Saturday, December 31, 2011

Little Things Radio ep.14 (James Brown Special)


  Regular listeners to these mixes may have noticed the downright criminal neglect of one of my all time favorite artists, James Brown. I can assure you all there was good reason for this. From day one of this blog/podcast thing I knew I'd be doing a James Brown show, and because this Christmas marked 5 years since his passing this was the ideal month to do it. 
   So here it is.. An extra long episode of original 45's dedicated to James Brown and the family of artists that helped to create his sound. Maceo Parker, Jab-O Starks, Pee Wee Ellis, Bobby Bennett, Marva Whitney, Bootsy Collins, Baby Lloyd Stallworth, Clyde Stubblefield, Tommi Rae, Bobby Byrd, Sweet Charles Sherrell, Waymon Reed, Lyn Collins, Johnny Terry, Fred Wesley, Dave Matthews, Vicki Anderson, Hank Ballard, and so many more... 

James Brown - Make It Funky pt.1 (Polydor)
Hank Ballard and the Midnight Lighters - From The Love Side (Polydor)
James Brown - There It Is pt.1 (Polydor)
Bobby Byrd - Hang Ups We Don't Need (The Hungry We Got To Feed) (King)
James Brown - The Popcorn (Polydor)
James Brown - Give It Up, Or Turnit A Loose (King)
Fred Wesley and the JB's - Doing It To Death (People) 
James Brown - World pt.1 (King)
James Brown - I Cried (King)
James Brown - I'll Lose My Mind (King)
James Brown and the Famous Flames - Is It Yes Or Is It No (King)
James Brown - Down And Out In New York City (Polydor)
Bobby Byrd - If You Got A Love You Better (Hold On To It) (Brownstone)
The JB's - Hot Pants Road (People) 
James Brown - Hot Pants pt.1 (People)
The JB's - Pass The Peas (People) 
Marva Whitney - It's My Thing (King)
James Brown - My Thang (Polydor)
Maceo and the Macks - Parrty pt.1 (People)
The Dapps feat. Alfred Ellis - Bringing Up The Guitar (King)
Fred Wesley and the JB's - You Can Have Watergate, Just Gimme Some Bucks And I'll Be Straight (People)
Hank Ballard and the Midnight Lighters - Finger Poppin' Time (Polydor)
Fred Wesley and the JB's - Damn Right I Am Somebody pt.1 (People)
James Brown - Let A Man Come In And Do The Popcorn pt.1 (King)
James Brown - Escape-ism pt.1 (People)
Marva Whitney - I Made A Mistake Because It's Only You pt.1 (King)
James Brown - The Payback pt.1 (Polydor)
Fred and the New JB's - Breakin' Bread (People)
James Brown - Public Enemy No.1 pt.1 (Polydor)
James Brown and the Famous Flames - If I Ruled The World (King)
James Brown and the Famous Flames - It's A Man's, Man's, Man's World (King)
James Brown and the Famous Flames - I Can't Help It (I Just Do-Do-Do) (King)
Marva Whitney - Ball Of Fire (King)
Vicki Anderson - Baby Don't You Know (King)
Bobby Byrd - You Gave My Heart A Brand New Song To Sing (King)
The Dapps feat. Alfred Ellis - Gettin' A Little Hipper (King)
The Female Preacher Lyn Collins - Think (About It) (People)
Marva Whitney - Things Got To Get Better (Get Together) (King)
James Brown and the Famous Flames - I Can't Stand Myself (When You Touch Me) (King)
James Brown - Soul Pride pt.2 (King)
James Brown - Get Up, Get Into It, Get Involved pt.1 (King)
James Brown and the Famous Flames - Papa's Got A Brand New Bag pt.1 (King)
Fred Wesley and the JB's - If You Don't Get It The First Time, Back Up And Try It Again (People)

Download Link...













Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Little Things Radio ep.13 (Birthday Special)

Little Things,Soul,Dancing


Eddie Kendricks - Loving You The Second Time Around (Tamla)
Barbara Mason - Give Me Your Love (Buddah)
Ripple - I Dont Know What It Is, But It Sure Is Funky (GRC)
Dramatics - Whatcha See Is Whatcha Get (Volt)
The 8th Day - She's Not Just Another Woman (Invictus)
Bill Withers - Use Me (Sussex)
Jr. Walker and the All Stars - Cleo's Back
Aretha Franklin - Spirit In The Dark (Atlantic)
Connie McGill and Visions - For That Great Day (Sugar)
Timmy Thomas - Cold Cold People (Glades)
The Meters - Sophisticated Cissy (Josie)
Earnest Jackson - Funky Black Man (Stone)
Earnest Jackson - Love And Happiness (Stone)
The O'Jays - Give The People What They Want (Philadelphia International)
Kool And The Gang - Hollywood Swinging (De-Lite)
Betty Wright - Baby Sitter (Alston)
Delia Gartrell - Fight Fire With Fire (Right-On)
Syl Johnson - We Do It Together (Twinight)
Syl Johnson - Dresses Too Short (Twinight)
Syl Johnson - Try Me (Twilight)
Syl Johnson - Is It Because I'm Black (Twinight)
Karlophone - Desire (Amorphous)
Suff Draft - Come 2ULive Edit (White)
De La Soul - The Mack Daddy On The Left (Tommy Boy)
The Mohawks - The Champ (Philips)
The Beginning Of The End - Funky Nassau (Alston)
Donald Austin - Crazy Legs - (Eastbound)  
Lou Courtney - Do The Thing (Riverside) 
The Esquires - Get On Up (Bunky)

Download Link...

It was November last year that I decided to start this little blog/podcast thing, which makes this a birthday of sorts I suppose. Wayhey! It's been a pretty enjoyable experience overall, a bit of a chore at times but rewarding. Thanks to everyone who downloads the mixes and bothers to read the rambling. It's hugely appreciated.
 I'd like to think this wont be the only birthday we'll celebrate around here but I guess time will tell. As long as I have 45's to play and it continues to feel worthwhile, I'll keep doing it.
   We'll be celebrating a year of Little Things at the next Hobo Convention on the 11th of December in An Realt Dearg. A2DF, Phil Hope, Congo Lizard, and the Hobo Residents playing nothing but 7"s from 5pm till close. There it is.

syl johnson,try me,northern,soul,7",record
Syl Johnson - Try Me

syl johnson,dresses too short,7",vinyl,mixes,soul,funk,littlethingsradio
Syl Johnson - Dresses Too Short

syl johnson,because i'm black,soul,samples,wu tang,7",vinyl,mix
Syl Johnson - Is It Because I'm Black

syl,johnson,do it together,7",vinyl,mixes,blog,radio
Syl Johnson - We Do It Together

  Syl Johnson got his start in music in the late 50's playing with blues legends like Howlin Wolf, Magic Sam, Junior Wells and Billy Boy Arnold. In the early 60's he started knocking out some great 7"s of his own for the Federal and Twinight labels. These songs may have been more Otis Redding than Howlin Wolf but a heavy blues influence can be heard in all of Johnson's music. Twinight would be home to Johnson until the early 70's when he was convinced by Willie Mitchell to leave the label and sign with Hi Records in Memphis. 
   The four 7"s featured here are all from the Twinight/Twilight years.

Esquires,Get On Up,7",45's,Little Things,soul

Esquires - Get On Up
I featured the Esquires "Girls In The City" on the blog a few months back, this time we're bringing attention the their superb debut "Get On Up". The song sold very well when it was released in 1967 (11 in the pop charts). The group went on to record music together for almost 10 years. Over that time they had several other minor hits but nothing would ever sell as well as "Get On Up". In 1976 They recorded a fairly pointless remake of the song "Get Up 76".

