Friday, 11 April 2014

THE SHEEP RECORDS STORY #14: HELLSUCKERS "ROCK'N'ROLL LICENCE" (2000)



Sheep Records was a Swiss underground label specialized in Garage-Rock, Surf, Lounge and other Rock'n'Roll oddities. Run by Christian Müller from Zürich, along with friends Andi Frick and Andreas Egi, it was active from 1996 to 2004 and published about 30 releases, mostly on 7" vinyl singles.



In october 2006, after about two years of hiatus, all the contents of the now defunct Sheep Records website were deleted from the Internet, and replaced with a blank page announcing that "Der Kebab ist gegessen" ("The kebab is eaten"), a last goodbye and a reference to the label's cataloguing system that included the prefix "kebab" for vinyl releases and "gigot" for CD releases.



The fourteenth Sheep Records release was a 7" EP by young French rockers Hellsuckers from Schiltigheim, Alsace. "Rock'n'Roll Licence" was released in July 2000 and was limited to 300 copies on red vinyl and 200 copies on black vinyl, for a total of 500 copies.

All the songs were previously included on their debut MiniLP "Everything Sucks Except Rock'n'Roll", released in Japan in 1999. Since the EP reports a "January 2000" recording date on the back cover, I assume that these versions are different from those released on the MiniLP... Or is it just a typo?

«The Hellsuckers capture elements of metal, punk and rockabilly, squish 'em together and create a sound that's somewhere between The Hellacopters, AC/DC and The Bones. Loud, swaggering, fast and as catchy as they come.»





Here's the track list and the personnel/credits list for this 7" EP. Tracks were originally listed in wrong order both on the back cover and on the record labels: the graphics appearing on this page were edited to include the correct running order.

01. Phantom Creeps (3:27)
02. Snakerace (2:17)
03. Fast Bullit (1:53)
04. Helldriver (1:52)

Recorded and mixed in January 2000 at Downtown Studio by Zephir.

Produced by Revell Yell Music.

Design by Manusion.

All tracks were remastered in April 2014 and are available in FLAC lossless format or high-quality 320 Kbps MP3 files; both formats include scans of the complete original artwork.

Please have a look at the comments for the download links.

«The Hellsuckers rock and trash everything and everyone to the ground. Nothing is sacred here, no mercy for the weak. Just a fist-in-your-face-rock.»

Originally called Johnny Nountchak and The Hellsuckers, the band was formed in 1998 and originates from Schiltigheim, Alsace, France.

Founding members were Johnny Nountchak (vocals), Rich Road (guitar), Dean Blondin (bass) and Jim Bullit (drums). Over the years, the Hellsuckers family has grown to also include two more guitarists: Randy Zephyr and Nikki Five.

They debuted with the MiniLP "Everything Sucks Except Rock'n'Roll", released in Japan by Revel Yell Music in 1999. Three albums followed, namely "Rock'n'Roll Venom" (2001), "Tonite Destruction" (2003) and "Total Satan" (2006), before the band disbanded sometimes in 2007 or 2008.

Dave Blondin and Jim Bullit went on to form the Rock'n'Roll / Psychobilly act The Wolfgangs along with Cha and Lothar Von Wolfgang.


The Hellsuckers, circa 2000


The following video offers a preview of the remastered single, enjoy "Phantom Creeps"!



More information about Sheep Records and Hellsuckers is available here:

http://www.surfnroll.de/interviews/sheep/sheep.html

https://myspace.com/hellsuckers1

http://www.discogs.com/artist/1111087-Hellsuckers

http://www.spirit-of-metal.com/groupe-groupe-Hellsuckers-l-en.html

http://www.w-fenec.org/rock/hellsuckers.html

http://schoelcke.org/thewolfgangs/


The Sheep Records story will continue in the next months. All your inputs are more than welcome, if you want to get in touch please write to stereocandies [at] hotmail [dot] com or leave a comment in the box below, thank you!

