Saturday, 26 April 2008

Independent Movement Slippin' Away

I was put onto this 1978 album by Shanky who promotes the Northern Disco parties in Manchester. (see links) The album isn’t great but the title track is worth whatever money you might end up paying for it.

A disco / boogie track with an incredibly funky bassline in the intro.

Interesting fact that this tune was co-written by Gene Chandler.

Friday, 25 April 2008

Single of the week J Rawls & Middle Child

J Rawls first came to my attention as one half (along with J Sands) of soulful hip hop unit the Lone Catalysts. He also gained a rep as the producer of Black star’s (Mos Def and Talib Kwali) Brown Skin Lady
J really rose in my estimations when he released the album Essence of Soul in 2005. In this production he brought together an array of independent soul singers – Eric Roberson, Tavaris, Venus Malone, Aloe Blacc, Sol Uprising, Jonell and Middle Child putting their vocals over his hip hop beats.

Fast forward three years and we see the first single of his new soul based projects, this time with one of the finds on the Essence of Soul, Middle Child
The 12” has two tracks, Till the sun comes and Music over madness with Middle Child’s soulful vocals over J’s fat beats. I can’t wait for the album.

Available at FatCity records

Also of note is The Liquid Crystal project, which is due it’s second installment. Here we have J Rawls producing live versions of famous hip hop instrumentals. A little bit like Marc Mac’s Visioneers project

For those of us in the North West of England we can catch J doing a DJ set at the Magnet on Hardman St in Liverpool next Saturday the 3rd of May. A tour of Europe with Middle Child is planned for later in the summer.

J.Rawls feat. Eric Roberson - Pleasure before pain

Thursday, 24 April 2008

We Can Make It We Try The Sylvers

Alot more attention focused on The Sylvers the last couple of years since J Dilla looped up Only one can win on his Donuts LP. This one my favourites of theirs

Tuesday, 22 April 2008

Jay Dee Strange Funky Games and Things

I first heard Love Unlimited Orchestra's instrumental Strange Games and Things underpinning EPMD's Manslaughter. It was also the groove Tim Westwood used for the intro on his show when it was worth listening to occasionally.

This track was taken from Barry White's Love Unlimited Orchestra's 1976 album My Sweet Summer Suite

Love Unlimited Orchestra Strange Games and Things

Fast forward a few years and I purchased the third in the excellent Natural High compilations of 2 step soul and rare groove. Track 5 is by an artist called Jay Dee and this time the title has an extra word - Strange Funky Games and Things. Reading the sleave notes it reveals that the track is off a 1974, Barry White produced album called Come on in Love

I've never seen a copy of this album, I assume it is quite rare. I haven't heard any other tracks off the album but if they are touched by the hands of Barry White they can't be too shabby can they?

Jay Dee Strange Funky Games and Things

Monday, 21 April 2008

Pete Rock + CL Smooth: T.R.O.Y.

Hip Hop with Soul

I'll be plundering youtube for classic hip hop from the golden era. From the album Mecca and the Soul Brother

Single of the Week - Doin James PT 2

G.A.M.M records, I believe, is the label off-shoot of the Swedish club Raw Fusion. Don't know much about the label, I think information is scarce because a lot of the sample sources are un-licenced (for example Red Astaire's D'Angelo sampling Follow Me)

This is their second release of James Brown inspired music.

Track 1 side A is a rehash of Bobby Byrds immortal I know you got soul by Swing Session, this doesn't do much for me and makes me just want to dig out the original or Eric B and Rakim's version.

Track 2 side B contains a funky rework of James Browns Sayin and Doin' it by the Sugar Loaf Gangsters who give a slight afro-beat feel.

My main my reason for getting hold of this 12" is the track 1 side B, You Dead Wrong. A funky basement soul lick by Red Astaire using the vocals of Caretta Bell over James Brown samples. This is a seriously raw, funky soul track that made me stop everything I was doing when I heard it on the radio. It should be big but with G.A.M.M releases being relatively limited I can't see it being the case.