Love and Happiness,Earnest Jackson,soul,stone,7",vinyl,mixes
Earnest Jackson - Love And Happiness 

Earnest Jackson,brainfreeze,funky black man,shadow,funk,7",45's,cut chemist,vinyl
Earnest Jackson - Funky Black Man

  These are two of the three 45's Earnest Jackson cut for Stone Records in the early 70's. "Love and Happiness" is a cover of the Al Green classic, while "Funky Black Man" should be familiar to most for it's inclusion on Cut Chemist and Shadows infamous "Brainfreeze" mix. Later they would also use Fried Chicken's cover "Funky DJ" for their second collaborative 45 set "Product Placement".
  Fried Chicken (also known as Bubba Thomas and the Lightmen) recorded their cover two years after the release of the Earnest Jackson 45. "Funky DJ" is rarer of the two, often selling for over 100e, but the original version isn't the easiest of finds either.

mohawks,champ,breaks,samples,funk,library,7",vinyl,mix,radio,krs one

The Mohawks - The Champ  
   You should all know this one well. Those drums, organ, and vocal stabs were the foundation for countless hip hop classics.
 The Mohawks were a group of British session musicians brought together by Alan Hawkshaw. The group never toured, and only recorded one LP which was intended for use in film and television. If it wasn't for Hip Hop this music would have almost certainly faded into obscurity.
    Mohawks 45's  can get a little pricey. Nothing crazy but they usually go for somewhere between 30 and 50 euro. I managed to pick up this Dutch pressing a couple months back for a tenner. Score.

lou courtney,do the thing,riverside,soul,7",vinyl,records,45,Funk Brothers

Lou Courtney - Do The Thing
   Another soul legend who's work deserves a lot more attention. During his 15 years in the music industry he released an impressive catalogue of soul, funk, ballads and even disco for labels such as Riverside, Phillips, Imperial, Buddah and Verve. He was also a talented songwriter who penned tunes for the likes of Mary Wells, Dee Dee Warwick and Gloria Gaynor. Despite all this, Courtney never really achieved the commercial success his talents warranted. Of course he is highly respected among soul collectors (who often pay high prices for his rarer pieces) but mainstream recognition for some reason avoided him. You almost get the feeling he preferred it this way.
   In the late 70's his releases dry up and he disappears from the public eye. What happens after that is a mystery. He may have died many years ago. If that is the case I hope he lived long enough to see how much his music is loved and respected by a whole new generation of soul and funk fans.

barbara mason,mayfield,give me your love,buddah,soul,7",vinyl,radio

Barbara Mason - Give Me Your Love
  Barbara Mason was still in her teens when she recorded her debut song "Trouble Girl" in 1964. Over the following seven or eight years she released many 45's and two albums for the Arctic label, all of which she wrote herself. Most of her records from the Arctic days are soul ballads but when she signed with Buddah in 1972 she adopted a funkier sound. The Curtis Mayfield cover featured here is a good example of this. Barbara Mason was never afraid of trying out new sounds. In the early 80's she put out some really nice disco 12"s for the Westend label.

connie mcgill,visions,soul,doo wop,great day,7",vinyl

Connie McGill and Visions - For That Great Day
  Doo Wop vocal group from New York who seem to have been active from 1961 to 1973. This track was originally released in 1962 on  Super Records.

beginning of the end,funky nassau,funk,breaks,7",vinyl,mixes,radio

The Beginning Of The End - Funky Nassau
  The Beginning Of The End was a four piece funk band from Nassau, in the Bahamas. There is an obvious Caribbean influence in their music but make no mistake, this is straight up funk. The band released two solid albums on the Alston label in the early 70's before splitting ways.

meters,sophisticated cissy,bdp,samples,funk,7",vinyl

The Meters - Sophisticated Cissy
  Down tempo funk from one of the greatest bands to ever do it.

De La Soul,mack daddy,7",hip hop,45

De La Soul - Mack Daddy On The Left
  This was on the b-side of the "Eye Know" single. For some reason it was left off of De La's game changing debut LP "3 Feet High And Rising''. 

Monday, October 24, 2011

Little Things Radio ep.12 Oct 2011


  It's that time of year again... Cork Jazz Festival is back and the line-up this year doesn't disappoint. The highlight for me has to be the Honest Jon's Chop Up. I have no idea what kind of music will come out of throwing all those creative souls together but on paper it looks like music history in the making. I'm excited.
  I could waffle on and on about all the artists performing in Cork over the weekend, but to be honest it sounds a little too much like work. Go check out the full line-up here and save me the bother.
  No theme to this months mix really, just over an hour of decent 7"s. A lot of funk, breaks, some disco, blues and so on. Regular listeners will be heart broken to hear I didnt bother with the mic this month. It's a bit of a chore to set up and pretty much everything I want to say about the records gets written on the blog anyway. The whole exercise has felt a bit pointless lately. So, for now at least, the golden voice is off the air!
  Be sure to check back next month as we'll be celebrating a full year of LittleThingsRadio. wayhey! I suppose I should do something different to mark the occasion, haven't decided exactly what that'll be yet, but it'll be good... I think. 


