Tag Archives: M.F.S.B.

PAAAARTY TIME-SERIOUS FUNK FROM THE 70S.

PAAAARTY TIME-SERIOUS FUNK FROM THE 70S. After its birth in the mid to late sixties, funk’s popularity quickly grew. With its fusion of soul, R&B and jazz, funk’s heyday was the seventies. While the peak of funk’s popularity was during the seventies, it was during the seventies that some of the greatest funk music was …

Continue reading

BACKBEATS: PHILLY GEMS-MORE PHILLY DISCO FLOOR-FILLERS.

BACKBEATS: PHILLY GEMS-MORE PHILLY DISCO FLOOR-FILLERS One of the music industry’s big success stories of recent years has been Harmless Records’ Backbeats compilation series. In the last three years, the Backbeats’ compilation series has grown to become the world’s most popular compilation series. That is a remarkable achievement. We shouldn’t be surprised though. After all, …

Continue reading

THE SPINNERS-SPINNERS.

THE SPINNERS-SPINNERS. Nineteen years after The Spinners were formed in Detroit in 1954, commercial success and critical acclaim came their way. It had been a long time coming and many groups would’ve walked away from music. Luckily,  The Spinners were made of stronger stuff. Their determination and perseverance was eventually rewarded in 1973, when they released …

Continue reading

SALSOUL PRESENTS-PHILLY SOUL FLAVAS.

SALSOUL PRESENTS-PHILLY SOUL FLAVAS. There aren’t many musicians who played their part in making two separate record labels the most critically acclaimed, commercially successful, innovative and influential labels in the history of music. However, back in the late sixties in Philadelphia, a group of supremely talented musicians began working together. This included the Baker, Harris, …

Continue reading

GOLDEN GATE GROOVE: THE SOUND OF PHILADELPHIA IN SAN FRANCISCO-1973.

GOLDEN GATE GROOVE: THE SOUND OF PHILADELPHIA IN SAN FRANCISCO-1973. There was only one occasion that Philadelphia International Records’ biggest names shared a stage. That was in September 1973, when Gamble and Huff took Harold Melvin and The Blue Notes, The O’Jays, The Three Degrees, Billy Paul and M.F.S.B. to the CBS annual convention in …

Continue reading

VINCE MONTANA JR-FAREWELL TO A TRUE MUSICAL INNOVATOR.

VINCE MONTANA JR-FAREWELL TO A TRUE MUSICAL INNOVATOR. Vince Montana Jr. who passed away on 13th April 2013, aged eighty-five, was one of the most innovative, influential and pioneering musicians in the history of popular music. However, referring to Vince as a musician is an understatement. He was also a songwriter, conductor, arranger and producer. …

Continue reading

THE MANHATTANS-THERE’S NO ME WITHOUT YOU.

THE MANHATTANS-THERE’S NO ME WITHOUT YOU. Like so many other groups, success took time to come The Manhattans’ way.  Indeed, The Manhattans released seven albums before making a commercial breakthrough with 1976s The Manhattans. It was certified gold, and 1977s It Feels So Good and 1980s After Midnight repeated the feat. However, before their 1976 …

Continue reading

PHILADELPHIA INTERNATIONAL CLASSICS-THE TOM MOULTON REMIXES-SPECIAL VINYL EDITION.

PHILADELPHIA INTERNATIONAL CLASSICS-THE TOM MOULTON REMIXES-SPECIAL VINYL EDITION. Just a year after the release of Philadelphia Classics-The Tom Moulton Remixes, now lovers of vinyl will be able to purchase a copy of what was one of the most anticipated box sets of 2012. While the four CD box set of Philadelphia Classics-The Tom Moulton Remixes …

Continue reading

THE INTRUDERS-ENERGY OF LOVE.

THE INTRUDERS-ENERGY OF LOVE. Throughout The Intruders’ career, Gamble and Huff had played an important role in guiding their career. Similarly, The Intruders had proved important in the rise and rise of Gamble and Huff. Indeed, the success Gamble and Huff enjoyed with The Intruders had proved crucial in CBS backing their new label Philadelphia …

Continue reading

NANCY WILSON-CAN’T TAKE MY EYES OFF YOU AND NOW I’M A WOMAN.

