Saturday, February 26, 2011

The Manhattans -- Devil In The Dark

No doubt, The Manhattans are the right choice if one wants to create a "certain" atmosphere. And when I've first heard this song, I was wondering, if there ever was a love song these guys didn't turn into the epitome of lovers in love.

Devil In The Dark is from their 1979 album Love Talk (Columbia Records)

Friday, February 25, 2011

Webster Lewis -- Go For It

How about some music to dance to? On a Friday that seems to be the natural choice. 
This tune is from Webster Lewis's  8 For The 80's album (1979)
The man has a Master's degree from the New England Conservatory of Music, yet Webster Lewis's best known recordings are his mid/late 70's disco tunes. In my opinion,  he is a terrific pianist/keyboardist  who should have been able to establish himself in the Jazz genre.  Instead he worked in the background in various positions.
The most notable musicians he's worked with are Barry White, Michael Jackson, Tom Jones, and Herbie Hancock, to name a few. 

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Buddy Guy -- Are You Losing Your Mind

From the album Stone Crazy (Alligator, 1981)

This album is very good. My kind of Blues ... Chicago Blues. As Soultaker would say, it's a "Hennessy" kind of album. Avoid any distraction, just sit down with a glass of your favorite drink to sip on -- and forget about the ordinary things in life.

And just for the fun of it:

Hm ... looks like this post has turned into a spontaneous Special ... Blame the guitar freak in me. 

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Clarence Carter -- Next To You

For the longest time didn't like Clarence Carter's songs. Not that I didn't adore his voice -- it was the kind of songs he was singing. He wasn't quite as tasteless as Marvin Sease, but still naughty enough to have me sneer at his music. 
Well, it turned out I had heard his later material before his earlier one. And I must say, I just love the intensity in his rich and full baritone voice. Clarence Carter, as many other soulmen from the 60's, had a difficult time adapting to the disco dominated music of the 70's. And that's when he got into the naughty business so to speak.
Anyway, I'm posting a piece by him that came up during dinner the other night. The intro already caught my attention, and it never ceased throughout the entire song. This is the CC I love ...

 Today's track is from his 1973 album Sixty Minutes With Clarence Carter (Fame)

Monday, February 21, 2011

Clyde Dean -- Can You Keep A Secret

Re-Post from Feb. 21, 2011
Clyde Dean probably has only released one single of which he wrote both sides. Today's track came up on my playlist, and I thought I should share it. Such umistakable Southern Soul tracks as Can You Keep A Secret always have me hum and dance along. 
Clyde Dean wrote the songs on the Black Jack release. If you like the gritty, raw style of early Soul -- you will like this track.

Cloudcast#1 -- Straight To The Heart

I'm trying out this mixcloud thing. I thought it would be a good idea to post mixcloud broadcasts in the future because the artists will receive royalties from the songs used.
So, here is my first MixCloud.

Friday, February 18, 2011

Con Funk Shun -- I Promise You Love

Get the album here.

A soft, romantic song from their 1981 album Confunk Shun 7 is this track. One of those songs that makes you want to dance to it forever, almost putting you in a gentle trance. A perfect harmony between voices and instruments ... 

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Joe Medwick -- I Came A Long Ways


(Get the album!)

There have been many adaptations to A Change Is Gonna Come, it's difficult to find one that doesn't sound like a mere re-make of the original. But when I heard Joe Medwick's I Came A Long Ways, I considered it special -- don't ask me why. Maybe it's the full sound of the organ and the intensity of the intro line ... I have no clue. But I sure love the song.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

J. J. Barnes -- Harder You Love

Now, here comes the reminder that love is not always of the Valentine's kind. Here's a bit of Northern Soul by J. J. Barnes. 

Monday, February 14, 2011

V-Day 2011 Songs

I'm not a Valentine's Day afficionado. In my opinion it is a superfluous and hyped-up, somewhat artificial and mostly commercial affair ... But I am all for love and heart and feeling -- and all of it to last forever (if possible.)
For all those who love Valentine's Day and think it deserves Raggedy's special attention, here we go with a list of songs to add some more love to the day (hopefully). 


My Love Is True -- The Temptations
Wrapped Up In Your Warm and Tender Love -- Tyrone Davis
Oh My Love, Sweet Love -- Hill Sisters
Baby, Baby, Baby -- Percy Sledge
So Deep In Love -- Eddie Giles
No Stronger Love -- Floaters
I Will Love You Always -- Stylistics
Without Your Love I'll Be Nothing -- Lavorn Smith
Love Is Magic -- Greg Perry

Sunday, February 13, 2011

The Fiestas -- Thanks For The Sweet Memories

The Fiestas, originally from Newark, NJ., had their first and biggest hit in 1959 with So Fine reaching number 3 on the R and B charts. They kept recording for the Old Town label until the 60's and scored another success with the title Broken Heart in 1962.  Broken Heart reached number 18 on the R and B charts. During the 60's they switched labels and signed first to Strand, NY and later to Vigor where they kept recording into the seventies without being successful again.