Sunday, 20 April 2008

Leroy Hutson

Leroy Hutson is a musical hero on many different soul scenes. Popular with those who like rare groove, northern and modern soul and jazz dance alike. His music has also been sampled by nu soul artists such as Erykah Badu (Lucky Fellow sampled on the track No Love on Baduizm).
The former Howard University roommate of Donny Hathaway started off his career as Curtis Mayfield’s replacement in the Impressions lasting two and half years before releasing his first solo album Love Oh Love in 1973.
A series of albums were released by the legendary Curtom label, the most revered and collectable being Hutson and Hutson II
Hutson contained the mind blowing tracks Lucky Fellow and All Because of You (see the video from Soul Train below)

Leroy Hutson Lucky Fellow

Hutson II contains the popular instrumental track Cool Out (recently sampled by the US soul artist Coultrain). It also contains my favourite Love the Feeling

Leroy Hutson Love the Feeling

Leroy left Curtom and released the album Paradise in 1982, which has been recently re-issued. Not as sought after as his 70’s material it’s contains Classy Lady which has a nice boogie feel as well as the title track which has a killer 2 step groove.

As well as his solo music he also was involved in the production of other rare groove favourites such as Voices of East Harlem Wanted Dead or Alive and Arnold Blair Trying to Get Close to You (recently re-issued on Wants List Volume 3)

Arnold Blair Trying to Get Close to You

Solo Albums
Love O Love (Curtom 1973)
Leroy Hutson, The Man (Curtom 1975)
Le Roy Hutson (Curtom 1975)
Feel The Spirit (Curtom 1976)
Hutson II (Curtom 1976)
Closer To The Source (Curtom 1978)
Unforgettable (RSO/Curtom 1979)
Paradise (Elektra 1982)
Shades Of Love EP (Expansion 1992)

Leroy Hutson - All Because Of You

Saturday, 19 April 2008

D'Influence Midnite


D’Influence are my favourite group of the early nineties.
The group consists of Sarah Webb on vocals and Ed Baden-Powell, Kwame Kwaten
and Steve Marston.
Their first release was the raw and funky “I’m the one” which was released on the influential Acid Jazz records. This led to a deal with East West records and the first album Good 4 We released in 1992

This album contained the classic track Good Lover. The original album version had a slight house feel but it’s the Touch mix that is still a favourite of mine. The epitome of the early 90’s UK soul “stripdown sound”. The drums seem to be a sample of Kool and the Gangs NT break with a funky bassline over it. Topped off with Sarah Webb’s earthy vocals

This album was followed up in 1995 with their second long player Prayer 4 Unity and the lead track Midnite (see the above video)

Their final full album was released in 1997 entitled London. The stand out track being the Fonda Rae sampling Hypnotise.

Not only did they produce excellent music in the studio they were renowned for their lives shows. I had the pleasure of seeing them play live at the Forum in London’s Kentish Town and the show was a blast with Kwame impressing me as a showman who knew how to work the audience.
What they are involved in now I don’t know but D’Influence will always have a well deserved place in my music collection.

Thursday, 17 April 2008

21st Century Soul Pt 1

I did this mix for a friends website (

It's a collection of current soul music that is doing it for me right now. What was encouraging when I compiled it was the diverse geographical locations the artists came from - USA, UK, Sweden, Japan, France and New Zealand

Sa Ra – So Special
Sy Smith – Time
W.Ellington Felton - 3 Sides
Erykah Badu – Honey
Yolanda Johnson (ft T3) – Intervention
Restless Soul - Draw your bow
Lady Alma- Running for nothing
Guynamite/ Selina Campbell – Those eyes
Electric Conversation – Paradise
Hanna & Beatr8 – Better than nothing
Low Budget Soul – I warned you (rise remix)

Download or stream the mix here



I've set this blog up to allow me share my thoughts about music I love, which is primarily soul music with a good groove, from whatever era.

I've called it Pass the feeling on for a couple of reasons. Firstly it's the name of a favourite album of mine, a 1975 set by Creative Source. It's an excellent album which I sought out to get hold of the track Funky Luvah, it's got the funky, soulful groove that I like.

The title track is also excellent, as sampled by Little Brother on Love Joint revisited

Secondly the title sums up what I want to do with the blog, pass the feeling I get when I listen to this music onto other people who feel the same way.