Monday, 28 January 2013

DJ Prestige

Washed ashore this week is my guest castaway Jamison Harvey, aka DJ Prestige, from Brooklyn, New York.  

A full-time DJ since 1998, Jamison puts out the influential Flea Market Funk blog.

There is a great feature on Jamison in 'Dust & Grooves', a photography and interview project documenting vinyl collectors in their most natural and intimate environment: The record room. Check it out, here...  Dust & Grooves

"Flea Market Funk aka DJ Prestige, Brooklyn NY by way of Dirty Jersey. Father, Husband, Record Digger, DJ, Beard Enthusiast and Liverpool Supporter."

Ray Barretto - Soul Drummers

"First introduced to this artist via Dutch Rap/Skate Rock band Urban Dance Squad when they sampled 'Deeper Shade of Soul'.

I had gone out and bought the reissue full length, Acid, at a crazy record show in Edison, NJ. I was thrilled to finally dig deeper and procure a promo copy of "Soul Drummers" years later for like $5. 

It's just a catchy song, and was an introduction of sorts for me to Latin music in the early 90's.  From there I got to discover artists like Joe Bataan, Willie Colon, and the like.  I guess you always remember your first (Latin record that is), and the percussion on this one just kills it.  Definitely one of my all time favorites."   

Brother Jack McDuff - Oblighetto
"Having a sweet spot for the Jazz organ, I have been obsessed with guys like McDuff, Jimmy Smith, Jimmy McGriff, Shirley Scott, Groove Holmes, Lonnie Smith and Larry Young for a long time. 

Imagine my surprise to find this record in the bottom of a record crate for 50 cents.  The haunting vocals of Jean DuShon echo in the background, and Brother Jack goes about his business proper. It was a bonus to me that A Tribe Called Quest 'Scenario' sample used this record off of their Low End Theory LP, something I have worn out multiple times.

There is something about Soul Jazz that just moves me, and Brother Jack McDuff is one of the greatest."

Sugar Billy - Super Duper Love Part 1
"I originally bought this at a flea market on the cheap, and was hooked by the guitar riff and Sugar Billy's wail of "Giiiiiirlllll are you diggin' on me?". The jockey and horse, plus the typography of the words Fast Track drew me to this (I am a record design nerd too).

When I opened up for Joss Stone years later and played this song, her sound guy ran up to me and said "What are you doing playing this?  That's Joss' song!".  I took my headphones off and said, "Who?  This is Sugar Billy!".

Even without the Joss Stone connection, this is a smooth Soul groover that I can't live without."

Brother To Brother - In The Bottle
"A cover version of the Gil Scott-Heron's classic, to me, has got to be one of my 45s and imagine my surprise when I read that Bobbitto Garcia covets this same record.

OK, it's a bit slower, but still packs the same punch every time I drop the needle on it.

This was an early 45 I picked up when I started to get into 45s heavy.  It holds a special place among my records, and the flute solo that takes the record out is just lovely.  Turbo was a division of All Platinum based out of NJ, so a lot of their records could be dug up in the Tri-State area (NJ/NY/PA).

There were so many good All Platinum. Stang, and Turbo records around, but to me, 'In The Bottle' is top of my list."

Dawn Penn - You Don't Love Me
"Originally when I heard this, it was her 90's Dancehall remake with the U-Roy 'Wake the town and tell the people' intro, but I quickly fell in love with her original version on Coxsone records from 1967.  

The original, slower riddum and Dawn's voice have sealed the deal easily as one of the best Reggae 45's I have ever dug up.  

This was early Reggae at it's finest, with a Leroy (Smart) and Rocky track on the flip.  "No No No" chugs along and the piano stabs and guitar riff get me every time.  The Willie Cobbs Bluesy version is quite special too, but Penn's take on it is the one for me."     

