The Coasters Web Site
The Great R&B Pioneers

.. and More About .. the Great R&B Pioneers

.. and More About (page2) ..
Edited by Claus Röhnisch (updated October 17, 2009)


Below you´ll find  the Great R&B Pioneers with a short presentation and the most valuable recordings with all R&B Top Ten Hits listed first, followed by other notable classics. Several artists are presented with links to other web sites! All #1 Hits are noted in bold; with number of weeks at #1 position. Titles hitting any of Billboard´s three national R&B Top Ten Charts (Best Seller, Juke Box, Disc Jockey) are listed.
Tip: Check the links to
All music guide. and Wikipedia - and to the other links too.
All presentations edited by Claus Röhnisch.

The World's Greatest Blues Singer
Session Discography and JLH Time-Line plus Ultimate CDs


The Great
Vocal Groups

The DominoesThe CloversThe "5" Royales | The Midnighters

The Flamingos | The Moonglows | The Drifters | The Platters
The Cadillacs | The Coasters | The Isley Brothers
  The ImpressionsThe Miracles | The Temptations

Juke Blues

R&B Pioneers

City Blues

Early Rock Idols

Soul Pioneers

John Lee Hooker
Muddy Waters
Lightnin´ Hopkins
Jimmy Reed
S  B  Williamson
Howlin´ Wolf
Elmore James
Little Walter


Lionel Hampton
Louis Jordan

Buddy Johnson
Wynonie Harris
Charles Brown
Amos Milburn

Johnny Otis
Ruth Brown


T-Bone Walker
Joe Turner
Roy Brown

B.B. King
Lowell Fulson
Ike Turner
Bobby Bland
Junior Parker


Fats Domino
Jesse Belvin

LaVern Baker
Bobby Day
Chuck Berry
Bo Diddley
Little Richard

Lloyd Price


Clyde McPhatter
Sam Cooke
Jackie Wilson
Little Willie John
Etta James

Brook Benton
James Brown
Marvin Gaye


Atlantic Records
Atlantic Soul Stars

King Curtis

Ray Charles | Chuck Willis | Solomon Burke | Joe Tex
Rufus Thomas 
Wilson Pickett |
Otis Redding | Aretha Franklin

All the links above are internal!
Try the external ones below too!

"The Fat Man" - "Fabulous Mr. D" - "The Real King of Rock 'n' Roll" - Pianist /singer and the most popular of all R&B artists during the 1950s. Based in New Orleans, where most of his hits were made (although "Aint' It A Shame" and "Blueberry Hill" - among others - were cut in California). Influenced by Fats Waller and Albert Ammons. Trained with guitarist and brother-in-law Harrison Verrett during the ´40s; joined Billy Diamonds´ band and met producer - composer - trumpet player Dave Bartholomew, who together with Fats wrote most of the hits. Fats was the foremost exponent of the Bayou-blues and instrumental in "transforming" R&B to R&R. Some famous members of his studio band - originally summoned by Verrett: Herb Hardesty, Lee Allen, Buddy Hagans, tenor saxes; Walter Nelson, Ernest McLean and Roy Montrell, gtrs; Cornelius Coleman and Earl Palmer, dms. Some of Domino's recordings in New Orleans had pre-recorded instrumental tracks with Frank Fields and Allen Toussaint on piano in the late 1950s. There were 19 original Imperial albums issued in US between 1956-1963.  Born: Antoine Domino, Jr. February 26, 1928, New Orleans, La. (birth certificate wrongly "christened" him Anthony). First recordings: N.O. December 10, 1949 - The Fat Man / Detroit Blues - Imperial 5058. Records for: Imperial 49-62, ABC 63-65, Mercury, Reprise.

Essential CD: They Call Me The Fat Man (4CD 1991) - EMI CDP7-96785-2;
reissued as:
 Walking To New Orleans (4CD 2002) - Capitol 37374;
or: Legends of the 20th Century (Vol 13) - 20th Century 521714-2 (25 classic chronologic tracks).

For collectors: Out of New Orleans: The Complete Imperial (8CD)
- Bear Family BCD 15541 HI (222 great tracks incl severl alternates and undubbed).

Rockin  On Rampart (2CD) - Proper PVCD120;
The Marican Chart Gits - The Singles A's & B's 1950-1958 (2CD) - Jasmine JASCD 557
Blue Monday - Fats Domino and the Lost Dawn of Rock 'n' Roll by Rick Coleman (2006)
Videos on Fats Search on Fats Domino

Fats Domino at Wikipedia
All music guide.on Fats Domino
Fats Domino at The Blues Database
| Fats Domino Online | The Fats Domino Pages | Early Fats | More on Fats |
Fats Domino at
Great label shots and images (don't miss this one)

"The Fats Domino Jukebox" on Capitol with 20 great original hits.

     R&B # 1 Hits (of his 39 Top Tens):
1952     Goin´ Home     1w
1955     Ain´t It A Shame (Ain´t That A Shame)      11w
1955     All By Myself     3w
1956     Poor Me     1w
1956     I´m In Love Again      9w
1956     Blueberry Hill     11w
1957     Blue Monday     8w
1957     I´m Walkin´     6w
1959     I Want To Walk You Home      1w
Other notable R&B Top 10 Hits:
1949     The Fat Man
1950     Every Night About This Time
1953     Goin´ To The River
1953     Please Don´t Leave Me
1953     Rose Mary
1954     Something´s Wrong
1956     Boo Weevil
1956     My Blue Heaven
1956     When My Dreamboat Comes Home
1956     So Long
1957     Blue Monday
1957     Valley Of Tears
1958     Whole Lotta Loving
1959     I´m Ready
1959     Be My Guest
1960     Walking To New Orleans
1960     Three Nights A Week
1960     My Girl Josephine
1961     Let The Four Winds Blow
For Your Good Taste:
1950     Hey! La Bas (Boogie)
1958     The Big Beat
1961     Good Hearted Man
1962     Jambalaya
1962     I Hear You Knocking
1963     One Night
1963     There Goes My Heart Again
1964     Kansas City

The Fats Domino Band
Touring - and recording.

1946  Dave Bartholomew´s Band
Bartholomew,vcl/tpt; Meyer Kennedy,alts; Clarence Hall,tens; Fred Lane,pno; Frank Fields,bs; Dave Oxley,dm
1949-1950  Dave Bartholomew´s Band
Bartholomew, Joe Harris,alts; Hall, Herb Hardesty and Alvin "Red" Tyler,tens; Salvador Doucette,pno; Ernest McLean,gtr; Fields, Earl Palmer,dm (Domino toured with this band in 1950).
1951-1954  The Fats Domino Band
Domino,vcl/pno; Herb Hardesty, ts (only on recordings not band-member); Robert "Buddy" Hagans, tens; Wendell Duconge (real name Emmett W. Fortner), alts; Harrison Verrett, advisor and sometimes gtr, Walter "Papoose" Nelson,gtr; Billy Diamond,bs and road manager; Cornelius "Teeno" Coleman,dm; John "Little Sonny" Jones, vocals on stage (this was Domino's first own band although he had played with Diamond, Verrett and Hagans for years before this first band was formed).
During these years Hardesty, sometimes Lee Allen and Clarence Ford plus Fields played on Domino recordings together with the band.
October 1955
On the "I'm In love Again" recording: Allen, Hardesty, Ford, McLean, Fields, Palmer (who left NO for LA in 1957).
Domino, Bartholomew (occ), Ford (who joined the band in late 1956/early 1957), Duconge (alternating); Hagans, Hardesty (now a Domino band-member), Allen (occasionally - who joined the band in 1957), McLean, Justin Adams and Nelson (alt gtr), Fields, Coleman and Charles Williams (alternating with Earl Palmer on several recordings)
June-July 1956
On the "Blueberry Hill" recording in L.A.: Domino, pno; Verrett,arr; Nelson,gtr; Lawrence Guyton,bs; Coleman,dm; Hagans, Duconge, and Eddie Silvers, saxes; Bartholomew, horn arr.
Domino, Bartholomew (occ), Duconge, Hardesty, Warren Bell,tens; Allen, tens; Ford,bars; McLean and Nelson (alt), Fields and Guyton (alt) Coleman and Williams (alt)
October 30, 1958
On the "Margie" recording in L.A.: Domino, pno; Bartholomew, arr; Hardesty, Plas Johnson, tens; Nelson, gtr; Red Callender, bs; Earl Palmer,dm.

