jimmy Page remaster helps. There's more clarity in the guitar and the whole thing swings better than it did before. "The Rover" has hiss in it that seems more accentuated but it also seems more muscular (what a powerhouse of a song). But then we get the big mother fuyer. "In My Time Of Dying" is a 1928 Blind Willie Johnson Spiritual called "Jesus Make Up My Dying Bed" on Columbia 14276-D (78") - but Zeppelin massively rearranged it - enough for the boys to naughtily claim it as their own (plundering the Blues and not for the first time either). There's even a few seconds of dialogue at the end - "That's The One!" Bonham exclaims knowing he's blasted that sucker as far as it can go. It's a truly awesome piece of Rock and when that guitar solo first kicks in - the drums, the guitar and the bass - at that moment the whole band were undeniably the best in the world. Side 2 opens with "Houses Of The Holy" and again that very subtle remaster difference is evident - and with the drums so forward and loud in the mix - I swear I can hear the squeaking of Bonham's pedals more than I did before (nice). John Paul Jones gets to make his presence known on the funky keyboard backdrop he gives "Trampled Under Foot" (especially in his wicked solo) - but what I can hear more is the overdubbed guitar parts and Plant's ballsy vocals. Bonzo's moment finishes Side 2 "Kashmir" and honestly it sounds much like the "Mothership" remaster to me - huge of course - but I can't honestly say it's any better.

I've always loved the Eastern vibe to "In The Light", the wafting treated acoustic guitars of "Bron-Yr-Aur" and the happy-go-lucky almost childish feel to "Down By The Seaside" - all of which sound much improved. But I'm thrilled to say that the best track on the album seems to have been improved the most - the stunning "Ten Years Gone" which ended Side 3. It's clean, present and powerful - that gorgeous guitar strumming and bass combined sounding so good. And when it goes into that huge riff - wow is the only appropriate response (surely this is Zeppelin at their very best). Can't say I hear a huge improvement in "The Wanton Song" but I'd swear it was produced that way - sounding ever so slightly muffled or contained so that the last passage sounds clearer - doesn't look like that can changed no much you remaster it. "Boogie With Stu" and "Black Country Woman" now sound huge and such fun...

So there you have it - like "Blonde On Blonde", "The Beatles", "Second Winter", "Exile On Main St.", "Manassas" and "The Lamb Lies Down On Broadway" - "Physical Graffiti" is one of those vinyl double albums that retains its cool, mystery and magic. And despite some personal misgivings about presentation on this 3CD 40th Anniversary Reissue - isn't it the business to see it back at Number 1 where it belongs...
Comment Comments (12) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Feb 27, 2015 5:58 PM GMT

Soul & Swagger
Soul & Swagger
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Price: £52.64

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars "...All Righty..." - Soul & Swagger: The Complete "5" Royales 1951-1967 (2014 RockBeat Records 5CD Book Set Remasters), 23 Feb. 2015
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This review is from: Soul & Swagger (Audio CD)
I believe the appropriate linguistic response here is - WOW! Sounding leagues ahead of what's gone before (even from quality labels like Rhino and Ace) - this gorgeously presented all-encompassing 5CD Set celebrating the R'n'B and Soul sides of THE "5" ROYALES has had 'Reissue Of The Year' tagged onto it in many press quarters. And holding this beautiful 9" x 9" Hardback Book Package with its 141 tracks and 124-page memorabilia-festooned book in my grubby hands - frankly I'm not in the least bit surprised. RockBeat Records of Sherman Oaks, California, USA is new to me as a reissue label - but man have they done the business here - and even (dare we say it) - raised the reissue bar by a mile or two. Here are the complete swaggering details...

USA released 1 April 2014 (June 2014 in the UK) - "Soul & Swagger: The Complete "5" Royales 1951-1967" is a 5CD Hardback Book Set on RockBeat Records ROC-CD-3101 (Barcode 089353310127) and breaks down as follows:

Disc 1, 29 Tracks, 76:09 minutes:
1. Bedside Of A Neighbor (January 1952 USA 78"-only on Apollo 253, A)
2. Journey's End (January 1952 USA 78"-only on Apollo 253, B-side of "Bedside Of A Neighbor")
3. Come Over Here (October 1952 USA 78"-only on Apollo 266, A)
4. Let Nothing Separate Me (October 1952 USA 78"-only on Apollo 266, B-side to "Come Over Here")
5. Too Much Of A Little Bit (November 1951 USA 78"-only on Apollo 434, A)
6. Give Me One More Chance (November 1951 USA 78"-only on Apollo 434, B-side of "Too Much Of A Little Bit")
7. So God Can Use Me (first appeared on the 1987 US LP "Sing 'Laundromat Blues'" on Relic Records 8016)
8. I Wanna Rest (first appeared on the 1987 US LP "Sing 'Baby Don't Do It'" on Relic 8015)
9. You Know I Know (September 1952, Apollo 441-45, A)
10. Courage To Love (September 1952, Apollo 441-45, B-side to "You Know I Know" - see Notes)
11. Baby Don't Do It (December 1952, Apollo 443-45, A)
12. Take All Of Me (December 1952, Apollo 443-45, B-side to "Baby Don't Do It")
13. Help Me, Somebody (April 1953, Apollo 446-45, A)
14. Crazy, Crazy, Crazy (April 1953, Apollo 446-45, B-side to "Help Me Somebody
15. Too Much Lovin' (Much Too Much) (August 1953, Apollo 448-X45, A)
16. Laundromat Blues (August 1953, Apollo 448-X45, B-side to "Too Much Lovin' (Much Too Much)")
17. All Righty (October 1953, Apollo 449-X45, A)
18. I Want To Thank You (October 1953, Apollo 449-X45, B-side to "All Righty")
19. I Do (January 1954, Apollo 452-X45, A)
20. Good Things (January 1954, Apollo 452-X45, B-side of "I Do)
21. I Like It Like That (April 1954, Apollo 45-454, A)
22. Cry Some More (April 1954, Apollo 45-454, B-side of "I Like It Like That")
23. What's That? (July 1954, Apollo 45-458, A)
24. Let Me Come Back Home (July 1954, Apollo 45-458, B-side to "What's That?")
25. I Am Thinking (first appeared on the 1987 US LP "Sing 'Baby Don't Do It'" on Relic 8015)
26. I'm Gonna Run It Down (August 1954, King 45-4740, A)
27. Behave Yourself (August 1954, King 45-4740, B-side to "I'm Gonna Run It Down")
28. I Can't Stand Losing You (first appeared on the 1978 US LP "17 Hits" on King/Gusto 5014X)
29. Royal J. Abbit Interview 1993 (1:09 minutes, no venue info provided)
NOTES on CD 1:
Tracks 1 and 2 credited to ROYAL SONS QUINTET
Tracks 3 and 4 with 7 and 8 credited to THE ROYAL SONS QUINTET
Tracks 5 and 6 credited to THE ROYALS
Tracks 9 and 10 with 19 to 22 credited to THE "5" ROYALES and Orchestra
Tracks 9 and 10 also released in small numbers on a Red Vinyl American 45 with the catalogue number Apollo R-441
Tracks 11 and 12 credited to THE "5" ROYALES With Charlie Ferguson, His Tenor and His Orchestra
Tracks 13 to 22 credited to THE "5" ROYALES With Charlie (Little Jazz) Ferguson and His Orchestra
Tracks 23 and 24 credited to "5" ROYALES and Orchestra
Tracks 25 to 28 credited to THE "5" ROYALES

