Soul City Los Angeles: West Coast Gems From The Dawn Of Soul Music

Various Artists
FORMAT: Audio CD - 2 Disc
Release date: 14 Apr 2014

**** - Soul Bag

CAT No: FVDD192 UPC TEXT: 5055311001920

Full details

Soul City Los Angeles presents recordings which served to establish the musical direction of LA and neighbouring West Coast conurbations in the late 1950s and early 1960s when R&B was evolving into the style that became known as soul. Compiled and annotated by soul music authority Clive Richardson, Soul City Los Angeles is the latest in a series that has previously explored the nascent soul scenes in Detroit, New York and Chicago.

This instalment presents a selection from key independent labels of the area, including Sam Cooke’s SAR and Richard Vaughn’s Arvee, as well as choice items from Aladdin, Liberty, Imperial and Ebb, and collectable releases from more obscure imprints. Famous names on CD1 of this 60-track 2CD set include the Olympics, the Valentinos (aka the Womack Brothers) with ‘Lookin’ For A Love’, the Rivingtons with ‘Papa-Oom-Mow-Mow’, and Johnnie Morisette with ‘Meet Me At The Twistin’ Place’, while CD2 features ‘Ko Ko Mo’ hitmakers Gene & Eunice, both sides of a 1962 single on Rush by Don & Dewey, early recordings by future stars Johnnie Taylor and Johnny ‘Guitar’ Watson, and a young Sly Stone as a member of the Viscaynes.

Soul fans of the early 1960s could often figure out the geographic origins of new singles as much by the ‘sound’ as by any knowledge of sometimes obscure artists and labels, with the output of West Coast studios tending to have a ‘harder’ sound in comparison with some more sophisticated (for the era) productions from the opposite coast or the regions of the Great Lakes. Here we have music from the formative period of the soul era in Los Angeles.

Also available as 2LP vinyl collectors edition, featuring 28 of the most sought-after tracks and colour insert.



  1. Soothe Me (The Simms Twins)
  2. Right To Love (The Simms Twins)
  3. The Smile (The Simms Twins)
  4. You’re Pickin’ In The Right Cotton Patch (The Simms Twins)
  5. Stay Where You Are (The Olympics)
  6. Baby, It’s Hot (The Olympics)
  7. Come On (Earl Nelson)
  8. No Time To Cry (Earl Nelson)
  9. Lookin’ For A Love (The Valentinos)
  10. Somewhere There’s A Girl (The Valentinos)
  11. Damper (Johnnie Morisette)
  12. Meet Me At The Twistin’ Place (Johnnie Morisette)
  13. Anytime, Anyplace, Anywhere (Johnnie Morisette)
  14. Here Comes The Night (Part 1) (Jimmy Norman)
  15. Here Comes The Night (Part 2) (Willie Moon Man Echols)
  16. The Heebee Jeebees (Wally Cox)
  17. I Can’t Help It (Wally Cox)
  18. Papa-Oom-Mow-Mow (The Rivingtons)
  19. Deep Water (The Rivingtons)
  20. My Reward (The Rivingtons)
  21. Waiting (The Rivingtons)
  22. The Love I Just Lost (Beamon Young)
  23. Some Day (Beamon Young)
  24. That Much Of Your Love (Donald Woods)
  25. Memories Of An Angel (Donald Woods)
  26. All By Myself (Zeke Strong and His Queen Tones)
  27. Your Heart Must Be Made Of Stone (Zeke Strong and His Queen Tones)
  28. This Is The Nite (The Valiants)
  29. Love Game (The Valiants)
  30. Frieda Frieda (The Valiants)


  1. Soul Motion (Don and Dewey)
  2. Stretchin’ Out (Don and Dewey)
  3. A Whole Lotta Woman (Johnnie Taylor)
  4. Why, Why, Why (Johnnie Taylor)
  5. Never, Never (Johnnie Taylor)
  6. Rome (Wasn’t Built In A Day) (Johnnie Taylor)
  7. Looking Back (Johnny Guitar Watson)
  8. The Eagle Is Back (Johnny Guitar Watson)
  9. Johnny Guitar (Johnny Guitar Watson)
  10. Cuttin’ In (Johnny Guitar Watson)
  11. Sweet Lovin’ Mama (Johnny Guitar Watson)
  12. The Angels Gave You To Me (Gene and Eunice)
  13. I Mean Love (Gene and Eunice)
  14. I Ain’t Guilty (The Crawford Brothers)
  15. It Feels Good (The Crawford Brothers)
  16. Just Like That (The Robins)
  17. Oh No (The Robins)
  18. Glory Of Love (The Velvetones)
  19. I Love Her So (The Velvetones)
  20. I Pity You Fool (Jennell Hawkins)
  21. Don’t Worry Bout Me (Jennell Hawkins)
  22. Heavenly Angel (The Viscaynes)
  23. Yellow Moon (The Viscaynes)
  24. Uncle Sam Needs You (The Viscaynes)
  25. That’s All I Ask (Tommy Knight)
  26. There’s No Pain (Tommy Knight)
  27. Lucy Lee (Lloyd George)
  28. Sing Real Loud (Lloyd George)
  29. She’s All Right (Troy Walker)
  30. I’m Gettin’ Hip (Troy Walker)