The Fiestas -- Broken Heart:  Jackie Wilson's influence cannot be denied ...

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Denise LaSalle -- Trying To Forget

Denise is best known for her Southern Soul recordings focusing on extramarital issues, so to speak. She, like Millie Jackson, got stuck in a rut, singing about the rather unsavory aspects of love and love-like relationships. Nevertheless, I love both of these singers for their great voices. After all, music not only offers the means to escape from reality but often it also portrays quite accurately the not so glorious sides of life.
Today's pick is from Denise LaSalle's album Here I Am Again (1975). On this song she showcases  her ability to control her strong, expressive voice, presenting a softer, less raw style than she usually applies to her material.
I just love her.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

A Bucketful of the Blues

Blues on Thursday ... Blues on Thursday ... Blues on Thursday ...


I've Been Hurt -- Big Lucky Carter
Dog Man -- Big Amos Patton
Trouble Is My Name -- Don Hines

The album from which the songs were taken is available here.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Charlie Wilson -- You Are

Sorry. The post/links are no longer available. I forgot that I am not supposed to support artists affiliated with Sony or its subsidiaries w/o getting visits from the Record Industry.  

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Soultaker's Tresure Chest: Random Goodness

Posted By Soultaker

Hope everyone is doing good. It's the day before the Superbowl, basiclly the calm before the storm. Neither The Packers or Steelers are my team, but I am going to go with the Packers(besides the first song in my set is by a group called the Packers so why not. LOL) I'm probably going to just stay around here this year and watch the game at home. So today I'm just laying back and being thankful that it's raining outside instead of snow. Tired of the white stuff already. I'm normally a fall/winter person, but this year is just crazy with amount of snow we have had already. So I just say enough of it and lets just move onto Spring already.

Today's set I bring to you is just something I kind of threw together. Normally I have in mind of what I want to play, but today I'm just going to pick whatever I see that comes up as I go through my stuff. Some of this I haven't heard in many years and forgotton that I had. Some cases I forgot what the song sounds like, but I know its good stuff. So come along and check out what I got in store


1. Hole In The Wall – The Packers – Pure Soul Music
2. Steal Away – Jimmy Hughes – Fame
3. I’ll Never Leave You Lonely – Roy C – Alaga Records
4. Oh! Baby – Barbara Lynn – Jamie
5. Why Did You Lie To Me – Tony Fox – Tri Spin
6. Every Night, Every Day – Jimmy Mc Cracklin – Imperial
7. Seven Letters – Ben E. King – Atco
8. When He Touches Me (Nothing Else Matters) – Peaches and Herb – Date
9. Gretest Love – Willie West – Deesu
10. Love In The Streets (Aint Good As The Love At Home) – Johnnie Taylor – Stax
11. Wayward Dream – Annette Poindexter – Twinight
12. How Long – Charles Bradley - Daptone

Monday, January 31, 2011

Soul Generation -- In Your Way / Citations -- Hey Mr. Love

Sawyer and I just were talking about the Soul Generation, and I thought I should eventually post the track I have saved on my desktop for quite some time now. I also found Hey, Mr. Love in my library from a group named The Citations. I think it might be a song by The Soul Generation from their early days when the called themselves The Citations. So, I will post that one too.

In Your Way / Hey Mr. Love

LimeLinx: In Your Way / Hey Mr. Love

Get their Collectables album here.

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Reggae Sunday at S.O.T.S

Acting Strange -- David Isaacs (More David Isaacs here.)
Babe and Suckling --  The Gladiators
Broadway Jungle -- Toots and The Maytals
Kinky Griner - Prince Buster 
Carolina -- Prince Buster

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Barbara Lewis -- Sho Nuff (It's Got To Be Your Love)

Barbara Lewis was as beautiful as she was talented. 

Every artist has his or her song that will always be their trademark. No doubt, for Barbara Lewis' it was her  Hello Stranger. She had written the title herself, and in 1963 this piece of sophisticated  seduction got lots of air time on radio stations -- and had made it into the pop charts. (The background vocals are by The Dells, btw.) But today, I'll post a not so popular song by her. 