The Mystic Moods - Midnight Snack (Sound Bird)
Black Heat - Chip's Funk (Atlantic)
Timmy Thomas - People Are Changin' (Glades)
Johnny Copeland - I Wish I Was Single (Wet Soul)
Procol Harum - A Whiter Shade Of Pale (Deram)
Minnie Ripperton with Rotary Connection (Janus)
Barbara McNair - Here I Am Baby (Motown)
Mable John - It's Catching (Stax)
The Dells - Wear It On Our Face (Cadet)
Dramatics - The Devil Is Dope (Volt)
The Lost Generation - Talking The Teenage Language (Brunswick)
The People's Choice - Let Me Do My Thing (Phil L.A. Of Soul)
Ann Peebles - If This Is Heaven (Hi)
The Nite-Liters - Down And Dirty (RCA)
Mandrill - Fencewalk (Polydor)
Mandrill - Mandrill (Polydor)
Alvin Cash and the Scott Bros Orch - Keep On Dancing (Toddlin Town)
The Chevelles - The Gallop (Flaming Arrow)
Kool and the Gang - The Frog (DeLite)
Mongo Santamaria - Cold Sweat (Columbia)
Jimmy McGriff - The Worm (Solid State)
Rogier Van Otterloo - Let's Go To Randstad (Randstad Uitzendbureau)
Miami feat. Robert Moore - Party Freaks (Drive) 
Shadow - Hot City (Elektra)
First Choice - Guilty (Philly Groove)
Vicki Sue Robinson - Turn The Beat Around (RCA)

Download Link...


Miami feat. Robert Moore - Party Freaks 
  As the house band for T.K. Records Miami played many classic sessions with artists such as Betty Wright, George and Gwen McCrae, Little Beaver and more. They also released three very decent albums of disco funk themselves. 

jimmy mcgriff,the worm,breaks,funk,jazz,7",vinyl,records

Jimmy McGriff - The Worm
  Jimmy Mcgriff was one of the masters of the Hammond B3 organ. Over his long career he recorded over 50 albums for labels such as Blue Note, Groove Merchant, Sue and Solid State. "The Worm", one of McGriff's funkier moments, includes a nice opening drum break that has been sampled extensively. 


Mongo Santamaria - Cold Sweat 
  Mongo Santamaria was a highly influential Cuban percussionist who has recorded over 30 albums of his own and played on countless others. His fusion of Latin percussion sounds with American Soul and R&B would be an important influence on the Boogaloo sound of the late 60's. 
  "Cold Sweat" is of course a cover of the James Brown classic. The b-side features nice version of Otis Redding's "Sitting On The Dock Of The Bay"


Rogier Van Otterloo - Let's Go To Randstad 
  This one is 70's Dutch pop music with some really nice drum breaks. I picked this up a few years back in Amsterdam. Me and a friend of mine were walking around the city and ended up browsing in one of those headshops. I saw a small box of records at the back of the and had a quick look through them. There wasn't much there I was interested in except for a copy of Lee Dorsey's "Every Thing I Do Gohn Be Funky". When I went to pay for it the guy behind the counter pulled out a bunch of 7"s he thought I might be interested in. Ended up leaving with a small stack of really nice funk records. He threw in this Roger Van Otterloo 7" for free. I asked him what type of music was on it. "Kinda hard to explain" he said. "I think you'll like it. It's got breaks." Good enough for me. 