Disc 2, 28 tracks, 75:24 minutes:
1. Monkey Hips And Rice (October 1954, King 45-4744, A)
2. Devil With The Rest (October 1954, King 45-4744, B-side of "Monkey Hips And Rice")
3. School Girl (January 1955, King 45-4762, A)
4. One Mistake (January 1955, King 45-4762, B-side of "School Girl")
5. With All Your Heart (January 1955, Apollo 467-X45, A)
6. (Put Something In It) With All Your Heart (Alternate Take 3) (first appeared on the 1987 US LP "Sing 'Baby Don't Do It'" on Relic 8015)
7. Six O'Clock In The Morning (January 1955, Apollo 467-X45, B-side to "With All Your Heart")
8. See, Hear And Know Nothing (first appeared on the 1987 US LP "Sing 'Laundromat Blues'" on Relic Records 8016)
9. You Didn't Learn It At Home (January 1955, King 45-4770, A)
10. Every Dog Has His Day (January 1955, King 45-4770, B-side of "You Didn't Learn It At Home")
11. Mohawk Squawk (February 1955, King 45-4785, A)
12. How I Wonder (February 1955, King 45-4785, B-side of "Mohawk Squawk")
13. I Need Your Lovin' Baby (June 1955, King 45-4806, A)
14. When I Get Like This (June 1955, King 45-4806, B-side to "I Need Your Lovin' Baby")
15. Women About To Make Me Go Crazy (August 1955, King 45-4819, A)
16. Do Unto You (August 1955, King 45-4819, B-side to "Women About To Make Me Go Crazy")
17. Someone Made You For Me (1955, King 45-4830, A)
18. I Ain't Getting' Caught (1955, King 45-4830, B-side to "Someone Made You For Me")
19. Right Around The Corner (January 1956, King 45-4869, A)
20. When You Walked Through The Door (January 1956, King 45-4869, B-side to "Right Around The Corner")
21. I Could Love You (February 1956, King 45-4901, A - see Notes)
22. My Wants For Love (February 1956, King 45-4901, B-side to "I Could Love You" - see Notes)
23. Come On And Save Me (July 1956, King 45-4952, A)
24. Come On And Save Me (Take 2) (first appeared on the 1998 CD compilation "The Real Thing" on Eagle Records EA-R 90415)
25. Come On And Save Me (Take 3) (first appeared on the 1998 CD compilation "The Real Thing" on Eagle Records EA-R 90415)
26. Get Something Out Of It (July 1956, King 45-4952, B-side of "Come On And Save Me")
27. Get Something Out Of It (Take 2) (first appeared on the 1998 CD compilation "The Real Thing" on Eagle Records EA-R 90415)
28. Get Something Out Of It (Take 4) (first appeared on the 1998 CD compilation "The Real Thing" on Eagle Records EA-R 90415)
NOTES on CD 2:
Tracks 1 to 28 all credited to THE "5" ROYALES
Tracks 13 to 16 with 19 to 28 all likely to feature Mickey "Guitar" Baker on Lead Guitar
Tracks 21 and 22 mistakenly credited in the book as King 4921 when its 4901

Disc 3, 29 tracks, 73:16 minutes:
1. Just As I Am (Take 9, Master Take) (September 1956, King 45-4973, A)
2. Just As I Am (Alternate Takes 3 & 4) (first appeared on the 1998 CD compilation "The Real Thing" on Eagle Records EA-R 90415)
3. Mine Forevermore (September 1956, King 45-4973, B-side of "Just As I Am")
4. Tears Of Joy (March 1957, King 45-5032, A)
5. Thirty Second Lover (March 1957, King 45-5032, B-side to "Tears Of Joy")
6. Think (May 1957, King 45-5053, A)
7. I'd Better Make A Move (May 1957, King 45-5053, B-side of "Think")
8. Messin' Up (October 1957, King 45-5082, A)
9. Say It (October 1957, King 45-5082, B-side of "Messin' Up")
10. Dedicated To The One I Love (December 1957, King 45-5098, A - see Notes)
11. Don't Be Ashamed (December 1957, King 45-5098, B-side of "Dedicated To The One I Love")
12. The Feeling Is Real (April 1958, King 45-5131, A)
13. Do The Cha Cha Cherry (April 1958, King 45-5131, B-side of "The Feeling Is Real")
14. Double Or Nothing (June 1958, King 45-5141, A)
15. Tell The Truth (1958, King 45-5141, B-side of "Double Or Nothing")
16. Don't Let It Be In Vain (October 1958, King 45-5153, A)
17. Don't Let It Be In Vain (Alternate Take 1) (first appeared on the 1998 CD compilation "The Real Thing" on Eagle Records EA-R 90415)
18. The Slummer The Slum (October 1958, King 45-5153, B-side of "Don't Let It Be In Vain")
19. The Slummer The Slum (Alternate Take) (first appeared on the 1998 CD compilation "The Real Thing" on Eagle Records EA-R 90415)
20. The Real Thing (November 1958, King 45-5162, A)
21. The Real Thing (Alternate Take 2) (first appeared on the 1998 CD compilation "The Real Thing" on Eagle Records EA-R 90415)
22. Your Only Love (November 1958, King 45-5162, B-side to "The Real Thing")
23. Your Only Love (Alternate Take 2) (first appeared on the 1998 CD compilation "The Real Thing" on Eagle Records EA-R 90415)
24. I Know It's Hard But It's Fair (March 1959, King 45-5191, A)
25. Miracle Of Love (March 1959, King 45-5191, B-side of "I Know It's Hard But It's Fair")
26. Tell Me You Care (July 1959, King 45-5237, A)
27. Wonder Where Your Love Has Gone (July 1959, King 45-5237, B-side to "Tell Me You Care")
28. My Sugar Sugar (October 1959, King 45-5266, A)
29. Pumpkin Pie (1959, Pull 107, A)
NOTES on CD 3:
All tracks credited to THE "5" ROYALES except 29
Track 29 credited to GUITAR SHORTY / Bob Tate & His Orchestra - it features The "5" Royales uncredited as the backing group
Track 10 "Dedicated To The One I Love" was also reissued in 1963 on King 45-5756 with "Tears Of Joy" as its B-side (Track 4) - it was also their only UK 7" single on Ember Records EMBS S-124 in March 1961

Disc 4, 26 tracks, 72:19 minutes:
1. It Hurts Inside (October 1959, King 45-5266, B-side to "My Sugar Sugar")
2. I'm With You (March 1960, King 45-5329, A)
3. Don't Give More Than You Can Take (March 1960, King 45-5329, B-side of "I'm With You")
4. Why (June 1960, King 45-5357, A)
5. (Something Moves Me) Within My Heart (June 1960, King 45-5357, B-side of "Why")
6. Solid Rock (1960, Federal 45-12383, A - see Notes)
7. I'm A Cool Teenager (1960, Federal 45-12383, B-side to "Solid Rock" - see Notes)
8. I'm A Cool Teenager (Undubbed) (first appeared on the 2007 UK CD compilation "Catch That Teardrop: The Best Of The Home Of The Blues 1960-1964 Sessions" on Ace Records CDCHD 1055 - see Notes)
9. Now Baby Don't Do It (1960, Federal 45-12396, A - see Notes)
10. Everybody Knows (1960, Federal 45-12396, B-side to "Everybody Knows" - see Notes)
11. Please, Please, Please (October 1960, Home Of The Blues 112, A)
12. I Got To Know (October 1960, Home Of The Blues 112, B-side to "Please, Please, Please")
13. Dedicated To The One I Love (Alternate Mix) (January 1961, King 45-5453, A - With Overdubbed Female Vocals)
14. If You Don't Need Me (February 1961, Home Of The Blues 218, A)
15. I'm Gonna Tell Them (February 1961, Home Of The Blues 218, B-side of "If You Don't Need Me")
16. Rain Drops Keep A Fallin' (March 1961, Federal 45-12398, A)
17. Please, Please, Be Mine (March 1961, Federal 45-12398, B-side of "Rain Drops Keep A Fallin'")
18. Not Going To Cry (May 1961, Home Of The Blues 232, A)
19. Take Me With You Baby (May 1961, Home Of The Blues 232, B-side of "Not Going To Cry")
20. Here It 'Tis Right Here (October 1961, Federal 45-12431, A - see Notes)
21. Jail Bird (October 1961, Federal 45-12431, B-side of "Here It 'Tis Right Here" - see Notes)
22. Much In Need (November 1961, Home Of The Blues 234/Vee-Jay VJ 412, A)
23. They Don't Know (November 1961, Home Of The Blues 234/Vee-Jay VJ 412, B-side of "Much In Need")
24. Send Me Somebody (June 1962, Federal 45-12464, A - see Notes)
25. Come On Let's Have A Good Time (June 1962, Federal 45-12464, B-side to "Send Me Somebody" - see Notes)
26. Just Can't Do Me This Way (first appeared on the 1998 CD compilation "The Real Thing" on Eagle Records EA-R 90415)
NOTES on CD 4:
Tracks 1 to 5, 11 to 15, 18 and 19, 22, 23 and 26 credited to THE "5" ROYALES
Tracks 6 to 10 credited to EL PAULING and THE ROYALTON
Tracks 16 and 17 credited to EL PAULING, ROYAL ABBIT, THE ROYALTON
Tracks 20 and 21, 24 and 25 credited to EL PAULING and ROYAL ABBIT

