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Monday, January 27, 2014

Sandra Rhodes—Al Green's backing vocalist—gets reissued on Omnivore

Twenty feet from stardom . . .
On CD for the first time, Sandra Rhodes’ Where’s Your Love Been
contains seven bonus tracks.
MEMPHIS, Tenn. — While Sandra Rhodes made a name for herself singing behind Al Green on his classic Hi Records sides and writing songs including Conway Twitty’s #1 single “The Clown,” her best work missed the public eye. And ear.
Where’s Your Love Been, Rhodes’s 1972 album for Fantasy Records, was recorded at the Sam Phillips Recording Studio in Memphis (founded in 1960 as a roomier successor to the legendary producer’s Sun Studio). Just as her backing vocals (usually performed with sister Donna and then husband Charlie Chalmers) appeared on recordings of every genre, the disc reflects the Memphis native’s extraordinary musical flexibility. Much of the set displayed a pronounced country vibe, yet a couple of its selections were unabashed Memphis soul. Sandra sounds gloriously at home on all of them. That range — it’s why her own songs have been recorded by artists as diverse as Skeeter Davis and Isaac Hayes.
Co-produced by Sandra and Chalmers, the ten tracks on Where’s Your Love Been include originals like the title cut as well as a cover of the Rolling Stones’ “You Can’t Always Get What You Want.” To make this album’s CD debut, due out March 11 on Omnivore Recordings, even more special, seven bonus tracks from the sessions have been unearthed — all previously unissued.
Had this album been a commercial success, Sandra Rhodes’ musical fortunes might have unfolded differently. “You just never know if one thing had been a hit or another, what would have happened,” Rhodes muses. “I’m sure it would have changed the course of our lives in one way or another. But the way things went, we got to dabble in a little bit of all of it — and still are!”
Although Sandra and Charlie are no longer married, they still have a publishing com­pany and team on various musical ventures (Rhodes, Chalmers & Rhodes were on Al Green’s acclaimed 2003 secular comeback CD I Can’t Stop). Charlie operates his own recording studio in Branson, Miss. Sandra and younger sister Donna co-star in a new incarnation of The Rhodes Show television program — which enjoyed an initial 27-year run in Memphis in the ‘60s — around the Ozarks (Sandra now lives in Arkansas) and the mid-South.
With liner notes from Bill Dahl in a full color booklet, Where’s Your Love Been is ready for the audience that missed out on it over four decades ago. As with many other great “unheard” albums, Omnivore Recordings is proud to tell everyone that the question of Where’s Your Love Been has finally been answered.
Track Listing:
1. No One Else Could Love You More
2. I Think I Love You Again
3. No Such Thing As Love
4. Sho’ Is Rainin’
5. It’s Up To You
6. Where’s Your Love Been
7. You Can’t Always Get What You Want
8. Never Grow Old
9. The Best Thing You Ever Had
10. Sowed Love And Reaped The Heartache
Bonus Tracks
11. Double Dealing Woman
12. Someday Sweet Baby
13. Baby Don’t Go
14. I’d Rather Hurt You Now
15. Linda Was A Lady
16. Jingo
17. I Don’t Play The Game

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