If you enjoyed these choices as much as I did, then enjoy more by following this link :


Monday, 21 January 2013

Glen Goodwin

Washed ashore on a lonely island in the sea is this weeks guest castway, Glen Goodwin resident DJ at 'Stax of Soul' and The Hole in the Wall Soul Club.

"It seemed so easy when Bill asked for my deserted island five, but actually to choose just five is virtually impossible, and caused me a lot of pain when finally settling on my five, after many revisits I can tell you. For that reason what you see here may well be very different if I try again next month. These may not be the best five records I own, nor even the most popular on the dance floor but they are all important to me in different ways."

"That said, here we go..."

Mitch Ryder & The Detroit Wheels - You Get Your Kicks

"This was the first ever Northern Soul record that I ever purchased, sometime around my 12th year I think. Having been bought up in North Staffordshire and with two older brothers who both attended The Torch, its fair to say that I was weaned on soul music, hence my love of it starting so young. 

I remember buying this with the first weeks wages from my first weekend schoolboy job at the Co-Op. 75pence from a wage packet of £4.33 was quite an investment! It became quite overplayed for a long time, and being easy to get was never really a track for the purist, but for me it, since I keep my records in the order I purchased them, remains number 1 in my collection. 

Happy memories of me recording it onto a cassette tape along with my other early records to be played against me ear at night as I drifted off to sleep, as a constant companion when I sat having crafty ciggies with my mates, and played to death in my early youth club days."

Ernie Tucker - Can She Give You Fever

"I wanted to include a real stomper, and had many in mind to choose from, but finally settled on this, one of my most recent purchases to represent them. Like the wonderful ‘Get Out’ by Harold Melvin, it has an odd, some might say out of place intro, but for those who know it, like the aforementioned Harold Melvin, that simply gives time to find a roomy space on the dance floor and not miss a beat of the cracking, stomping, hard edged treat to follow. 

This is becoming firmly established in my sets and rapidly gaining a following at both Hole In The Wall & Stax of Soul."

Edwin Starr - Back Streets

"Throughout my life this man has been consistently my favourite soul singer. I saw him perform a number of times, met him on a couple of occasions, and like most Northern Soul fans class him as a god in the scene. 

I could have chosen any of the many records of his that I own but finally settled on this beautiful song, also ensuring that I don’t have just stompers amongst my five choices. 

The saddest time I remember hearing this (but only as instrumental) was just a few weeks after the great mans death. He had been booked to appear at a Kings Hall All Nighter, and in one of the most poignant moments I can remember, his sax player played this out live on stage where, had he not been taken from us, Edwin would have been standing to sing it. Not a dry eye in the house!"

Holly St James - That's Not Love
"For me this is what the scene is all about. A virtually unknown singer and a track unknown outside of the soul circuit, yet an incredible voice and real soul. How could this have NOT been a hit?!? 

I chose this because it has it all. The lyrics are sensational, the backing track oozes soul and brings goose bumps every time I hear it, a track that builds to an unbelievable, almost orgasmic climax. Despite being one of the slowest tracks its one that I have to dance to when I hear it and smile throughout. 

It beat off stiff competition from the likes of Mel Britt, Prince Phillip Mitchell, Dean Barlow, Frankie Karl and the incredible ‘No One There’ by Martha Reeves to name a few."

The Drifters
Drip Drop

"This amazing sound from 1958 came out ahead of a number of tracks that I class together in a broad RnB/Popcorn group; Soul Brothers Six, Willie Mitchell, The King Pins amongst them.

I chose it partly because I simply adore it, and adore dancing to it, and partly because The Drifters were the first live band I ever saw, at Hanley’s Victoria Hall in around 1972. This was before the break ups and sad sight of several versions of The Drifters touring at the same time, when they still had all of the credibility that these amazing singers deserve."

"Please, next time someone asks me to do this, let me choose at least 100 tracks!"


