required listening

CD Review

VARIOUS ARTISTS  -  Dave Godin’s Deep Soul Treasures, Vol.5

Kent Soul (UK) CDKEND 485

SOUL CITY-Who Knows; RONNIE TAYLOR-Without Love; BIG MAYBELLE-Don’t Pass Me By; HELENA FERGUSON-Where Is The Party; CAROLYN SULLIVAN-Dead; ESTHER PHILLIPS-Home Is Where The Hatred Is; MASQUERADERS-I Ain’t Got To Love Nobody Else; MARK IV-I’ll Be Right There (To Make Love To You); KENNY CARTER-I’m Not The One; EMOTIONS-Somebody New; BARBARA LYNN-(Until Then) I’ll Suffer; DEE DEE WARWICK-Foolish Fool; GEORGE JACKSON-My Desires Are Getting The Best Of Me; JAMES CARR-These Ain’t Raindrops; EDDIE & ERNIE-Standing At The Crossroads; BETTY HARRIS-Can’t Last Much Longer; GLADYS KNIGHT & the PIPS-Lovers Always Forgive; CHANTELS-Every Night (I Pray); JUDY WHITE-Satisfaction Guaranteed; JERRY WASHINGTON-Right Here Is Where You Belong; LATTIMORE BROWN-I Will; RENE BAILEY-It’s Too Late (For Tears); ZILLA MAYES-All I Want Is You; LINDA JONES-What Can I Do (Without You); Z.Z. HILL-Nothing Can Change The Love I Have For You

It is now fifteen years on from the death of soul guru, Dave Godin and from volume 4 of his ‘Deep Soul Treasures’ compilations but Ace Records have been using the interim years to rekindle Dave’s enthusiasm by focusing on the lists of tracks that he left behind that would have been intended for continuing the successful series, plus obtaining the necessary licensing agreements - not always an easy task.  Thus, Ady Croasdell has taken up the baton and run with twenty-five more tracks of the highest order, some perhaps more familiar than previously but, naturally, many of the rarities have already been scooped up and, in any event, familiarity in this case certainly means no loss of quality nor intensity, as befits the keeping the overall theme.  Where to begin?  Without doubt the uniform standard is faultlessly high and, as ever in such circumstances, any of the choices not specifically singled out is of no less worthiness than any other.  However, I’m going to alight first on the most doom-laden, viz Carolyn Sullivan’s 1968 Philips release, ‘Dead’.  Ironically, it’s not exactly what one might call a ‘slowie’ as the number develops over a background of organ, tambourine and jazzy sax but it’s the lyrics and the tragedy in Ms Sullivan’s voice that chill.  It’s been a bit of a ‘marmite’ song among soul aficionados but it managed to spawn at least three further versions, most notably Ede Robin from a year later.  From that point, further intensity follows immediately with Esther Phillips’ Kudu recording, Gil Scott-Heron’s ‘Home Is Where The Hatred Is’, another item that illustrates ‘deep’ does not automatically mean a funereal beat.  It’s back to the opener for stronger conformity to the norm as Soul City render their version of ‘Who Knows’, a song originated with Gladys Knight & the Pips at their time with the Maxx label (and penned by Gladys and Pip, Wiliam Guest) while Knight/Pips/Maxx are themselves here with Van McCoy’s ‘Lovers Always Forgive’.  Elsewhere, ‘magnificent‘ is a fair word to apply to both Helena Ferguson’s Compass outing, ‘Where Is The Party‘ and Judy Whte’s Buddah release, ‘Satisfaction Guaranteed’, on which the daughter of folk/bluesman, Josh White, is supported by a femme chorus.  Moving over to the guys, Ronnie Taylor’s self-penned ‘Without Love‘ is a beaut with strong organ back-up, strings support Kenny Carter on his 1966 recording, ‘I’m Not The One’, actually making its daylight debut here and it’s a piano that majors on Lattimore Brown’s Renegade release, ‘I Will’.  With a host of ‘names‘ among the twenty-five, satisfaction as they say is guaranteed.  What’s more, the 32-page accompanying booklet tells you all  you need to know about each individual track and the opening pages feature an interview with Dave Godin undertaken by Jon Savage in 1995 and 1997.

US R&B Chart statistics  (peak positions: BB = ‘Billboard’, CB = ‘Cashbox’)...

Barbara Lynn  -  (Until Then) I’ll Suffer  (Atlantic 45, 2812)  -  BB 31, CB 8

Big Maybelle  -  Don’t Pass Me By  (Rojac 45, 1969)  -  BB 27, CB 28

Chantels  -  Every Night (I Pray)  (End 45, 1015)  -  BB 16

Dee Dee Warwick  -  Foolish Fool  (Mercury 45, 72880)  -  BB 14, CB 4

Esther Phillips  -  Home Is Where The Hatred Is  (Kudu 45, 904)  -  BB 40, CB 40

Helena Ferguson  -  Where Is The Party  (Congress 45, 7009)  -  BB 27, CB 20

Jerry Washington  -  Right Here Is Where You Belong  (Excello 45, 2327)  -  BB 48, CB 46

Masqueraders  -  I Ain’t Got To Love Nobody Else  (Bell 45, 733)  -  BB 7, CB 11                                                                                                                                           

review posted 25/10/19