Chuck Jackson and Maxine Brown are two of the most cherished artists in 60s soul music, synonymous with quality and distinction throughout all phases of their lengthy careers. Their recordings for Scepter's Wand subsidiary are the ones that collectors of real soul treasure most. (Here's something to think about Chuck and Maxine's biggest Wand sides have now been available on Kent for longer than they were available on Wand!)
During 2005, Kent will be reissuing the four remaining original Chuck Jackson Wand albums that have yet to make it to CD. This month it's at last possible for us to bring you Mr J and Ms B's two mid-60s duet albums on CD, together with a few solo Chuck sides that we've never before reissued in this format. Having been present at the digital transference of the tapes last September, I'm happy to confirm that all of the titles have been taken from the original Wand album production masters, and that the music has never sounded better than it does here!
Duets are a common and widely accepted feature of today's R&B, but back in the mid 60s the pairing of any two established soloists was always something of an event. When Wand paired its flagship soloists in 1965 in the wake of Marvin Gaye's ongoing success at Motown, with first Mary Wells and subsequently Kim Weston and Tammi Terrell, that's exactly what it was. The single release of their version of Chris Kenner's Something You Got gave both artists their biggest hit in some time, and the Saying Something" album that followed in its wake more than lived up to the promise of the 45. (Here's something else to think about most of the album's tracks were written and arranged by the team of Nickolas Ashford, Valerie Simpson and Jo Armstead at least two of whom were soon to go on to pen classic after classic for Motown, including most of the major hit duets of Marvin and Tammi.)
by TONY ROUNCE