Archive for the ‘The Brotherhood Of Man’ Category

Micky Moonshine

Sunday, August 5th, 2012

Listen: Name It You Got It / Micky Moonshine

My all time favorite Northern Soul compilation, unfortunately available only on CD, is UK Decca’s THE NORTHERN SOUL SCENE. It includes some true hits, and a whole bunch that sonically fit in, but probably weren’t originally very sought after. And through this very disc, I discovered more than a few all time favorite singles: Frankie & Johnny ‘I’ll Hold You’, The Eyes Of Blue ‘Heart Trouble’, Fearns Brass Foundry ‘Don’t Change It’, Clyde McPhatter ‘Baby You Got It’ and The Brotherhood Of Man ‘Reach Out Your Hand’ to name some, and most of which I’ve previously posted.

No surprise, ‘Name It You Got It’ comes in as a top choice as well. According to, I believe, Phil Smee’s excellent liner notes and packaging, Micky Moonshine was indeed the pseudonym of this fellow Chris Rainbow. ‘Name It You Got It’ being his only 7″, and, although never playlisted, apparently the record received a fair share of BBC Radio 1 airplay in ’74. With no resulting sales to speak of, the single was banished to the mark down bins until someone or other resuscitated it’s worthiness on the infamous Northern circuit, a very self celebrated scene of which I personally derive both musical pleasure and great amusement.

So much so was the demand that at one point, toward the end of ’75, Decca reissued the 7″ but mistakenly mispressed it’s A side, ‘Baby Blue’, on both sides of the initial run, despite correctly affixing A and B side labels. So buyers beware. Correct copies have ‘right way up’ inscribed next to the matrix number in the run off groove on the ‘Baby You Got It’ side. Therefore all ebay customers, better verify this tid bit with your seller.

JT & The Big Family

Friday, March 19th, 2010

JT&BigFamily, Champion, JT & The Big Family

Listen: Moments In Soul / JT & The Big Family JTBigFamily.mp3

JT & The Big Family, not even sure who they were. Didn’t hang around long enough to find out – them not me that is. Not forgetting, one of the hardest and bravest things to do, in addition to being seminal, breaking new ground etc etc, is making derivative schlock formula pap pop. There were, still are, several masters at it, and the general public many times eats it up. For instance, the Greenaway/Cook machine churned out things like White Plains and The Brotherhood Of Man. And I loved them all.

Along comes this bunch, throwing Art Of Noise and Soul II Soul samples into a blender, and out comes a, well….classic. Classic schlock, to some that is – and no problem. I, for one, am not offended by the term – but don’t forget, reinterpreting classic music through a new combination of samples isn’t all that easy. If it were, I think everyone would have done it well.

As Marianne Faithfull once sang in ‘Guilt’: “give me more more more more, more”.


Tuesday, July 28th, 2009

sunnydoctors, Sunny, Sue & Sunny, The Brotherhood Of Man, Roger Cook, Roger Greenaway, Geoff Stephens, CBS

Listen: Doctor’s Orders / Sunny SunnyDoctors.mp3

Basically Sunny has loads of history. Solo artist, one half of Sue & Sunny (both of whom were also members of The Brotherhood Of Man) and background voice on many, many, many hit singles (Dusty Springfield, Elton John, The Love Affair, Lulu, Mott The Hoople, T. Rex, Tom Jones, and Joe Cocker to name but a few bigger ones). She’s probably on more records than even she can remember – let alone you or me.

Often associated with the Cook & Greenaway writer/producer team, it was their song ‘Doctor’s Order’ (co-written with Geoff Stephens, himself claim to a long list of song credits: The Applejacks, Manfred Mann, Scott Walker, Dave Berry, Frank Sinatra, The Carpenters) that became a favorite for literally months in ’74. As into rock and soul as I was in ’74, the occasional pop track would bite me hard. I was never comfortable that Sunny’s version didn’t become the US hit version, it was better and smoother than Carol Douglas’. Rest of world though, the crown went to the awesome Sunny. I want to meet her someday.

The Brotherhood Of Man

Thursday, April 2nd, 2009

Reach Out Your Hand / The Brotherhood Of Man

Listen: Reach Out Your Hand / The Brotherhood Of Man BrotherhoodReach.mp3

No question about it, THE ESSENTIAL NORTHERN SOUL PRICE GUIDE is one of the best books ever. It’s my idea of what to read by the fireplace on a snowy winter afternoon. But I really do have one complaint. This single is not included. Clearly authors Martin Koppel, a particularly nice fellow who ran Toronto’s Kop’s Collectabiles for ages nd Tim Brown know what they’re talking about. I know Martin is English, as I’ve bought many a single from him through the years, and I guess Tim is too. So understandably, sometimes the Brits have their heads in spaces other than their own backyard, yet all is forgiven. Basically, this fits really nicely into any mix of Northern I’ve ever done. Plus it’s on Deram. I like anything on Deram, even the schmaltziest stuff, which The Brotherhood Of Man would dependably deliver on a regular basis. Keith Mansfield was involved in this one, he did some great stuff for The Love Affair too.

If you’re in New York, go now to Bleeker Street Records. There’s a ton of 7″ warehouse fresh finds in the basement 3 for $1.00. Mike Goldsmith alerted me to them. Been twice, between the two of us, we’ve lightened their load by a few hundred. Returned today and picked up three more copies of this, and plenty are left. Have fun.

Rings & Things

Thursday, March 5th, 2009

Strange Things Are Happening / Rings & Things

Listen: Strange Things Are Happening / Rings & Things RingsAndThings.mp3

Guess what…just like the vast 99%++++ majority of this earth’s living mankind, I do not know anything about Rings & Things. I have checked high and low. Despite a virtual cross between The Brotherhood Of Man and The 5th Dimension, it has not detoured their only ever release, ‘Strange Things Are Happening’ from graduating into the psychedelic singles collectable A list. Quite deservedly so. This is a British band, that much we know – and yet they coined the US west coast Jim Webb/John Phillips sound meticulously. I picked it up on a UK trip ages and ages ago – for under a dollar. Great investment – not that it’s value really matters, I’d never sell it. Get to my place within 24 hours of me croaking though – Corinne promises she’s curbing all these ‘fucking’ records as soon as I’m cold.