CD submissions accepted! Guest writers always welcome!!

I started a quest to find terrific blues music and incredible musicianship when I was just a little kid. I also have a tremendous appreciation of fine musical instruments and equipment. One of my greatest joys all of my life was sharing my finds with my friends. I'm now publishing my journey. I hope that you come along!


Please email me at Info@Bmansbluesreport.com
Showing posts with label Rufus Thomas. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Rufus Thomas. Show all posts

Friday, February 13, 2015

Real Gone Music: Apollo Saturday Night/Saturday Night At The Uptown - New Release Review

I just received the newest release, Apollo Saturday Night/Saturday Night At The Uptown, from Real Gone Records and it's a real R&B party. Originally released on Atlantic in 1964, these two original LP's are combined onto a single Cd. Opening Apollo Saturday Night with I Found A Love and Alabama Bound by the Falcons, this is scorching hot and real. Otis Redding takes the stage with Pain In My Heart and These Arms Of Mine and in classic style. His voice is unmistakable and his dynamics with the horns impeccable. Doris Troy swings with Misty and gets a hot groove on Say Yeah. Great sax (King Curtis) backing really pushes this track. Rufus Thomas is down with Rockin' Chair and Walking The Dog gets that funky groove going with trumpets, trombones and sax with a Watusi kick. The Coasters deliver T'Ain't Nothin' To Me with their typically classic humor and Speedo's Back In Town with that hot R&B feel. Ben E King's set includes Groovin', Don't Play That Song, and Stand By Me... a hard set to follow! Finale featuring various artists hits hard. Spectacular set!

 Starting the second LP, Saturday Night At The Uptown and an introduction by Jimmy Bishop. The Drifters open with Under The Boardwalk, On Broadway and There Goes My Baby. These guys have the crowd firmly in their hands. The recording quality isn't perfect but the performance is top notch. Patty & the Emblems does Mixed Up, Shook Up, Girl and the recording is very clear and well balanced with classic 60's style. The Vibrations perform My Girl Sloopy and The Watusi, both with a much more pop feel and a lot of spunk. Next up is Wilson Pickett with strong soul ballad, If You Need Me and the hip shaking I'm Gonna Cry. Patti LaBelle & Her Bluebelles lays down an angelic soul ballad, Down The Aisle.... very powerful! The Carltons offer up Can't You Hear The Beat with an Isley's enthusiasm and bright horns. Wrapping the release is Barbara Lynn with (O Baby) We Got A Good Thing Going, a cool R&B track with a great feel. Lynn sings with all of the confidence of a closer and this makes for a great track to sum up a super release.

  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 favorites band! ”LIKE”

 

Monday, March 26, 2012

Walking the Dog - RUFUS THOMAS


Rufus Thomas, Jr. (March 27, 1917 – December 15, 2001) was an American rhythm and blues, funk and soul singer and comedian from Memphis, Tennessee, who recorded on Sun Records in the 1950s and on Stax Records in the 1960s and 1970s. He was the father of soul singer Carla Thomas and keyboard player Marvell Thomas. A third child, Vaneese, a former French teacher, has a recording studio in upstate New York and sings for television commercials.
Born a sharecropper's son in the rural community of Cayce, Mississippi, Thomas moved to Memphis with his family at age 2. His mother was “a church woman.” Thomas made his artistic debut at the age of 6 playing a frog in a school theatrical production. Much later in life, he would impersonate all kinds of animals: screeching cats, funky chickens and penguins, and mournful dogs. By age 10, he was a tap dancer, performing in amateur productions at Memphis' Booker T. Washington High School.
He made his professional singing debut at the Elks Club on Beale Street in Memphis, filling in for another singer at the last minute. He made his first 78 rpm record in 1943 for the Star Talent label in Texas, "I'll Be a Good Boy", backed with "I'm So Worried."