Kool and the Gang,Tribe Called Quest,samples,breaks,7",funk,vinyl,mixes

Kool and the Gang - The Frog
  Tribe Called Quest must have loved a bit of Kool and the Gang. "N.T.", "Who's Gonna Take The Weight", "Soul Vibration's" all found their way into Tribe productions. "The Frog" was one of the records used for "Mr. Mohammed" from Tribe's classic debut LP, "People's Instinctive Paths Of Rhythm"

Alvin Cash,brainfreeze,breaks,7",funk

Alvin Cash and the Scott Bros Orch - Keep On Dancing
   Alvin Cash is probably best known for his song "Twine Time" with the Crawlers. He released quite a few decent singles in the 60's and 70's and acted in several blaxpioitation films. 

the chevelles,funk,gallop,7",vinyl,mixes,radio

The Chevelles - The Gallop 
  Heavy instrumental funk. This can be found on the b-side of Gloria Walker and the Chevelles' "Talking About My Baby".  


Mandrill - Fencewalk 
  Mandrill's music had it all. Funk, Latin, Rock, Afrobeat, Jazz... Their fanbase crossed all genres and racial barriers. They felt equally at home playing shows with James Brown or Miles Davis or Deep Purple. It didn't matter. They'd play with anyone, and would often be the band people left the show talking about. For more info check out this in depth interview on the Midnight Soulstice Podcast


The Nite-Liters - Down And Dirty
  70's funk outfit The Nite-Liters released 5 very solid albums in the early seventies and were involved in the making of two albums by Love, Peace and Happiness. Some members were also part of the successful soul group New Birth.


Shadow - Hot City
  Shadow was made up of former members of the Ohio Players in 1979. By the time they split ways 1982 they had released three albums, which included some minor hits, but they would never match commercial success they enjoyed as the Ohio Players.  


Black Heat - Chip's Funk
  This was one of the singles from Black Heat's excellent self titled debut on Atlantic records. The b-side features "Street Of Tears" which was sampled to great effect by 9th Wonder for his Murs collaboration "3:16"  
johnny copeland,blues,single,7"

Johnny Copeland - I Wish I Was Single 
   Blues singer and guitarist Copeland signed his first recording contract with Duke records way back in 1957. Throughout his long career he played with many of the greats including Sonny Boy Williamson, Big Mamma Thornton and Freddy King. 
   "I Wish I Was Single" is one of Copelands later recordings (1981). While many Blues legends found it difficult to find their place in the changing music industry of the 80's, Copeland managed to thrive. He recorded several critically acclaimed albums and even won a Grammy in 1987 for Best Traditional Blues Album for his work on the "Showdown!" LP recorded with Robert Clay and Albert Collins.  

mabel john,stax,soul,7",mixes

Mable John - It's Catching  
  Mable John was the first female artist signed to Tamala/Motown Records. She recorded a few Blues singles for the label that sold poorly. At this time Berry Gordy was beginning to have a lot of success with the type of Soul acts the label is generally associated with, such as the Miracles and the Marvelettes, and most of the Blues artists (Mable included) were dropped. 
  After her spell at Motown she spent several years as a backing singer for Ray Charles. In 1966 she signed with Stax records (making her one of the few artists to be signed to both Motown and Stax) where she released a string of excellent 45's that these days are all too often overlooked. 

barbara mcnair,soul,7",vinyl,radio

Barbara McNair - Here I Am Baby
  McNair's career began to take off when she won Arthur Godfrey's "Talent Scouts" tv show which I guess was something like a 50's version of X Factor. From there she became a regular guest on shows like the "Steve Allen Show", "Hullabaloo" and "The Bell Telephone Hour".
   She went on to have a successful acting career featuring on television shows such as "Mission Impossible" and "The Eleventh Hour" and many feature films such as "If He Hollers Let Him Go", Elvis Presley's "Change Of Habit" and "They Call Me Mister Tibbs" (which features a kick ass Quincy Jones soundtrack that's well worth tracking down).
   In the early 70's McNair married manager Rick Manzie who allegedly had mob ties. In 1976 Manzie was murdered in their Las Vegas home. Later Mafia Boss turned Government informer Jimmy Fratianno claimed in his book "The Last Mafioso" that Manzie was murdered because he tried to have a mob associated lawyer killed. The truth of this has been challenged and chances are we'll never know the full story.
   McNair remarried and lived out the rest of her life in Los Angeles. She died of throat cancer in 2007.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Little Things Radio Ep.11 Sept 2011



