September sees Fantastic Voyage sustain momentum in the wake of a busy Summer schedule. In many respects we continue where we left off, in a month of continued chronicling of revelatory roots music. Quick on the heels of the Soul City Philadelphia set comes Soul City New Orleans: Big Easy Gems From The Dawn of Soul Music, a collection which sheds light on one of America’s most vibrant and significant hives of early modern soul. Soul music savant Clive Richardson lifts the lid on a flourishing scene, assembling a compelling selection drawn from imprints large and small. Familiar names include Lee Dorsey, Aaron Neville and Irma Thomas, though as always the neglected take their place amongst the renowned. Coming in both a 2CD and 2LP edition, the collection has already received praise from Record Collector who described it as an “impeccably chosen profile”. Like the flamboyance associated with the city’s famed Mardi Gras carnival, Soul City New Orleans brings together the finest precedents for a spirited, unmissable display.
From the deep south we then head north, to the more inconspicuous but no less rich hub of Indiana, for Hoosier Daddy: Mar-Vel’ And The Birth of Indiana Rockabilly. A mammoth 105 track 3CD set – which also comes in a 2LP edition – Hoosier Daddy documents the story of the pioneering and industrious Indiana record man, Harry Glenn, and his Mar-Vel’ and Glenn labels. Curated by rock and roll specialist Dave Penny the collection accomodates the cultish and the rare, with Bobby Sisco, Herbie Duncan, Chuck Dallis and Harry Carter featuring alongside the first recordings of Jackie De Shannon. The remit is not restricted to the work of Harry Glenn either, as the compilation traverses the length and breadth of the Hoosier State, charting the output of other important rockabilly labels, from Indianapolis, Fort Wayne, Marion, Columbus and many other areas. Vintage Rock have already voiced their approval concluding that “there’s more to Dave Penny’s latest mix than the clever title…a playlist of over 100 incredible tunes…rarely-spun treasures that will excite any true rockabilly fan”. An ample collection which stories an exciting emergence, it makes a case for Indiana’s status as a vital centre in the development of American rockabilly.
Rounding out September is a release which diverges from the focus on a specific setting to one which trades exclusively in material gathered from an illustrious catalogue. Right Now: Atlantic Club Soul and Deep Cuts follows Lois Wilson’s highly successful explorations of the Chess and Motown staples with an assemblage of three decades worth of rare Atlantic gold. Available in CD and LP versions, the collection eschews familiar hits and popular favourites in favour of a diverse and comprehensive store of cuts derived from the vaults of the hallowed label. As well as a pre-Motown Isley Brothers, Louisiana rock ’n’ roller Dale Hawkins, and an incarnation of The Falcons (which then included Wilson Pickett and Mack Rice in their ranks) the set features lesser known, deep catalogue gems from Jean DuShon, Jimmy Ricks, King Coleman, Richie Barrett, the Top Notes, The Tarantulas and many more. Defined as equivalent to a “fine feast” by Blues In Britain, Right Now represents a deep delve into the rich depths of one of America’s greatest ever labels.