He also became a long-standing on-air personality with WDIA, one of the first radio stations in the US to feature an all-black staff and programming geared toward blacks. His celebrity was such that in 1953 he recorded an "answer record" to Big Mama Thornton's hit, "Hound Dog" called "Bear Cat" released on Sun Records. Although the song was the label's first hit, a copyright-infringement suit ensued and nearly bankrupted Sam Phillips' record label. Later, Rufus was one of the African American artists released by Sam Phillips as he oriented his label more toward white audiences and signed the likes of Elvis Presley.

The prime of Rufus' recording career came in the 1960s and early 1970s, when he was on the roster of Memphis label, Stax, having one of the first hit sides at the historic soul and blues label, "Walking the Dog", (#5 R&B, #10 Pop) in 1963. Rufus is thus the first, and still the only, father to debut in the Hot 100's top 10 after his daughter debuted there. Rufus' daughter Carla also reached #10, with "Gee Whiz (Look At His Eyes)" on 27 March 1961.

At Stax, Rufus recorded songs when he had something to record. He was often backed by Booker T. and the MG's or the Bar-Kays.
He died of heart failure in 2001, at the age of 84, at St. Francis Hospital in Memphis. A street is named in his honor, just off Beale Street in Memphis. He is buried next to his wife at the New Park Cemetery in Memphis.

Like my Facebook Page, Post your video on my wall or post great blues photos or events! Share your favorite postings and get more exposure for your favorite band! - ”LIKE”

Friday, September 9, 2011

Do The Funky Chicken - Rufus Thomas - Stax Remaster release review


I have just listened to the new remastered release of Rufus Thomas "Do the Funky Chicken" release. The recording just got to put a smile on your face. Originally released back in 1970 these recordings are quite entertaining. Put it on and take it for a spin!
Get Facebook support for your favorite band or venue - click HERE



The Stax reissues will be released on September 13


Friday, September 2, 2011

CONCORD MUSIC GROUP’S STAX REMASTERS SERIES CONTINUES ON SEPTEMBER 13 WITH REISSUES FROM RUFUS THOMAS, THE DRAMATICS, AND SHIRLEY BROWN





CONCORD MUSIC GROUP’S STAX REMASTERS SERIES
CONTINUES ON SEPTEMBER 13
WITH REISSUES FROM

RUFUS THOMAS, THE DRAMATICS, AND SHIRLEY BROWN



Rufus Thomas’s Do the Funky Chicken, Shirley Brown’s Woman to Woman, and the Dramatics’ Whatcha See Is Whatcha Get

are fortified with bonus tracks
LOS ANGELES, Calif. — In 1968, on the heels of the label’s severance from Atlantic Records, Stax Records president Al Bell decided to initiate a massive 28-LP release program that would auger the label’s return to the top. The initiative fostered a new generation of Stax hitmakers including the Dramatics and Shirley Brown. And, it proved an artistically and commercially fertile time for Stax veteran Rufus Thomas.



On September 13, 2011, Concord Music Group, as part of its Stax Remasters series , will reissue Rufus Thomas’s Do the Funky Chicken, the Dramatics’ Whatcha See Is Whatcha Get and Shirley Brown’s Woman to Woman — each featuring a chart-topping title track. All three reissues feature 24-bit remastering, rare bonus tracks, and new liner notes to frame the recordings in historical context.



Rufus Thomas: Do the Funky Chicken:

Although Rufus and his daughter Carla Thomas had given Satellite Records (precursor to Stax) its first hit in 1960, followed in turn by Rufus’s solo hit “Walkin’ the Dog,” his star had faded by the late ’60s. The self-proclaimed “world’s oldest teenager” (age 51 in 1968) found inspiration in 1968 when he recorded Eddie Floyd’s “Funky Mississippi,” backed by Booker T. & the MGs and the Memphis Horns, for an album that never saw the light of day titled May I Have Your Ticket Please? A year later, Thomas entered the studio again — this time with his son Marvell Thomas on keyboards and members of the Bar-Kays — to record “Do the Funky Chicken.” The song was a smash, reaching #5 R&B and #28 Pop. Rufus was back on top, and the album Do the Funky Chicken was hailed as a career highlight. The follow-up, a two-sided hit of the menacing voodoo funk of “Sixty Minute Man” backed with the gospel-inflected “The Preacher and the Bear,” made it to #42 R&B. The reissue is rounded out by “Funky Mississippi,” “Funky Way” and “Itch and Scratch,” the last recorded not at Stax but rather at Jackson, Mississippi’s Malaco Studios. Stax historian Rob Bowman contributed liner notes.



