CD Slow 'n' Moody Black & Bluesy & More (CD 4671339),
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Slow 'n' Moody Black & Bluesy & More
1. Nothing Can Change the Love I Have for You - Z.Z. Hill
2. You Messed Up My Mind - Clay Hammond
3. I Can't Stand It - Jimmy Holiday
4. Let's Get Together - Arthur & Mary
5. Darling I'm Standing by You - Jeanette Jones
6. Baby I'll Come - Mary Love
7. If I'd Lose You - Jackie Day
8. I Don't Wanna Lose You - Tami Young
9. (Baby) Come to Me - Little Henry & the Shamrocks
10. Ain't Nobody's Business - B.B. King
11. Every Dog's Got His Day - Johnny Copeland
12. Weep No More - Terry & The Tyrants
13. It's Real, Pt. 1 - Jimmy Robins
14. Whenever I Can't Sleep - Willie Gauff & The Love Brothers
15. Last One to Know, The - Joe Haywood
16. Woman Needs a Man, A - Yvonne Baker
17. Everybody Needs Somebody - Jimmy Holiday
18. Farewell - Willie Gauff & The Love Brothers
19. Why Should I Be the One - Tommy Youngblood
20. I'll Come Back to You - The Mighty Hannibal
21. Consider Yourself - Stacy Johnson
22. Years Go Passing By, The - Larry Davis
23. I'm Falling for You - Ernie Andrews
24. I'm in Love - Larry Sanders
25. Sweet Bitter Love - Millie Foster
26. Smartest Fool, The - Ruth Davis
Manufacturer Part Number (MPN): 321
Kae Williams; Bill Silva; G. Benz; Mike Akopoff; Jimmy Robbins
Liner Note Author: Ady Croasdell.
Photographers: Gilles Ptard; Tony Gale; Alec Palao.
Arrangers: Bobby Martin ; Jimmy Robins; Maxwell Street Jimmy Davis ; Miles Grayson.
The rather awkward that's-a-mouthful title of this CD arose in part because it grew out of a couple of previous similarly named compilations on the Kent label. The company released an LP titled Slow 'n' Moody Black & Bluesy in 1983, and a CD of the same title in 1994 that took off a couple songs and added a dozen more. Not quite satisfied, in 2009 Kent rejigged it yet again by taking off some material, adding a couple more tracks, appending "& More" to the title, and finding (say the liner notes) "extra verses or longer fadeouts and [using] them wherever they sounded superior to the original releases." The whole (and kind of confusing) story is laid out in the booklet's introductory annotation. What's more important, especially if you're coming to this CD without having its predecessors in your collection, is that it collects 26 tracks in the "deep soul" style recorded for the Modern label between the mid-'60s and early '70s. Wait, you're saying: Modern was a Los Angeles label, how could there be much "deep soul" from L.A., as the style was so identified with the American South? Well, as the liner notes point out, "There was more Southern-sounding soul produced in Los Angeles than New York City, Detroit, or Chicago, where similar numbers of young blacks had migrated during and after the war years." So Modern did generate a lot of material in the emotive, richly arranged ballad style associated with deep soul, even if it had relatively little commercial success, especially when compared to Stax, Atlantic, Hi, Goldwax, and other such companies. Indeed, there aren't many names on here that will be familiar even to most soul fans, some probable exceptions being B.B. King, Johnny Copeland, Z.Z. Hill, and the Mighty Hannibal. But the sides are well produced, even if lacking in the kind of killer songs likely to either tickle the charts or find placement on more selective soul anthologies in the CD era. It's also true that the songs sometimes bear the influences of more distinctive greats like Otis Redding and Sam Cooke on their sleeves. But they're sincere, and fairly melodic more often than not. If Stacy Johnson's clich-ridden "Consider Yourself" is the low end of this particular batch, there are enough better cuts, like Larry Davis' uncommonly bluesy and minor-key "The Years Go Passing By," to make the overall average come out a bit ahead of the specialist reissue pack. Also, the somewhat lighter production touch makes it a refreshing change from the heavier Southern-originating deep soul comps that dominate the reissue market for this genre, even though that might count as a strike against this particular anthology for some deep soul purists. ~ Richie Unterberger
Living Blues (p.70) - "From San Francisco came Jeanette Jones' plaintive rendition of the Ashford and Simpson composition 'Darling I'm Standing By'..."
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