CD All-American Rock 'n' Roll from Fraternity Records 1959-1961 (CD 114939),
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All-American Rock 'n' Roll from Fraternity Records 1959-1961
1. Rock-a-Bop - Sparkle Moore
2. Flower of My Heart - Sparkle Moore
3. Killer - Sparkle Moore
4. She's Neat - Dale Wright
5. Take Hold of My Hand - Carl Dobkins, Jr.
6. That's Why I'm Asking - Carl Dobkins, Jr.
7. Makin' Love With My Baby - Richard Turley
8. That's My Girl - Jesse Lee Turner
9. Absolutely Nothing - Bill Parsons
10. Dance Dance Dance - Bill Parsons
11. Hand Me Down My Rockin' Shoes - Bill Parsons
12. Jungle Bandstand - Bill Parsons
13. Try It No More - Gene Marcum
14. That's Showbiz - Dale Wright & The Wright Guys
15. You're the Answer - Dale Wright & The Wright Guys
16. Dis a Itty Biti - Robin "Hood" Brians
17. Buddies With the Blues - Bobby Bare
18. Teardrops From My Eyes - Jimmy Jeffers & The Jokers
19. Rubber Dolly - Bobby Bare
20. All American Boy, The - Bobby Bare
Manufacturer Part Number (MPN): 316
Contains 20 tracks that were originally released in the late 50's by the Fraternity label.
One of the most curious of all the independent record companies that dotted the Midwest and dabbled in rock & roll in the 1950s and '60s was Harry Carlson's Fraternity Records, based in Cincinnati, Ohio. Curious because Carlson was 50 years old when he started the label in 1954 and his musical background was of another era far removed from the country and blues talent being gobbled up by his neighbor, Syd Nathan's King Records. His own tastes ran toward M.O.R. romantic ballads and light orchestral arrangements and the first 40 or so releases on the label reflect that, with Cathy Carr's "Ivory Tower" and Jimmy Dorsey's "So Rare" (neither compiled here for obvious reasons) becoming the first big hits for the label. But within a couple of years, Carlson was making his first tentative moves toward the rock & roll market, and the 20 tracks compiled here reflect some of the best the label had to offer between 1956 to 1959. Kicking off with three recordings by the energetic Sparkle Moore -- one of the few female rockabillies recording for any label back in those times -- both "Rock-A-Bop" and "Killer" shine with a D.I.Y. breathless vocal approach from the girl that outshines the relatively square backing she receives from the Dan Belloc Orchestra. Dale Wright clocks in with three superlative winners, including his big hit, "She's Neat," the funny but all too true "That's Showbiz," and the bluesy rock-a-ballad "You're The Answer," all exhibiting a wilder tone to the backing than most Fraternity singles. For years, collectors assumed that Bill Parsons' 1958 hit "The All American Boy" was country singer Bobby Bare under an assumed name, which was true, as Bare sold off all his rights because he was entering the service. But to confuse the story -- and it is a very confused one -- even further, this compilation brings to light four novelty rockers by the real Bill Parsons, sounding very much like the Bobby Bare on "The All American Boy," most notably on the extremely similar "Absolutely Nothin'" and "Jungle Bandstand." But Bobby Bare finally gets his due with alternate takes of "The All American Boy," and its flip "Rubber Dolly" credited correctly to him with a 1959 track, "Buddies with the Blues," thrown in to round things out. Great one-offs from Jesse Lee Turner ("That's My Girl"), Robin Hood Brians ("Dis a Itty Bit!"), Jimmy Jeffers and the Jokers ("Teardrops from My Eyes"), Richard Turley ("Makin' Love with My Baby") and a pair from lightweight rocker Carl Dobkins, Jr. ("Take Hold of My Hand" and "That's Why I'm Asking") complete this excellent package. Fraternity may not have been the most committed of labels when it came to recording the shakin' music (although they had hits with Lonnie Mack and the Casinos into the late '60s), but they left behind some fine sides, and many of them are collected right here. ~ Cub Koda
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Ace (Label) 316
E1 Distribution (USA)
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