Domino, Diamond, road manager; Hardesty, Hagans, Allen, Ford, Nelson (who died in February 28, 1962) and Roy Montrell,gtrs; Jimmie Davis,bsg; Coleman
Domino, Bartholomew (occasionally), Hardesty, Allen, Hagans, Ford, Montrell, Davis, Coleman
Domino, Hardesty, Hagans, Nat Perilliat,tens; Ford, Walter Kimble,bars; Wallace Davenport,tpt; Montrell (who died in 1969), Davis, Clarence Brown,dm
Note: In 1970 a tragic road accident happened in Texas, where Davis was killed and Hagans and Ford were badly hurt. Hardesty had quit the band by the late 60s. Several of the old musicians have toured with Fats in later years (especially Lee Allen and Dave Bartholomew).


"King Of Rock ´n´ Roll" - "The Georgia Peach" - "The Quasar of Rock" - "The Architect of Rock 'n' Roll" - Ruling original rock ´n ´ roll singer/pianist of international fame; starting out with roots from Roy Brown´s crying blues and creating the wildest rock. Worked in Atlanta, Georgia and debuted for RCA, later joined the Tempo Toppers mixed secular/gospel group and was accompanied by Johnny Otis´ quintet on recordings in 1954. Also worked in Texas. Started his own band - The Upsetters, of which several of the original line-up joined James Brown in 1956. Richard made his first famous Specialty recordings in New Orleans and left R&B/Rock ´n´ Roll for gospel music during 1958-62 - and again in the ´70s. Some notable New Orleans´ musicians on Richard´s famous recordings (mostly produced by Bumps Blackwell): Alvin "Red" Tyler and Lee Allen, saxophones; Roy Montrell, gtr; Earl Palmer, dms. Some members of his road band the Upsetters: Clifford Burks, Wilbert Smith, and Grady Gaines, saxes; Charles Connor, dms (who were featured on some L.A. recordings). Born: Richard Wayne Penniman December 5, 1932 (severall files say December 25, 1935 - a date nowdays rejected), Macon, Ga. First recordings: Atlanta, Georgia October 16, 1951 Taxi Blues / Every Hour - Victor 4392. Records for: Victor 51-52, Peacock 53-54, Specialty 55-58 and 1964; plus a.o. Mercury, Atlantic, Kent, Vee-Jay, Okeh and Reprise.
Essential CD: The Georgia Peach - Specialty SPCD 7012-2
For collectors: The Formative Years 1951-53 - Bear Family BCD 15448 AH;
The Specialty Sessions (3CD) - Specialty SPCD 8508 or
The Specialty Sessions  (6CD) - Ace ACEBOXCD1
She Knows How To Rock - The Singles A's & B's (2CD) - Jasmine JASCD 545
Reading: The Life And Times of Little Richard by Charles White (US 1984 and US/UK 1994)
and Little Richard - The Birth of Rock 'n' Roll by David Kirby (US 2009) Search on Little Richard

Little Richard at Wikipedia
All music guide.on Little Richard
Little Richard at The Blues Database (maybe later)
| Little | Little Richard News Home
| More Little Richard |
Little Richard Discography

Little Richard at DigitalDreamDoor

Great label shots and images (don't miss this one)
Little Richard at rock and roll page  |  Little Richard's Ace Box CD

R&B Top 10 Hits:
1955     Tutti-Frutti
1956     Long Tall Sally     8w
1956     Slippin´ And Slidin´
1956     Rip It Up   2w
1956     Ready Teddy
1956     She´s Got It
1956     Heebie Jeebies
1956     The Girl Can´t Help It
1957     Lucille     2w
1957     Send Me Some Lovin´
1957     Jenny, Jenny
1957     Miss Ann
1957     Keep A Knockin´
1958     Good Golly, Miss Molly
Other Fine Ones:
1952     Every Hour
1954     Directly From My Heart To You (released 1956)
1954     Little Richard´s Boogie
1957     Can´t Believe You Wanna Leave
1959     Shake A Hand
1959     Hey-Hey-Hey-Hey
1963     Travelin´ Shoes
1964     Bama Lama Bama Loo
1966     Get Down With It
1970     Freedom Blues
 Little Richard's Original Specialty LPs
 Here's Little Richard - LP 2100 (1957)
 Little Richard - LP 2103 (1958)
The Fabulous Little Richard - LP 2104 (1958)
 His Biggest Hits - LP 2111 (1963)
 Grooviest 17 Original Hits - LP 2113 (1968)
 Well Alright! - LP 2136 (1970)
The Specialty Sessions - LPBox 8508 (1989)
(please note that the British AceBox contains
 6 CDs, and the US Specialty Box 3 CDs).



"Mr. Personality" - Prolific singer (and sometimes pianist) and bandleader with New Orleans traditions popularized. Started his own band in 1949. Was in the Army during 1953 - 56. Formed own company, KRC in 1957 and a new ones (Double L and later Turntable) in the ´60s in New York in partnership with Harold Logan (murdered in 1969). Continued as a business man with agency work. Born: March 9, 1933, Kenner - near New Orleans, La. First recordings: N.O. 1952 Barnyard Rock (issued on Specialty LP 2163); N.O. March 13, 1952 Lawdy Miss Clawdy /Mailman Blues - Specialty 428. Records for: Specialty 52-56, KRC 57-28, ABC 58-62, Double-L 63-65, Turntable 69.
Essential CDs: Restless Heart - The ultimate singles collection 1952-1959 (2CD) - Jasmine JASCD 552 (issued February, 2010)
or: Lawdy! - Specialty SPCD 7010-2 and Greatest Hits (ABC) - MCA MCAD-11184
or: Lloyd Rocks - Bear Family BCD 16999 AR (34 tracks, 52-page booklet)
For Collectors: Mr. Personality - Million Sellers and More from ABC (Shout CD 43)
Reading: Lawdy Miss Clawdy - The Lloyd Price Story - The True King of the 50's
Walking to New Orleans - The Story of New Orleans Rhythm & Blues by John Broven (Blues Unlimited, 1974) Search on Lloyd Price

Lloyd Price at Wikipedia
All music guide.on Lloyd Price
Lloyd Price at The Blues Database (maybe later)

Lloyd Price Discography
| More Lloyd Price |
Lloyd's terrific websitelawdymissclawdy

Great label shots and images (don't miss this one)

     R&B Top 10 Hits:
1952    Lawdy Miss Clawdy     7w

1952    Oooh, Oooh, Oooh
1952    Restless Heart
1953    Tell Me Pretty Baby
1953    Ain´t It A Shame
1957    Just Because

1959    Stagger Lee     4w  (issued 1958)
1959    Where Were You (On Our Wedding Day)
1959    Personality     4w
1959    I´m Gonna Get Married     3w
1959    Come Into My Heart
1960    Wont´cha Come Home
1960    Lady Luck
1960    Question
Other Nice Ones:

1954    I Wish Your Picture Was You
1954    Walking The Track
1956    Heavy Dreams

1956    Baby Please Come Home
1957    Why
1958    You Need Love
1963    Who's Sorry Now

1963    Misty

"The Original Soul Star" - Dramatic "soprano-like" singer - after Roy Brown the first to infuse R&B with an intense gospel-derived fervor, laying the ground of forming soul music.Moved as a child from "soul state" North Carolina to Teaneck, New Jersey. Started singing gospel with The Mount Lebanon Singers (no recordings) in 1949, and soon joined the new-formed Dominoes in Harlem 1950. Organized and featured his own name with the Drifters from 1953, "head-hunted" by Ahmet Ertegun. Went solo in 1955. Clyde is possibly one of the most important characters of R&B. Born: November 15, 1932 (not 1933 as stated in many files - some files even give 1931), Durham, North Carolina. Died of heart attack June 13, 1972, NYC. First recordings: NYC November 14, 1950 with the Dominoes Do Something For Me - Federal 12001 ; with the Drifters NYC June 28, 1953 Lucille - issued 1954 on Atlantic 1019; August 9, 1953 Money Honey / The Way I Feel - Atlantic 1006; first solo recording: NYC October 24, 1954 Everyones´s Laughing / Hot Ziggety - Atlantic 1070 (backed by the Cues); August 25, 1955 Seven Days / I´m Not Worthy Of You - Atlantic 1081. Records for: Atlantic 53-59, MGM 59-60, Mercury 60-65, Amy 66-67, Decca 70.
Essential CDs: Deap Sea Ball-the Best of... - Atlantic 82314-2;
Clyde McPhatter & The Drifters - Sequel RSA CD 803
Reading: Clyde McPhatter - A Biographical Essay by Colin Escott with Richard Weize (Bear Family, 1987) Search on Clyde McPhatter
Clyde McPhatter at Wikipedia
All music guide.on Clyde McPhatter
Clyde McPhatter Tribute on Digital Dream Door
Clyde McPhatter Discography
Clyde McPhatter fansite
..and don´t forget those with The Dominoes
..and his best: those as lead with The Drifters (with his own name labeled)

