To me, nothing says "Sunday vibe" like some easy groovin' soul singles. One of the coolest radio traditions of my lifetime (and one which educated me about many records in my formative years) are the oldies Sundays programs that have been popular in many major cities since the 80's (I've listened to them growing up in L.A, the Chicago area and here at my home in the bay area). Taking a cue from these shows, I'll pop in every now and then on a Sunday to lay out some tracks that you probably won't hear on the radio, but certainly should.
Plucked at age 15 from a talent show at Chicago's Regal Theater, saucy
voice Jo Ann Garrett was signed to Chess Records where she cut this
debut single. This is one of those rare cases where the debut release is
also definitive and perfect; she cut some other great sides but in my
opinion, this is THE ONE. Another strikingly perfect female Chicago soul
side, from 1966.
Delivered with pure soul and a restrained confidence, the brothers deliver a sublime, pure harmony vocal that gives me shivers and a big lump at the back of my throat. This is the type of record that exists in that upper echelon- a place where music simply does not get any better.
Next up is a lovely side from the late, great Detroit singer Belita Woods. Belita cut one of the strongest, funkiest records to EVER come out of Detroit (the unbelievable double sider "Magic Corner b/w Grounded in 1967) and this follow up from 1970 shows another side of her vocal range; specifically, her way around a ballad.
Belita was a part of the P Funk gang for 15 years or so, and her voice was truly a thing of wonder, and stayed strong up until the end.
And finally, here's a super record out of the Sunshine State, from 1967.
This seems to a be a one off from this group from Miami, and what a gorgeous one-off it is!
This record was originally released on a small Miami label called DEEP CITY (before it was picked up by Brent Records in Los Angeles) and I have read that the Moovers (who were a vocal quartet) worked as backing singers on almost all of the other Deep City label releases. It's certainly believable, as these guys have an incredibly smooth and lush vocal blend. Stellar stuff.
Until next time!