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Showing posts with label Doo-Wop. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Doo-Wop. Show all posts

Friday, March 13, 2009

Sun Ra Discography

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This post is definitely going to be one of my favorite post I have done on Blax-Jive. Sun Ra is simply genius. His life is beyond music and deeper than what you may hear. I'm proud to make this post and I hope everyone take advantages of the selected biographies I will have listed. I am only going to post a summary of Sun Ra, but its much deeper than what I am posting.

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Sun Ra (May 22, 1914 to May 30, 1993) was an innovative and individual jazz composer, bandleader and piano and synthesizer player, who came to be known as much for preaching his bizarre cosmic philosophy as for his phenomenal musical compositions and performances.

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Born Herman "Sonny" Blount in Birmingham, Alabama, he abandoned his birth name and took on the name of Sun Ra (Ra being the name of the ancient Egyptian god of the Sun) and headed a band with an ever-changing ensemble known as the "Arkestra" (or sometimes "Solar Arkestra").

The musical development of Sun Ra can be (loosely) categorized into three periods:

The first period of the 1950s was when his music evolved from big-band Swing into the outer space-themed "cosmic jazz" he was best known for. Early inhis career, Ra worked as an arranger for Fletcher Henderson. Music critics and jazz historians say some of his best work was recorded during this period. Notable Sun Ra albums from the 1950s include Sun Ra Visits Planet Earth, Interstellar Low Ways, Angels And Demons At Play, We Travel The Spaceways, and Jazz In Silhouette (among many others).
It was during the 1950s that Sun Ra began wearing the outlandish, Egyptian-styled costumes and headdresses he would be known for. Claiming that he was not from the Planet Earth but rather from Saturn, Ra developed a complicated persona of "cosmic" philosophies and lyrical poetry that preached "awareness" and peace above all. He eschewed racism (having been a victim of it many times, in regards to the touring and booking schedule of the Arkestra), though he rarely came out and directly spoke about any controversial subjects. He preferred to make music, which he did, as the cast of musicians touring and working with him changed on an almost daily basis.
(The most notable graduate of the Sun Ra Arkestra was John Gilmore, a saxophonist whose work influenced that of John Coltrane).
During the 1960s, his music underwent a chaotic, free jazz experimental period. It was during this period that his popularity reached its peak, as the "beat generation" and the psychedelic era embraced him. In this era, Ra was among the first of any musicians to make extensive use of synthesizers and other various electronic instruments. Newcomers to Ra's music may have difficulty with his albums of this era. Notable titles from this period include The Magic City, When Sun Comes Out, The Heliocentric Worlds of Sun Ra, Volume One and Other Planes Of There.
During their third period, beginning in the 1970s and onward, Sun Ra and the Arkestra settled down into a more conventional method (though still highly eclectic and energetic), and Ra took a liking to the films of Walt Disney. He incorporated smatterings of Disney's musical numbers into many of his performances from then on; and in the late 1980s the Arkestra even performed a concert at Walt Disney World. The Arkestra's version of "Pink Elephants on Parade" is available on Stay Awake, a compilation of Disney tunes by many artists.
A number of Sun Ra's 1970s concerts are available on CD, but none have received a wide release in comparison to his earlier music. The album Atlantis can be considered the landmark that led into his 1970s era.

During his career Sun Ra recorded over one hundred albums, but many of them were printed on microlabels, and his music was largely unknown outside of the live jazz touring circuit. In the 1990s, after he had left this plane of existence, many of his recordings were released on compact disc for the first time under the Ihnfinity Music label.

The Arkestra continues to tour and perform as of November 2003, now led by alto saxophonist Marshall Allen.

Sun Ra and his Arkestra were the subject of a documentary film made in 1972 and a feature film entitled Space Is The Place in 1974. The soundtrack, also by Sun Ra, is available on CD.

Some recommended albums (by no means all-inclusive): Atlantis, Supersonic Jazz, Cosmic Tones for Mental Therapy, We Travel the Spaceways, Singles, Languidity, The Magic City.