     R&B Top 10 Hits (solo):
1955     Love Has Joined Us Together (with Ruth Brown)
1956     Seven Days
1956     Treasure Of Love   1w
1957     Without Love (There Is Nothing)
1957     Just To Hold My Hand
1957     Long Lonely Nights   1w
1958     Come What May
1958     A Lover´s Question   1w
1960     Ta Ta
1964      Deep In The Heart Of Harlem
Other Interesting Ones:
1955     Everyone´s Laughing (with Vocal Quartet)
1955     I Gotta Have You (with Ruth Brown)
1956     I´m Lonely Tonight
1959     Since You´ve Been Gone
1961     The Bells (re-recording)
1962     Lover Please

"Mr. Easy" - Extremely talented California singer (and sometimes pianist) - "The Blues Balladeer" and Godfather of West Coast doo wop, instrumental in shaping the high school group harmony sounds of early 1950s - said to be as talented as Sam Cooke by his producer/arranger Bumps Blackwell on Specialty. Maxwell Davis arranged several Modern recordings. An interesting fact for collectors: There is one Modern single 1004 issued as by Curley Williams & Group "This Heart Of Mine"/"Be Mine" which is Belvin in disguise ("Let's Make Up" from Belvin's Crown LP 5187 isn' t Belvin, but most probably Willie Davies from The Jacks). Born: December 15, 1932, San Antonio, Texas (some files say Texarkana, Arkansas). Died in a car crash February 6, 1960, Arkansas. First recordings: L.A. 1950 with Big Jay McNeely All That Wine Is Gone and Sad Story - Imperial 5115 and 5130; Hollywood mid/late 1951 Dream Girl  / Hang Your Tears Out To Dry - RIH 120 (definately recorded in 1951 since it was advertised in December, 1951). First hit: Dream Girl (with Marvin Phillips as Jesse and Marvin) - Specialty 447, recorded November 12, 1952. Records for: Recorded in Hollywood 51-52, Specialty 1952 and 1955, Cash 1956, Modern 56-58, Class 1957, Aladdin 1958, RCA 58-60.
Essential CDs: Goodnight My Love - Ace CDCDH 336 (Modern Recordings);
The Blues Balladeer - Specialty SPCD 7003-2;
and Golden Classics - Collectables COL2701 (mostly RCA)
For Collectors: Guess Who, The RCA Victor Recordings (2CD) - Ace CDCH2 1020
and So Fine - Jesse Belvin & The Chargers - Night Train NTICD 7097
The Unfurgettable Mr. Easy - Jasmine (2CD) JASCD 156 (26 early singles tracks and 2 RCA LPs) Search on Jesse Belvin
Jesse Belvin at Wikipedia
All music guide.on Jesse Belvin
| Jesse Belvin Discography |

R&B Top 10 Hits:
1953     Dream Girl
            (with Marvin Phillips as Jesse and Marvin)
1956     Goodnight My Love
1959     Guess Who
Some Other Essential Songs:
1950     Sad Story (with Big Jay McNeely)
1951     Hang Your Tears Out To Dry
1952     Baby Don´t Go
1955     Gone
1955     One Little Blessing
1956     Girl Of My Dreams
            (with Eugene Church as The Cliques)
1958     Beware
1958     Just To Say Hello
1958     The Masquarade Is Over
1959     It Could Have Been Worse

Collectables CD COL21701.

"Mr. Soul" - "The Man who Invented Soul" - "Mister Feeling" - The most influential of all soul singers (by many called the first), his elements reverberating in todays pop, rock, soul, blues, gospel, and reggae. At the age of 15, Sam became lead singer of the famous "teenage" gospel group The Highway QC's until he was 19 when he was hand picked by Roy (S.R.) Crain, manager of the The Soul Stirrers, to replace the legendary R.H. Harris as lead singer. Stationed in Chicago since 1933 and came to Los Angeles in 1951. Sang with The Soul Stirrers for five years until he went solo (produced by Bumps Blackwell on his new label Keen). Worked with Lou Rawls, Billy Preston, and Bobby Womack. Cooke's roadband during 1962-1964 were the Upsetters (Little Richard's original band), but in the L.A. studios it was mostly René Hall who led studio musicians (with Sam's all-time guitarist Clif White). Started his own label with J.W. Alexander (SAR) after his RCA success (recording demos on that label himself). Born: Sam Cook January 22, 1931 (not 1935) in McCain, near Clarksdale, Miss. Died December 11, 1964, Los Angeles, Calif. (shot by a motel hostess). First recordings: L.A. March 1, 1951 with the Soul Stirrers - "Jesus Gave Me Water" (tecording as lead through April 10, 1957 for Specialty); first "secular solo" recordings: New Orleans December 12, 1956 Lovable and prob. I'll Come Running Back To You (remastered with overdubs in Hollywood November 1, 1957) - the first issued as Dale Cook on Specialty 596 in January, 1957, composed by Roy Hamilton's manager Bill Cook - and originally recorded August 21, 1956 in New York as a demo together with Happy In Love / I Need You Now (the latter two issued on Specialty single 667 in 1959); - and the second as Sam Cooke on Specialty 619 in November 1957). First for Keen: L.A. June 1, 1957 You Send Me (issued in September 1957). Records for: Specialty 56-58, Keen 57-60, RCA 1960-.
Essential CD: Portrait of a Legend 1951-1964 - ABKCO9872418 (30 great tracks)
or: The Man And His Music - RCA PCD1-7127 (28 tracks similar to above)
For Collectors: The Man Who Invented Soul (4CD-box) - RCA 67911-2
and: CD "With the Soul Stirrers": Specialty SPCD 7009-2 /Ace CDCHD 359
Reading: You Send Me - The Life and Times of Sam Cooke by David Wolff with S.R. Crain, Clifton White and G. Davis Tenebaum (US, 1995)
The Man Who Invented Soul - Sam Cooke: Joe McEwen (US, 1977)
Dream Boogie - The Triumph of Sam Cooke: Peter Guralnick (US 2005) Search on Sam Cooke
Sam Cooke at Wikipedia
All music guide.on Sam Cooke
Cooke at The Blues Database
| Sam Cooke (official)| Sam Cooke | Sam Cooke |
Sam Cooke Singles Discography at Soulful Kinda Music

Great label shots and images (don't miss this one)

     R&B Top 10 Hits:
1957    You Send Me 6w
1958    I´ll Come Running Back To You   1w
1958    You Were Made For Me
1958    Lonely Island
1958    Win Your Love For Me
1959    Everybody Likes To Cha Cha Cha
1960    Wonderful World
1960    Chain Gang
1962    Twistin´ The Nite Away     3w
1962    Bring It On Home To Me
1962    Having A Party
1962    Nothing Can Change This Love
1962    Someboday Have Mercy
1963    Send Me Some Lovin´
1963    Another Saturday Night 1w
1963    Frankie And Johnny
1963    Little Red Rooster
1964    Good News   1w
1964    Good Times   2w
1964    Tennessee Waltz
1964    Cousin Of Mine
1964    That's Where It's At
1965    Shake
1965    A Change Is Gonna Come
Here´s More Good Ones:
1957    That´s Heaven To Me (with the Soul Stirrers)
1956    Lovable (as Dale Cook)
1959    Only Sixteen

