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Entries in Soul (23)


Strivin' & 45'n | The A's & B's of Funk, Soul, & R&B | July 21st @ Japp's

Join us this Friday at Japp's Since 1879 for the second edition of Strivin’ & 45'n, an all 7" vinyl affair. I'll be playing timeless funk, soul, and R&B sides from my stash for a party unlike any other in the neighborhood. Roll through anytime starting at 9pm and help keep the party popping and hissing all night long.


Chuck Bradford - "You're Going To Miss Me When I'm Gone / Say It Was A Dream" (Fire, 1961)

I've posted a Fire Records single before... I want to say I picked a half dozen or so of their 45's all at one time? While their releases aren't especially collectible, the 45's still make for solid one-off blues additions to my single collection. 

This Chuck Bradford 7" released on Fire Records features "You're Going to Miss Me When I'm Gone" and "Say It Was a Dream". While I wasn't able to track down ANY information on Chuck Bradford, I can hear that his sound, at least on these two sides, is raw and delightfully unpolished. The a-side is a rousing blues rocker that features a spirited saxophone accompaniment. "Say it Was a Dream" is a sauntering blues cut with a piano pairing. Somehow, this record has found itself classified as a Northern Soul on past eBay sales and descriptions, but it sounds too blues-y to my ears to fit that bill. 

While not much info is out there on the artist Chuck Bradford, I have stumbled across the name of Fire Records head man Bobby Robinson a handful of times. It's pretty staggering just how many labels, eras and sounds he was behind as producer and label owner. Bobby Robinson touched everything from doo-wop to hip hop and was the mastermind behind the labels of Red Robin Records (1952), Whirlin' Disc Records (1956), Fury Records (1957), Everlast Records (1957), Fire Records (1959), and ultimately Enjoy Records (1962). What a legacy to leave behind! 

Listen to both sides of this mighty Chuck Bradford 7" single below.


The Icemen - "Sugar Baby / Only Time Will Tell" (Samar, 1966)

I found this 45 by The Icemen a while back and I've been enjoying it ever since. Released on Samar, both sides of this single offer strong examples of

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Bobby Byrd - "I Need Help (I Can't Do It Alone) Pt. 1 / Pt. 2" (King, 1970)

One of the true unsung players in the game of funk and soul, Bobby Byrd was a founding member of the Famous Flames, the vocal group that catapulted James Brown into the spotlight. Keeping Mr. Byrd close by throughout his career, James leveraged Bobby's showmanship and vocal prowess as the hype man, emcee, and back-up singer for his infamous live show. I recently stumbled across this amazing 7-inch containing the single "I Need Help (I Can't Do It Alone)". Released on King Records in 1970, the 45 captures the title track (in two parts) from Mr. Byrd's 1970 solo album of the same name. I'm still looking for a copy of the original long player, so this 45 will have to do for now. Sadly, Bobby Byrd passed away in 2007, but I'm still hoping someone will do it up right and put together a relevant compilation of Bobby Byrd's output that properly showcases and brings to light his infectious energy and booming voice.


Bull & The Matador - "The Funky Judge / Instrumental" (Toddlin' Town Records, 1968)

Who doesn't just LOVE a killer funk 45? Bull & The Matadors was a short lived group out of East St. Louis, Illinois. "The Funky Judge" was their first, and most successful, release peaking at #39 on the Billboard Hot 100. The group went on to record a couple more singles for Toddlin' Town Records, but was never able to match the success of "The Funky Judge". So far, this is the only record of I've been lucky enough to stumble across from Bull & The Matadors, but I'll surely be keeping an eye open for their other singles. Enjoy both sides of "The Funky Judge" 7-inch below... The b-side features a cold-blooded instrumental version!

Bull & The Matadors - "The Funky Judge / The Funky Judge (Instrumental)" (Toddlin' Town Records, 1968)