Saturday, 29 March 2014

PANCY LAU (劉鳳屏) "負心的人" (1969)




Front and back cover of FHEP 1001 version 1, "Made in Hong Kong"

Pancy Lau (Lau Fung Ping, 劉鳳屏 or 刘鳳屏, also referred to as Liu Feng Ping) was born sometimes in the late 40s / early 50s in a family of musicians; her father (劉伯樂), a famous Cantonese Opera singer, was her very first music teacher.

At eight / nine years she was already performing operas, and at thirteeen / fourteen she began to explore Pop music. During the early 60s she participated in several singing contests with no significant results. In 1965 at last she won the Mandarin section of the 6th Sing Tao Daily singing competition with the song "三年" (Three Years). As a result of this success, she became a resident singer at the prestigious restaurant / nightclub 金冠 (Golden Crown).

Television Broadcasts Limited (電視廣播有限公司), commonly known as TVB, commenced broadcasting in Hong Kong on 19 November 1967. Pancy Lau was one of the first singers who participated in the popular show "歡樂今宵" (Enjoy Yourself Tonight) along with colleagues 仙杜拉 (Sandra Lang, one half of The Chopsticks duo along with 阿美娜 / Amina) and 鍾玲玲 (Betty Chung).

"水長流" (Water Always Flows) was released in 1968 by Fung Hang Records (風行); it was the first in a long series of recordings that was about to continue for more than fifteen years.

In this period Pancy was more and more busy, her bookings considerably increased bringing her to perform seven days a week in nightclubs and karaoke bars, sometimes offering two shows in different locations during the same evening/night.

Following a second EP entitled "山前山後百花开" ("When the Flowers Bloom On Mount Qian Shan") released in 1969, Pancy Lau's first album was finally published in 1970. "快回頭望一望" ("Quickly Looking Back") contained twelve songs - including the eight tracks already released on her previous EPs.

The record was a huge success with no less than four editions published - and sometimes also bootlegged - by different labels in Hong Kong, Malaysia, Singapore and Taiwan. In a time when many of the hit songs in Hong Kong were linked and driven by popular TV series, Pancy's debut album contained enough fresh material to become a modern classic.

It is unclear to me if the tracks released on FHEP 1001, "負心的人" (Ungrateful People), the subject of this post, were released in 1969 - before her debut album - or in 1970. As a matter of fact, three of these songs were also included on Pancy's second album, "劉鳳屏之歌" (Pancy Lau's Songs), released by New Wave Record Co. (新風) in 1970 and all of them were also part of the FHLP 1001 "My Heart Is Beating" album, which, according to the information I gathered may have been released as late as 1972...

Anyway, the two versions of FHEP 1001 in my possession offer the same four songs packaged in two different covers. Cover of Version 1 features a picture apparently taken during the same photo session that also graced Pancy's previous output and the sleeve is marked as "Made in Hong Kong" on the back.

Cover of Version 2 features a picture from the same session that was later used for the FHLP 1001 "My Heart Is Beating" album; one of the songs included on this EP, "花好月园" (Blooming Flowers and The Full Moon), was included on that album with a different, but similar, title "月园花好. On the back of the sleeve it says "Printed by K.M.I.L.", an acronym that I have learned to associate with records produced for the Malaysian market.

Althought Version 1 is marked as "Stereo / Mono compatible" on the labels, both versions of this EP offer mono recordings. The same songs are featured as stereo versions on the two albums mentioned in the paragraphs above; they which will be the subject of other posts here on Stereo Candies in the future...

For a more detailed biography of Pancy Lau, please have a look at this other post of mine: "The Very Best of Pancy Lau Volume 1 [1968-72]".




Front and back cover of FHEP 1001 version 2, "Printed by K.M.I.L."


Here's the track list for this 7" single:

01. 負心的人 (3:45)
02. 阿里郎 (1:43)
03. 多拉茜 (2:43)
04. 花好月园 (2:50)

All tracks were remastered in March 2014 and are available in FLAC lossless format or high-quality 320 Kbps MP3 files; both formats include scans of the complete original artwork.

Please have a look at the comments for the download links.


