Posts Tagged ‘Dee Dee Warwick’

Perry & The Harmonics

Thursday, December 25th, 2014

Listen: Do The Monkey With Mr. James / Perry & The Harmonics

If you haven’t heard or heard of Perry & The Harmonics, then get to steppin’. For years, I too slept on this single and the sole album from which it came, INTRIGUE WITH SOUL.

Seemingly led by saxophonist Clarence Perry, the ’65 studio-only Perry & The Harmonics attempted to cash in on the extremely successful and then current craze of James Bond / 007. The bulk of the album being soul interpretations of the film’s various theme songs, plus a few originals like ‘James Goes To Soulville’ and then, this spectacular single ‘Do The Monkey With James’.

The album is scarce, and this single even more so. That’s Ed Townsend, possibly most known as co-writer of Marvin Gaye’s ‘Let’s Get It On’, doing the voice overs, which double as lead vocals, and I doubt a better delivery could have been conjured by anyone. His credits as a songwriter and producer are fairly deep, particularly in the Mercury catalogs, where he was a house producer working closely with Dee Dee Warwick. His label ties included Vee Jay, Capitol and Scepter. As well, as an unsung hero, his writing and producing credits covered Etta James, Big Maybelle and The Shirelles. He was particularly good with the female voice.

Hoagy Lands

Thursday, August 11th, 2011

Listen: Baby Come On Home / Hoagy Lands
Baby Come On Home / Hoagy Lands

Anything associated with Bert Berns gets my radar sky high. A master of New York RnB productions, I grabbed this in a stack somewhere along life’s journey years ago. The not often used black and white, as opposed to red and white, Atlantic promo label giving this obscure single from ’64 even more of an odd one out feel.

There was no way ‘Baby Come Back Home’ was going to disappoint despite the rather un-soulful sound of an artist named Hoagy Lands. Gladly, that first instinct, triggered by the Bert Berns namecheck, was right. The record is a gem.

Through the years I’ve picked up his other titles on Laurie and ABC, yet always found it baffling that, for such an obvious musical fit, ‘Baby Come On Home’, with Cissy Houston, Dee Dee Warwick and Judy Clay on backups, became his only Atlantic release.

Maxine Brown

Wednesday, October 13th, 2010

maxineohnouk, Maxine Brown, Ace Records, Wand, Manfred Mann, Carole King, Goffin, Fontella Bass, Dusty Springfield, Dee Dee Warwick

Listen: Oh No Not My Baby / Maxine Brown MaxineBrownOhNo.mp3

Infamous Carole King (did you know she married one of The Myddle Class) / Gerry Goffin classic. Like many of their compositions, ‘Oh No Not My Baby’ was recorded by a whole bunch of folks. Cher, Manfred Mann, Fontella Bass, Dusty Springfield and Dee Dee Warwick amongst my favorites.

The US hit version went to Maxine Brown (#24, 1964). Unfortunately, most of her singles for Wand (Pye International in the UK for this one), as well her duets with Chuck Jackson, achieved undeserved low Billboard pop chart peaks, Bubbling Under The Hot 100 entries or non hits whatsoever. Hence, their place in every last Northern Soul price guide.

As with most of her work for the label, Cissy Houston and The Sweet Inspirations provided backups. It had to have been a magical time around the New York studios that catered to the RnB sessions in those days. Seems a day didn’t pass without a classic being recorded, just think of all the unreleased, forgotten songs.

Worth getting: BEST OF THE WAND YEARS, a flawless cd comp from Ace UK with the usual amazing booklet. The details will have you drooling.

Above: Jukebox Tab signed by Maxine Brown