Unfortunately, Barbara Lewis became one of the many artists who got swindled out of her fair share in her work. According to a bio on Pop History Dig "... despite her talents, Lewis’s share of the rewards for her music was not what it should have been, especially in the early years.  When she began her career, she was na├»ve about the business side of her music, and executives got most of the money.  Some of her royalty checks were sent to fictitious persons.  At one point, Lewis was given a check for $500, with her handlers telling her it was the best they could do."

In case you don't have at least a Best of Barbara Lewis yet, get it here.

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Francine Reed -- Wild Women Don't Get The Blues (Vid.)

This is what I love about blogging: There are always people around who know artists I've never heard about. It just so happened that Marc sent me that wonderful For Your Precious Love cover by Francine Reed. And I was fascinated by her voice -- intoxicated even. So, I went hunting for more info about and music by her.
Here is a short bio from the Arizona Blues Hall of Fame website and a YouTube clip that convinced me that I need to change ... I think I should be a wild woman from now on. lol No more Blues and such. Sounds good, huh.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Al Green -- Keep On Pushing Love

Soultaker and I were listening to the Maurice Watts' Love zone Friday night, and one of the songs he played was Al Green's Keep On Pushing Love. I had to confess that there was yet another Al Green song I didn't know ... This man's repertoire is simply too vast for one person to become fully acquainted with.
Your old Raggedy, of course, went looking for that track immediately. What I found out was that it is from Al Green's 1995 Your Heart's In Good Hands album -- and that there are even more beautiful songs on the album. Al sounds as fresh and authentic as on any of his early releases.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Chameleon -- Mysteryoso

I love me some heavy bass. And if I can feel its vibrations in my stomach -- it's perfect.  I know there are some of you who appreciate that type of music too: The Funk!
So let's funk it up today with a nice instrumental by Chameleon. 
Give me some bass please!


More Info on the group.

Monday, January 24, 2011

The Controllers -- Heaven Is Only One Step Away

How was the weekend, people? I had one of those "extreme relaxed" Sundays, meaning spending most of the day in my pj's, trying to convince myself that leaving the house would be a good idea. Well, suffice it to say that I had little success ...

The Controllers started out in Alabama as the Epics in 1965, changing their name to The Soul Controllers in 1970 and finally calling themselves The Controllers.

Reginald and Larry McArthurLenard Brown, and Ricky Lewis formed the lineup, and were especially effective on heartache ballads, though they also did competent up-tempo dance numbers. They relocated to Miami in the late '70s and began recording for Juana. Frederick Knight produced some of their material, including the 1977 debut LP Somebody's Gotta Win, Somebody's Gotta Lose. They enjoyed moderate success with other Juana singles and LPs, though both "Heaven Is Only One Step Away" and "We Don't" were outstanding performances. They moved to MCA in 1984. Stevie Wonder made a guest appearance on harmonica for their first MCA single, "Crushed," which reached number 30 on the R&B charts. Their biggest MCA hit was "Stay," which peaked at number 12 in 1986. They moved to Capitol in 1988, issuing Just in Time that year."  (,  Ron Wynn)


P.S.: Those who don't mind the rather synthetic sound of the 80's, the group's album "Stay" would probably be a nice find. I love the singing, but the music is def. a big turn-off for me.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Reggae Sunday!

A bagful of Reggae to  make the gloomiest mood go away!

Comes and Goes -- The Melodians
Thunderball -- The Upsetters
So Long Baby -- The Marvels 

Saturday, January 22, 2011

For Your Precious Love Covers (Tracks)

Well .. there wasn't much interest in contributing cover versions of this wonderful love song. If it hadn't been for Marc, I would have had no submissions at all.
I know. I know. My followers are lazy. Anyway,  here are three of the most beautiful covers I've ever heard.
Big thanks to Marc!

Vernon Guy from the Ike and Tina Turner Revue - Live! album (I think this is my favorite.)
The Hi-Lites. Perfect background harmony.
Francine Reed feat. William Bell (live) This woman has such a powerful voice -- I love it! And, of course, William Bell's voice never fails to touch me. (So many memories.)

Byron Lee and The Dragonaires -- because I simply cannot pass a Reggae tune ... It makes my heart sing and my feet dance.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Juke Boy Bonner -- I'm In The Big City

Blues on Thursday  bLueS oN thUrsdAy  Blues on Thursday

I just found him while surfing the Tube ... and I'm In The Big City I definitely like. It's from his album Life Gave Me A Dirty Deal, (Arhoolie Records, 1993). This is my kind of Blues. Nice pace, neat harp, and a crisp guitar ...

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

The Appointments -- Sweet Daddy

Hm ... There's not much to offer in terms of info about this group.  If anyone knows more about The Appointments, please share the info with us. All I know is that I listen to it quite often -- volume turned way up. This is as perfect a mood mender as they come. Try it! 