   
FHEP 1001 version 1, "Made in Hong Kong", black labels

Here's what I discovered searching information about the songs included on this EP; the translations of the song titles are approximate in most cases, but anyway...:

01. "負心的人" (Ungrateful People) is the theme song from the movie of the same name. The original version was performed by 汤兰花 (Tang Lan Hua, available here); other versions were later performed, among others, by 姚蘇蓉 (Yao Su Rong, here) and 崔萍 (Tsui Ping, here).

02. "阿里郎" (Arirang) is one of the most famous Korean traditional folk songs. In its original form it has been sung for more than 600 years: who would even think about it listening to the swinging version presented here? There's plenty of versions available on YouTube.

03. "多拉茜" (Duolaqian) - I wasn't able to find any relevant information about this song, except that it was also performed by 凌霄 (Ling Seow)...

04. "花好月园" (Blooming Flowers and the Full Moon) is a classic Chinese song from the late '40s that was originally performed by singer / actress 周璇 (Zhou Xuan), one of China's seven great singing stars; you can listen to the original version here. The song has been covered by many divas of the Chinese classic and pop music industry with each imparting their distinct flavour to the song. A lot of versions are available on YouTube.

   
FHEP 1001 version 2, "Printed by K.M.I.L.", dark blue labels


The following videos offer a preview of the remastered single, enjoy the title track "負心的人" (Ungrateful People) and "阿里郎" (Arirang)!






More information about Pancy Lau is available here:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Music_of_Hong_Kong

http://home.ied.edu.hk/~hkpop/music/hkpophistory.html

http://www.flickr.com/photos/dk_gilbert/sets/72157608139056712/

http://www.goldenage.hk/b5/ga/ga_article.php?article_id=1079

http://paper.wenweipo.com/2007/04/21/EN0704210024.htm

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tUIeOiDudhg&feature=related


http://baike.baidu.com/view/5637119.htm

http://www.vinylparadise.com/4pop_can/1/066LFP0A.htm

http://www.inkui.com/a1/A/A4A8B8CB7ABE6FF6C1CF_a.html

http://robokon.orgfree.com/5080/5080_LauFungPing.htm

http://mypaper.pchome.com.tw/chrishui/post/1276979467

http://rateyourmusic.com/artist/%E5%8A%89%E9%B3%B3%E5%B1%8F

http://www.whatsinmag.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=1004%3A2012-04-02-19-44-12&catid=75%3A2012-03-30-21-17-42&lang=tw

I'm currently trying to compile a Pancy Lau exhaustive discography, my work-in-progress is available here.

All my posts dedicated to Pancy Lau on this blog are available here.



In the next months I will post more Hong Kong/Taiwan/Singapore/etc. Pop/Instrumental records released in the late-60s / mid-70s. As usual, I would like to provide information about these releases and their authours, here's a few names: 劉鳳屏 (Pancy Lau), 樱花 (Sakura), 太陽神樂隊 (The Apollo), 冉肖玲 (Ran Xiao Ling), 奧斯卡管弦樂團 (Oscar Orchestra), 奚秀蘭 (Stella Chee),...

Unfortunately the Internet doesn't offer much information - written in English - about these artists and this is the reason why I need help: if you can translate from Chinese to English please get in touch with me at stereocandies [at] hotmail [dot] com or leave a comment in the box below, thank you so much!

It's been difficult to obtain these vinyls, some are not in the best conditions and I'm currently working hard to properly master them. It seems that these artists and their music are poorly known in the West, of course it's a real pity because they made stunning releases: I'd like to share them with you with a proper presentation, hope that someone will be able to help.

Wednesday, 19 March 2014

BUNGALOW RECORDS, THE POOL SERIES #1: DOB "PLANET DOB" (1997)



Bungalow Records was (...or still is?) a Pop / Electronica label founded in 1996 by Berliner DJs Holger Beier and Marcus Liesenfeld, a.k.a. Le Hammond Inferno:

«We have always been passionate about music, towards the end of the '80s we started playing in an indie band and DJing at the same time, combining our strong passions for Pop and Dance music. That was a very fertile period for the Club scene in Germany and we were very busy organizing a series of parties that have entered into the history of German clublife. Parties attended by Saint Etienne, Towa Tei of Deee-Lite, Stereolab... At that point we ended up being a reference point and many people were interested in the creation of a label. We actually had never thought about it, but our encounter with Christof Ellinghaus of City Slang has made this possibility a reality. We founded Bungalow and slowly we tried to learn how to manage a record label.»