Disc 5, 29 tracks, 75:00 minutes:
1. Help Me Somebody (March 1962, Vee-Jay VJ 431, A)
2. Talk About My Woman (March 1962, Vee-Jay VJ 431, B-side to "Help Me Somebody")
3. Talk About My Woman, Part 2 (first appeared on the 1985 UK compilation LP "R&B Volts From The Vee-Jay Vaults" on Charly CRB 1106)
4. Goof Ball (July 1962, Home Of The Blues 243, A/ABC-Paramount 10348, A - see Notes)
5. Catch That Teardrop (July 1962, Home Of The Blues 243/ABC-Paramount 10348, B-side to "Goof Ball" - see Notes)
6. I Want It Like That (November 1962, ABC-Paramount 10368, B-side to "What's In The Heart")
7. What's In The Heart (November 1962, ABC-Paramount 10368, A)
8. She Did Me Wrong (first appeared on the 2007 UK CD compilation "Catch That Teardrop: The Best Of The Home Of The Blues 1960-1964 Sessions" on Ace Records CDCHD 1055)
9. Show Me (first appeared on the 2007 UK CD compilation "Catch That Teardrop: The Best Of The Home Of The Blues 1960-1964 Sessions" on Ace Records CDCHD 1055)
10. Think - PREVIOUSLY UNRELEASED 1962 Memphis Recording
11. I'm Standing In The Shadows (April 1963, Todd 45-1086, A)
12. Doin' Everything (April 1963, Todd 45-1086, B-side of "I'm Standing In The Shadows")
13. Baby Don't Do It (October 1963, Todd 45-1088, A)
14. There's Somebody Over There (October 1963, Todd 45-1088, B-side to "Baby Don't Do It")
15. Baby Don't Do It (September 1964, Smash S-1936, A - see Notes)
16. I Like It Like That (September 1964, Smash S-1936, B-side of "Baby Don't Do It")
17. Never Turn Your Back (February 1965, Smash S-1963, A)
18. Faith (February 1965, Smash S-1963, B-side to "Never Turn Your Back")
19. Time For Everything (December 1964, Savoy 1625, A)
20. Soul House (December 1964, Savoy 1625, B-side of "Time For Everything")
21. Mr. Moon Man Pts. 1 & 2 (first appeared on the 2007 UK CD compilation "Catch That Teardrop: The Best Of The Home Of The Blues 1960-1964 Sessions" on Ace Records CDCHD 1055)
22. I'm On The Right Road Now (1966, White Cliffs 224, A)
23. Mr. Moon Man (1966, White Cliffs 224, B-side to "I'm On The Right Road Now")
24. Help Yourself (first appeared on the 1992 CD compilation "Hi Records- The R&B Sessions/The Soul & R&B Years" on Hi Records CD129)
25. Roll With The Punch (first appeared on the 1992 CD compilation "Hi Records- The R&B Sessions/The Soul & R&B Years" on Hi Records CD129)
26. I'm Not Ashamed (1961, Apollo 1201, A - see Notes)
27. Didn't We Fool Them (1961, Apollo 1201, B-side of "I'm Not Ashamed" - see Notes)
28. Washboard (Take 1) (1961, Apollo 1203, A - see Notes)
29. (I'm) Gonna Spend My Money (1961, Apollo 1203, B-side of "Washboard" - see Notes)
NOTES on CD 5:
Tracks 1 to 10, 15 to 18 with 24 and 25 credited to THE "5" ROYALES
Track 15 "Baby Don't Do It" is said to include much of James Brown's backing band including the man himself on Piano & Organ
Tracks 11 to 14 credited to FIVE ROYALES
Tracks 19 to 21 credited as ED PAULING and THE EXCITERS
Track 22 credited to THE "5" ROYALES (A-side)
Track 23 credited to ED PAULING & THE "5" ROYALES (B-side)
Tracks 26 and 27 credited to KING RICHARD & THE POOR BOYS (Lowman Pauling and Royal Abbit of The "5" Royales under and alias)
Tracks 28 and 29 credited to THE POOR BOYS (Lowman Pauling and Royal Abbit of The "5" Royales under and alias)

The first thing that hits you about this set (apart from the exceptional sound) is the glorious packaging. This really is a beautiful thing to behold. Similar to Motown's "Singles" Book Sets in concept and shape - the thick Hardback Book opens to Disc 1 imbedded in the front cover flap with a fantastic array of Apollo, King, ABC-Paramount, Todd, Federal and other relevant labels as a backdrop. There's a short 1-page Forward by STEVE CROPPER of Booker T & The M.G.'s, an introduction by compilers JAMES AUSTIN and TOM McCULLOUGH while BILL DAHL'S superlative essay on the group begins on Page 11 and finishes with reference-sources on Page 65 (what a great writer he is). There then follows colour pages of those rare EPs and LPs on King and Apollo. Inbetween all that is a stunning parade of memorabilia photos, label repros, fan-club memberships, concert posters and their name in lights at venues - and at the end a mind-blowing page-after-page display of every 45 and rare 78".

But to give you an indication of the real detail involved here the track-by-track annotation begins on Page 68 and doesn't end until Page 107 with many of the entries having the Billboard and Cashbox Reviews relevant to each song printed beneath the entry! I can't imagine the hundreds of hours it must have taken to do this - picking out each available reference - but it's exemplary stuff. Both "Much In Need" and "Goof Ball" on the Home Of The Blues label were also released on ABC-Paramount - so the page displays of 45s has both. The only other label with this level of depth is of course Bear Family (and those Universal/Hip-O Select Motown Book Sets that won awards).

JERRY PETERSON at SOUND AVENGER did the Remastering and any fan that has owned previous CDs will immediately notice the audio improvement. These tracks sound boss - full of Fifties presence and life and allowed to breath - a top job done. Completists will also notice from the lists provided above that there's actually only one Previously Unreleased track (No 10 on Disc 5) - the others have been on LPs and CD compilations from Gusto to Collectibles. But this is of course the first time the lot has been bundled together in the same place - and presented with such lavish style.

It begins with their 78"-only sides on Apollo as THE ROYAL SONS QUINTET (gorgeous Gospel like "Bedside Of A Neighbor") and ends decades later with members of the band moonlighting as The Poor Boys. The opening 78's have hiss but are amazingly evocative as they croon "nothing separate me from God's love..." But things go up several notches with their superlative lead-in R'n'B single in November 1951 (credited just as The Royals) - a piano-rolling, hand-clapping dancer called "Too Much Of A Little Bit" with Lowman Pauling giving it some deep-as-an-ocean lead vocals. Its lovely B-side "Give Me One More Chance" is a Vocal group smooching pleader making Apollo 434 a bit of a classic pairing. The audio is gorgeous. After two more Royal Sons Quintet Gospel tracks on Apollo ("So God Can Use Me" and "I Wanna Rest") we return to bopping on the infectious Sax blaster "You Know I Know" where our hero's "nerves are in a mess..." And again they use a smoocher on the flip "Courage To Love" with John L. Tanner on Lead Vocals. From "Baby Don't Do It" (their first chart placing in January 1953) right through to "Cry Some More" (tracks 11 to 22) we get the swinging involvement of Charlie (Little Jazz) Ferguson and His Orchestra. The audio quality on say, "Crazy, Crazy, Crazy" a mid-tempo shuffler is fabulous - the saxophone and piano so clear. "All Righty!" features a short unannounced false start with James E. Moore and Obadiah Carter both on Baritone Tenor, Otto Jeffries on Bass and once again John L. Tanner on Lead with Pauling on both Bass and Guitar. Disc 1 cleverly ends with the introduction of Royal J. Abbit explaining in a short but informative interview how and when he joined the group thus setting us up for Disc 2...