Lee Perry - Roast Fish And Corn Bread (Orchid)
The Heptones - We're In The Mood (Coxsone)
Sidney Owens and North and South Connection - Sputnik (Scorpio Sounds)
Mystiques - So Good To Have You Home Again (Numero Group)
Billy Garner - I Got Some (Fryers)
The Invaders - Latin Lips (Jazzman)
Mary Lou Williams - Credo (Jazzman)
Lee Moses - Reach Out I'll Be There (Jazzman)
Syl Johnson - I Resign From Your Love (Federal)
Ebony Rhythm Band - Soul Heart Transplant (Now and Again)
Connie Price and the Keystones feat. Soul Sister D'Mya - Time To Kill (Now and Again)
Smokey Brooks - Spin-It Jig (Now) 
Otis Lee - Hard Row To Hoe (Soul Magic)
We The People - Break Down (Davel)
Cojo - Play It By Ear (Lotus Land)
Darwin's Theory - Keep On Smiling (Lotus Land)
John and Ernest - Super Fly Meets Shaft (Rainy Wednesday)
WQLJ - Nothin' Doin' But Waitin' On Leon (WQLJ)
Mack Rice - Three People In Love (Capitol)
Ed Robinson - Hey Blackman (GM)
The Pack - Harlem Shuffle (Lucky Eleven)
Donald Austin - Crazy Eleven (Eastbound)
Firebirds - Soul Sonata (Excello)
The Chi-Lites - We Need Order (Brunswick)
C-Brand - Shake Your A-S-S-E-T-S (Detroit International)
Magic Disco Machine - Scratchin (Motown)
Hypnotic Brass Ensamble - Brass In Africa (Handcuts)
Bobby McFerrin - Don't  Worry Be Happy (EMI)

Download Link...

Jazzman,records,records,7",45's,breaks,lee moses,mary lou williams,mixes,vinyl

  The whole original vs re-press argument is something I try my best not to get bogged down in. Sure, there's something nice about owning an original, but I'm not one of those types that will refuse to play a record simply because it's a reissue. There's just too much incredible music out there that I'm never going to realistically be abel to find or afford without the help of labels like Now And Again and Jazzman. I'm not willing to spend big money on any record and I don't live in a part of the world where rares turn up in bargain bins very often, so if I'm left with the choice of losing my rent money on an original or picking up that 10 euro repress, well... there's no choice at all.
   I'm also more than happy to give my money to the labels out there doing it right. Some are just looking to bootleg old records for a quick buck, but others make every effort to license the music legally in the hope that the original artists are compensated. 
  Most of the 45's I've been playing on these podcasts have been original pressings. They aren't rare records (most of the stuff I play can be found for less than a tenner with a little patience) but until now I've avoided playing re-presses for the most part. This month I decided was as good a time as any to break out a few. So the first half of this show will focus on some of those rare records that I haven't as of yet been abel to find original copies of. The search continues... 

ebony rhythm band,soul,heart,transplant,stones throw,7",mixes,radio
Ebony Rhythm Band - Soul Heart Transplant 
   This is an incredible piece of psychedelic funk that was discovered and reissued on 7" by the Stones Throw subsidiary Now and Again back in 2003. "Soul Heart Transplant" b/w "Drugs Ain't Cool" was the Ebony Rhythm Band's only solo release, but they did work as a backing band for other artists. Some of the unused tracks from those studio sessions ended up being compiled and released on "The Lamp Sessions" LP in 2004. 

hypnotic brass ensemble,7",45's,breaks
The Hypnotic Brass Ensemble - Brass In Africa
   The Hypnotic Brass Ensemble are one of my favorite live acts. The energy they bring to the stage is incredible. They're back in Cork for the Jazz Festival next month where they'll be doing a show in the Pav, as well as taking part in the Honest Jon's Chop Up show in the Savoy. A week before that the boys are in Dublin doing a special Sun Ra inspired set for the Choice Cuts Rhythm Weekender.
   I'm sure by now anyone in Ireland with any interest has probably seen them at least a couple times (It seems like they spend more time in Ireland than they do in the states) but that's no reason to not go and see them again. 