[from an interview published on Blow Up magazine, issue #26/27, July 2000]



For a few years, until the early '00s, Bungalow was a very prolific and cool label. Their compilations "Sushi 3003" / "Sushi 4004" marked the first time a western indie label delved into the cutting edge Japanese Club-Pop scene:

«...the initial spark was the moment we listened to "Twiggy Twiggy" by Pizzicato Five and later Towa Tei's "Future Listening". We were hearing a new, never heard craziness in playing around with Pop music. The first thing that came to our simple minds was: there must be more. So we contacted journalist and Nippon-Mania-Man Olaf Maikopf and had the quite naive idea to travel to Japan and put together a compilation of modern Japanese Club-Pop. After running through the streets of Tokyo for some 10 days, meeting about 35 record companies and even more bands, we were totally confused and had to carry tons of CDs and LPs back home (much to the pleasure of the Lufthansa customs agents). Back home we slept for a month and then compiled "Sushi 3003" as an introduction to Japanese Club-Pop and concentrated on giving a wide overview of what has been going on in Tokyo in the last 10 years.»

[from the "Sushi 4004" liner notes, 1998]



Bungalow gave us the chance to (re)discover the soundtrack works of German composer Peter Thomas; they also licensed most of Combustible Edison releases in Europe and brought Stereo Total to international success and fame, album after album.

Among others, they released lovely CDs by Czerkinsky, Fantastic Plastic Machine, Yoshinori Sunahara and Bertrand Burgalat, and other little wonders from the German underground like Pop Tarts, Dauerfisch, Mina... For this and all the rest, thank you Bungalow!

The "Pool Series" was a... series of 12" records that explored the more Dance-oriented side of the label. They were released in a simple brown cardboard sleeve with a sticker containing all the pertinent details.

The cover design was changed at a later stage, and the last five issues offered a different design, with all information printed directly on the sleeves and no sticker at all.


The first issue in the series was Dob's "Planet Dob", released in 1997; it contains the following tracks.

01. Planet Dob (4:10)
02. Fa La Le Ra (4:39)
03. Planet Deb (5:22)

All tracks were remastered in March 2014 and are available in FLAC lossless format or high-quality 320 Kbps MP3 files; both formats include scans of the complete original artwork.

Please have a look at the comments for the download links.





Side A features "Plenet Dob" - the closing track from the album "La Lu La Roo" - a classy Ambient-Electronica piece with Dub influences and Drum'n'Bass elements.

On Side B we find "Fa La Le Ra" - a remix of the album's title track enriched by a Drum'n'Bass rhythm and offering a different refrain - and "Planet Deb", which - unsurprisingly - is a prominently Dub remix of "Planet Dob".

The following videos offer a preview of the remastered 12", enjoy "Planet Dob"!




Dob, originally called Date of Birth, were formed in 1984 by the three brothers Shigeto in Fukuoka, a small town in the south of Japan; most of their musical output was released by Kitty Records.

They were very successful in their native Country: in 1992 their single "You Are My Secret", the theme song from the classic Japanese TV drama "あなただけ見えない" (Only You Can't See It), sold the unbelievable amount of 400.000 copies.

According to the liner notes of "Sushi 3003", Dob "are not just a band, they are a family obsessed with music as much as they are with graphics"... "La Lu La Roo", their album released by Bungalow in 1996, came as a Enhanced CD with an interactive track for Macintosh users.

The visual side of Dob was also widely explored on "Planet Dob", their own game for the Sony Playstation released in late 1999.


Dob logo

It seems like Dob ceased to exist sometimes in the early '00s, traces of their beautiful website are still around courtesy of the Internet Wayback Machine... Here's the full list of the band members:

Isao Shigeto: guitars, keyboards, composing, computer programming, engineering, etc.

