R/E/P > Terry Manning

Songs from the 60's and 70's, obscure or not, that really stand out

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David Kulka:
Having dissed, discredited, and exposed many recordings and names here, suppose we pay tribute to some standouts, either well known or unknown.  Here are four nominees that may have little in common, except for the fact that they are all wonderful.

#1.  Dion, "The Wanderer", 1961.  A classic oldie, perhaps overplayed and overlooked, but when a friend cued it up on "The Fabulous Dion" CD (Ace, made in France) I just about fell over.  It sounds like it was recorded straight to 2-track, with very little compression, and all the gear working exactly right.  (I'm not saying it was --  it just sounds that way.)  The bass is fabulous, something the Protools kids should strive to achieve.  The stereo mix has loads of separation, which I happen to like.  Crystal clear -- wow.  Now this is a GREAT rock and roll track!

#2.  The Emotions, "So I Can Love You".  Terry, did you record this one?  I have the record somewhere but when the housekeeper was dusting, a lot of the old LP's got mixed up.  Anyway, what a dynamite song.  Those B3 glissando hooks are just addictive and the tambourine is undistorted, rare in a soul hit.  (That's why I think you recorded it).  This has always been one of my favorites and when I listened to it again tonight, it well stood the test of time.  I wish I could mention some of the names, if only I could find the damned album.  Anyone?  A+++

#3.  Dobie Grey, "Drift Away".  Sometime in the early 70's.  This perfect match of song and singer must have been one of those inspired accidents.  Does anyone know the story behind this great song?  Quite a lot of tape hiss during the intro -- maybe the engineer was too lazy to mute all the other tracks-- but nevermind.  The strings fit in just beautifully, and the sonics are excellent.  Was it on Decca?  ABC?  I'd sure like to know more about this hit.  It's all about why we love music, hiss or not it sounds fantastic, and I'll never tire of hearing it.

#4.  The Chi-Lites, "My Heart Just Keeps On Breakin'", 1973.  Brunswick Records Ultra Range Sound Process.  Written by Eugene Record (Record?) and Stank McKenney (Stank?) this is the perfect ying/yang, a contradiction in terms, one of a kind -- a soul/country-western track.  It was on the "A Letter To Myself" album, which I think followed the monster hit "Have You Seen Her".  The soulful harmonies, country fiddle, pizzicato strings, and doo wop chorus work perfectly together, strange as it may seem.  And guess who engineered it?  Bruce Swedien.  The album art features the Chi-Lites in big afros and gigantic gauzy, flowing robes.  iTunes doesn't have the song, but it's well worth seeking out.

So, those are MY four picks.  I'd like to hear yours.

Bob Olhsson:
About "The Wanderer," I understand the band was the Apollo Theater band. It was probably recorded at Bell Sound but I may be able to find out for sure from a friend.

Gene Eichelberger recorded "Drift Away" at Quadraphonic here in Nashville so I'll see if I can pick his brain.

From All Music Guide:

David Briggs Keyboards  
Gene Eichelberger Engineer  
Dobie Gray Vocals  
Mike Leech Bass  
Kenny Malone Drums  
Weldon Myrick Guitar (Steel)  
Buddy Spicher Violin  
Mentor Williams Guitar, Producer  
Reggie Young Banjo, Guitar  

I really like this idea for a thread!  I will think very hard and come up with my list, but, regarding David's:

•Dion NEVER MADE A BAD RECORD!  "The Wanderer" is absolutely awesome in every way, but most everything he did was in the elite of recordings, too.  Very talented guy.

•At least three of the players on the Dobie Gray session were either from from 1) The Memphis Soul/R&B session groups, having played at either or both Royal (Hi, Al Green, etc., or at American (Chips Moman's old place where a lot of hits were cut!) as well as Ardent sessions, or 2) from Muscle Shoals.  (Leech, Briggs, & Young, at least).  They migrated to Nashville and did a lot of pop-country, as opposed to the total country stuff.  Great players!

More soon.


Rock and Roll Woman ..Buffalo Springfield
Bluebird ..Buffalo Springfield
Eight Miles High ..Byrds
Pre-Road Downs ..Crosby Stills & Nash

Awesome vocals and limiters (the two converged perfectly here), then it all disappeared at the end of the 60's. Poof!

Bob Olhsson:
I understand Reggie Young had been part of the first successful rock-a-billy band that paved the way for all of the Sun artists. Sam Phillips apparently couldn't ever afford him! So he had what most people would consider a successful career before emerging as what the late Tom Dowd called "the greatest accompanist of the 20th century."


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