Tommy Hunt-The Complete Man: 60s NYC Soul Songs.

Label: Kent.

Mention the name Tommy Hunt, and many soul fans will think of the music that the Pittsburgh-born singer recorded for Scepter in the early sixties. That was where Tommy Hunt came to prominence as a solo artist. However, this wasn’t Tommy Hunt’s first encounter with fame.  

He was a member of The Flamingos when they released their biggest hit single I Only Have Eyes for You in 1959. Just a year later, Tommy Hunt left The Flamingos, citing the age-old excuse musical differences. Leaving a successful group could’ve been a disaster for Tommy Hunt, but this wasn’t the case.

Just a few days after leaving The Flamingos, Luther Dixon signed Tommy Hunt to Scepter. Soon, Lady Luck had smiled on Tommy Hunt, when a radio DJ mistakenly spun Human,  the B-Side of Parade Of Broken Hearts, which gave him his biggest hit of 1961.

A year in 1962, Tommy Hunt  released And I Never Knew as a single, which featured the debut of Bacharach and David’s I Just Don’t Know What To Do With Myself on the B-Side. It would later be recorded by everyone from Dusty Springfield to Art Garfunkel. However, in 1962 it was Tommy Hunt who first recorded this future classic for Scepter. 

Many of Tommy Hunt’s Scepter recordings featured on a Kent compilation The Biggest Man which was released in 1997. Twenty-two years later, and Kent, an imprint of Ace Records released The Complete Man: 60s NYC Soul Songs which features twenty-five tracks from Tommy Hunt, including more from the Scepter and Dynamo vaults plus his highly regarded mid-sixties Atlantic and Capitol singles. The Complete Man: 60s NYC Soul Songs is a veritable feast of soulful music.

Among the tracks from the Scepter vaults on The Complete Man: 60s NYC Soul Songs are the  Billboard 100 hit The Door Is Open, the album track You’re So Fine and the rare alternate B-Side How Young Is Young. 

They’re joined by various unissued tracks including Van McCoy’s What’s The Matter Baby which Tommy Hunt originally recorded in 1963 with a different arrangement.  Lonely For You was written by Van McCoy and Luther Dixon who signed and produced Tommy Hunt on Scepter, and just like One Of These Days is a quality beat ballad. Girls Are Sentimental and Who You Gonna Thrill Tonight are both the type of romantic ballads recorded in New York studios circa 1962. Just like the other newly found tracks, they’re all orchestrated.

It’s not just ballads on The Complete Man: 60s NYC Soul Songs, Tommy Hunt works his way through various uptempo soul songs. Among them are Oscar Brown Jr’s The Work Song, Never Love A Robin’ and from the Scepter vaults The Pretty Part Of You which is a 100 Club favourite. 

They’re joined by Tommy Hunt’s four immediate post-Scepter recording. This includes I Don’t Want To Lose You and Hold On which were recorded in Chicago and released on Atlantic in 1965. Then I’ll Make You Happy and The Clown were issued on Capitol in 1966. It’s the first time these four cuts have been released and the sound quality is of the highest standard, as one expects from a Kent release. Many of the other tracks on The Complete Man: 60s NYC Soul Songs have never been released on CD before, so this is the first time Tommy Hunt fans will be able to enjoy this latest veritable feast of soulful delights from the Pittsburgh-born soul man.

Tommy Hunt-The Complete Man: 60s NYC Soul Songs.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: