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Southern Soul Corner Oct 12

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Corner Talk: Multiple Southern Soul chart movers and shakers this month include: Grown Man from Lenny Williams,  Move Somethin' by Certified Slim, Country Boy from Sir Charles Jones, Peggy Scott-Adams with Not Good Enough To Marry, Soul Music by Vick Allen, Jeff Floyd's Using Me, Shake from Rickey White,  My Check Is Spent by Mel Waiters, Blind Blind Snake (hot!) from Luther Lackey, Pat Cooley's Dirt Road Double Wide, Stevie J's Come Here Party, Soul School by Mr. David, Good Motor by LJ Echols and Meat On Them Bones from Sir Jonathan Burton.........                              

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 Ecko Records continues to bring outstanding music to the Southern Soul market, as they have for the past seventeen years. Blues Mix:8 Juke Joint Soul is the latest compilation that features two of their newest artists, Sonny Mack and Jaye Hammer, together with current superstars Ms. Jody, Donnie Ray, Sheba Potts-Wright and OB Buchana. I'm liking Mack's upbeat Clean Up Man as well as the mid-tempo tell all Cheatin' Ain't No Fun. Hammer's I'm In Love has the groove to be a potential floor filler. Ms. Jody may very well be the hottest female singer in the genre – she lights it up here with three killer tracks – It's A Reunion, Just Let Me Ride and Get Drunk Party. Her counterpart on the male side, the effervescent Donnie Ray, hits a home run on the previously unreleased I'm Gonna Keep My Love At Home and a killer tune that keeps on coming back, Something About The Music. The bonus track that is included is a live version of That Old Booty Green from Ms. Barbara Carr. Twelve tracks in all, quality sound and production work throughout the release!

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Speaking of Barbara Carr, it would be hard for me to forget her dynamic performance of Hootchie Dance at the Carolina Beach Music Awards several years ago. Beach music fuses nicely with Southern Soul on Three Pair, a brand new release from Ocean Beach Records (a CDS subsidiary I think?). Soul and Blues music veterans Carr, Roy Roberts and Johnny Rawls collaborate on thirteen tracks of new tunes as well as some strong previous releases. Shaggin' Down In Carolina, Parts 1 and 2 are prime cuts along with Let's Go To The Beach. The awesome Carr/Roberts Don't Let Our Love Slip Away is back along with Part 2. R&B shuffles How Long, What's Been Going On  and Can't You See make for potential solid dance tracks. It's Only You was the hit title track from Roy's 2008 album release on Rock House Records. The gospel tinged Reach Out is a testament to what everyone needs to be doing to fix  our social ills. Good stuff from three strong vocalists that have been around the block and continue to turn out quality music!

 

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Peggy Scott-Adams has come full circle with her music career over the past forty plus years. She toured with Ben E. King while still just a teenager. Her duets with male singing partner Jo Jo Benson in the late '60's yielded national hits on Lovers Holiday, Pickin' Wild Mountain Berries and Soulshake. Fast forward to the '90's, a relocation to California and Peggy's work with amazing songwriter/producer Jimmy Lewis on the Miss Butch label. Her 1996 single Bill was a radio phenomenon crossover that is often credited as ushering in the contemporary Southern Soul scene of today. The associated album Help Yourself went to #1 as one of the top Blues releases of the year. Five more charting albums on the label were released, almost one per year, through 2003 as Peggy became the reigning Queen of Southern Soul for that time period. This success culminated in a compilation album entitled 16 Hits – The Best Of Peggy Scott-Adams. Peggy then turned to Gospel music, releasing her God Can....And He Will  album shortly thereafter, pretty much leaving the secular music scene once again, until now.

 

Life After Bill marks Peggy's return to Southern Soul in a big way. The title track as well as Old School are about reminders of the past and a statement of resolve for the future. The previously mentioned (at the beginning of this month's column)  Not Good Enough To Marry has been making strong chart noise for several weeks. I always enjoy a soulful cover of the classic anthem Make Me Yours, which Peggy delivers here. The release begins and ends with stirring ballads – Just Because and Forever Came To An End.  Take note ya'll,  Peggy Scott-Adams is back!! 

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For a music gnrenre to grow and pr osper, the introduction of new and change is a good thing. The proliferation of new artists in Southern Soul, particularly over the last five years, now numbers in the hundreds, with more coming on board practically every week, many from independent labels. There is a level of diversity in the some of the grooves that are being produced and recorded, nothing wrong with that either. Here are some recent tracks from what I would consider to be 'new' artists that are currently getting some radio and/or club blasts:

 

You Should Know – Greta Prince

Forever Swing – Tucka

Lifestyles Of The Poor And Unknown -  Total Package Band

Float Away – Lamont Starr

Juke Joint Party – Val McKnight

Good Loving – Jimmie Ja

I Can't Wait – Moses Blu

Loving Love Again - Sharnette Hyter

Club In Tha Woods – Avail Hollywood

Your Touch Your Love  - Avana

Weekend Lover – Certified Slim

Ooo Wee – Andrew Booker

I Won't Let My Baby Down – Lewis Shaw

After Party – Choppa Law

Cookies 'N' Milk – Jureesa McBride

Swing It – Lomax

Let's Get It Started – Koree' Rudolph

I Want It – Leroy Allen

Good Man Of Mine - Equanya

Baby I Got It – Donnell Sullivan

I Miss My Ex - DeCarlos Bonds

I've Got A Good Man – Monro Brown

Modern Day Woman – David Walker

Party All Night Long – Zeke

That's Not My Cologne – Charles McCormick

                                                

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 A Near Miss: Per our discussion of new artists, here is a relative newcomer in the biz that I didn't discover until recently. His killer 2010 album, Simply The Best, was evidently missed by a lot of folks in the industry. I am speaking of CC Miles, a singer with a heart full of Soul and R&B.  Twelve straight ahead tracks come at you dead on, many of them with a high energy groove that just won't quit.  Tip Toe, Player Got Played On, Yes, Inspirator, Real Good Woman, Can't Stay On It, Work Witt' It and No Time Out all roll with tempos up between 110 and 130 BPMs (beats per minute). Glad I stumbled backwards on to this album! CC also has a new single release entitled Go Fishing that is getting air time from selected radio jocks.

 

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