1. I Can See Him Making Love To You – The Mayberry Movement
2. Hope For Love – Darrow Fletcher
3. It’s Better To Cry – Johnny Watson
4. That’s The Way Our Love Is – The Radiations
5. Take All The Time You Need – The Checkmates Ltd
6. You’re Gonna Lose Me – Freddie Hubbard Featuring Jeanie Tracy
7. Your Song – Laura Lee
8. Lovin’ – The Pacesetters
9. I’m A Dreamer – Bobby Burn
10. I Wanna Stay High On You – Higher Feelings
11. Always – Garland Green
12. A Broken Heart Cries – The Pretenders
13. Lightin’ Up – Ty Karim
14. The Fool Who Used To Live Here – Betty Fikes
15. More Than Just Somebody I Know – Brenda Wayne
16. Staying At Home Like A Woman – Lynn Varnado
17. All In My Mind – Unknown Artist
18. Still A Part Of Me – The Minits
19. I’m In Love – The Ovations
20. What Hurts – Grover Mitchell
21. You Gotta Be A Lady – The Chargers
22. Double Love – The California Playboys
23. Wear Your Natural – Towana & The Total Destruction
Masterpieces Of Modern Soul Volume 2 – Various Artists CD (Kent)
Only 1 left in stock
1. I Can See Him Making Love To You – The Mayberry Movement
A long-waited follow-up to 2003’s first volume, Kent presents 24 more slabs of 70s soul: crossover, two step and shufflers for cultured collectors.
Compiler Ady Croasdell has gathered together fantastic unissued dance tracks from Brenda Wayne, the Radiations, and Betty Fikes – plus previously unheard finished masters from soul legends Darrow Fletcher and the Ovations.
Add in Modern Room perennials from Grover Mitchell, Bobby Burn and the Pretenders – and super-rarities from Higher Feelings, the Minits and Ty Karim. Plus recent big discoveries from George Jackson, Frank Dell and the Mayberry Movement.
Rembrandt’s oeuvre was deep dark shades of mystery; Hieronymus Bosch depicted devilish incarnations from the most fevered, hell-troubled imagination, while Warhol drew tins of soup: each in its own way a masterpiece. The Modern Soul world has its own, equally diverse, aural classics which get their share of the spotlight here.
Who would deny Grover Mitchell, a Georgian flowering in the City Of Brotherly Love, his musical piece de resistance ‘What Hurts’? Master arranger Thom Bell does some fabulous colouring in on the background, while Len Barry and Sherman Marshall sketched the composition with him. The Chargers more psychefunk shaded number comes from the same Pennsylvanian school of art.
Over on the West coast, arranger and writer Miles Grayson was laying down tracks at such a rate that three of them have only recently come to light. Of these, the most fascinating find has to be Betty Fikes’ southern soul shaded ‘The Fool Who Used To Live Here’. Apart from being a soulful groove it turns out Betty was a leading light and campaigner in the 60s civil rights movement. Her activism from her home town of Selma, Alabama eventually led to her performing for Secretary Of State Colin Powell at his White House gatherings. In contrast Brenda Wayne parked her taxi cab outside the studios, cut the pounding disco inspired dancer ‘More Than Just Somebody I Know’, and then got back behind the wheel to pick up more fares. Two very different stories and styles but both great music, premiered here. Miles also came up with a southern-style, funkified gem from his regular singer Lynn Varnado. ‘Staying At Home Like A Woman’ first pictured on our sister label BGP. This is a chance for Kenters to katch on.
We move to the barely released. Higher Feelings’ ‘I Wanna Stay High On You’ was one of Kent/Modern’s hopes for the 70s that was sadly dashed due to group politics and a break-up that was ironic in the extreme, when you consider that the group are still together 35 years on. It’s a wonderful two-stepper that is rare enough not to be featured in any of the price guides and we, the owners of the label, also had no idea of its existence until a kind collector passed on all the info.
Ty Karim was an LA city girl with a wonderful recording history. Featured twice here, once with her fabulous 70s update of ‘Lighten Up Baby’, ‘Lightin’ Up’ and also in her group incarnation as Towana And The Total Destruction (check out that fantastic front cover photo). As Towana, Ty recorded ‘Wear Your Natural’ in a slow funky groove that was eventually speeded up for the 45’s release. Here we give you the unadulterated original speed recording.
Back east in NYC, David A Blake was producing classy soul recordings and his and Frankie Nieves’ song ‘It’s Better To Cry’ has a complex history. However it is the quality of Johnny Watson’s 70s recording of it that really matters here; good enough for DJs to pay 4 figure sums until a most unusual scam was revealed. Dave’s soul group harmony production of the Radiations’ ‘That’s The Way Our Love Is’ is absolutely exquisite and though possibly of an earlier date than this CD would normally entertain, demands inclusion.
Memphis is raided for three Sounds Of Memphis / XL recordings; recently out on different Kent CDs but well worthy of reappraisal here on a dancers’ CD. One of the triumvirate is now credited to a mystery vocalist; feel free to enlighten us with your opinions.
Chicago’s Darrow Fletcher continues to impress with his sensitive soulful singing and the discovery of ‘Hope For Love’, a previously unreleased 70s master, is a treat for everyone concerned. Other key tracks include the jazz-flavoured Fantasy recordings of Freddie Hubbard & Jeanie Tracy, the Pacesetters and the Checkmates Ltd. Garland Green adds another excellent vocal portrayal to his Kent output and the Pretenders, Bobby Burn, Act 1 and Mayberry Movement all get neglected works reappraised in this entertaining new setting. By Ady Croasdell – Ace Records
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