Susumu Shigeto: drums, composing, lyrics, computer programming, engineering, etc.

Ken-1 (Kenichi Shigeto): computer programming, art, visuals, etc.

Norico: voice, lyrics


Dob, circa 1996-97


More information about Bungalow Records and Dob is available here:

http://www.bungalow.de/

http://www.discogs.com/label/1125-Bungalow

http://rateyourmusic.com/label/bungalow_records/

http://ja.wikipedia.org/wiki/...

http://web.archive.org/web/19990221062919/...

http://date-of-birth.blogspot.com

http://www.geocities.jp/soundtracks1111/artists_dateofbirth.html

http://ks23364.kimsufi.com/psxdata/databasepsx/games/J/P/SLPS-02111.html


The "Pool Series" will continue in the next months. All your inputs are welcome, if you want to get in touch please write to stereocandies [at] hotmail [dot] com or leave a comment in the box below, thank you!

Friday, 28 February 2014

TAMIKO JONES "I'LL BE ANYTHING FOR YOU" (1968)

Black is black, I want my baby back
It's gray, it's gray, since he went away
What can I do, 'cause I'm feelin' blue

If I had my way, he'd be back today
But he don't intend to see me again
What can I do, 'cause I'm feelin' blue

I can't choose, it's too much to lose
My love's too strong
Maybe if he would come back to me
Then it can't go wrong

Bad is bad, that I feel so sad
It's time, it's time, that I found peace of mind
What can I do, 'cause I'm feelin' blue

I can't choose, it's too much to lose
My love's too strong
Maybe if he would come back to me
Then it can't go wrong

Black is black, I want my baby back
It's gray, it's gray, since he went away
What can I do, 'cause I'm feelin' blue
'Cause I-I-I-I-I'm feelin' blue


[from the lyrics of "Black Is Black"]



Barbara Tamiko Ferguson was born in 1945, one of ten children, in Kyle, West Virginia, USA.

So exotic in her features, ethnically she might be described as multi-racial: her father was an African-American and her maternal grandmother, Mrs. Arma Dalton - who used to live in Charleston - was partly of Japanese descent. Mrs. Dalton's parents, now deceased, were nisei. Because of her Japanese background, Mrs. Dalton at one time lived in a federal internment camp on the West Coast during World War II.

«My mother married a white man of Scotch-Irish ancestry, and on my maternal grandfather's side there is Cherokee Indian blood. So, racially at least I'm really mixed up. Like the rest of my family I consider myself a Negro [1]



The extreme versatility of Tamiko's singing is readily appreciated in considering her own musical background. She was raised in Detroit and, while working as a secretary, she auditioned for a talent agency and made her professional debut in 1961 at the Flame Show Bar in Detroit, a room that earlier showcased such talents as Johnnie Ray and Della Reese:

«I got that job strictly on nerve, I decided one day I wanted to be a singer. Though my repertoire consisted of only one song, "Goody, Goody", I got an audition through an agent with Maurice King, who led the orchestra at the Flame Show Bar. I was hired on the spot for a one-week engagement, but stayed six months.» [1]


I'll Be Anything For You" inner gatefold

During that first six-month engagement, she expanded her repertoire considerably under Maurice King's guidance and improved her showmanship. She developed a style of her own, though she never learned to read music. She describes such style as "jazz-bop", which is a unique styling compounded of pop songs on a jazz base:

«I depend on my ear, I think God gave me a gift for music which I express through my voice. When I first started out, I used to get so scared my knees would knock. The more I sing the more confident I feel, but I still get a little nervous on an opening night.» [1]


Tamiko Jones as pictured on the cover of the French 7" split EP shared with Angela Martin, circa 1963-64

She began her recording career on the Checker label in 1963; her first release, credited simply as Timiko, was the happy-go-lucky song "Is It a Sin?" written by Richard "Popcorn" Wylie backed with "The Boy For Me" written by Robert Bateman on the flip side.

By 1964, Timiko became Tamiko and she relocated to the Atco Records imprint releasing the single "Don't Laugh If I Cry at Your Party" backed with "Rhapsody". Both tracks were also released in France as side A of a 7" split EP coupled with two songs by Angela Martin on side B.