1961    Cupid
1961    Baby Won´t You Please Come Home

"The Bird" - underrated true veteran singer of the California blues and rhythm and group vocal soundm who just like Jesse Belvin recorded several songs in different disguises in the early years of his carreer. Formed the Hollywood Four Flames in 1950 and recorded with them (also as the Satellites and under other names during the whole of the ´50s); between stints as a soloist and with "The Voices" (featuring foremost himself but also Earl Nelson and sometimes featuring his buddy Bobby Relf on stage). In 1956 Bobby sang lead on the Jerry Leiber-Mike Stoller tune "Finders Keepers", written for The Crescendos on Atlantic 1109 (featuring Bobby Relf, Pernice Morland, and Will "Dub" Jones - Jones sang lead on the flip "Sweet Dreams" - the flip song was reissued in 1959 with a great Bobby lead on "I'll Be Seeing You"). Bobby also recorded with Earl Nelson (lead on the Hollywood Flames "Buzz Buzz Buzz" hit of 1957 and "I'll Be Seeing You" of 1958) as Bob & Earl (Bobby Relf later replaced Day in that duo). Day's hits on Class were produced by Googie and Leon René in Los Angeles. Born: Robert James Byrd July 1, 1928 (and not 1932, some files say 1930), Fort Worth, Tex. Died July 15, 1990, Los Angeles, Calif. Changed his name  from Bobby Byrd to Bobby Day on Class in 1957. First recordings: L.A. 1950 with The Flames (later Four Flames and Hollywood Flames) Please Tell Me How - Selection 113; L.A. as Bobby Byrd 1952 Please Don´t Hurt Me - Sarge & Sound 203; L.A. as Bobby Day 1957 Come Seven / So Long Baby - Class 207. Records for: Class 57-59, Rendezvouz 60-62.

The Hollywood Flames - lineups:
1950-mid 1953
:  The Flames / The Hollywood Four Flames / The Four Flames
Robert Byrd (lead, tenor, baritone and bass); David Ford (lead); Willie Rae Rockwell (second tenor); Curley Dinkins (baritone and bass). The second tenor spot was often substituted during these years, foremost bu Clyde Tillis but also by Leon Hughes.
mid 1953-1954:  The Hollywood Flames
David Ford (first tenor); Robert Byrd (bass); Gaynel Hodge (lead and second tenor; substituted sometimes by Leon Hughes); Curtis Williams (baritone; often substitited by the returning Dinkins). Curtis left to form The Penguins in mid 1954 and Gaynel formed The Turks, who were joined for one session in 1956 by Byrd. 
| Marv Goldberg's article on The Penguins |
1955-1956: The group probably did not exist these two years, although Byrd recorded several songs with former and later members and also with other California group singers.
1957-1958: Bobby Day & The Satellites / The Hollywood Flames
Earl Nelson (lead); Robert Byrd (known as Bobby Day from 1957), David Ford, Curtis Williams, Clyde Tillis. (Ford, Nelson and Williams support Day on "Rock-in Robin").
1959: The Hollywood Flames (stationed in New York)
Earl Nelson, David Ford, Ray Brewster, Eddie Williams.
Late 1959-ca 1962: The Hollywood Flames
David Ford, Eddie Williams or Curtis Williams, Donald Height (lead), Ray Brewster.
1963-1965: The Hollywood Flames (back in L.A.)
Earl Nelson, David Ford, Eddie Williams (the latter two replaced by John Berry and George Home).
Discography - Bobby Day and album covers

Discography - Flames and album covers

"The Hollywood Flames & Friends" - a rare CD of 2001 with 27 great tracks (inlcuding some with Gaynel Hodge's group The Turks).

Essential CD: Rockin´ Robin - The Very Best of..  - Ace CDCHD 834 (also incl Bob & Earl)
CD for Collectors: The Best of Bobby Day - Varese Vintage 302 066 249-2 (featuring 16 tracks covering 1952-1965)
CD by The Hollywood Flames: The Hollywood Flames - Specialty SPCD 7021 Search on Bobby Day
Bobby Day at Wikipedia
Marv Goldberg's article on the Hollywood Flames and Bobby Day
Hollywood Flames
All music guide.on Bobby Day  |  Hollywood Flames

     R&B Top 10 Hit:
1958    Rock-in Robin (Rockin´ Robin)     3w
Other Favorites:
1952     Please Don´t Hurt Me (as Robert Byrd)
1954     Ride Helen Ride (The Hollywood Flames)
1955     Two Things I Love (The Voices)
1856     Finders Keepers (The Crescendos)
1957     Come Seven
1957     Little Bitty Pretty One (with the Satellites)
1957     When The Swallows Come Back To Capistrano
1958     Over And Over
1958     Unchained Melody
1959     Bluebird, Buzzard & The Oriole

"Mr. Rock N' Roll" - "The Rock Poet" - "Mr. Crazy Legs" - Guitarist/singer - the most important rock & roll lyricist/poet (ahead of Leiber-Stoller), finding the essence of Americas teenage culture - and pioneer of rock guitar playing. Influencing most of modern rock - heavily inspired the Beatles and the Rolling Stones. Roots in country & western, mixed with the humor and swing of Louis Jordan. Worked in St. Louis during the early years of his career and came to Chicago in 1955. Worked closely with pianist Johnnie Johnson and later often used Lafayette Leake on piano in studios. Ever wondered who the second guitarist is on Berry's classics? - Well it's Chuck himself (since his lead guitar often was overdubbed). Prisoned at the peak of his career. Returned to business in the mid ´60s and is probably the greatest idol of the original rock ´n´ roll fans, moving back to Missouri in later years (Wentzville). Born: Charles Edward Anderson-Berry October 18, 1926 St. Louis, Mo (probably not in San José, Calif. as stated in some files). First recordings: St. Louis August 13, 1954 with the Cubans (incl Oscar Washington) Oh Maria - Balla 1008; Chicago May 21, 1955 Maybellene / Wee Wee Hours - Chess 1604. Records for: Chess 55-66, Mercury 66-69, Chess 69-70, All Platinum 74-79, Atco 1979.
Essential CD:   The Chess Box (3CD) - MCA/Chess CHD3-80001
or: The Anthology (2CD) MCA 088 112304-2
or: Reelin' And Rockin', The Very Best of (2CD) - Universal EU CD 9832354

Editor´s choise: The Chess Years (9CD) - Charly CD RED Box 2
Editor's Special Gem: Johnny B. Goode - His Complete '50s Chess Recordings - Hip-O Select 9473
(4CD box 103 tracks incl alternates)
For Collectors: You Never Can Tell - The Complete Recordings 1060-1966 - Hip-O Select
Brown-Eyed Handsome Man - The Life and Hard Times of Chuck Berry by Bruce Pegg (US, 2002)
and Chuck Berry - The Autobiography by Chuck Berry (US, 1987)
and Chuck Berry - The Biography by John Collis (Aurum Press, UK 2002)
and Long Distance Information - The Recorded Legacy of Chuck Berry by Fred Rothwell (UK 2001) Search on Chuck Berry
Chuck Berry at Wikipedia
All music guide.on Chuck Berry
Chuck at The Blues Database

| Chuck (official) | The Chuck Berry Page |
| Mr. Rock ´n´ Roll - Chuck Berry | Chuck Berry disco | Chuck Berry News | More of Chuck |
Chuck Berry at DigitalDreamDoor
Chuck Berry videos

Great label shots and images (don't miss this one)

R&B Top 10 Hits:
1955     Maybellene      11w
1955     Wee Wee Hours
1955     Thirty Days (To Come Back Home)
1956     No Money Down
1956     Roll Over Beethoven
1956     Too Much Monkey Business
1956     Brown-Eyed Handsome Man
1957     School Day     5w
1957     Rock And Roll Music
1958     Sweet Little Sixteen      3w
1958     Johnny B. Goode
1958     Carol
1959     Almost Grown
1964     Nadine (Is It You?)
1964     No Particular Place To Go
There Sure Are More Goodies:

