on 10 June 2008
The King label specialised in blacks covering country music and whites covering black music-the twin strands which led to rock'n'roll.
This CD concentrates on many of the minor names who never cracked the maintream where only Boyd Bennett and Bonnie Lou would have hit singles.
In fact Bonnie Lou's Tennessee Wig Walk was a surprise U K hit in 1954 while some 20 years later Hank Mizzell's Jungle Rock did the same
The King label was founded in 1943 and at first recorded nothing but country but 10 years later both King and its various subsidiary labels put many black artists on the charts including James Brown,Bill Doggett and Valerie Carr.Hits on the R & B charts came from solo stars like Ivory Joe Hunter vocal groups like Otis Williams & the Charms who hit with their cover of the Jewels' Hearts of Stone and later covered local white girl singer Cathy Carr's Ivory Tower though she won the race.
Cathy was one of the first to sign with the new Fraternity label who would sometimes purchase recordings like Bonnie Lou's final single Friction Heat
The label was eventually sold to Starday Records in 1970 and relaunched as Starday-King before being sold again to songwriters Leiber & Stoller who ended up combining it under the name Gusto.