Glen will be spinning more great tracks like these at the Hole in the Wall Soul Club at Elixir Bar, 162 Eversholt Street, London NW1 1BL.

click on the link below for more details


Monday, 14 January 2013

Gail Smith

My guest castaway this week is Gail Smith. Originally from Hull, Gail moved to Victoria, Australia in 1998 and describes herself as "a music fan, collector and presenter - pure and simple!"

Like Larry Grogan's 'funky16corners', Gail's 'Work Your Soul' podcast always strives to both inform and entertain the listener... it achieves this admirably.

"What a challenge.....especially as not two, but three tracks on my first - very long - list had already been chosen by Mr G! 

I was going to go for full-blown stompers and floorfillers but then had a re-think and decided on tracks, in no particular order, that could be on a 24/7 loop and still sound great each time around."

Johnny Sayles - I Can't Get Enough (Of Your Love)
"This list is by no means definitive but this stellar track will ALWAYS be in my top five in whatever genre.  I was just a tad too young to frequent the legendary Northern Soul venues in England and I would have loved to have witnessed the acrobatics that must have accompanied this track.  The first few bars of soft brass belie what is going to murder your senses for the next 2.31 absolute explosion of Chicago brilliance, storming vocals from Mr Sayles, exemplary arrangement from Monk Higgins and a rhythm section so tight it's about to snap.  The thing builds and builds to the bridge break and if I was capable, I'd be dropping and spinning like a pro.....instead I'm singing at the top of my voice and willing my feet to move faster."

"Cos I can never, never, aaaaaaah, get enough of your love!"

Eddie Holman - I'll Cry 1000 Tears

"This track, along with the remaining three, has something about it that is so difficult to describe. I'm no musician but I'm guessing it's something to do with certain chord changes that produce a melancholic melody - yet it's hypnotic and you end up playing it over and over again. So, Eddie, forever remembered for "Hey There Lonely Girl", yet so much more - fantastic vocal range, gifted songwriter and bringing it all together in the city of brotherly love.  Did some classic tracks (I Surrender, Hold Me In Your Arms, A Free Country, Where I'm Not Wanted) that are guaranteed floor-fillers, but this for me is Eddie at top flight."

"I'll search a thousand faces just to find you and bring you home again...."

Marvin Gaye - When I Feel The Need

"It's a crime that this track sat unreleased in the Motown vaults for the best part of 30-odd years....Marvin at his absolute best on a track tailor-made for him by Ashford and Simpson, with the might of the Motown machine as a solid foundation and Harvey Fuqua and Johnny Bristol producing.  I just love these big Motown sounds,  brass belting out, strings wailing, percussion pounding.....  put Marvin in the mix, starting all mellow then blasting into a screaming evocation of love.....makes you melt..."

"For every locked door, my baby has a key...."

Jackie Lee - Oh, My Darlin'

"Another one for the melting category.  Those chord changes again that tug at your heart-strings while you're wanting to dance up a storm  - close to tears, but your feet going ten to the dozen, on probably one of the best northern soul mid-tempo tracks you'll ever hear. 

Written by the prolific and talented Sherlie Matthews and the might of Fred Smith and James Carmichael on production and arrangement, it's got that unmistakeable West Coast sound.  Spine-tingling."

"I feel so lost and friendless, there's no solution, I've just got to have you..."

Jack Montgomery - Don't Turn Your Back On Me

"Jack Montgomery's being wrapped in black velvet and fed chocolate.... totally under-stated and effortless. It's as though he never really has to do anything except go with the flow - and what a flow it is, Detroit production at its very best, Don Mancha, Fred Bridges, Mike Theodore and Denis Coffey.  That deep moan, an inspired lead-in for the instrumental bridge.  The orchestration is  almost classical, the strings carrying the whole thing with what I think is an oboe making a cameo appearance - not often you get that in a soul record.  Add some sweet, sweet backing singers and there it is.....perfection.  The man - real name Marvin Jones - only recorded five known tracks each one of them sinking without a trace. Unbelievable."