1956     You Can´t Catch Me
1956     Drifting Heart
1957     Guitar Boogie (instr)
1958     Reelin´ And Rockin´
1958     Around And Around
1958     Blues For Hawaiians (instr)
1958     Sweet Little Rock And Roll(er)
1958     Hey Pedro
1958     Memphis, Tennessee
1958     Little Queenie
1959     Back In The U.S.A.
1960     Let It Rock
1960     Mad Lad (instr)
1964     You Never Can Tell (Pop #14)
1964     Little Marie
1972     My Ding-A-Ling (Pop #1)
 Chuck Berry's original Chess LPs:

 After School Session - LP 1426 (1957)
 One Dozen Berrys - LP 1432 (1958)
 Chuck Berry Is On Top - LP 1435 (1959)
 Rockin' At The Hops - LP 1448 (1960)
 New Juke Box Hits - LP 1456 (1961)
 Chuck Berry Twist - LP 1465 (1962)
 reissued as: More Chuck Berry - LP 1465 (1963)
 Chuck Berry On Stage - LP 1480 (1963)
 Chuck Berry's Greatest Hits - LP 1485 (1964)
 St. Louis to Liverpool - LP 1488 (1964)
 Chuck Berry in London - LP 1495 (1965)
 Fresh Berry's - LP 1498 (1965)


 Chuck Berry's Golden Decade - 2LP1514 (1967)
 Back Home - LP 1550 (1970)
 San Fransisco Dues - LP 50008 (1971)
 The London Chuck Berry Sessions - LP 60020 (1972)
 Chuck Berry Bio - LP 50043 (1973)
 Chuck Berry's Golden Decade Vol. 2 - 2LP 60023 (1973)
 Chuck Berry's Golden Decade Vol. 3 - 2LP 60028 (1974)
 several of the above later reissued on Chess 9000-series

 The Great Twenty-Eight - 2LP 92500 (1983)
 Rock 'n' Roll Rarities - 2LP 92521 (1986)
 More Rock 'n' Roll Rarities - LP/CD 9190 (1986)
 The Chess Box - 6LP/3CD 80001 (1989)
 Missing Berries: Rarities Vol. 3 - LP/CD 9318 (1990)


"The Originator" - Legendary and influental R&B-rock vocalist - guitarist (and sometimes violinist), with his special "jungle-style" - featuring his heavily touring band´s maracas-player Jerome Green, and his great drummer Clifton James. Started his life on the Louisiana/ Mississippi borders and came to Chicago in 1935. Worked on the border of Chicago blues and Country-influenced Bayou rhythms. Diddley has been highly active thruout his career. Born: firstnames Ellas Otha out of wedlock to Eugene Bates and Ethel Wilson (later adopted by his mother's couisin Mrs Gussie McDaniel - and used the McDaniel surname in Chicago - often misspelled McDaniels) in McComb, Mississippi December 30, 1928 (Bob Eagle's research sates the year of 1927); died of heart attack in his home in Archer, Florida June 2, 2008. First recordings: Chicago March 2, 1955 Bo Diddley b/w I´m A Man - Checker 814. Records for: Checker from 1955.
Essential CD: The Chess Box (3CD) - MCA/Chess CH3 19502
or: His Best - MCA/Chess CHD 9373
or: The Story of Bo Diddley, The Very Best of (2CD) - Universal EU CD 9832296

For Collectors: I´m A Man - The Chess Masters, 1955-1958 - Hip-O Select B0009231-02 (2CD)
(48 chronological tracks 1955 - 1958 with the hits plus rare, alternates, and unissued);
plus Road Runner - The Chess Masters, 1959-1960 Hip-O Select B0011076-02 (2CD)
and Ride On - The Chess Masters, 1960-1961 Hip-O Select B00122946-02
Reading: Bo Diddley: Living Legend by George R. White (UK, 1995)
and The Complete Bo Diddley Sessions by George R. White (UK, 2002)
and They Kept On Rockin´ - The Giants of Rock ´N´ Roll by Stuart Colman (Blandford, 1982) Search on Bo Diddley
Bo Diddley at Wikipedia
All music guide.on Bo Diddley
Diddley at The Blues Database
| More on Bo Diddley | And more on him |

      R&B Top 10 Hits:
1955     Bo Diddley     2w
1956     Pretty Thing
1959     Say Man
Some Of His Other Best:

1955     I´m A Man
1955     Diddley Daddy
1956     Bring It To Jerome
1956     Who Do You Love
1957     Hey Bo Diddley
1959     The Story of Bo Diddley
1960     Road Runner
1962     I Can Tell
1962     You Can´t Judge A Book By The Cover

"Hardest Working Man In Show-Biz" - Singer, drummer and organist - "Mr. Dynamite" - "Soul Brother No. 1" - "The Godfather of Soul" - JB is the most successful black act of the 1960s and 70s. Started his musical career in Toccoa, Georgia in 1954 with the Flames (no recordings - except for the demo of "Please, Please, Please" on November 1, 1955 at the studio of WIBB in Macon, Georgia -
including Sylvester Keels, Nash Knox, Fred Pulliam, vocals; Brown, dms; Johnny Terry, vcls; Nafloyd Scott, gtr; Bobby Byrd, pno (born in Toccoa. Georgia August 15, 1934 - died in Loganville, Georgia September 12, 2007); and Ray Scott, bass. Stationed in Augusta, Toccoa and Macon (all Georgia) during 1952-1955. On the first recording the Flames changed name to the Famous Flames (with Brown, Byrd, Terry, Keels, Nash and Nafloyd completed with Little Richards´ ex-road manager Alvin (Lucas) "Fats" Gonder, pno. Soon the original Flames quit - and James back-up vocal group consisted of Little Richards' ex-backing vocal group The Dominions, featuring J.W. Archer, Bill Hollings, Louis Madison (who also played pno), plus  Willie Johnson and often also still Johnny Terry. Brown was billed with his vocal group The Famous Flames on records up to 1968 - the backing vocals in the early 50s included Johnny Terry, Bobby Byrd, Bobby Bennett, and Baby Lloyd Stallworth (now qith Les Buie on guitar). The James Brown Revue during the late 1960s and early 1970s inlcluded Soul Sisters - Bea Ford, Yvonne Fair, Vicki Anderson, Anna King, Tammy Montgomery, Marva Whitney, and Lynn Collins; Soul Brothers - Bobby Byrd, James Crawford, Hank Ballard, and Lee Austin. Long time business associate: booking manager Ben Bart. Brown changed from vocal group backing to heavy "funk" instrumental backing during 1964 when he and Bart formed Fair Deal, which resulted in recordings for Mercury´s Smash Records (with veteran arranger Sam Lowe doing a superb job with studio musicians - and with Nat Jones leading the Brown touring band). The trend setting hit on Smash was "Out Of Sight". Some of Brown´s early band members: Lucas "Fats" Gonder, pno and road manager; Wilbert "Lee Diamond" Smith, tenorsax; J.C. Davis, tenorsax (and original band leader, who later left for Etta James); Nafloyd Scott and Bobby Roach,guitars; Nat Kendrick; dms; Bernard Odum; bass. From the ´60s: St. Clair Pinckney, sax (who stayed loyal); Les Buie, gtr; Al "Brisco" Clark, sax (new band leader); soon replaced by Nat Jones; alto sax (and skillful orchestral arranger) and the innovative band leader during the first successful years of "the new bag" with Maceo Parker, multiple saxophones; Eldee Williams, tenor sax (who left for Joe Tex); Melvin Parker, dms; former Johnny Otis guitarist Jimmy Nolen; Alfred "PeeWee" Ellis, tenor sax and Jones´ successor as arranger in 1967; Jabo Starks and later Clyde Stubblefields,dms; supplemented by Fred Wesley, trombone and band leader from late 1969 - introducing the instrumentalists as The J.B.´s during 1971-1976. Bobby Byrd played piano and Brown organ on several hits. Vice-president of the Brown business during many years: Johnny Terry (from the Flames). Long-time friend: Charles Bobbit (his manager of later years). Polydor bought Brown´s masters from Syd Nathan when JB was contracted to that label in 1971 and Syd had disposed of his King Records to Hal Neely (Polydor also has the People label nowadays). James Brown´s super career was based in New York and "the Apollo", but James moved to South Carolina and later settled back in Augusta, Georgia. Born: May 3, 1933 in Barnwell County, South Carolina (not May 5, 1938 in Macon, Georgia - or in 1928, Tennessee - as stated in some files). Died in Atlanta, Georgia hospital December 25, 2006 of pneumonia. First recording: Cincinnati, Ohio February 4, 1956 Please Please Please / Why Do You Do Me - Federal 12258. Records for: Federal 56-60, King 60-71, Smash 64-67, People 71-76 (mostly as the J.B.´s and also credits to the bandmembers), Polydor 1971-80, Scotti Bros 85-.
Essential CD: The 50th Anniversary Collection (2CD) - Polydor 60725 (50 tracks)
or: The Godfather-The Very Best of James Brown (20 tracks) - Universal 589841-2
or: Out Of Sight-The very Best of JB - Polydor 589279-2
or: T
he 50th Anniversary Collection (3CD) - Universal 9818083 (78 chronological tracks)
For Collectors:
Star Time-The Godfather of Soul (4CD) - Polydor 849109/112-2;
Live At The Apollo (in  1962) - Polydor 843 479-2
Live - DeLuxe Edition (2CD) (at the Apollo in 1967) - Polydor 549-884-2
Roots of A Revolution (2CD) - Polydor 817304-2;
Soul Pride-The Instrumentals 1960-1969 (2CD) - Polydor 517845-2;
The J.B.´s - Funky Good Time: The Anthology (2CD) - Polydor 527094-2 (featuring the 12 minute original of Doing It To Death)
The Foundations of Funk-A Brand New Bag (1964-1969) - Polydor/Universal (2CD) 73145311652
And:  the terrific limited editions  (with great liner information incl definitive session discographies by Alan Leeds):
The Singles Volume One / The Federal Years 1956-60 (2CD) - Hip-0 Select 7029
The Singles Volume Two: 1960-1963 (2CD) - Hip-O Select 8510
The Singles Volume Three: 1964-1965 (2CD) - Hip-0 Select 8804
The Singles Volume Four: 1966-1967 (2CD) - Hip-O Select 9472
The Singles Volume Five: 1967-1969 (2CD)  - Hip-O Select 10411
The Singles Volume Six: 1969-1970 (2CD) - Hip-O Select 12204
The Singles Volume Seven: 1970-1972 (2CD) - Hip-O Select 12728
The Singles Volume Eight: 1972-1973 (2CD) - Hip-O Select 13349
The Singles Volume Nine: 1973-1975 (2CD) Hip-O Select 14259
The Singles Volume Ten; 1975-1979 (2CD) Hip-O Select 15279