The Dramatics: Whatcha See Is Whatcha Get:

In diversifying the A&R focus of Stax, Al Bell brought in Detroit producer Don Davis to work with core artists Carla Thomas and Johnnie Taylor. He brought with him a Motor City vocal group called the Dramatics. Davis turned to fellow Detroit producer and songwriter Tony Hestor to work with the group. Hestor wrote a great song with “Whatcha See Is Whatcha Get” and crafted an extraordinary arrangement as well. Annotator Bowman writes, “The slight Latin feel fit the first wave of disco like a glove while the use of claves and congas combined with a fuzzed lead guitar line and seraphonous strings and horns.” The chemistry of artist, song, and arrangement drove the record all the way to #3 R&B and #9 Pop in the summer of 1971 on the Volt label. The follow-up was “In the Rain,” of which then-lead vocalist Ron Banks recalls, “We looked at each other and said, ‘Whoa, that’s a smash.’ And for once we were right.” The song went to #5 Pop. The Whatcha See Is Whatcha Get reissue contains no fewer than nine bonus tracks including charting hits “Fell for You” and “Hey You! Get Off My Mountain,” both recorded in Detroit instead of Memphis. The closer “Hum a Song (From Your Heart)” was produced at Atlantic South Criterion Studios by the legendary production triumvirate of Jerry Wexler, Tom Dowd, and Arif Mardin.



Shirley Brown: Woman to Woman:

“Phenomenon means having your first single, ‘Woman to Woman,’ sell a million in its first eight weeks,” wrote Stax employee Deanie Parker in her liner notes for Shirley Brown’s Woman to Woman album, released in 1974 on Stax’s Truth imprint. The East St. Louis native came to Stax by way of Albert King, who’d discovered her when she was all of 14. When matched with the powerful James Banks, Eddie Marion, and Henderson Thigpen composition “Woman to Woman,” Brown hit a nerve with female listeners. In a spoken intro, Brown said: “Hello, may I speak to Barbara? Barbara, this is Shirley. You might not know who I am, but the reason I am calling you is because I was going through my old man’s pockets this morning. And I just happened to find your name and number.” After presenting her case, Brown sang earnestly about not letting anyone else “break up my happy home” because “I love that man and he’s mine.” The song notched #1 R&B and #22 Pop. A follow-up, “It Ain’t No Fun” by Fredrick Knight, charted #94 Pop. Songs by Knight, Sir Mack Rice, and the late Jerry Ragovoy round out the original album release. The reissue contains five bonus tracks by writers Carolyn Franklin, Otis Redding, Aretha Franklin, and Stevie Wonder. After Stax’s closure, Brown signed to Arista and with Stax’s co-founder Jim Stewart and Bettye Crutcher producing, reaching #15 with “Blessed is the Woman (With a Man Like Mine)” and has more recently recorded for Malaco.



About Stax Records:

Stax Records is synonymous with Southern soul music. Originally known as Satellite, the Memphis company was founded in 1959 by Jim Stewart and his sister, Estelle Axton, and took its new name in 1961 from the first two letters of their last names. Among the many artists who scored hits on Stax and its Volt subsidiary during the ’60s were Rufus and Carla Thomas, Booker T. & the MGs, Sam and Dave, Johnnie Taylor, Albert King, and Otis Redding. Redding's death in 1967 signaled the end of the first Stax era (to which Atlantic retains distribution rights). Subsequently the company spawned a new crop of hitmakers, among them Isaac Hayes, the Staple Singers, the Dramatics, and Shirley Brown. In June 1977, a year-and-a-half after Stax went bankrupt, the company’s masters were purchased by Fantasy, Inc. Concord Music Group purchased and reactivated Stax in 2004 to release both new soul recordings and catalog reissues