Raggedy's Rx:

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Archie Walker -- I'm Asking Forgiveness / A Change Is Near

Archie Walker is one of the artists who only seemed to have released a handful recordings. I think it is  regrettable not to have more material available by this artist. It certainly would have been interesting to hear how his voice had changed over time.
His voice may not be exceptional, but in its modesty (for the lack of a better expression) it is touching me. He's not trying to impress his audience, but is singing his song as if he were by himself -- in the shower, maybe?
I found the tracks -- of course -- at Sir Shambling's.  At first, I was going to post only I'm Asking Forgiveness, but A Change Is Near definitely deserves to be posted too. The song's title already hints at the original it is based upon: Sam Cooke's A Change Will Come. The latter song's musical arrangement is no doubt brilliant -- I especially love the guitar.

Now, get an earful of that sweet 60's sound of Archie Walker. 

Monday, January 17, 2011

Arnie Love and The Lovelettes -- Me Myself and I

Today's track is from the 1981 album Invisible Wind by Arnie Love and The Lovelettes (P-Vine Japan).

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Reggae Sunday


Love And Affection -- Bob Marley and The Wailers (Birth of a Legend)
We Need Love -- Johnny Osbourne
Love is a Treasure -- Freddie McKay

Saturday, January 15, 2011

ZZ Hill -- The Greatest Love

I admit I never knew this side of ZZ Hill. For the longest time I thought of him in terms of watered down Blues songs. Well, I just found a soft and silky Southern Soul piece by  him on the Kent Southern Soul Brothers album presenting Clay Hammond and ZZ Hill. I have listened to the song at least five times since I dug it out. I guess that means I really like it, and that's why I want to share it with you.
If you like Southern Soul, you should get the Cd -- and if you haven't heard of Clay Hammond yet, you're destined to discover an awesome vocalist in the best of Sam Cooke tradition. 

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Willie Hutch -- Stormy Monday

Blues On Thursday     Blues On Thursday

Today's track is from Willie Hutch's 1976  album Concert in Blues (Motown) 
The excellent pianist is Harold Johnson.

Find the album here.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

For Your Precious Love Versions

I just found another cover of "For Your Precious Love" -- one of the most beautiful love songs that ever have been sung.
I would like to ask you to help me expand the collection of versions I have been able to acquire so far. Here are the versions I have in my library:

The Flames
The Invitations
The Rolling Stones
James Brown
Linda Jones
The Impressions
Jerry Butler (of course)
Garnet Mimms
Roy Hamilton
Otis Redding
Oscar Toney
Geater Davis

Please send your version to:

Update: Jan. 14th
((Marc)) contributed the following cover versions:
David Allan Coe
Don Bryant
Francine Reed feat. William Bell (live)
Jackie Wilson and Count Basie
Johnnie Taylor
Little Johnny Taylor
The Hi Lites
The Laurels
Vernon Green and The Medallions
Many thanks for these fantastic tracks!

I dug out the following covers:
Aaron Neville
Buddy Miles live

Update Jan. 15th
Francine Reed (studio) Passion, fire, power.
Southside Johnny (Smooth and silky)
The Marcels (Fantastic acappella version)
The Impressions (1981) (Doesn't really work for me)
Barbara Mason (Beautiful, simply beautiful)
Byron Lee and The Dragonairs (Makes the heart sing and dance!)
Gene Vincent (Different somehow)

I dug out the following covers:
Aaron Neville
Buddy Miles live

Concerning my complaint about the lack of participation, I had some people call me impatient. They say I expect too much too soon from my blog friends. So, let's wait a little longer and see if there will be more submissions in the next days.

Update Jan. 22, 2011
I've posted my favorites here.
In addition, Marc sent me 3 more versions. 

Sunday, January 9, 2011

W. A. Mozart -- Requiem Mass in D Minor

Out of respect for the victims of the Tuscon massacre, I will not post today. My heart is heavy; and in my mind the words "nine-year-old" child keep repeating themselves. I am deeply sorry for the victims and their families. And I am deeply ashamed for America: this is no longer the land of the free and the home of the brave. It has turned into the land of  savages and cowards. 

May the victims R.I.P. and may their loved ones find consolation and peace of mind someday.

Friday, January 7, 2011

Soultaker's Treasure Chest - Good Hennessy Music

Posted By Soultaker

I hope everyone had a safe holiday. I'm glad everything is back to normal and that I made it through the madness. Actually I had a great New Years. Got to give a shout out to DJ Prestige as he was DJing down at The Annex in Asbury Park. Me and my lady went down and brought in the New Year with him. Had a great time dancing to the tasty joints he was spinning and enjoying the overall good vibe down there. Check out his blog Flea Market Funk as he has plenty great mixes of his own there.

