Authentic, occasionally obscure, but always groovy, West Coast soul. Southern blues abounds, while gospel and Motown’s influence are also present.
Here are 25 more tracks from the deep reserves of Kent/Modern 60s and early 70s soul. The selection is a thorough cross-section of the company’s favoured stylings – blues, funk, straight soul, jazz-tinged ballads and deep wailers along with a handful of appropriate soul dancers for those with a pulse.
Prolific performers such as Z.Z. Hill, Johnny Copeland and Clay Hammond are alongside one-off 45 artists like Jeanette Jones, Earl Foster and Chuck Walker. Walker’s little-known deep soul ballads open and close the compilation and there are stunning slow soul performances from Jimmy Bee and Venetta Fields. Blues meets soul with Larry Davis, Al King, Lowell Fulson and Millie Foster, whose version of ‘Rock Me Baby’ is sensual and previously unissued.
Moody, early soul dance tracks come from Bobby John and the Other Brothers, while uptempo offerings are sung by Z.Z. Hill, Vernon Garrett and Stacy Johnson. The newly discovered ‘Honey’ by Felice Taylor was penned by Steve Cook and Charles Tate of ‘Too Darn Soulful’ fame and gospel choir BPS Revolution contribute a terrific, largely unknown, mid-tempo LP track. Funkateers will undoubtedly dig the Rudy Love, Charles Taylor and Four Tees sides.
The compilation features the type of music that LA’s black record buyers wanted in the soul era. The Biharis undoubtedly knew their market.