The Life of James Brown (re-edited "Black and Proud") by Geoff Brown (UK 2007 - "1996")  - simply great!!!!
The James Brown Reader - 50 years of writing about The Godfather of Soul edited by Nelson George and Alan Leeds (Plumer, US 2008)

James Brown - The Godfather of Soul by James Brown with Bruce Tucker (US, 1986 & with epilogue by Dave Marsh 1997)
I Feel Good - A Memoir of a Life of Soul by James Brown with Marc Eliot (US 2005)
Say Ít Loud - My Memories of James Brown Soutl Brother No. 1 by Don Rhodes (US 2008)
The Hardest Working Man by James Sullivan (US 2008) Search on James BrownAll music guide.on James Brown
James Brown at Wikipedia
James Brown at The Blues Database (maybe later)
| James Brown - Godfather of Soul (official) | James Brown Homepage - Funky-Stuff |
| More on James Brown | James Brown Soul Patrol |
The James Brown Discography at Soulful Kinda Music

      R&B # 1 Hits (of His 59 Top Tens): 
1959     Try Me      1w
1965     Papa´s Got A Brand New Bag      8w     video
1965     I Got You (I Feel Good)      6w
1966     It´s A Man´s Man´s Man´s World      2w
1967     Cold Sweat     3w
1968     I Got The Feelin´     2w
1968     Say It Loud - I´m Black And I´m Proud      6w
1969     Give It Up Or Turnit A Loose      2w
1969     Mother Popcorn (You Got To Have A Mother For Me)      2w
1970     Super Bad     2w
1971     Hot Pants     1w
1971     Make It Funky     2w
1972     Talking Loud And Saying Nothing      1w
1972     Get On The Good Foot      1w
1973     Doing It To Death     2w (Fred Wesley & the J.B.´s)
1974     The Payback     2w
1974     My Thang     2w
1974     Papa Don´t Take No Mess     1w
Other Important Songs & Hits:

1956     Please Please Please
1957     Just Won´t Do Right
1957     That Dood It
1957     Why Does Everything Happen To Me
1959     Good Good Lovin´
1960     Think
1961     I Don´t Mind
1961     Baby You´re Right
1961     Lost Someone
1962     Night Train
1963     Prisoner Of Love
1964     Oh Baby Don´t You Weep (Pop #23, R&B #4)
1964     Don´t Cry Baby  (Smash)
1964     Out Of Sight (Pop #24, R&B #5)  video
1964     Grits (instr)
1965     With Every Beat Of My Heart (instr)
1966     Ain´t That A Groove
1966     Is It Yes Or Is It No?
1966     Don´t Be A Drop-Out
1967     Bring It Up
1970     Get Up (I Feel Like Beeing Like A) Sex Machine
1971     Escape-Ism (People Records as James Brown)
1976     Body Heat
1976     Everybody Wanna Get Funky One More Time
1985     Living In America
1988     I´m Real
Note: Most recordings up to mid 1968 on King issued as by
James Brown and the Famous Flames.
The James Brown Band - leaders / arrangers
Below you will find session details of the first recordings of each of the James Brown band leaders 1956-1975

1956  Please Please Please - James Brown with The Famous Flames
(Federal), recorded in Cincinnati, OH February 4

Alvin "Fats" Gonder, bandleaderl/pno; Bobby Byrd, Johnny Terry, Sylvester Keels, Nash Knox,vcls; Nafloyd Scott,gtr; Wilbert "Lee Diamond" Smith,ts; (Ray Felder,ts present at the session); Clarence Mack,b; Edison Gore,dm; James Brown,lead vcl - other original members of Brown's Flames (although not on any recordings): Fred Pulliam, Ray Scott,vcls.
1958  Try Me (I Need You) - James Brown and The Famous Flames
(Federal), recorded in
New York, N.Y. September 18
Andy Gibson, arr/dir/prod with studio musicians;
Bill Hollings, J.W. Archer, Louis Madison, and prob Johnny Terry,vcls; James Brown,lead vcl.
1958  I Want You So Bad - James Brown and The Famous Flames
(Federal), recorded in Los Angeles, CA December 18

James C Davis, bandleaderl/ts; Bill Hollings, J.W. Archer, Johnny Terry,vcls; Louis Madison,pno; unknown,second ts; Bobby Roach,gtr; Bernard Odum,b; Nat Kendrick,dm; James Brown,lead vcl (new Famous Flames on session but not on this recording: Bill Hollings, J.W. Archer, Johnny Terry, Louis Madison.
1961 Just Won´t Do Right  version II (I Stay In The Chapel Every Night)  - James Brown and The Famous Flames
(King - issued 1964), recorded in Miami, Florida June 9

Al "Brisco" Clark, bandleaderl/ts; Bobby Byrd,co-vcl; Roosevelt Brown,tp; St. Clair Pinckney,ts; Alvin "Fats" Gonder,org; Les Buie,gtr, Hubert Lee Perry,b; Nat Kendrick,dm; James Brown,lead vcl (and prob pno, although James played organ on the instrumental "Cross Firing" from this session - issued 1961 as James Brown presents his Band).

