Kicking off in Detroit, the Soul City series explores the music being produced in key centres in the early 1960s, when R&B was evolving into the style that was soon widely referred to as soul. This 2LP vinyl limited edition (500 copies), features 28 tracks selected from the 60-track 2CD set.
In recent times, any musical mention of Detroit and the 1960s has yielded a default response of ‘Motown’, and while Hitsville USA, as the Corporation’s headquarters on West Grand Boulevard was known, certainly served to put the city firmly on the map, there was a time early in the decade when the Motown Recording Corporation was but a bit-part player in the musical output.
In 1962, Detroit was in a state of musical transition from the relatively primitive productions of Joe Von Battle’s JVB label, and Devora and Jack Brown’s Fortune Records, to a more evolved R&B sound. Before Berry Gordy Jr had laid the foundations for his Motown empire, Robert West had originated a similar formative enterprise with multiple labels culminating, in January 1962, with Lu Pine Records. Despite the proliferation of recordings, it wasn’t until the Falcons charted in 1959 that West’s company made any impact with national sales.
Compiled and annotated by soul music authority Clive Richardson, Soul City Detroit presents a selection of the recordings which served to establish the musical direction of the Motor City into the era which became known as ‘soul’. R&B has continued to be the cover-all generic term for African-American music to this day, but with changing styles and increasing elements of sophistication within the music in the early 1960s, soul emerged into more common usage.
This compilation brings you a generous selection of early recordings by Motown stars including the Contours, Mary Wells and the Marvelettes, plus early hits by Marvin Gaye and the Miracles, and a chance to hear early offerings by the Supremes and Martha & the Vandellas. Also presented are the bluesy stylings of Sammy Ward and Gino Parks, Joe Stubbs and Mack Rice, along with the gospel-inspired vocals of Wilson Pickett, both leading the Falcons on ‘I Found a Love’ and on an early solo track. This is where the SOUL era began in the Motor City!
- The Stretch (The Contours)
- Claudia (The Contours)
- So Grateful (The Contours)
- Get To School On Time (The Five Quails)
- Request Of A Fool (The Downbeats)
- Oh Lover (Sherri Taylor and Singin’ Sammy Ward)
- I Found A Love (The Falcons)
- Stubborn Kind Of Fellow (Marvin Gaye)
- For This I Thank You (Gino Parks)
- Baby I’m Coming Home (Mack Rice)
- Keep On Loving Me (Joe Stubbs)
- I’m A Coward (Gino Washington)
- Someday Pretty Baby (Singin’ Sammy Ward)
- My Heart Belongs To You (Wilson Pickett)
- Playboy (The Marvelettes)
- Beechwood 4-5789 (The Marvelettes)
- The One Who Really Loves You (Mary Wells)
- Operator (Mary Wells)
- He’s So Fine (The Corvells)
- Village Of Love (Nathaniel Mayer and the Fabulous Twilights)
- Fortune Teller Tell Me (Lamont Dozier)
- Happy Landing (The Miracles)
- Camel Walk (Saundra Mallett and the Vandellas)
- Here You Come (Hattie Littles)
- My Baby Won’t Come Back (Martha and the Vandellas)
- You’ll Never Cherish A Love So True ’Til You Lose It (The Vells)
- Mind Over Matter I’m Gonna Make You Mine (The Pirates)
- Let Me Go The Right Way (The Supremes)