CD The Goldwax Story, Vol. 1 (CD 113328),
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The Goldwax Story, Vol. 1
1. I'm Living Good - Louis Williams/The Ovations/Louis Williams
2. There Goes My Used to Be - Wee Willie Walker
3. I'll Be True to You - Spencer Wiggins
4. I Don't Want to Be Hurt Anymore - James Carr
5. That's How Strong My Love Is - The Keys/O.V. Wright/The Keys
6. Unlovable - Barbara Perry
7. Here It Is Now - Gene Miller (Bowlegs)
8. Call on Me - Percy Milem
9. Well's Gone Dry, The - Dorothy Williams
10. He's Too Old - Spencer Wiggins
11. Some Other Time - Eddie Jefferson
12. Pouring Water on a Drowning Man - James Carr
13. Rockin' Chair - The Ovations
14. Will I Ever Be Free - Jeb Stuart
15. Darling - The Lyrics
16. Power of a Woman, The - Spencer Wiggins
17. I've Been Loving You Too Long - Ben Atkins
18. Liquid Mood - Timmy Thomas
19. Don't Cry - The Ovations
20. You Didn't Know It, But You Had Me - George & Greer
21. Love Is a Tricky Thing - The Five C's
22. It's Wonderful to Be in Love - The Ovations
23. Uptight Good Woman - Spencer Wiggins
24. Dark End of the Street, The - James Carr
Manufacturer Part Number (MPN): 203
Rudolph V. "Doc" Russell; Quinton Claunch
Performers includes: The Ovations, Spencer Wiggins, Eddie Jefferson, Dorothy Williams, James Carr, The Lyrics, O.V. Wright, Jeb Stuart, Wee Willie Walker
Contains 24 tracks.
Liner Note Author: John Ridley.
Recording information: 1964-1969.
Arrangers: Chips Moman; Dan Penn; Alana Dante.
The Memphis '60s soul label Goldwax is most known for its lengthy series of singles (many of them R&B hits) with James Carr, but also recorded several other artists during the decade. Three of the 24 tracks on this anthology belong to Carr, including his most famous song, "The Dark End of the Street." Otherwise, though, most of these names will draw blanks, except for O.V. Wright (who did just one single for the label) and Timmy Thomas (whose jazzy 1967 organ instrumental, "Liquid Mood," with some scat singing, preceded his big vocal hit "Why Can't We Live Together" by five years). Deep Southern soul fans will enjoy this release mightily, as it has so many of the stocks-in-trade of Southern soul in general and Memphis soul in particular: tight soul backup, urgent, pleading vocals, and a leaning toward slow, emotional balladry in the songwriting (with some up-tempo tunes thrown in). It isn't, though, on the same level as the somewhat similar and much more famous soul being done in the same town at the same time at Stax Records. The vocalists are too often derivative of Otis Redding and Sam Cooke; the Ovations' Louis Williams sounds like a Sam Cooke clone, so close are his vocals and so obvious is his role model. The George half of George & Greer, heard on their lighthearted, up-tempo 1966 single "You Didn't Know It, But You Had Me," was well-known songwriter George Jackson. For some variety, you get the instrumental "Here It Is Now" by Gene (Bowlegs) Miller, which strongly recalls the work of Stax instrumental groups Booker T. & the MG's and the Mar-Keys. The Lyrics' "Darling," the first Goldwax release in 1964, is the most doo wop-indebted cut, with some ludicrously over-the-top crying at the cut's outset. ~ Richie Unterberger
Living Blues (5-6/02, p.81) - "...Two dozen stunners..."
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