"If you take this love from me, my love would be like a rainy day..."


If you enjoyed these choices as much as I did, you can listen to more great tracks from Gail on the latest episode of 'Work Your Soul' on Mixcloud :

Monday, 7 January 2013

Larry Grogan

My latest guest castaway to be washed ashore on a lonely island is Larry Grogan.  
New Jersey vinyl junkie/crate digger, Larry has been writing about music in various forms (zines, newspapers, e-zines, blogs) since the mid-1980′s and his Funky16Corners blog started in November 2004 to focus on funk and soul vinyl.

Every Friday night, Larry hosts the Funky16Corners Radio Show on Viva Radio... "a mix of soul, funk, jazz and rare groove all recorded from OG vinyl for your listening pleasure."

So, over to you Larry...

"When Bill asked me to put together a “desert island” selection of 45s, to be honest it took some thought (and a revision or two). I basically dug back into my brain and tried to dredge up a selection of discs that were all undeniably dynamic, important to me personally, as well as things that I would recommend enthusiastically to someone looking to get acquainted with the power of soul music." 

"If you come by the Funky16Corners blog, it should come as no surprise that there are two Eddie Bo-related discs on the list. Bo was a master of R&B, soul and funk, working as a singer,songwriter, producer and arranger for a wide variety of performers and New Orleans record labels during his long career."

Roger & The Gypsies - Pass The Hatchet Pts 1&2
"The first 45 on the list is by any measure my all-time favorite, in any genre, and that’s saying a lot. Roger and the Gypsies were in fact a New Orleans-based group known as Earl Stanley and the Stereos. Seven B label owner Joe Banashak took their already hot instrumental track and had Eddie Bo punch it up by adding vocals. There’s no denying that without the vocals, ‘Pass the Hatchet’ has a propulsive drive, but with Bo added to the mix it is elevated to another level entirely. The record has a huge drum sound, which is the main reason it works so well on the dance floor. Not an easy 45 to come by, but worth whatever you have to pay when you find it."

Chuck Edwards - Downtown Soulville
"The second disc on the list is a great example of an r&b/soul singer who was capable of mixing a little rock into his sound. Chuck Edwards recorded for a few different Western Pennsylvania labels before relocating to the west coast in the late 60s. ‘Downtown Soulville’ (also used as the theme song for the mighty Mr Finewine’s famed WFMU radio show) is an upbeat soul mover driven by Edwards’ guitar and some tasty, almost garagey combo organ. It’s one of those records that is a mile marker of sorts on the road from soul to funk."

Barbara Banks - River of Tears
"It wouldn’t be a real desert island list if I didn’t include some Northern Soul, which is why Barbara Banks’ ‘River of Tears’ is on the list. I first heard this record on a comp assembled by the mighty Keb Darge, and I zealously pursued a copy for my own record box for a number of years after that. When I finally did pick it up (at no small expense) I played it over and over again. 

Co-written by Banks (and later covered fantastically – with a thundering drum break - by the Royalettes on Roulette), ‘River of Tears’ has that high-BPM Northern tempo, a fantastic bass/vibes riff and a remarkable vocal by Banks. The record builds in excitement until it just about explodes in the chorus."

Eddie Bo - Hook and Sling 
"Next up is the only explicitly ‘funk’ 45 in the mix. I’m a huge funk fan/collector, but I wanted to include a 45 that is not only representative of the sound, but also breaks with it on some levels. That 45 is Eddie Bo’s ‘Hook and Sling’. 

The biggest hit that Bo even had (Top 10 R&B in 1969) ‘Hook and Sling’ is a record that oozes the sound of New Orleans from its grooves. Light years away from a straight ahead 4/4 – thanks in large part to the stunning drum work of James Black – ‘Hook and Sling’ is one of those records that might take a few seconds for the listener to step into the grooves, but once they’re inside, there they’ll stay. This is quite literally a record that changed my life. It opened the door to New Orleans funk and soul (especially the sounds of Eddie Bo) and got me into funk 45s in a big way."