Tamiko Jones, publicity shot for the "A Man and a Woman" single, 1966

In July 1966 she briefly moved to the Golden World label and released her third single offering "I'm Spellbound" on side A and "Am I Glad Now" on side B. The single was produced by Gene Redd who wrote the tunes along with Rose Marie McCoy, Jimmy Crosby and a certain Mike Jones.

Anyway, let's take a step back: after the six months at the Flame Show Bar, Tamiko began touring the East Coast and Midwest, including stints on the Playboy circuit, the Catskill Mountains and the Carribean area, before getting her first national exposure on the Tonight Show in 1965. Later she performed on the Johnny Carson Show several times as well as on the Merv Griffin and Joey Bishop programs.


Tamiko Jones, press / publicity photo, circa 1966-67

Tamiko's career saw some elevation when she signed with Atlantic in late 1966. She teamed up with label mate Herbie Mann and released a single offering "A Man and a Woman", the theme song from the film of the same name composed by Francis Lai and Pierre Barouh, backed with "Sidewinder", a composition by Lee Morgan which has become a jazz standard nowadays. Many different versions of "A Man and a Woman" were recorded around this time by different artists, but only the Jones / Mann rendition made the best-selling charts.

«The first Herbie Mann / Tamiko Jones collaboration was a brilliant rendition of the attractive title tune from the French movie "A Man and a Woman". That recording, released in the fall of 1966, helped make A Man and a Woman" one of the most popular movie themes of the year. The union of Herbie Mann and Tamiko Jones started almost fortuitously at the Atlantic Recording Studios in New York. Herbie heard Tamiko singing in the studio one afternoon and was so taken by her warm, sensuous jazz-pop styling that he stayed throughout her entire rehearsal. When it was over he asked if she would like to record with him.» [2]


Tamiko Jones on the cover of Jet magazine, March 1967

The album was recorded in Rio de Janeiro during three sessions between September and December 1967, and was published by Atlantic in 1967. It consists of ten songs with musical backgrounds provided by both the Cannonball Adderley Trio and Herbie Mann's Band, mostly arranged by Joe Zawinul and Jimmy Wisner.

One more single was culled from the album, with side A offering a cover of The Beatles' "Day Tripper" paired on the flip side with "A Good Thing (Is Hard To Come By)", a Tamiko's own composition.

By the way, "A Mann and a Woman" has recently been re-released on CD in Japan and at the time of writing it is still available on major retailers as an import at a fair decent price, don't let it escape you!


With Ed McMhon and Joey Bishop, 1967

Tamiko Jones has also appeared as an extra in a few movies during the late '60s, namely "Penelope", "You're a Big Boy Now" and "How To Succeed In Business":

«Acting is a very exciting and stimulating outlet for my artistic energies. I love to act and want to become an expert at it. My greatest ambition is to appear in a Broadway musical. But singing is my main love. I'll never give that up, because it gives me a chance to express myself fully and freely.» [1]

Between June and September 1968, Tamiko was busy recording a new album at the Sam Phillips Recording Studio in Memphis and at Van Gelder Studios. "I'll Be Anything For You", the subject of this post, was released later that year on CTI which at the time was still an A&M imprint. Among others, the album featured Solomon Burke, Bernard Purdie and Richard Tee...


"I'll Be Anything For You" original inner sleeve shows many A&M goodies...


...and more goodies on the back!

Sources:

[1] from a feature/interview published on "Jet" magazine, March 1967

[2] from the "A Mann and a Woman" LP liner notes written by Bob Rolontz, 1967

[3] from the "I'll Be Anything For You" LP liner notes written by Peter J. Levinson, 1968


"I'll Be Anything For You" contains the following tracks:

01. I'll Be Anything For You (2:49)
02. Goodnight, My Love (2:38)
03. Where Are They Now? (2:57)
04. Cottage For Sale (2:50)
05. Black Is Black (3:00)
06. Try It Baby (3:25)
07. This Time Tomorrow (2:51)
08. Please Return Your Love To Me (2:07)
09. Peace of Mind (2:57)
10. I've Got My Eyes On You (2:48)
11. Suddenly (2:49)
12. Ya Ya (2:29)

All tracks were remastered from the original vinyl in February 2014 and are available in FLAC lossless format or high-quality 320 Kbps MP3 files, both formats include restored and printable PDF artwork.