1962  Prisoner Of Love - James Brown and the Famous Flames
(King), recorded in New York, N.Y. December 17

Sammy Lowe, arr/dir with studio musicians; James Brown,vcl. (Lowe also conducted several of the more funky recordings for Smash in 1964).
1963  Oh Baby Don´t You Weep  - James Brown and the Famous Flames
(King), recorded in Cincinnati, OH October 4

St. Clair Pinckney, temp. bandleader/ts; Bobby Byrd, Eugene "Baby Lloyd" Stallworth, Bobby Bennett,vcls; Les Buie,gtr; Sam Thomas,b; Sam Lathan,dm; James Brown,lead vcl/pno.
1964  Out Of Sight - James Brown and his Orchestra
(Smash), recorded in New York, N.Y. late May

Nat Jones, bandleader/alts; prob. Mack Johnson, Teddy Washington, Ron Tooley, Joe Dupars,tp; unknown,tb; St. Clair Pinckney, Eldee Williams, Al "Brisco Clark,ts; Maceo Parker,bars; Bobby Byrd or Alvin "Fats" Gonder,org; Les Buie,gtr; prob. Sam Thomas,b; Melvin Parker,dm; James Brown,vcl.
1966  The King - James Brown at the Organ (Smash LP "Handful Of Soul"),
recorded Charlottte, GA August 16 (Nat Jones's last one before his one-time return)

Nat Jones,bandleaderl/alts; James Brown,org: Joe Dupars, Waymon Reed, poss also Ron Harper,tp; Levi Rasbury,tb; Alfred "Pee Wee" Ellis, Eldee Williams,ts; St. Clair Pinckney,bars; Jimmy Nolen & Alfonzo Kellum,gtr; Bernard Odum,b; John "Jabo" Starks,dm.

1967  Let Yourself Go - James Brown and The Famous Flames
(King), recorded in Cherry Hill,NJ January 15
Alfred "Pee Wee" Ellis, bandleader/alts; Joe Dupars, Waymon Reed,tp; Levi Rasbury,tb; Garnett Brown,tb; Eldee Williams,ts; St. Clair Pinckney,bars; Jimmy Nolen,gtr; Alfonzo Kellum or Bernard Odum,b; John "Jabo" Starks,dm; Ron Celico,bgo; James Brown,vcl.
1969  Bewildered  version II - James Brown
(King), recorded in Cincinnati, OH April 12 or 22/23
David Matthews, arr/cond; with studio musicians, James Brown,vcl. (Matthews also arranged and produced several other Brown songs 1969).
1969  It's A New Day  James Brown
ng), recorded in Cincinnati, OH September 3
Maceo Parker, "unofficial bandleader"/ts; Fred Wesley, "co-bandleader"/tb; Bobby Byrd and various band members,vcl; Richard "Kush" Griffith, Joe Davis,tp; Eldee Williams,ts; St. Clair Pinckney,bars; Jimmy Nolen,gtr; Charles Sherrell,b; Melvin Parker,dm; James Brown,lead vcl.
1969  Spinning Wheel  - James Brown (King LP "Sex Machine")
recorded live Augusta, GA October 1

Fred Wesley, arranger/tb; James Brown,org; Richard "Kush" Griffith, Joe Davis,tp; Maceo Parker, Eldee Williams,ts; St. Clair Pinckney, bars; Jimmy Nolen,gtr; Alfonzo Kellum,b; Clyde Stubblefield or Melvin Parker,dm.
1970  Get Up I Feel Like Being Like A Sex Machine - James Brown  
King), recorded in Nashville, TN April 25

James Brown, bandleader/vcl/pno; Bobby Byrd,vcl/org; Clayton "Chicken" Gunnels, Darryl "Hasaan" Jamison,tp; Robert McCullough,ts; Phelps "Catfish" Collins,gtr; Williams "Bootsy" Collins,b; John "Jabo" Starks,dm.

1971  Soul Power  - James Brown
(King), recorded in Washington, D.C. January 26

James Brown, arranger/lead vcl; Fred Wesley,bandleader/co-arranger/tb; Bobby Byrd,co-vcl/org; Clayton "Chicken" Gunnels, Darryl "Hasaan" Jamison,tp; St Clair Pinckney,ts; Phelps "Catfish" Collins, Bobby Roach,gtr; Williams "Bootsy" Collins,bs; John "Jabo" Starks,dm; Johnny Griggs,cga.

And here the great reunion:
1973  Doing It To Death ("Gonna Have A Funky Good Time") - Fred Wesley & The J.B.´s
(People), recorded in Augusta,GA January 29

Fred Wesley,bandleader/tb/vcl; Ike Oakley, Darryl "Hasaan" Jamison & Jerone "Jasaan" Sanford,tp; Maceo Parker, alts/flute; St. Clair Pinckney & Eldee Williams,ts; Jimmy Nolen & Hearlon "Cheese" Martin,gtr; Fred Thomas,b; John "Jabo" Starks,dm; Danny Ray,intro; James Brown,lead vcl.


"The Countess", later "The Empress of Rock ´N´ Roll" - Early R&B thrush popularizing the classic female blues traditions of the 1920s (via blues belter - aunt Merline Johnson, and  distant cousin Memphis Minnie) strongly influencing white rock´n´roll. Born in Chicago, sang in church as a child and made her professional debut in 1946-47 at Club de Lisa with Fletcher Henderson´s band. Came to Detroit in 1952 (so she knows who Hank Ballard, Jackie Wilson, and Alonzo Tucker are at!). Too often under-rated (because of only one #1 hit), she was probably the most talented of the early R&B females. Made her first recordings as Little Miss Sharecropper and as Bea Baker. After a stint with Todd Rhodes´ Detroit band in 1952, LaVern toured Europe as "the Ambassadris of Blues" and was signed by Jerry Wexler to Atlantic after her return in 1953. Was joined by the qualitative Cues vocal group (as The Gliders) on several early Atlantic hits, often backed by tenor saxophonist Sam "The Man" Taylor. Her "Tweedlee Dee" is often called the first R&B hit turning Pop and was retiteld "Tweedle Dee" after Georgia Gibbs' No. 1 Pop cover hit. Baker left America during the late ´60s (first for Vietnam services and later settled for years in the Philippines after phenumonia illness) not returning to USA until 1988, when she made a successful revival, and later substituted for Ruth Brown on Broadway´s musical "Black And Blue". Born: Delores (Dolores) Baker (later Williams by marriage) November 11, 1929, Chicago, Ill., Died by heart attack in New York March 12, 1997. First recordings: as Little Miss Sharecropper in Chicago February 25, 1949: I Wonder Baby (RCA Victor 22-0016) and Easy Baby (22-0036) with flips by Eddie Penigar Band; later early recording: Chicago June, 1950 with Red Saunders band and Hot Lips Page: Sharecropper Boogie (unissed Columbia); first for Atlantic: NYC as LaVerne Baker (later pressings LaVern) June 19, 1953 Soul On Fire - Atlantic 1004. Records for: National 1950-51, Atlantic 53-64, Brunswick 65-69.
Essential CDs: Soul On Fire-The Best of... - Atlantic 82311-2,
or: The Definitive Soul Collection (2CD)  Rhino (delayed),
or: The Platinum Collection - Warner WEA CD 79995
LaVern - Sequel RSA CD 909,
The Chronological 1949-1954 - Classics 5126
(her first 23 recordings, from "Easy Baby" to "Tweedle Dee")
Editor´s choises: The above Sequel CD and the other six on Sequel (covering the Atantic years) - Sequel RSA CD 910 - 9
Icons of R&B and Soul, Volume 1 by Bob Gulla (Greenwood Press, US 2008)
Blue Rhythms - Six Lives in Rhythm and Blues by Chip Deffaa (US 1996)
Rhythm and the Blues by Jerry Wexler and David Ritz (Borzoi, 1993) Search on LaVern Baker
LaVern Baker at Wikipedia
All music guide.on LaVern Baker
LaVern at The Blues Database
| More LaVern Baker
| LaVern Baker discography |
Listen to "Soul On Fire" & "Tomorrow Night"
A nice article on LaVern