"Monkey Hips And Rice" opens up Volume 2 with a witty dancer but it's follow-up "School Girl" and the later released "Mohawk Squaw" both have lyrics that are not only politically incorrect but a tad awkward today. Better in both cases are the mellow B-sides "One Mistake" and the gorgeous Vocal Group magic of "How I Wonder". Alternate Takes start to appear in the shape of "With All Your Heart" (aka "(Put Something In It) With All Your Heart") and "Come On And Save Me" - both pleaders for ladies to return - while the shuffling "Get Something Out Of It" is excellent. Witty lyrics surface in the perfect woman song "I Ain't Getting Caught" where "she drinks and she doves..." but our man is suspicious until she tells him she "went to school with Davey Crockett..." Beautiful audio quality throughout the ballad "My Wants For Love" with Mickey "Guitar" Baker on Guitar while "I Could Love You" rollicks along like the party is in full swing ("baby they call me the squeezer!") with a fantastic solo from Baker.

The dancers continue in fine style with "Mine Forevermore" on Disc 3 while we get all Flamingos on the wonderfully romantic "Tears Of Joy" (again gorgeous audio). It's a Vocal Group mid-tempo with a superb backing vocals arrangement as they "ooh, ooh, ooh..." their way through proceedings (James Brown gal Vicki Anderson took a version of it into the charts in 1967). Another classy slow song is "I'd Better Make A Move" - a wicked B-side Group Collectors will need. The Salsa cash-in "Do The Cha Cha Cherry" isn't very convincing - better is the lovely smoocher "Your Only Love" - another cracking B-side. The Guitar Shorty track which features an uncredited "5" Royales has good sound rather than great.

With the Sixties firmly underway (Disc 5) - the Group tried different styles - some with success. "Goof Ball" is great fun Sixties novelty with a hip-shaking "Catch That Teardrop" on the flip (you can the shimmy-shakers on the frat dancefloors grooving to this). You can understand why Ace Records of the UK grabbed at the excellent previously unreleased bopper "She Did Me Wrong" for their "Catch That Teardrop" CD compilation in 1995. And a real prize for fans is the Previously Unreleased "Think" (billed as by The "5" Royales but its actually El Pauling and Royal Abbit) with a wickedly effective organ solo from Abbit (he confirms its from sessions in Memphis in 1962). But just as good is the groovy B-side "Doin' Everything" which the writers feel was pinched by other songwriters and made into a hit call "Do The Everything" - not surprising it's a winner (expect it in a movie or TV program real soon). Soul Boys and Mods will love "Soul House" (aka "It Won't Be Long") by Ed Pauling & the Exciters - a funky fast-paced instrumental complete with homemade crude recording vibe - a Kent-Soul gem if there ever was one.

In an overcrowded marketplace - RockBeat Records of the USA have carved their name into my heart and the hearts of collectors everywhere with this superb reissue. "I won't be worried anymore..." - The "5" Royales sang way back in 1951. Well if RockBeat decide to do The Flamingos or The Dominoes in the same stylee - I'll be worrying my bank manager right soon (and then some).

Fantastic stuff and well done to all involved for getting it out there and in such glorious style...

Best of the Treniers: They Rock They Roll
Best of the Treniers: They Rock They Roll
Offered by EliteDigital UK
Price: £19.95

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars "...Rockin' Is Our Bizness..." - They Rock! They Roll! They Swing! The Best Of by THE TRENIERS (1995 Epic Legacy CD Remasters), 22 Feb. 2015
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The Treniers produced what is arguably one of the first Rock 'n' Roll records in 1951 with "Go! Go! Go!" - their opening salvo on Columbia's newly reactivated Okeh Records. That and their subsequent infectious dancers set a particular rock rolling and tumbling down a very long hill.

Next up - a country singer called Bill Haley attended one of their incendiary/acrobatic live shows in 1953 and asked "what kind of music are you playing?" Inspired by what he saw and heard - Haley quickly added a tune called "We're Gonna Rock Around The Clock" to his set list and a version of that single made a society-changing impact in the 1955 MGM movie "Blackboard Jungle". A young, unrecorded and impressionistic Elvis Presley is said to have seen The Treniers and their wild "Rockin' Is Our Bizness" song on the Dean Martin and Jerry Lewis "Colgate Comedy Hour" on television in early May 1954 - and we all know what that boy did to the fabric of the known Universe in 1956. In short - The Treniers are one of the founding fathers of our beloved Rock 'n' Roll - and this fabulous-sounding and fun CD (part of Epic's Rhythm and Soul Series) only bashes that home with a rather tasty audio slap in the kisser. Here are the Rock-A-Beating Boogies...

US released on CD in February 1995 - "They Rock! They Roll! They Swing! The Best Of The Treniers" is on Epic/Legacy/Okeh EK 66800 (Barcode 074646680025) and breaks down as follows (53:52 minutes):

1. Go! Go! Go! (1951, Okeh 4-6804, A)
2. It Rocks! It Rolls! It Swings! (1952, Okeh 4-6853, A)
3. Hadacol (That's All) (1952, Okeh 4-6876, A)
4. This Is It! (1953, Okeh 4-6984, B-side of "I'd Do Nothin' But Grieve")
5. Rocking On Saturday Night (1952, Okeh 4-6904, A)
6. Poon-Tang! (1953, Okeh 4-6937, B-side of "Hi-Yo Silver")
7. Rockin' Is Our Bizness (1953, Okeh 4-6960, A)
8. Sugar-Doo (1953, Okeh 4-6960, B-side to "Rockin' Is Our Bizness")
9. Rock-A-Beatin' Boogie (1954, Okeh 4-7023, A)
10. Trapped (In The Web Of Love) (1954, Okeh 4-7023, B-side of "Rock-A-Beatin' Boogie")
11. Bald Head (1954, Okeh 4-7035, A)
13. Say Hey (The Willie Mays Song) (1954, Epic 5-9066, A - see Notes)
14. Get Out Of The Car (1955, Okeh 4-7050, B-side to Who Put The 'Ungh' in The Mambo")
15. Everything's Wild In Wildwood - PREVIOUSLY UNRELEASED
17. Good Rockin' Tonight (1956, Epic 9162, B-side of "Boodie Green")
19. Rock 'N' Roll Call (1955, Epic 9144, A)
Notes: all tracks above are USA 7" singles in Mono unless otherwise stated
Track 13 is credited to WILLIE MAYS OF THE NEW YORK GIANTS with THE TRENIERS (Under The Direction of Quincy Jones) and was on both 78" and 45
Track 14 is sometimes known as "(Uh-Oh) Get Out Of The Car"

The 12-page booklet has affectionate and informative liner notes by Musicologist and Biography hero NICK TOSCHES (The Treniers had been bopping the crowds since before the Second World War and were an already known act when Okeh signed them) - some ensemble black and white publicity photos and even adverts for The Treniers endorsing bottles of Early Times and Old Forester Kentucky Bourbon. There are snaps of the boys going at it on stage - Gene Gilbeaux with his legs in the air as he pounds a piano in a full-on Little Richard/Jerry Lee Lewis style mayhem pose. But the big news (as it has been with this entire series) is new VIC ANESINI, BOB IRWIN and WARREN WEBERG Remasters and Transfers that are just stunning. The clarity on these recordings is breathtaking - full of Fifties presence and atmosphere - and the fact that most are killer tunes only adds to the enjoyment.

It opens with the brilliant Saxophone and finger-clicking "Go! Go! Go!" - and immediately the clarity wallops your senses - and that the fact that it sounds like "Rock Around The Clock" a full three years before that Decca single hit the streets in May 1954 - is amazing. There's a Louis Jordan let the good times roll vibe to "It Rocks! It Rolls! It Swings!" and again with Don Hill blowing his Sax like he was born to entertain. In fact almost all of the songs open with his lone wailing Sax before they launch into a Shuffle ("Rocking On Saturday Night") or Mambo ("Sugar-Do") or just Rock'n'Roll it out ("Rock-A-Beatin' Boogie" later covered by Haley on his famous "Rock Around The Clock" LP in December 1955).

They show off vocal prowess and clever lyrics in the infectious "Trapped (In The Web Of Love)" where were told "Love's a green-eyed monster...with oh so many charms...wrapped itself around my heart...with sixty million arms..." We get fingers pointing in "Bald Head" where a lady without a wig catches our boy's attention and we go to the ballgame with Willie Mays on "Say Hey" produced in July 1954 by a young Quincy Jones. "Get Out Of The Car" turned up on "The Okeh Rhythm & Blues Story" 3CD Box Set where our hero is not getting much joy from his gal as he shows her the sights of the city in his car and she won't show him much else.