Brother From Another Planet [Documentary On Sun Ra]






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Albums

Read the companion guide to this thread by Jon-A at The Astro-Infinity Equation

Posthumous Releases

Two In One Albums

Live Bootlegs

Singles

Compilations

Mixtapes


Covers and Interpretations

Miscellaneous
Arkestra recordings without Sun Ra (post 1993)

Audio Interviews

Video


"Brother From Another Planet : The Sun Ra Story"

(2005, BBC documentary, 1.9.GB)

- text search "BBC" on the page.

"Space Is The Place"
(1972, released in 1974, 81 mins).


"Sun Ra - A Joyful Noise"
Documentary film by Robert Mugge (1980)

from Transparency DVD 0171
"Sun Ra Volume Two: Sun Ra Arkestra East and West Berlin"



Resources & Selected Biographies

Some notable sources & links :

Post set up self-science and maintained by Simon. Big thanks to : Mr. Moo; stu; guijira; arkadin; free défendu; ish; drhotte, sawanotsuru, Disco_3000, reza, Jon-A, free bones, pathways to unknown worlds, filbert and trane rider at CIA. Also thanks to everyone who has contributed and offered advice; and all of the blogs linked to here.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Smokey Robinson & The Miracles Discography



Smokey Robinson (b. William Robinson, 19th February 1940, Detroit, Michigan, U.S.A.)

Emerson Rogers (Emerson Rogers left, and was replaced by his sister Claudette, who married Smokey Robinson in 1959.)

Bobby Rogers (b. 19th February 1940, Detroit, Michigan, U.S.A.)

Ronnie White (b. 5th April 1939, Detroit, Michigan, U.S.A., d. 26th August 1995)

and Warren 'Pete' Moore (b. 19th November 1939, Detroit, Michigan, U.S.A.).


Read More @ Blax-Pride

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Albums

Compilations


Smokey Robinson [Solo]

Bootleg
s

Solo Compilations



Links compiled by Fresh Sly
Many links provided by Mr. Moo, Pirate Island & Fullundie

Sunday, December 14, 2008

The Dells Discography


A soul vocal and close harmony group formed in 1953 as the El-Rays, who comprised:

Johnny Funches (b.18th July 1935, Harvey, Illinois, U.S.A., d. 23rd January 1998, lead)

Marvin Junior (b. 31st January 1936, Harrell, Arkansas, U.S.A., tenor)

Verne Allison (b. 22nd June 1936, Chicago, Illinois, U.S.A., tenor)

Lucius McGill (b. 1935, Chicago, Illinois, U.S.A., tenor)

Mickey McGill (b. 17th February 1937, Chicago, Illinois, U.S.A., baritone)

Chuck Barksdale (b. 11th January 1935, Chicago, Illinois, U.S.A., bass)


Read More @ Blax-Pride

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Albums

  • Oh What A Nite (1959)
  • It's Not Unusual (1965)
  • There Is (Cadet 1968)
  • Love Is Blue (Cadet 1969)
  • The Dell Musical Menu / Always Together (Cadet 1969)
  • Like It Is, Like It Was (Cadet 1970)
  • Freedom Means (Cadet 1971)
  • Dells Sing Dionne Warwick's Greatest Hits (Cadet 1972)
  • Sweet As Funk Can Be (Cadet 1972)
  • The Dells (Cadet 1973)
  • Give Your Baby A Standing Ovation (Cadet 1973)
  • with the Dramatics: The Dells Vs The Dramatics (Cadet 1974)
  • The Mighty Mighty Dells (Cadet 1974)
  • We Got To Get Our Thing Together (Cadet 1975)
  • No Way Back (Mercury 1975)
  • They Said It Couldn't Be Done, But We Did It (Mercury 1977)
  • Love Connection (Mercury 1977)
  • New Beginnings (ABC 1978)
  • Face To Face (ABC 1979)
  • I Touched A Dream (20th Century 1980)
  • Whatever Turns You On (20th Century 1981)
  • One Step Closer (1984)
  • The Second Time (Veteran 1988)
  • Music From The Motion Picture: The Five Heartbeats (Virgin 1991)
  • I Salute You (Philadelphia International 1992)
  • Reminiscing (Volt 2000)
  • Open Up My Heart / The 9/11 Album (Devine 2002)
  • Open Up My Heart / The 9/11 Suite (Devine 2002)
  • Hott (A & E Records 2004)
  • Then and Now (2008)


