Masterpieces is back with a cross-section of all that's good on the
Modern Soul scene.
Full of exclusive gems like the Mighty Whites' unreleased master
'Given My Life' from Los Angeles which would eventually see life in
an inferior recording by Brotherhood on MCA in 1978. It's been
played on acetate across Europe and is widely admired. A more
modern version of 'Rainmaker', as popularised on Kent LPs in the
80s, is featured by Detroit's C.J. & Co. and that city also provides a
fabulous groove on 'Ride The Disco Train', a never-heard-before
secular update of the ever-popular Tolbert Family gospel 45.
Jazzman Leon Thomas reminds us that Northern Soul clubs
weren't all baggies and spins with his ever-popular shuffler 'L. O. V.
E.', while Major Lance's 'That's The Story Of My Life' is a 70s
record that features the best of the classic soul sound. Millie
Jackson's 'I'll Continue To Love You' also belies its release date, in
this case 1976 but sounding almost 1969; fast feet needed here.
Some social commentary features on Lee Porter's now in-demand
Memphis waxing 'Nobody's Doin' A Doggone Thing'.
It's the digital debut for Ray Dahrouge's excellent first session on
the Street People which yielded two terrific sides and this
unreleased gem. Eddie Floyd's unissued Stax outing was featured
on a long-deleted CD but deserves a re-listen now the edit is more
apt, as is the case with Eon's LP track which stretched on fine on
their solo CD but benefits from a short back and sides here. John
Edwards' original of Corey Blake's 'How Can I Go On Without You'
is well-known but has never made a Masterpieces set, while
Loleatta Holloway's catchy and unusual 'Mrs So And So's
Daughter' also receives an edit and re-run.
Dave Hamilton's Detroit stable takes us into the 80s with the little-
known Felicia Johnson cut 'Franchise On Love' and New
Experience's unissued 'I Believe'. A surprise sleeper is Will
Hatcher's 'What Is Best For Me Is Better For You' which has been
overshadowed by its brilliant flip 'Who Am I Without You Baby';
this comes close to matching it after a few plays - a real grower.
There's a brand-new version of 'I Ain't Giving Up', the song Ray
Godfrey wrote for both Joe Simon and Millie Jackson, by the man
himself, and Part 2 of Herman Davis' two-stepper 'Gotta Be Loved'
debuts on CD.
A terrific mix of sounds from the early 70s right through to the 80s;
as a collection they are irresistible.