Of the five superb Previously Unreleased tracks - "Peace Bond Blues" sounds like Screamin' Jay Hawkins talking about "doing ninety days..." for his gal if she doesn't do right by him and pay the judge a Peace Bond. "Everything's Wild In Wildwood" sounds the band doing their best Louis Jordan impression where "the chicks by the sea..." are fine. And on it goes to crystal clear clarity on "Rock-A-Way" where the band name-check boogie cities including Rome and Nero and sound like Bill Haley & His Comets on fire (or was that the other way around).

So there you have it - twenty great Rhythm 'n' Blues and Rock 'n' Roll tunes - fantastic remasters from Vic Anesini and a neat 12-page booklet. I'll drink a long Bourbon to that...

PS: titles in Columbia/Legacy's "Rhythm and Soul" Series of CD Remasters include:
1. The Complete Okeh Sessions 1952-1955 - BIG MAYBELLE
2. Are You Hep To The Jive? - CAB CALLOWAY (and His Orchestra)
3. Unforgettable - ARETHA FRANKLIN
4. Funky Family - THE ISLEY BROTHERS
5. Beautiful Ballads - THE ISLEY BROTHERS
6. Lady Marmalade: The Best Of - PATTI LaBELLE and LABELLE
7. Everybody Loves A Good Time: The Best Of - MAJOR LANCE
8. If You Don't Know Me By Now: The Best Of - HAROLD MELVIN and THE BLUE NOTES
9. Give The People What They Want - THE O'JAYS
10. Love Train: The Best Of - THE O'JAYS
11. In Philadelphia - THE O'JAYS
12. They Rock! They Roll! They Swing! - The Best Of - THE TRENIERS
13. From Philly With Love - VARIOUS ARTISTS
14. Legacy's Rhythm and Soul Revue - VARIOUS ARTISTS (Sampler)
16. The Okeh Rhythm & Blues Story 1949-1957 - VARIOUS ARTISTS
17. Let's Jump Tonight! The Okeh Sessions 1951-1956 - CHUCK WILLIS
18. Lean On Me: The Best Of - BILL WITHERS

Lloyd Price Rocks
Lloyd Price Rocks
Price: £14.63

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars "...Lawdy Miss Clawdy...You Sure Look Good To Me..." Lloyd Rocks by LLOYD PRICE (2008 Bear Family CD Remasters), 20 Feb. 2015
This review is from: Lloyd Price Rocks (Audio CD)
Louisiana's "Mr. Personality" first brushed with the American Billboard charts in 1952 with his classic pre Rock 'n' Roll smash "Lawdy Miss Clawdy" - a tune that featured two New Orleans R'n'B giants on the session - Fats Domino and Dave Bartholomew. He then formed his own KRC Records and soon after joined the roster of ABC-Paramount Records for further hits like "Stagger Lee" and "Personality".

And that's where this wonderful single CD compilation by the incomparable Bear Family of Germany comes in. A superb addition to their definitive "Rocks" Series (now totalling fifty-plus artists) - this fully featured CD gathers up all the best sides from those three label stints and presents them with Bear's usual classiness and attention to fan-friendly detail. Here are the Stagger Lees...

Released on CD in Germany November 2008 - "Lloyd Rocks" by LLOYD PRICE on Bear Family BCD 16999 AR (Barcode 4000127169990) breaks down as follows (78:54 minutes):

1. Where You At? (1953, Specialty SP-463, A)
2. Country Boy Rock (1956, Specialty SP-578, A)
3. Rock 'n' Roll Dance (1956, Specialty SP-578, B-side to "Country Boy Rock")
4. Walkin' The Track (1954, Specialty SP-494, A)
5. Lawdy Miss Clawdy (1952, Specialty 428-45, A)
6. Why (from the 1987 US LP compilation "Personality Plus" on Specialty SP-2156)
7. I'm Glad, Glad (1956, Specialty SP-528, B-side of "Forgive Me Clawdy")
8. Baby, Please Come Home (1957, Specialty 602, A)
9. Tell Me, Pretty Baby (1953, Specialty 425-45, B-side of "Ain't To Be A Shame")
10. Carry Me Home (on the 1959 US LP "The Exciting Lloyd Price" on ABC-Paramount ABC-277 (Mono))
11. Woe Ho Ho (1956, Specialty SP-571, A)
12. Heavy Dreams (1973,
13. The Chicken And The Bop (1957, KRC 301-45, B-side of "Lonely Chair")
14. Hello Little Girl (1957, KRC 303-45, A)
15. Georgianna (1957, KRC 303-45, B-side of "Hello Little Girl")
16. How Many Times (1958, KRC 305-45, A)
17. Such A Mess (1958, KRC 5000, B-side of "No Limit To Love")
18. Down By The River (1959, KRC 5002, B-side of "Gonna Let You Come back Home")
19. Gonna Let You Come Back Home (1959, KRC 5002, A)
20. Stagger Lee (1958, ABC-Paramount 45-9972, A)
21. You Need Love (1958, ABC-Paramount 45-9972, B-side of "Stagger Lee")
22. Where Were You On Our Wedding Day (1959, ABC-Paramount 45-9997, A)
23. Just Because (1957, ABC-Paramount 45-9792, A)
24. Personality (1959, ABC-Paramount 45-10018, A)
25. Have You Ever Had The Blues (1959, ABC-Paramount 45-10018, B-side to "Personality")
26. I'm Gonna Get Married (1959, ABC-Paramount 45-10032, A)
27. Wont'cha Come Home (1959, ABC-Paramount 45-10062, B-side to "Come Into My Heart")
28. Lady Luck (1960, ABC-Paramount 45-10075, A)
29. Question (1960, ABC-Paramount 45-10123, A)
30. Mailman Blues (1959, Specialty 661, B-side of "Lawdy Miss Clawdy" reissue)
31. Ain't That Just Like A Woman (on the 1961 USA LP "Sings The Million Sellers" on ABC-Paramount ABC-366)
32. The Hoochie Coochie Coo (on the 1961 USA LP "Sings The Million Sellers" on ABC-Paramount ABC-366)
33. Lawdy Miss Clawdy (1959, Specialty 661, A)
34. Baby Please Come Home (LP Version) (on the 1959 US LP "The Exciting Lloyd Price" on ABC-Paramount ABC-277 (Mono))
[Note: all tracks are US 7" singles unless otherwise stated]

Compiled and Produced by BILL MILLAR - the detailed Discography has been done by more great names associated with the best reissues of the genre - BILL DAHL, MICHAEL RUPPLI, RICHARD WEIZE and RUSS WAPENSKY. R.A. ANDREAS, DAVE BOOTH, COLIN ESCOTT and the NOW DIG THIS magazine supplied the photos in the chunky booklet of 50 plus pages (trade adverts for KRC and ABC-Paramount, dressing room and on-stage photos, magazine covers etc). The CD is a repro of the American "Stagger Lee" 45 on ABC-Paramount complete with its label bag and there's a full colour repro of the gorgeous "Exciting Lloyd Price" LP sleeve on Page 47.

But the big news is JURGEN CRASSER and DOUG POMERBY Remasters and Transfers (licensed from Universal) that are truly fantastic in their clarity. As you can see from the list above - the songs cover his Specialty, KRC and ABC-Paramount recordings yet despite different tape sources - the audio quality here is uniformly great - jumping and kicking in all the right places - full of life and presence and irresistible dance beats. Bear does the business yet again...

Opening with an absolute barnstormer "Where You At?" - Price comes at you like Little Richard's eager younger brother shouting, "I looked all over New Orleans...WHERE YOU AT!" Then you notice his Speciality band on tune after tune - tearing through drum bashing and saxophone breaks with amazing energy. He's "gonna rock tonight down at the farm..." on "Country Boy Rock" and "drift down to your soul" on "Rock 'n' Roll Dance". Mid-tempo finally saunters in with "Walkin' The Track" sounding like a grittier version of Fats Domino. Clever sequencing follows the New Orleans shuffle of "Walkin' The Track" with exactly that - Fats Domino playing the background of the song that started Price's productive career - "Lawdy Miss Clawdy" from 1952 (sounding just brilliant).