As usual, please have a look at the comments for the download links.


A short review of the album published in December 1968

«"I'll Be Anything For You" represents Tamiko Jones' firm musical declaration that as a soul singer, sensitive interpreter of standards, and as a freewheeling handler of current pop tunes, she has arrived. No longer bridled by her previous image as a soft sounding singer of bossa nova songs with a woodwind background, in this album she shakes loose with a wide variety of tunes given several diverse musical settings.» [3]



The dozen songs in the album begin with the vibrant "I'll Be Anything For You", written by Bobby Hebb, the author of "Sunny". This and many of the Memphis sides are enhanced by arranger Teacho Wiltshire's subtle use of strings. Note the especially engaging low string figures he uses throughout "I'll Be Anything For You". In 1970 Hebb included the song in his own album entitled "Love Games".

The next tune, "Goodnight, My Love", perhaps more than any other side in the album illustrates the driving intensity of the Memphis Sound, with Tamiko's singing riding above the band with real conviction.

"Where Are They Now?", written by Brad Praich and Py Whitney, has almost a country and western feel to it, with Tamiko providing a plaintive rendition of the lyric. This song was also released as the flip side of the "Ya Ya" single (A&M 956) and as Side A of another single backed with "Please Return Your Love To Me" (A&M 1016).

"Cottage For Sale" is Tamiko's favorite side in the album and understandably so. Her treatment of this ballad is immediately reminiscent of the fine old standards recorded in the late '50s by Dinah Washington. The song has a long story, with artists from a variety of genres creating many notable recordings; in 1930 it was an hit for The Revelers vocal quartet, while Frank Sinatra recorded a popular version in 1959.

"Black Is Black" is a personal favourite of mine and one of the highlight of the album. The original version by Los Bravos, a Spanish beat group, was a hit in 1966 and sold over one million copies worldwide.

"Try it Baby" also brings to mind Dinah Washington and the memorable duets she recorded with Brook Benton. Tamiko's singing partner on this song is Solomon Burke, who shaped the sound of rhythm and blues as one of the founding fathers of soul music in the '60s: incidentally he was Tamiko's boyfriend at the the time this album was recorded... Tamiko opens by giving her side of the story, with Solomon underlining her statements and then giving his version. The intrinsic humor of the song, written by Berry Gordy, Jr., is perfectly portrayed by Tamiko and Solomon as soloists and in tandem.



Side B starts with voices backing Tamiko's lusty rendition of "This Time Tomorrow"; the song swings comfortably, led by Richard Tee's driving organ playing as a foundation.

"Please Return Your Love To Me" features once again Solomon Burke, this time as a backing vocalist; the song had been a hit for The Temptations just a few months before.

"Peace of Mind", written by Nick Woods, has both a jazz and gospel undercurrent to it as sung by Tamiko. The song was originally recorded by Nina Simone earlier the same year.

"I've Got My Eyes On You" is a popular song by Jackie Rae and Les Reed, it offers an unusual sound courtesy of Don Sebesky's combination of cellos and violas which perfectly underscores the pathos of the song. The chamber music feel is both brooding and yet at the same time lively and sparkling the way Tamiko, and the vocal chorus supporting her, interpret it.

The lively "Suddenly" was penned by Solomon Burke and originally performed by him as flip side of the "Lawdy Miss Clawdy" single in 1966.

"Ya Ya", the famous Lee Dorsey song, moves out of its teenybopper musical image through the decidedly polished and assured manner with which Tamiko approaches it. The band, conducted by Artie Butler, really walls behind her on this version and shows the apparent enjoyment felt by both musicians and singer in working together; it is characteristic of the feeling that seems to pervade throughout the album. The song was also released as a single (A&M 956) backed with the quiet "Goodnight, My Love".