Singles & 45's
  • Stay In My Corner [7 inch] (single) (1968)
  • The Dells Early Recordings


Compilations
  • Stay In My Corner (Cadet 1968)
  • Oh, What A Night (Cadet 1970)
  • The Dells On Their Corner (1992)
  • Dreams of Contentment (Vee-Jay 1993)
  • Dells, Vol. 2 (Vee-Jay 1994)
  • Passionate Breezes (1995)
  • Ultimate Collection (2004)


Other
  • Comme Un Aimant OST (performed "You Promised Me")

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

The Impressions Discography

Formed in Chicago in 1957 and originally known as the Roosters, this group comprised:

Jerry Butler (b. 8th December 1939, Sunflower, Mississippi, U.S.A.)

Curtis Mayfield (b. 3rd June 1942, Chicago, Illinois, U.S.A.)

Sam Gooden (b. 2nd September 1939, Chattanooga, Tennessee, U.S.A.),

and brothers Richard Brooks and Arthur Brooks (both born in Chattanooga, Tennessee, U.S.A.).

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The Impressions are an American music group from Chicago that formed in 1958. Their repertoire includes doo-wop, gospel, soul, and R&B.

The group was founded as The Roosters by Chattanooga, Tennessee natives Sam Gooden, Richard Brooks, and Arthur Brooks, who moved to Chicago and added Jerry Butler and Curtis Mayfield to their line-up to become Jerry Butler & the Impressions. By 1962, Butler and the Brookses had departed, and after switching to ABC-Paramount Records, Mayfield, Gooden, and new Impression Fred Cash collectively became a top-selling soul act. Mayfield left the group for a solo career in 1970; Leroy Hutson, Ralph Johnson, Reggie Torian, and Nate Evans were among the replacements who joined Gooden and Cash. Inductees into both the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and the Vocal Group Hall of Fame, The Impressions are best known for their 1960s string of hits, many of which were heavily influenced by gospel music and served as inspirational anthems for the Civil Rights Movement.

Jerry Butler and Curtis Mayfield met while singing in the same Chicago church choir. After singing in a number of local gospel groups, the two of them joined a doo-wop group called "The Roosters" in 1957, whose members included Chattanooga, Tennessee natives Sam Gooden, Richard Brooks, and his brother Arthur. By 1958, The Roosters had a new manager in Eddie Thomas, a record deal with Vee-Jay Records, and a new name: "Jerry Butler & the Impressions".

The group's first hit single was 1958's "For Your Precious Love", which hit #11 on the US pop charts and #3 on the R&B charts. However, soon after the release of the R&B Top 30 hit "Come Back My Love", Butler left the group to go on to a successful solo career. After briefly touring with the now-solo Butler as his guitarist, Curtis Mayfield became the group's new lead singer and songwriter, and Fred Cash, a returning original Roosters member, was appointed as the new fifth member.

Mayfield wrote a number of Butler's early solo hits, and used the money to get The Impressions to move to Chicago, Illinois. There, they got a new deal with ABC-Paramount Records in 1961, and released their first post-Butler single. That single, "Gypsy Woman", was their biggest single to date, hitting #2 on the R&B charts and #20 on the pop chart. Successive singles failed to match "Gypsy Woman"'s success, and Richard and Arthur Brooks ended up leaving the group in 1962.

The Impressions returned to Chicago as a trio, and soon aligned themselves with producer Johnny Pate, who helped to update their sound and create a more lush soul sound for the group. The result was "It's All Right", a 1963 gold single that topped the R&B charts and made it to #4 on the pop charts, and became one of the group's signature songs. "It's All Right" and "Gypsy Woman" were the anchors of The Impressions' first LP, 1963's The Impressions.