Rex Garvin & The Mighty Cravers - I Gotta Go Now (Up On The Floor)
"I saved ‘I Gotta Go Now (Up On the Floor)’ by Rex Garvin & The Mighty Cravers for last since it’s been a favorite set-closer of mine for years. Garvin & The Mighty Cravers recorded for a wide variety of labels through the 1960s, with ‘Sock It To ‘Em JB’ having some regional success in 1966 as well as being issued in Europe by Atlantic (and later covered by the Specials). ‘I Gotta Go Now (Up On the Floor)’ was released in 1967, and as far as I can tell failed to chart anywhere. If there was ever a 45 that tanked because it was too powerful and relentless, this is the one.

I always keep this one in the record box as inspiration to build a set worthy of a Saturday night crowd. It is a mind blower, with the band kicking into overdrive from the first notes, and once you get Rex and the band working the call and response of

‘I gotta go now!
Go ahead!
Out on the floor now!
Go ahead!’

It’s impossible not to move. I never, ever get tired of hearing, or spinning this record.

So, that’s my five. I hope you dig them, and that you got turned on to something new... Keep the Faith."

Click on the link below to go to Larry's Funky 16 Corners website which has links to his radio shows and podcasts:

Tuesday, 1 January 2013

Dirk Vermeiren

Washed ashore on a deserted island is my first guest castaway, Dirk Vermeiren.

A Belgian resident of Istanbul, Dirk co-hosts the Soul Sendekasi Radio Show with Ansell Mullins who hails from the USA. "A weekly one hour message articulated with a soul scream, written in a funky pen, punctuated with gospel exclamations and signed by the Rhythm and Blues. The language of the Manifesto may be Turkish but the groove is international."

With just five records to keep him company, here are Dirk's selections.

Harry Belafonte - Abraham, Martin and John

"Whenever an artist reaches the status Harry Belafonte reached during his lifetime - successful in music and movies, even becoming a goodwill ambassador for the UN, and on top that being called 'the Most Handsome Man Ever' by my mom - he sort of loses credibility in the eyes of a lot of people. But his voice remains unique, and Belafonte's interpretation of this song made famous by Marvin Gaye is  unmatched."

The Staple Singers - Freedom Highway

"This a live recording, including my favorite musical family (next to the Von Trapp family obviously). The interaction with the crowd is so intense I'm sure I will never have the feeling being on my own, stuck on the island."

The Soul Children - The Sweeter He Is

"Isaac Hayes wrote this track, but it is the Soul Children that live it through with an intensity that hits you in the stomach.  I'll always be grateful to my partner in Soul Sendikasi, Ansel, to introduce me to this recording. It just keeps getting better all the time. So does the Soul Sendikasi, which I intend to keep working on even when I'm stuck on the island. I'll throw a bottle in the sea with program details on a weekly basis."

Nolan Porter - Keep On Keepin' On

"Because all previous tracks were slow songs, and everybody is in need of some physical exercise once in a while, I'll pick dance tracks for places 2 and 1. Nolan Porter's 'Keep On Keepin' On' combines the power of R&B, the emotional power of the best soul recordings and on top of that is funky as hell."

The Sisters Love - Give Me Your Love

"Dance track, rich in all aspects. Sensual and groovy at the same time, a touch of psychedelics, jazzy flute, gospel style voices. When you come to think about it it's not clear it all the singer is addressing a love or saying a prayer. I like that ambiguity."

Soul Sendikasi is aired in Istanbul on Açik Radyo (94,9 FM), in Ankara on Radyo ODTÜ (103,1 FM), in Izmir on Radyo Dokuz Eylül (107,9 FM) in Eskişehir on Radyo A (101,7 FM) and via a podcast available on the Soul Sendikasi website... see LINKS