NANCY WILSON-CAN’T TAKE MY EYES OFF YOU AND NOW I’M A WOMAN. The two albums Nancy Wilson albums that feature on Soul Music Records’ latest release Can’t Take My Eyes Off You and Now I’m A Woman, feature two different approaches to production. 1970s Can’t Take My Eyes Off You, which was Nancy’s twenty-eight album …

Continue reading

WILSON PICKETT IN PHILADELPHIA.

WILSON PICKETT IN PHILADELPHIA. By 1970, when Wilson Pickett released Wilson Pickett In Philadelphia, his recording career was eight years old. He’d released his debut single If You Need Me in 1962, and since then, had enjoyed four number one US R&B singles. The first of these was his 1965 classic In The Midnight Hour, …

Continue reading

BARBARA MASON-TRANSITION.

BARBARA MASON-TRANSITION. When Barbara Mason signed to Buddah Records in 1973, she was already an experienced artist. Indeed, Philly born Barbara, released her debut single Trouble Child in 1964, on Crusader Records. Then in 1965, aged just eighteen, Barbara enjoyed the biggest single of her career, the classic, Yes, I’m Ready, which reached number five …

Continue reading

B.B. KING-TO KNOW YOU IS TO LOVE YOU.

B.B. KING-TO KNOW YOU IS TO LOVE YOU. In 1973, B.B. King decided to head to Philadelphia, to work with some of the city’s greatest musicians on his album To Know You Is To Love You. Many of these musicians were members of M.F.S.B, Philadelphia International Records’ legendary house-band. Among the members of M.F.S.B. which …

Continue reading

THE O’JAYS SHIP AHOY.

THE O’JAYS SHIP AHOY. In August 1972, when The O’Jays’ released Back Stabbers, little did they realize how important an album it would become. Back Stabbers was certified gold, and fourteen years after The O’Jays were formed, were on their way to becoming one of the most critically acclaimed and commercially successful groups in the …

Continue reading

LAURA NYRO-GONNA TAKE A MIRACLE.

LAURA NYRO-GONNA TAKE A MIRACLE. Recently, I’ve been reviewing albums which although not strictly Philly Soul, feature many of the musicians, songwriters, arrangers and producers who were architects of the Philly Sound. This include Ecstasy, Passion and Pain’s Ecstasy, Passion and Pain, Joe Simon’s Drowning In A Sea of Love, Dusty Springfield’s A Brand New …

Continue reading

ECSTASY, PASSION AND PAIN-ECSTASY, PASSION AND PAIN.

ECSTASY, PASSION AND PAIN-ECSTASY, PASSION AND PAIN. The maxim that Good Things Don’t Last Forever proved to be true for Ecstasy, Passion and Pain. They released just one album, Ecstasy, Passion and Pain in 1974. Featuring just ten songs, Ecstasy, Passion and Pain was a tantalizing taste of what might have become for Barbara Roy’s …

Continue reading

THE STYLISTICS-ROCKIN’ ROLL BABY.

THE STYLISTICS-ROCKIN’ ROLL BABY. Often, when a group decide to change producer, this can mark a change in their fortunes. This is even more risky when the producer has co-written some of your biggest hits. Forty years ago, The Stylistics were about to release their third album Rockin’ Roll Baby. Their two previous albums, 1971s …

Continue reading

THE RITCHIE FAMILY-LIFE IS MUSIC.

THE RITCHIE FAMILY-LIFE IS MUSIC. Mention the words concept album, and it conjurs up a certain image. Music journalists of a certain vintage, sixth formers in the seventies and of course, bloated prog rock bands. Indeed, every home should have one of these albums. After all, it’s a great way to deal with unwanted guests. …

Continue reading

NORMAN HARRIS-THE HARRIS MACHINE.

NORMAN HARRIS-THE HARRIS MACHINE. For Norman Harris, all his hard work building Gold Mind Records had been in vain. Gold Mind Records had been experiencing financial problems and eventually became part of Salsoul Records. Latterly, Gold Mind Records didn’t even have a distributor. Eventually the Cayre brothers decided that the only solution was that Gold …

Continue reading

BLUE MAGIC-THIRTEEN BLUE MAGIC LANE.

BLUE MAGIC-THIRTEEN BLUE MAGIC LANE. Blue Magic’s first two album had seen their fortunes vary. Their 1973 eponymous debut album Blue Magic, had been certified gold, and featured the million-selling, Philly Soul classic, Sideshow. Written by Bobby “Electronic” Eli and Vinnie Barrett, Sideshow was also certified gold, after selling over one-million copies. It seemed that …

Continue reading