But even that is blown out by the stunning audio quality on "Why" - a wild bopping tune that graced CD compilations in the late Eighties. "I'm Glad, Glad" is perhaps 'too' wild in its pace - like Roadrunner trying to outrun himself. Better is 1957's "Baby, Please Come Home" where he sounds closet to Richard Penniman. The Fats vibe returns with "Tell Me, Pretty Baby" while both he and Little Richard vie for supremacy on the superb "Woe Ho Ho" (that wicked Specialty sound). By the time you get to "Stagger Lee" and "Just Because" - if you weren't a convert before - you soon be will be.

Aged 81 in 2015 - "Mr. Personality" is still with us - and yet he's not spoken about with the same reverence Little Richard and Fats Domino are afforded. Hopefully this fabulous sounding CD from the wonderful Bear Family will spread the word everywhere...

The Cadillacs Rock
The Cadillacs Rock
Price: £13.91

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars "...Speedo Is Back..." - Rock by THE CADILLACS (2008 Bear Family CD Remasters), 20 Feb. 2015
This review is from: The Cadillacs Rock (Audio CD)
One of the great showmanship bands of the 1950's Rhythm and Blues heyday (a bit like The Coasters) - New York City's 'Cadillacs' were a fun group - always about scuffing up your polished shoes and swivelling your booze-loosened hips. Concentrating on dancers - Bear Family's "Rock" CD compilation gives you just short of eighty minutes of just that - bopper after bopper - and in properly great audio too coupled with classy presentation. Here are the crazy rhythms, peek-a-boo's and naggity nags...

Released on CD November 2008 in Germany - "The Cadillacs Rock" by THE CADILLACS on Bear Family BCD 16281 AR (Barcode 4000127162816) breaks down as follows (78:50 minutes):

1. Speedoo (1955 USA 7" single on Josie 785, A)
2. I Wonder Why (1954 USA 7" single on Josie 765, B-side of "Gloria")
3. I Want To Know About Love (1954 USA 7" single on Josie 769, B-side of Wishing Well")
4. No Chance (1955 USA 7" single on Josie 773, B-side of "Sympathy")
5. Down The Road (1955 USA 7" single on Josie 778, B-side of "Widow Lady")
6. Zoom Boom Zing (from their 2nd US album "The Crazy Cadillacs" released 1959 on Josie JGM-1089, Mono)
7. Shock-A-Doo (1956 USA 7" single on Josie 807, B-side of "Rudolph The Red-Nosed Reindeer")
8. Zoom (Version 2) (1956 USA 7" single on Josie 792, A)
9. Why (from their 2nd US album "The Crazy Cadillacs" released 1959 on Josie JGM-1089, Mono)
10. Baby's Coming Home To Me (from their 2nd US album "The Crazy Cadillacs" released 1959 on Josie JGM-1089, Mono)
11. Woe Is Me (1956 USA 7" single on Josie 798, A)
12. Sugar Sugar (1957 USA 7" single on Josie 812, A)
13. C'mon Home Baby (from the 1960 USA LP "Cadillacs Meet The Orioles" on Jubilee JGM-1117, Mono)
14. Lucy (1957 USA 7" single on Josie 821, A)
15. My Girl Friend (1957 USA 7" single on Josie 820, A)
16. Don't Be Mad With My (from their 2nd US album "The Crazy Cadillacs" released 1959 on Josie JGM-1089, Mono)
17. Buzz Buzz Buzz (1957 USA single on Josie 829, A)
18. Yea Yea Baby (1957 USA single on Josie 829, B-side of "Buzz Buzz Buzz")
19. Holy Smoke Baby (1958 USA 7" single on Josie 842, A)
20. Speedoo Is Back (1958 USA 7" single on Josie 836, A)
21. A' Looka Here (1958 USA 7" single on Josie 836, B-side of "Speedo Is Back")
22. Great Googly Moo (previously unissued March 1958 recording first released on the 1983 USA 5LP Box Set "For Collectors Only" on Murray Hill M6 1285)
23. Copy Cat (1959 USA 7" single on Josie 857, A)
24. Peek-A-Boo (1958 USA 7" single on Josie 846, A)
25. Please Mr. Johnson (1959 USA 7" single on Josie 861, B-side of "Cool It Fool")
26. Cool It Fool (1959 USA 7" single on Josie 861, A)
27. Jay Walker (1959 USA 7" single on Josie 857, B-side of "Copy Cat")
28. Naggity Nag (1959 USA 7" single on Josie 865, A - credited to Speedo & The Pearls)
29. Bad Dan McGoon (1959 USA 7" single on Josie 870, B-side of "Dumbell')
30. Romeo (1959 USA 7" single on Josie 866, A)
31. Dumbell (1959 USA 7" single on Josie 870, A)
32. Still You Left Me Baby (from the 1962 US LP "Twisting With The Cadillacs" on Jubilee JGM-5009)
33. Dum Dee Dum Dum (from the 1962 US LP "Twisting With The Cadillacs" on Jubilee JGM-5009)
34. Gloria (1954 USA 7" single on Josie 765, A)

It's packaged in Bear's now customary 3-flap foldout card digipak for the "Rocks" Series with a detachable booklet (44-pages in this case). The CD label has a repro of their huge "Gloria" hit on Josie Records while beneath the see-through plastic tray is a repro of the single itself on Josie 45-765 complete with its original label bag. The wonderful PETER GRENDYSA text begins on Page 2 and ends on Page 34 with a picture of the "Peek-A-Boo" single on Josie 45-846 - itself followed by an indepth BOB HYDE Discography that finishes on Page 42. Inbetween there's Black and White publicity photos, live shots, reproductions of Concert posters (Rockland Palace, Nov 13 with Ray Charles and The Moonglows is one), the Josie trade advert for "Speedoo" as the 'first hit of 1956', a Fan Club membership card and other various memorabilia photos (the Discography text has label shots of those rare and desirable American 45s). It's a typically tasty job done by Bear. The remastering was carried out by HAM (whoever that is) and is glorious stuff - clear, full of presence and jumping with Fifties atmosphere. And as you can see from the playing time - this CD doesn't scrimp on playing time either.

It opens with a winner - the classic "Speedoo" which sets the Rocking template (both it, "Gloria" and "Zoom" are featured on Bear's "Street Corner Symphonies" CD Series on Volumes 7, 8 and 6 respectively - see separate reviews). We then get into lesser-heard boppin' tunes like "No Chance" and "Down The Road". Rare LP tracks begin with "Zoom Boom Zing" from their 2nd album "The Crazy Cadillacs" - a $300 rarity from 1959. You then begin to notice the group's secret weapon - the name Esther Navarro appearing with the sole writing credit beneath at least 12 tunes (including "Gloria") - she was a secretary who wrote songs and managed artists.

"Oops upside your head" giggles punctuate "Baby's Coming Home To Me" but better is the great R'n'B beat and 'oh oh oh' vocals of "Woe Is Me" (another Navarro winner). Piano boogie kicks in with "Sugar Sugar" and their trademark manic backing vocals to a fast drumbeat. The four boys in the group - Charles Brooks, Earl Carroll, Bobby Phillips and Earl Wade - penned both "C'mon Home Baby" and "Lucy" (an impressive they are too). "Great Googly Moo" has a witty Siamese Cat guitar opening before settling into a cool dance shuffle bookended by a terrific Sax solo. The unrelenting uptempo continues with one of the best - "Cool It Fool" where our hero tries to woo some high-voiced schoolgirl whose having none of his juvenile advances (fantastic audio on both this and the rare B-side "Jay Walker"). "Naggity Nag" is obviously an answer song to "Yakety Yak" with an almost identikit rhythm. And on it goes...

There's a "Rock 'n Roll Jamboree" Poster on the inner flap from 8 September 1955 advertising all seats at $1.00 - you get Chuck Willis, Dakota Staton and in person - The Cadillacs. In 2015 it might cost you more than a buck to acquire this CD but the thrill is still the same...