I've been in a Mellow My Man type vibe lately. Meaning I like to partake in one of my favorite beverages, in this case, some Hennessy and listen to some slow music. It could be some jazz or often times some good soul music. So today I'm going to give you a sample of what I call Some Good Hennessy Music.

So Grab Your Favorite Drink, Click Here And Enjoy

1. She's Lonely - Bill Withers - Columbia
2. Who's It Gonna Be - Honey Cone - Hot Wax
3. So Soon We Change - David Ruffin - Warner Bros.
4. Wind, Blow Her Back My Way - Syl Johnson - Hi
5. Don't Change Me Now - Mavis Staples - Volt
6. For Your Precious Love - The Invitations - Silver Blue Records
7. The Bitter End - Howard Tate - Atlantic
8. Castles Of Sand - Jermaine Jackson - Motown

Theo Peoples Special

It looks as if the rumors are no longer rumors, but have turned out to be true. Theo Peoples is no longer with the Four Tops.

He joined The Temptations in 1992, replacing Richard Street. In 1998 Theo left the group and took Levi Stubbs' place in the Four Tops -- a daunting task for even the most accomplished vocalist. Levi's   naturally passionate singing simply can neither be duplicated nor replicated.

Theo Peoples, however, is without a doubt, one of the greatest, most soulful singers around. In addition to his excellent vocal skills he oozes stylishness and has the charisma so typical for each and every Temptation who has ever graced the stages of this world. (Yeah, yeah ... I'm getting carried away again.)
Anyway, I thought this news would be the perfect occasion to  post a  Theo Peoples Special. And, of course, to wish him all the best for his new career.

Those of you who are not familiar with Theo's solo material, I urge to check it out.

So, let's start with a video clip of him and the Queen

I always considered Theo being in the wrong place with the Four Tops; Theo, in my opinion, is a singer whose talent cannot be fully exhibited through the Motown material that the Tops usually perform. He belongs to another genre and another generation. 

This is the material that is Theo's forte.

From The Temptations' For Lovers Only

And here's the man live -- Smooooooooth ... Soulful ... Theo

Finally,  the title track from his album Chemistry ... You And Me (2004)


Skip Mahoaney -- Your Funny Moods


And the pick of the day is a slow jam with lots of feeling and of long duration. Funny Moods was the A-side of Skip Mahoaney and The Casuals' first 45 recording, and it became the title song of the group's firs LP  (D.C. International Records, 1974).  Their second album was, Land of Love, followed in 1976. (AVI released both their LP's on a single CD in 1995) More info about the group. 

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Charles Bradley -- Lovin' You Baby

It was difficult to pick only one track from this fantastic album. Some of the songs are strongly reminiscent of the great James Brown, and I think neither the Menahan Street Band nor Charles Bradley is trying to hide this fact. The album is a monument to true music: horns, drums, guitars, hammond organ ...  And of course it showcases one of the few soulful voices that are left for us hardcore soul fans to admire. 

Yours old Raggedy strongly suggests to get this album; there is not one filler track among the 12 tracks on the album. Daptone has done it again. 

I am posting one of my instant favorites from the CD.

Charles Bradley and The Menahan Street Band, Lovin' You, Baby (Dunham Records, 2011)

Enjoy!  (Link fixed)

Bio (Also: In Why Is It So Hard, track 10, Charles Bradley sings about his life experience.) 

Monday, January 3, 2011

Sydney Rodgers -- Child From A Broken Home / Don't Throw Stones / Raggy Raggy Clothes

Reggae on a Monday is quite as good as Reggae on a Sunday. Isn't it? 

 Sidney Rodgers (Miracle Worker, 1974):

Child From A Broken Home
Don't Throw Stones
Raggy Raggy Clothes 

Sunday, January 2, 2011

Hearts Of Stone -- It's A Lonesome Road

I'm not one who gives much advice -- mainly because I could use some of it myself. But this piece of advice is quite safe because proven and true: Steer clear from hearts of stone ... they'll send you on a lonesome road littered with heartache and hurt and regrets. 

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Happy New Year!

To all my followers and readers and friends: I wish you a happy new year and that at some point during 2011 you'll be the one singing "the dream I had came true." 
I also start the new year with a new color scheme, hoping that life will be a vibrant, colorful, and daring an experience as the fuchsia/pink color combination I've picked. 
Let's start 2011 on a hope-filled message -- in a song of course.

The Dream I Had Came True, Dicky and Billy