7",magic disco machine,scratchin,motown,ultimate breaks and beats,samples,run dmc
Magic Disco Machine - Scratchin 
   One of those classic breaks that seemed to get sampled by just about everybody in the late 80's. N.W.A., Slick Rick, Stetsasonic, Run DMC, Biz Markie, Big Daddy Kane, etc, etc.. the drums and horn stabs are everywhere.

John and Ernest,superfly meets shaft,7",samples,radio
John and Ernest - Super Fly Meets Shaft 

   Weird novelty record that uses snippets of random songs to tell a ridiculous story about Super Fly and Shaft. Steinski style sample fodder.

mack rice,7",people in love,cut chemist,dj shadow,brainfreeze,45's,radio
Mack Rice - Three People In Love

  Yet another legend of soul music who is far too often overlooked. Throughout his long career Rice has written over 400 songs, many of which are classics. His compositions have been performed by The Staple Singers, Johnny Taylor, Wilson Pickett, Otis Clay, Albert King, Rufus Thomas, Ike and Tina Turner, Etta James, and many, many more. 
  He got his first big break in the late 50's with the Falcons, a group that included Eddie Floyd, Joe Stubbs and Wilson Pickett. They had several hits in the late 50's and early 60's before eventually splitting ways in 1963.
   In 1965 he wrote and recorded what is probably his best known song, "Mustang Sally".  Originally titled "Mustang Mama", it was the one and only Aretha Franklin who suggested he change it to Sally. Mack's version did quite well but it's Wilson Pickett's version that is remembered by most today.
   Mack worked as an in-house songwriter for Stax records from 1967 straight through to the end when Stax eventually closed in 1978. At that point he invested some of his money in an asphalt company and left the music industry entirely until 1992 when he finally released a solo album titled "Right Now" on the Blue Suit label. He now lives in Detroit and is still performing. 
   This record can be a tricky find these days. It often sells for over 50 euro, partially because of it's use on Cut Chemist and DJ Shadow's Brain Freeze mix. Cut Chemist will be back in Cork next month alongside JRocc for the Rhythm Weekender. Not to be missed.

Firebirds - Soul Sonata

   Firebirds were a group of Detroit session musicians. It's believed this track was probably an unused song from a previous studio session that Excello decided to release as an instrumental. Open drums + pleasant piano + funky bassline = Keeper. 

the pack,harlem shuffle,7",45's,grand funk,mixes
The Pack - Harlem Shuffle

   The Pack we're a garage rock band from Michigan who had several regional hits in the second half of the 60's. The group was originally a soul and funk cover band called The Jazz Masters until they were discovered by radio D.J. Terry Knight. At the time Knight was growing tired of radio and wanted to start making music of his own. He recruited the Jazz Masters as his band and renamed them The Pack. 
   With Knight as lead singer and songwriter, the Pack released a string of 45's and one album before Knight left the group to pursue a solo career in 1967. This cover of the Bob and Earl classic was the groups first release without Knight. A couple more 45's followed before the band split ways in 1968. Don Brewer (drums) and Mark Farmer (bass) would go on to form the hugely successful Grand Funk Railroad. 
   Meanwhile Knight was having some success with a group called the Terry Knight Revue. This however was short lived. He was eventually reunited with his old band mates when he became producer and manager for Grand Funk Railroad. Despite the huge success Grand Funk enjoyed while under Knight, the band claimed they weren't getting the money they were owed and eventually sacked him. Not one to go quietly, Knight sued the band for breach of contract. Legal battles dragged on for over two years before Grand Funk eventually won their freedom from Knight, but at a heavy price. 
   After the Grand Funk days, Knight started the Brown Bag Records label which he ran for a year or two before retiring from the music business permanently in late 1973. Knight disappeared from the public eye for over 30 years until his bizarre and tragic death brought him back into the spotlight.
   In November of 2004 Knight was murdered in a domestic dispute. He was stabbed 17 times while trying to protect his daughter from her abusive boyfriend. His killer was convicted and is now serving a life sentence.

chi-lites,samples,all city,7",soul,mixes
The Chi-Lites - We Need Order 
  I've had this record for years, somehow it was only recently that I realised this song was the sample source for one of my favorite Hip Hop tracks from the late 90's, All City's "The Actual".