Complete Okeh Sessions: 1952-1955
Complete Okeh Sessions: 1952-1955

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars "...Don't Run My Business..." - The Complete Okeh Sessions 1952-55 by BIG MAYBELLE (1994 USA Epic/Legacy/Okeh CD Remasters), 19 Feb. 2015
One of the original big-framed shouters and reared on Sunday services where singing for the Lord meant reaching the people in the back seats as well as in the Heavens - Tennessee's Mabel Louise Smith (Big Maybelle) could probably floor a male suitor by just opening her mouth from a mile away. Yet beneath that huge brassy voice and sassy stage persona (backed by saxophones and a blistering rhythm section) beat the heart of a big softie and a habitual substance abuser. Perhaps it was a combination of all these things that imbibed her driving R'n'B with such pathos, fun and pain - all at the same time. Here are the 'just want your love' details...

USA released August 1994 on CD - "The Complete Okeh Sessions 1952-55" by BIG MAYBELLE on Epic/Legacy/Okeh EK 53417 (Barcode 886972504322) breaks down as follows (73:48 minutes):

1. Just Want Your Love (1953 USA 7" single Okeh 6955, B-side to "Way Back Home")
2. So Good To My Baby (first appeared 1983 USA 2LP set "The Okeh Sessions" on Epic EG 38456)
3. Gabbin' Blues (Don't Run My Business) (1953 USA 7" single Okeh 6931, A - reissued on Okeh 7069 - see 22 for B-side)
4. My Country Man (1953 USA 7"single on Okeh 7009, A)
5. Rain Down Rain (1953 USA 7" single Okeh 6931, B-side of "Gabbin' Blues (Don't Run My Business)")
6. Way Back Home (1953 USA 7" single Okeh 6955, A)
7. Please Stay Away From My Sam (first appeared 1983 USA 2LP set "The Okeh Sessions" on Epic EG 38456)
8. Jinny Mule (1953 USA 7"single on Okeh 6998, B-side to "Send For Me")
9. Send For Me (1953 USA 7"single on Okeh 6998, A)
10. Maybelle's Blues (1953 USA 7"single on Okeh 7009, B-side of "My Country Man")
11. I've Got A Feelin' (1954 USA 7"single on Okeh 7026, A)
12. You'll Never Know (1954 USA 7"single on Okeh 7026, B-side of "I've Got A Feelin'")
13. No More Trouble Out Of Me (first appeared 1983 USA 2LP set "The Okeh Sessions" on Epic EG 38456)
14. My Big Mistake (1954 USA 7"single on Okeh 7042, A)
15. Ain't No Use (1955 USA 7"single on Okeh 7053, A)
16. I'm Getting 'Long Alright (1954 USA 7"single on Okeh 7042, B-side of "My Big Mistake")
17. You'll Be Sorry (first appeared 1983 USA 2LP set "The Okeh Sessions" on Epic EG 38456)
18. Hair Dressin' Women (first appeared 1983 USA 2LP set "The Okeh Sessions" on Epic EG 38456)
19. One Monkey Don't Stop No Show (1955 USA 7"single on Okeh 7060, B-side of "Whole Lotta Shakin' Goin' On")
20. Don't Leave Poor Me (1955 USA 7"single on Okeh 7053, B-side of "Ain't No Use")
21. Ain't To Be Played With (first appeared 1983 USA 2LP set "The Okeh Sessions" on Epic EG 38456)
22. New Kind Of Mambo (1956 USA 7" single on Okeh 7069, B-side of "Gabbin' Blues" reissue)
23. Ocean Of Tears (first appeared on the July 1993 Various Artists 3CD Box Set "The Okeh Rhythm And Blues Story 1949-1957" on Epic/Legacy/Okeh E3K 48912)
24. Whole Lot Of Shakin' Goin' On (1955 USA 7"single on Okeh 7060, A)
25. The Other Night (1956 USA 7"single on Okeh 7066, B-side of "Such A Cutie")
26. Such A Cutie (1956 USA 7"single on Okeh 7066, A)

The 12-page booklet has excellent liner notes from PETER GRENDYSA (who did both of The Chess Blues and Rhythm and Roll 4CD Box Sets) with the text peppered by Columbia/Okeh trade adverts ("Gabbin' Blues b/w Rain Down Man") and a photo of her live on a Detroit stage in 1956 mid rapture (a great snap). But the big news is stunning VIC ANESINI/WARREN BEBERG remasters and transfers - clean, clear and full of amazing Fifties echo and presence. This CD is gorgeous audio-wise (the same goes for the whole series really) and that's hammered home as you go from track-to-track.

Love - the lack of it, the throws of it, the sex of it - is not far from the surface of every song. "When it comes to lovin'...he really knows how..." Maybelle enthuses on "Country Man" - while a few minutes later she weeps and wails on "Maybelle's Blues" that "My baby up and left me around about midnight...have mercy...I'm in so much misery..." The bopping R'n'B dancer "So Good To My Baby" first turned up on the 1983 American double-album "The Okeh Sessions" - but better are the flurry of mid-tempo and slow bluesy workouts that came off that double-platter - "Please Stay Away From My Sam", "No More Trouble Out Of Me" and "You'll Be Sorry". There's cautionary advice in "Hair Dressin' Women" who apparently "love to run their mouth all day..." and she does a storming lead rasp on the moaning "Ain't To Be Played With" (quite possibly the best vocal on here).

There's incredibly rare studio chatter at the beginning of "Whole Lot Of Shakin' Goin On" (essentially a False Start with Take 2 being the master) while her formula of a slow A-side backed with a bopping flip is probably best sampled on the fab duo of "Ain't No Use" and "Don't Leave Poor Me" (Okeh 7053). The audio quality is amazing on these cuts - live and in your living room. As it is on the lively "just can't miss..." dancer "New Kind Of Mambo" with Sam "The Man" Taylor blowing up a fabulous Saxophone solo. A special mention should also go the great quality of "Ocean Of Tears" - the lone entry from "The Okeh Story" 3CD Box Set from 1993 (then previously unreleased) which features Mickey Baker putting in tasty licks on Guitar.

A lack of real world love, the needle fix and subsequent diabetes from a lifetime of substance abuse finally did for her in 1972 when she passed away aged only 48. At least this cool little American CD does her Legacy proud - a bit of a cutie frankly...

PS: titles in Columbia/Legacy's "Rhythm and Soul" Series of CD Remasters include:
1. The Complete Okeh Sessions 1952-1955 - BIG MAYBELLE
2. Are You Hep To The Jive? - CAB CALLOWAY (and His Orchestra)
3. Unforgettable - ARETHA FRANKLIN
4. Funky Family - THE ISLEY BROTHERS
5. Beautiful Ballads - THE ISLEY BROTHERS
6. Lady Marmalade: The Best Of - PATTI LaBELLE and LABELLE
7. Everybody Loves A Good Time: The Best Of - MAJOR LANCE
8. If You Don't Know Me By Now: The Best Of - HAROLD MELVIN and THE BLUE NOTES
9. Give The People What They Want - THE O'JAYS
10. Love Train: The Best Of - THE O'JAYS
11. In Philadelphia - THE O'JAYS
12. They Rock! They Roll! They Swing! - The Best Of - THE TRENIERS
13. From Philly With Love - VARIOUS ARTISTS
14. Legacy's Rhythm and Soul Revue - VARIOUS ARTISTS (Sampler)
16. The Okeh Rhythm & Blues Story 1949-1957 - VARIOUS ARTISTS
17. Let's Jump Tonight! The Okeh Sessions 1951-1956 - CHUCK WILLIS
18. Lean On Me: The Best Of - BILL WITHERS

Teenagers & Youth in Music 1951-60
Teenagers & Youth in Music 1951-60
Price: £13.55

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars "...Boogie Woogie All Night Long..." - TEENAGE - Teenagers & Youth In Music 1951-1960 (2011 Bear Family CD Remasters), 18 Feb. 2015
Beautifully presented and cleverly put together - here's a CD compilation from Bear Family of real value that seems to have passed too many genre lovers by. Time to fix that little boo boo...