A&M Records / CTI Billboard advertisement, October 1968


The following videos offer a preview of the remastered album; for this purpose I chose my favourite tracks: "I'll Be Anything For You", "Black Is Black", "Suddenly" and "Ya Ya", enjoy!










Here's the credits and personnel list of "I'll Be Anything For You" as they appear on the inner gatefold of the album:

Session #1: June 4, 1968
- I'll Be Anything For You*^
- Goodnight, My Love*^
- Where Are They Now?*^
- Ya Ya
*Rhythm tracks arranged by Solomon Burke
^Strings arranged by Teacho Wiltshire
"Ya Ya" arranged by Artie Butler

Session #2: August 15, 1968
- Black Is Black
- Try It Baby
- Suddenly
Arranged and conducted by Teacho Wiltshire

Session #3: August 29, 1968
- Cottage For Sale
- This Time Tomorrow
- Peace of Mind
Arranged and conducted by Teacho Wiltshire

Session #4: September 17, 1968
- Please Return Your Love To Me
- I've Got My Eyes On You
Rhythm tracks arranged and conducted by Horace Ott
Strings arranged by Don Sebesky

Session #1 recorded at Sam Phillips Recording Studio

Sessions #2, 3 and 4 recorded a Van Gelder Studios
Engineer: Rudy Van Gelder

Piano and Organ: Bobby Emmons (1), Richard Tee (2, 3, 4),
      Bobby Wood (1)
Bass: Chuck Rainey (2, 3, 4)
Drums: Gene Chrisman (1), Herb Lovelle (2), Bernard Purdie (3, 4)
Percussion: Warren Smith (2, 3)
Guitar: Tom Cogbill (1), Bill Fontaine (2), Eric Gale (4), Mike Leech (1),
      Carl Lynch
(2, 3, 4), David Spinozza (3), Reggie Young (1)
Trumpet: Ray Copeland (1, 2), Harold Johnson (1, 2), Mel Lastie (1, 2),
      lrvin Markowitz (1), Marvin Stamm (1)
Trombone: Ben Powell (1, 2), Alan Raph (1)
Saxophone: Joe Grimm (1), Howard Johnson (1, 2), Romeo Penque (1),
      Seldon Powell (1, 2), Jerome Richardson (1, 2)
Violin: Ben Blumenreich (1, 3), Lewis Eley (1, 3), Paul Gershman (2, 4),
      Joseph Haber (1, 3), Louis Haber (1, 3), Charles Libove (2, 4),
      Harry Lookofsky (1, 3), Joseph Singer (1, 3), Irving Spice (1, 3),
      Louis Stone (1, 3)
Viola: Seymour Berman (1, 3), Selwart Clarke (1, 3), David Sackson (1, 3),
      Murray Sandry (1, 3), Emanuel Vardi (2, 4)
Cello: Seymour Barab (1, 3), George Ricci (2, 4), Alan Shulman (1, 3)

Cover photograph by Pete Turner
Album design by Sam Antupit


Tamiko Jones in 1968 as pictured on the front cover of "I'll Be Anything For You"


More information about "I'll Be Anything For You" and Tamiko Jones is available here:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tamiko_Jones

http://www.soulwalking.co.uk/Tamiko%20Jones.html

http://supersoulsisters.blogspot.com/2009/11/tamiko-jones-collection-1963-1986.html

http://www.discogs.com/artist/8483-Tamiko-Jones

http://www.dougpayne.com/ctid3k.htm

http://soulfuldetroit.com/showthread.php?484-Tamiko-Jones

http://www.amcorner.com/forum/threads/aotw-tamiko-jones-ill-be-anything-for-you-sp-3011.9656/

http://www.amcorner.com/forum/threads/aotw-tamiko-jones-ill-be-anything-for-you-sp-3011.7066/


If you have any other useful information about the Tamiko Jones and "I'll Be Anything For You" - especially corrections and improvements to this post - or if you spot any dead links, please get in touch with me at stereocandies [at] hotmail [dot] com or leave a comment in the box below, thank you!