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Showing posts with label Clyde Wilson. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Clyde Wilson. Show all posts

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

I Don't Want To Lose You - Steve Mancha

Clyde Wilson - Steve Mancha On Christmas Day 1945 in Walhall, South Carolina a musical legend was born. Clyde Darnell Wilson, or as all collectors and lovers of Detroit soul music know him ... Steve Mancha. Clyde moved to Detroit at the age of five years old and by 1960 he was already singing locally around the Detroit area when he met another future Detroit icon, Melvin Davis. Melvin Davis was already recording for Jack and Devora Brown's Fortune Records. Around this early time Clyde joined Melvin Davis, David Ruffin and Tony Newton in forming a group called The Jaywalkers. Any info on this group and any records that exist would be gratefully received by Hitsville. Shortly after this Clyde met and became friends with Wilburt Jackson. It was with Wilbur that Clyde formed the duo The Two Friends. They were about to record their first 45 for Harvey Fuqua's HPC label. Join us now as we explore the work of one Detroit's Northern Soul musical heroes ... Mr. STEVE MANCHA The Two Friends cut one single for Harvey Fuqua's HPC label in 1960 "Just Too Much To Hope For" b/w "Family Reunion." Most Motown collectors are probably more familiar with the version of "Too Much to Hope For" cut in 1968 for Motown Records by Tammi Terrell. HPC was a short lived label and Harvey Fuqua went on to form Harvey and TRI- Phi Records with Gwen Gordy. As a duo Clyde and Wilburs days were numbered as Gwen and Harvey put all their promoting energy into another newly formed pairing, Johnny Bristol and Jackey Beavers, who recorded surprisingly enough as Johnny and Jackie! It was through Gwen Gordy that, after struggling with sluggish sales of their labels, that they merged with Berry Gordy's expanding Motown stable. Part of this package deal meant that the artists connected with Harvey and TRI Phi were also brought under contract to Motown. Thus began the 'Motown' years of Two Friends, Johnny and Jackie, Jr Walker and The All-stars, The Detroit Spinners and many more. The Monitors - Number One In Your Heart (V.I.P.) It was in this period that Clyde was allegedly a member of Laurence Faulkon and The Stars and another group Laurence Faulkon and The Sounds. They recorded two records, firstly for MRC Records in 1962 called "I'll Marry You" and a second one on Mike Hank's MAHs label called "My Girlfriend" b/w"Why Should We Hide Our Love." Although it appears that Motown didn't record anything on The Two Friends, Clyde and Wilbur did have a hand in writing some of the songs of the time. A couple of notable songs in which they feature on the credits are "Give A Little Love" - Marvin Gaye and Tammi Terrell and the wonderful upbeat stomper by The Monitors - "Number One In Your Heart" - VIP 25032 Steve Mancha - Did My baby Call (Wheelsville) With Motown concentrating it's efforts on other artists, here ended the relationship between Clyde Wilson and Motown. Clyde looked around for other opportunities and eventually teamed up with yet another legendary Detroit record producer, Don Davis. At this point Don Davis suggested that Clyde change his performing name and Clyde adopted Don Davis' partner Don Mancha's (Yet another legendary Detroit musical figure), surname. Hence Clyde Wilson a.k.a. Steve Mancha found himself recording for Wheelsville Records under the auspicious production talents of Don Davis. Their first work together produced an absolute classic Detroit Soul 45. Steve Mancha - "Did My Baby Call" b/w "Whirlpool" - MW 518 Mad Lads - Did My Baby Call (Volt) The record sold fairly well but not enough to become a hit even locally. The song "Did My Baby Call" was also released on the B side of the magnificent Professionals - "Thats Why I Love You" - Groove City 101. Another version of this fabulous song was also recorded a few years later by The Mad Lads - "Did My Baby Call" b/w "Let Me Repair Your Heart" - Volt 4080. The version by Steve Mancha is probably Steve's finest moment and is typical of Don Davis' production work of that period. A Trio of Mancha inspired singles In the same year Steve switched to the newly formed GrooVesville Record label and released the brilliant ballad "Youre Still In My Heart" b/w "She's so good" - GV 1001. The A side of this record is the epitome of a Detroit soulful 'beat ballad', haunting vocals mixed in with brilliant backing group. This really does it for me. The strong drum/piano led, almost midtempo track is filled with ghost like supporting voices that were to become a signature of the GrooVesville set up in the mid to late 60's. Steve's voice is fully matured now and when paired with Mr. Davis' production they became an extremely tight knit musical team. The flip side is almost equally good and produces much of the same. A tremendous double sided record. Steve Mancha - I Don't Want To Loose You (GrooVesville) The next release on GrooVesville in 1966 was the great "I Don't Want To Lose You" b/w "I Need To Be Needed" - GV 1002. This track made the RnB Chart and became a minor hit. Both sides are wonderful Detroit soul, but "I need To Be Needed" is, for me, the better side. A wonderful production with a string section probably called on from The Detroit Symphony Orchestra. Again the backing vocals are stunning, and Steve, at his best, noticeably straining vocally, every ounce of his body as he claims he needs to be needed. If you haven't heard this side, then you're in for a real treat. It was this year that Steve took a brief respite from singing solo and joined up with Eddie