Released in Germany in November 2011 - "Teenage: Teenagers & Youth Music 1951-1960 - Compiled by Jon Savage" on Bear Family BCD 17242 AH (Barcode 4000127172426) breaks down as follows (83:04 minutes):

1. Too Young - NAT 'KING' COLE (1951, Capitol 1448)
2. Wild, Wild Young Women - RUTH BROWN (1953, Atlantic 993)
3. Seventeen - BOYD BENNETT & HIS ROCKETS (1955, King 1470)
4. A Teenage Prayer - GALE STORM (1955, Dot 15436)
5. Boogie Woogie Teenager - DON JULIAN & THE MEADOWLARKS (1956, Dootone 405 [B-side of "I'm A Believer"]
6. Teenage Mambo - THE GAYLARKS (1956, Music City 805)
7. Teenage Partner - GENE VINCENT (1957 USA LP, "Gene Vincent & The Blue Caps" LP on Capitol T 811, 1958 UK LP "A Gene Vincent Record Date" on Capitol T 1059)
8. Teenage Crush - TOMMY SANDS (1957, Capitol 3639)
9. I'm Not A Juvenile Delinquent - FRANKIE LYMON & THE TEENAGERS (1957, Gee 1026)
10. Teenage Party - TOMMY STEELE (1957 UK 7" on Decca F 10849, B-side of "Knee Deep In The Blues")
11. A Teenager's Romance - RICKY NELSON (1957, Verve V 10047)
12. Young Blood - THE COASTERS (1957, Atco 6087)
13. The Eighteen Year Old Blues - STEVE CARL with THE JAGS (1958, Meteor 5046)
14. Teen Age Riot - PORTUGUESE JOE with THE TENNESSEE ROCKABILLYS (1957, Surf SR 5018-45)
15. Sweet Little Sixteen - CHUCK BERRY (1958, Chess 1683)
16. Teenage Cutie - EDDIE COCHRAN (1972 UK 2LP set "The Legendary Masters Series" on United Artists UAD 60017/18)
17. Ballad Of A Teenage Queen - JOHNNY CASH (1958, Sun 283)
18. School Of Rock 'n' Roll - GENE SUMMERS (1958, Jan 11-100)
19. (Got The) Teen-Age Blues - AL CASEY and THE BATS (1958, Highland 1002)
20. High School Confidential - JERRY LEE LEWIS (1958, Sun 296)
21. A Teenager Sings The Blues - DEAN EDWARDS (1959, Hanover 4501)
22. Teenage Love - THE FIVE CHESTERNUTS (1958 UK 7" on Columbia DB 4165)
23. I Was A Teenage Creature - LORD LUTHER (1958, Frantic F-107)
24. Sixteen Candles - THE CRESTS (1958, Coed 506)
25. A Teenager's Letter Of Promises - JUANITA ROGERS & LYN HOLLINGS with MR. V'S FIVE JOYS (1959, Pink Clouds 333)
26. High School U.S.A. - TOMMY FACENDA (1958, Legrand 1001/Atlantic 51-78)
27. A Teenager In Love - DION and THE BELMONTS (1959, Laurie 3027)
28. The Beat Generation - BOB McFADDEN and DOR [DOR is Rod McKuen] (1959, Brunswick 9-55140)
29. Teen Beat - SANDY NELSON (1959, Original Sound 5)
30. High School Caesar - REGGIE PERKINS (1959, Ray Note S-9)
31. Ballad Of A Juvenile Delinquent - PHIL JOHNS and THE LONELY ONES (1960, River 2012)
32. Because They're Young - DUANE EDDY and THE REBELS (1960, Jamie 1156)
33. Teen Street - JANIS MARTIN (1961, Palette PZ 5071)
34. Teen Angel - MARK DINNING (1960, MGM K 12845)

"Teenage..." is housed in Bear's now standard packaging - a 3-way foldout card digipak with an attached booklet. In this case we get 66 stunning pages worth of liner notes by compiler and music-lover JON SAVAGE. I've reviewed a compilation he did a few years back called "Meridian 1970" which was brilliant too. Like Bill Dahl, his paragraphs on each song are full of facts, wit and personal opinions. There's a warmth and affection here that's just so enjoyable. The booklet is a joy - peppered with colour photos of US Teen magazines like "Dig", "Teen" and "Records Magazine", full-page colour covers of lurid paperbacks like "The Young Punks", "Savage Streets" and "Teenage Gangs" which we're reliably told are full of 'shocking stories' and 'frightening portraits' - yum yum! In fact as you sit there and ogle the superbly evocative presentation and listen to track-after-track of how 'teenagers' eventually took over the world - you're struck by the deliciousness of it all - the possibility and the hope. The music sounds 'boss' too...

Mastered by JURGEN CRASSER - I've raved about his great transfers before - the 16 "Blowing The Fuse" CDs from 1945 to 1960 and the 10 "Sweet Soul Music" compilations from 1961 to 1970 (see reviews for nearly all of them). Given the hugely differing sources - the sound quality is uniformly SUPERB - and in some cases I'd swear it's better than what went before.

It opens badly. Whether it was Number 1 or not in 1951, few will say that the soothing vocals of Nat 'King' Cole had anything to do with teenagers and rebellion. But it improves immeasurably with the irrepressible "Wild, Wild Young Men" by Ruth Brown - you can literally 'feel' the sex and danger emanating from her every saucy line. Genius comes in the shape of "Boogie Woogie Teenage" by Don Julian and The Meadowlarks - a sensational dancing rocker relegated to a 1956 B-side on Dootone (lyrics above) and the stark exciting rockabilly vibe of "Teenage Cutie" by Eddie Cochran - an outtake that finally saw the light of day on the 1972 2LP retrospective set "The Legendary Masters Series" - absolute winners both of them and very clever choices. Speaking of the wonderful Eddie - "(Got The) The Teen-Age Blues" by Al Casey & The Bats could easily be a re-run of "Jeannie, Jeannie, Jeannie" by Cochran and the "...don't know what to do with my future..." misery of "The Eighteen Year Old Blues" by Steve Carl vocalized the thoughts of so many. The utterly bizarre comes in the shape of the 'werewolf' lyrics of "I Was A Teenage Creature" and the spookily spoken "A Teenager's Letter Of Promises" sounding not unlike Screaming Jay Hawkins meets Bobby 'Boris' Pickett & The Crypt Kickers (it sounds a little rough, but has been included for rarity value).

Then there are the 'themes' - the classroom in "High School Confidential" by Jerry Lee Lewis and the superb "School Of Rock 'n' Roll" by Gene Summers (both imbibed with genuine wildness and parent-filling fear) - "Teenage Crush" by Tommy Sands and "High School Caesar" by Reggie Perkins cover TV and films - while bullish behavior and its consequences is everywhere in the constant pairing of the words 'teenagers' and 'delinquents'. Longing, necking and romance is handled by Gael Storm in "A Teenage Prayer", "A Teenager Sings The Blues" by Dean Edwards and Ricky Nelson's sappy "A Teenage Romance". Much more fun though is the naughty cockiness of "Young Blood" by The Coasters and the pre-surf instrumentals of Sandy Nelson's wonderful "Teen Beat" and Duane Eddy's biggest hit "Because You're Young". There's drive-in doo-wop and melodrama - George Lucas featured the extraordinarily evocative "Sixteen Candles" by The Crests in his 1973 masterpiece "American Graffiti" while the morbid "Teen Angel" by Mark Dinning hit the collective nerve and went to No. 1 on the hit parade. Boyd Bennett handles young lust and angst with his "Seventeen" while Tommy Steele provides happier thoughts with "Teenage Party". Perhaps conspicuous by his absence - is the biggest corrupter of them all and surely a close relative of Beelzebub - Elvis Presley. I bet he's giggling at this compilation right now...and admiring his female counterpart - Janis Martin as she Rock 'n' Roll's "Teen Street".

Niggles - while Savage's brief is to chronicle the youth phenomenon that swept the USA and then the world in the mid to late Fifties - long-time Collectors will probably sigh at the overly familiar here - Chuck Berry, Johnny Cash, Dion & The Belmonts and Frankie Lymon - tracks they probably have two or three times over. But looking deeper into the generous 34 tracks (and its huge playing time of 83:04 minutes), there are rarities and first-time-on-CD gems here well worth the purchase. "Ballad Of A Juvenile Delinquent" by Phil Johns is a musical find with lyrics that go from the Malls to the Jailhouse in 2 minutes 50. Tommy Facenda's "High School U.S.A." is said to have had 28 versions recorded by Atlantic - each name-checking specific high-schools in different States - a trick that worked because it garnished a No. 28 placing on the National charts in 1959.

This CD is fun, evocative and gorgeous in its presentation. And best of all it captures what it was like to be young in the Fifties and poppin' coins into a jukebox to hear the soundtrack to your life...

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