Here come the girls! From Ace’s earliest days, there’s always been a place in our hearts for music’s feminine side. Every few months since then has seen a new release to keep girl pop aficionados satisfied – whether single artist sets and twofers or multi-act series and themed compilations. The Where The Girls Are collections zone in on the 1960s girl group sound, paying special attention to the rare and obscure: think castanets, anguished teen sirens, Svengali-esque producers and mini-sonatas about dancing and boyfriends (sometimes deceased). Get the picture? The Early Girls series, on the other hand, is drawn entirely (well, almost) from Billboard magazine’s Hot 100 of the pre-Beatles era.
Nippon Girls: Japanese Pop,Beat & Bossa Nova 1966-1970
Various Artists (Big Beat International)
The brainchild of Cha Cha Charming’s Sheila Burgel (a former Tokyo resident), this compendium of hits and obscurities celebrates the female forebears of J-pop. Ranges from the sublime to the ridiculous … sometimes in the same song, according to one reviewer. Konichiwa!
Where the Girls Are Volume 5
Among the delights on this volume in the long-running series are a host of gems from the environs of the Brill Building, most making their CD debut. Laura Nyro rubs shoulders with some great black girl groups – she would have been proud.
Destroy That Boy!
Genuine axe-toting female combos form the basis of this edgy collection of beat group, garage band and freak beat platters with an international twist. Ann-Margret produced by LeeHazlewood, anyone?
Early Girls Volume 2
Brought to you by the team behind our flagship Golden Age Of American Rock’n’Roll series, the Early Girls compendiums explore feminine pop of the early rock era, encompassing solo artists, groups and male outfits fronted by a girl lead.
Reparata & The Delrons
These exotically monikered New York dolls are one of the most respected acts of the girl group era. With the Wall of Sound epic ‘I’m Nobody’s Baby Now’ they came very close to beating the Shangri-Las and the Ronettes at their own game.
The Clickettes Meet The Fashions
To connoisseurs of doo wop, the Clickettes are one of the most revered girl groups. Spanning 1958 to 1962, this collection comprises the teenage outfit’s complete recordings, including decks cut as the Fashions and previously unissued numbers.
No slowies allowed. By a mile the most successful female artist of the pre-British Invasion era, Connie rocks, bops and boogies on this bumper comp, tackling up-tempo material with the same gusto she applied to her Neapolitan ballads.
Want obscure? Look no further. Only eight tracks here have previously seen the light of day, released on miniscule logos such as BigBen. The rest are previously unissued numbers from the vaults of maverick Hollywood-based producer Gary Paxton.
In the early 60s, the beautiful Jackie was known as the writer of hits for Brenda Lee, the Searchers and others, but she also made great recordings of her own. Here’s the proof in all its nascent folk rock glory.
As 1968 drew to a close the golden age of girl groups had seemingly been and gone. Then along came Condition Red, a cleverly-produced psychodrama enacted a trio of foxy teenagers from the suburbs of Memphis. Includes seven unissued titles.