1964 brought the first of Mayfield's Black pride anthem compositions, "Keep on Pushing", which became a Top 10 smash on both the Billboard Pop and R&B charts.It was the title cut from the album of the same name ,Keep On Pushing, which also reached the Top 10 on both charts. Future Mayfield compositions would feature more and more of a social and political awareness, including the following year's major hit and the group's best-known song, the gospel-influenced "People Get Ready", which hit #3 on the R&B charts and #14 on the pop charts.

n the mid-1960s, The Impressions, were compared with Motown acts such as The Temptations,The Miracles, and The Four Tops. After 1965's "Woman's Got Soul", and the #7 pop hit "Amen", The Impressions reach the R&B Top Ten for three more years, finally scoring in 1968 with the #9 "I Loved and Lost". "We're a Winner", which hit #1 on the R&B charts that same year, represented a new level of social awareness in Mayfield's music. Mayfield created his own label, Curtom, and moved The Impressions to the label. Over the next two years, more Impressions message tracks, including the #1 R&B hit "Choice of Colors" (1969) and the #3 "Check Out Your Mind" (1970), became big hits for the group.

After the release of the Check Out Your Mind LP in 1970, Mayfield left the group and began a successful solo career, the highlight of which was writing and producing the Super Fly soundtrack. He continued to write and produce for The Impressions, who remained on Curtom. Leroy Hutson was the first new lead singer for the group following Mayfield's departure, but success eluded The Impressions, and Hutson left the group in 1973. New members Ralph Johnson and Reggie Torian replaced Hutson, and The Impressions had three R&B Top 5 singles in 1974–1975: the #1 "Finally Got Myself Together (I'm a Changed Man)" (which also reached the Pop top 20 ) , and the #3 singles "Same Thing it Took" and "Sooner or Later". In 1976, The Impressions left Curtom and Mayfield behind for Cotillion Records, and had their final major hit with "Loving Power". The same year, Ralph Johnson was replaced with Nate Evans, who remained in the group for three years, during which time The Impressions switched to 20th Century Records. Singles and albums sales continued to slip, and Evans left in 1979, reducing the group to a trio. Their final album, Fan the Flames, was released in 1981, and Reggie Torian, Fred Cash, and Sam Gooden (who remained in the group throughout its entire existence) disbanded two years later. Ralph Johnson rejoined the group in 1983 and was with them until 2000 at that time the group consisted of Fred Cash,Sam Gooden,Vandy Hampton,and Ralph Johnson and these four guys recorded with Eric Clapton on his "Reptile" album.There is also a new album that was recently released called a tribute to the memory of Curtis Mayfield that these four guys are singing all the songs. Since the early-1980s, The Impressions periodically rebanded in various formats, usually recreating the classic line-up of Mayfield, Gooden, and Cash, and sometimes including Jerry Butler in the line-up. On August 14, 1990, Mayfield was severely injured when lighting equipment fell on him during an on-stage performance. Paralyzed from the neck down, he could no longer play and could barely sing. He eventually was able to make a brief, well-received, comeback in 1997 with his New World Order album, and he died in Roswell, Georgia, on December 26, 1999 at the age of 57.

The Impressions were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1991, and into the Vocal Group Hall of Fame in 2003. The members who got to take part in this honor, as Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductees, were Sam Gooden, Jerry Butler, Richard Brooks , Curtis Mayfield. Arthur Brooks, and Fred Cash.

The group performs today, with Fred Cash, Sam Gooden, and Reggie Torian. In 2008,Universal Music & Hip O Records released "Movin' On Up"- the first- ever video compilation of The Impressions , featuring brand new interviews with original Impressions members Sam Gooden and Fred Cash,along with taped interviews with the late Curtis Mayfield,and video performances of the group's greatest hits and several of Mayfield's solo hits.






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