Anderson, JJ Barnes and Edwin Starr to form The Holidays. The group immediately cut the incredible "I'll Love You Forever" for Ed Wingate's Golden World label. The other side of this 45 (GW 36) is the uptempo instrumental "Making Up Time" and can be heard on the website under the 'Golden World Article'. The lead on this 45 is taken by Edwin Starr and the record became an RnB hit and went some way to establishing The Holidays name as a group. A Trio of Mancha singles As the members of The Holidays continued their solo careers, Steve returned to his solo recordings with GrooVesville. His next release was "Friday Night" b/w "Monday Through Thursday" - GV 1004. This was probably Steve's most uptempo record up to date, both sides being basically the same track with different but similar lyrics on each side. Thus the flip side is almost a Part 2 of the A side. Again a wonderful production with one of the best brass sections you will hear on a record, and the drum rolls are awesome. A point of note is that the dynamic duo of Popcorn Wylie and Tony Hester are credited on the A side, whilst their names are nowhere to be seen on the B Side! Ah, the wonders of sixites Detriot Soul eh? A further point of interest is that the song was also produced by Don Davis with Johnny Taylor and released on the Stax label. Although this is a great version, it is considerably funkier and I feel it has lost that 'Detroit Sound', in fact I know a few people who would swear it's a different record! 1967 saw the release of two more records on GrooVesville. First up was "Don't Make Me a Story Teller" b/w "I Wont Love You And Leave You" - GV1005. "Story Teller" is a lovely ballad in a simlar vein to "I dont Want To Lose You." It was covered by that legendary Chicago outfit The Dells in the early 70s and that too is a wonderful record. Another Trio of Mancha singles The second release of 1967 was "Just Keep On Loving Me" b/w "Sweet Baby Dont Ever Be Untrue" GV 1007. The A side, although a dancer, is one of Steves recordings that has never really taken off in the clubs (it also failed to chart). There are at least two more versions of "Just Keep on Loving Me" one by King Bee And The Sensations and one featured here by Lee Jennings on Star Track Records. This song really does deserve more turntable action. The Steve Mancha version just shades the others but all three are quality examples of the eras best soul records. 1969 saw Steve's career switch to a different label Groove City. Different label, same people and set up. The first single released by Steve on this label was "A Love Like Yours" b/w "Hate Yourself In The Morning" - GC 204. Written by Steve (under his real name and Don Davis), this song ("Hate Yourself In The Morning"), especially Steves rendition is a powerhouse of mid-tempo Detroit Soul at its very best. The credits on the label alone would be enough to get the soul fans attention. A GrooVesville production, it features Steve on the production credits. Maybe Steve felt it was time to put the lessons learned from his mentor Don Davis to the test. The result is a stunning vocal peformance interloping with a fantastic bass and drum led mid-tempo beat that uses the signature vibes so loved by soul fans everywhere. This is not the only Groove City record by Steve to be a sought after item. In my opinion the best was yet to come. The group known as The Holidays (this time minus Edwin Starr), went into the studio and recorded one of the greatest double siders of all time. The record was "Easy Living" b/w "I Lost You" - Groove City 206. "Easy Living" is one of the best mid-tempo records you will ever hear, the production, by a certain Jack Ashford (who also appears on the writing credits, along with Bobbie C. Croft), is awesome, as you would expect from a member of the legendary Pied Piper Production Team. The song contains a beautiful string arrangement that is reminiscent of Paul Riser's similar work at Motown. Steve's lead vocal is great foil to the skills of all involved. A great record in all departments. Groove City 45's The flipside, "I Lost You," is also a song written and produced by a Detroit icon, Tony Hestor. Although Mr Hestor is probably best known as half the duo of Wylie/Hestor because of their prolific output of sheer quality records. Tony Hestor was a superb songwriter, producer and artist in his own right, as this awesome song showcases. Although credited to The Holidays, this is 100% Mancha, and Mancha at his very best! The deep bass and powerful drum intro just makes your ears prick up as you know from the opening refrains that this is something special. Steves vocal just about drips with passion that only the 'Real Deal' soul-singers can get away with. A mid-tempo dancer it's a masterpiece of mid-sixities Detroit soul music. It is this side that is popular with the Northern Soul dance floors and the record comes under the 'Hard To Find' category with copies changing hands for large sums of money. The next couple of records we take a look at from Steve in this first part of his musical journey never saw a release at the time they were recorded. Long time collector and Detroit soul fan Martin Koppell gained access to the Solid Hitbound/GrooVesville masters and whilst working on the material came across a number of unreleased items that found their way to issue on the UK Goldmine's Connoisseur/Sevens labels. All are of quite extraordinary quality and should have a home in every Detroit collectors boxes. If you support live Blues acts, up and coming Blues talents and want to learn more about Blues news and Fathers of the Blues, ”LIKE” ---Bman’s Blues Report--- Facebook Page! I’m looking for great talent and trying to grow the audience for your favorite band!