LaVern Baker pre-Atlantic discography:
Eddie "Sugarman" Penigar Orchestra;
vocal Little Miss Sharecropper
 (Chicago, February 25, 1949)
RCA Victor 22-0016   I Wonder Baby  (B-side by Eddie Penigar, issued March 1949)
RCA Victor 22-0036   Easy Baby  (B-side by Eddie Penigar, issued May 1949)
Hot Lips Page (prob. Chicago, June 15, 1950)
with vocal by Baker and Red Saunders' band
Sharecropper Boogie (unissued Columbia)
Miss Sharecropper with Orchestra (Chicago, ca January 1951)
incl Earl Washington,pno and Red Saunders,dms
National 9151   I´ve Tried  (aka I´ll Try) b/w  How Long (issued May 1951)
National 9153   Take Out Some Time  b/w I Want To Rock (issued June, 1951)
Bea Baker
with Maurice King´s Wolverines (New York City or poss Detroit, March 8, 1951)
Columbia 39330   Good Daddy  (non Baker B-side, prob Maurice King, issued May 1951)
Maurice King & his Wolverines, vocal Bea Baker (New York City or poss. Detroit, April 25, 1951)
Okeh 6800   I Want A Lavender Cadillac  (Maurice King flip, issued June 1951)
Okeh 6817   Make It Good  (Maurice King flip)
Todd Rhodes & his Orchestra, vocal Lavern Baker (Cincinnati, July 1, 1952)
note: all flips by Rhodes´ orchestra
King 4556   Trying (issued Sept 1952)
King 4566   Pig Latin Blues (issued Oct 1952)
(Cincinnati, October 14, 1952)
King 4583   Must I Cry Again (issued Dec 1952)
King 4601   Lost Child  (issued March 1953)
R&B Top 10 Hits:
1955     Tweedlee Dee (Tweedle Dee)
1955     Bop-Ting-A-Ling
1955     That´s All I Need
1955     Play It Fair
1956     Still
1956     I Can´t Love You Enough
1957    Jim Dandy   1w  (as LaVerne Baker)
1957     Jim Dandy Got Married
1958     I Cried A Tear
1959     I Waited Too Long
1962     See See Rider
The Very Best of Other Goodies:
1951     How Long (as Little Miss Sharecropper)
1951     I Want A Lavender Cadillac
            (with Maurice King as Bea Baker)
1952     Pig Latin Blues (w Todd Rhodes)
1952     Must I Cry Again (w Todd Rhodes)
1953     Soul On Fire (as Laverne Baker)
1954     Living My Life For You
1954     I´m In A Crying Mood
1954     Of Course I Do
1954     Tomorrow Night
1956     Tra-La-La  (as LaVerne Baker)
1957     It´s So Fine (w the Cookies)
1959     If You Love Me
1959     Shake A Hand
1960     You´re The Boss (w Jimmy Ricks)
1960     Don Juan
1960     Saved
1960     I Didn't Know I Was Crying
1961     Hey Memphis
1965     Think Twice (w Jackie Wilson)

A 4-cd box of 2000 featuring four LaVerns best Atlantic LPs.

  LaVern´s original Atlantic LPs

  1956  La Vern - Atlantic LP 8002
  1957  Rock & Roll - Atlantic LP 8007
  1958  Sings Bessie Smith - Atlantic LP 1281
  1959  Blues Ballads - Atlantic LP 8030
  1959  Precious Memories /Sings Gospel
           - Atlantic LP 8036
  1961  Saved - Atlantic LP 8050
  1962  See See Rider - Atlantic LP 8071
  1964  The Best of LaVern Baker - Atlantic LP 8078
  1971  Her Greatest Recordings/The Early Years
           - Atco LP 33-372

"Mr. Excitement" - "The Black Elvis" - Original Detroit Soul singer, who never recorded for Motown, but initiated that city´s famous ´60s sound. Started out in 1952 as Sonny Wilson and then joined the Dominoes (succeeding lead Clyde McPhatter) and went solo again in 1957. Inspired James Brown´s stage routines, and definatley Elvis Presley's and Michael Jackson's. Worked in Detroit and came to New York City to record in 1956, also worked in Chicago and Los Angeles. Was managed by Al Green (who also managed LaVern Baker up to his death in 1957). Jackie´s early hits were composed by Berry Gordy and Roquel "Billy" Davis (under the pseudonym of Tyron Carlo). Later Nat Tarnopol, soon owner of Brunswick, became Wilson's manager (and producer). Dick Jacobs did most of the arrangements up to 1965 in New York. although some of Jackie's early Brunswick recordings were done in Detroit, a.o. the hit "To Be Loved". From 1966 Carl Davis co-produced and arranged Jackie's recordings - now in Chicago with the famous Detroit Motown musicians moonlightning (Jackie's great album with Count Basie was done in Los Angeles. Long-time friend: original Midnighter Alonzo Tucker (who co-wrote several of Jackie's songs on the 1960 blues album including "Doggin' Around" and later "Baby Workout" and the nice male-back-up-vocal album "Somethin' Else"). Jackie collapsed from a stroke on stage at a rock ´n´ roll revival show at Little Casino on September 29, 1975 in Camden, N.J. and was hospitalized (unable to communicate) for the rest of his life. Born: Jack Leroy Wilson June 9, 1934, Detroit, Mich; died January 21, 1984, NYC. First recordings: Detroit 1952 as Sonny Wilson Rainy Day Blues and Danny Boy - DeeGee 4000 and 4001; with Billy Ward & his Dominoes NYC June 17, 1953 You Can´t Keep A Good Man Down - Federal 12139; first new solo rec. NYC July 12, 1957 Reet Petite (The Finest Girl You Ever Want To Meet) /By The Light Of The Silvery Moon - Brunswick 55024. Records for: Brunswick 1957-1975.
Essential CD: The Very Best of.. - Rhino R2 71559
or: The Original Hits (2CD 1957-71) - Brunswick DCD 5284The Titan of Soul on Edsel.
For Collectors: Mr. Excitement! - Rhino R2 70775 (3CD)
or: The Titan of Soul - Edsel FBook 18 (3CD)
also: Reet Petite The Original Recordings - Not Now 294 (2CD)
featuring his first Brunswick LP plus bonus + The Dominoes
Reading: Jackie Wilson - Lonely Teardrops by Tony Douglas
(US and UK Routledge, 2001 and 2005) also published as  The Man, The Music, The Mob (Mainstream, 2001) 
and The Black Elvis by Doug Carter (US 1998) Search on Jackie Wilson
Jackie Wilson at Wikipedia
All music guide.on Jackie Wilson
Jackie at The Blues Database
Discography at Soulful Kinda Music
Jackie Wilson | Jackie Wilson | More on Jackie |
Baby Workout at Shindig TV

     R&B Top 10 Hits:
1958   To Be Loved
1958   Lonely Teardrops      7w
1959   That´s Why (I Love You So)
1959   I´ll Be Satisfied
1959   You Better Know It 1w
1959   Talk That Talk
1960   Doggin´ Around 3w
1960   Night
1960   A Woman, A Lover, A Friend 4w
1960   Am I The Man
1961   The Tear Of The Year
1961   I´m Comin´ On Back To You
1963   Baby Workout    3w
1966   Whispers (Gettin´ Louder)
1967   (Your Love Keeps Lifting Me) Higher And Higher    1w
1970   This Love Is Real
Some of the Other Gems:
1957   Reet Petite (The Finest Girl You Ever Want To Meet)
1962   Stormy Weather
1963   Shake A Hand (with Linda Hopkins)
1964   Danny Boy
1964   Bigg  Boss Line (from Somethin' Else LP)
1964   Groovin' (from Somethin' Else LP)
1964   Give Me Back My Heart (from Somethin' Else LP)
1964   Squeeze Her - Tease Her (from Somethin' Else LP)
1964   Be My Girl (from Somethin' Else LP)
1964   Baby (I Just Can't Help It) (from Somethin' Else LP)
1954   She's All Right
1965   Think Twice (with LaVern Baker)
1966   Brand New Thing
1969   Chaing Gang (with Count Basie)

"The Prince of the Blues" - Intensive and "feverish" young Detroit soul/blues ballad singer. Moved with family to Detroit from Arkansas in 1941. Regarded as a highly qualitative soul pioneer (especially by James Brown). His band of 1958, the Upsetters (little Richard's old band) was taken over by Sam Cooke later. Said to have used John Davenport as a composer pseudo for "Fever", although it is more likely an Otis Blackwell pseudo - possibly with John as co-writer. Mostly stationed in Detroit but also worked in NYC and moved to Miami, Florida in later years. Florida. Willie was jailed for manslaughter (knife-killing in a bar fight) in 1966. Born: William Edgar John. November 15, 1937, Cullendale, Ark. Died of heart attack on May 26, 1968, Washington State Penitantiary, Walla Walla, Washington. First recordings: As Willie John Detroit December, 1953 Mommy What Happened To The Christmas Tree - Prize; As Little Willie John NYC June 27, 1955 All Around The World - King 4818. Records for: King 55-63.
Essential CD: Fever: The Best Of..(anth) - Rhino R2 71511
or: The Very Best Of .. - Collectables CD 2822 (25 classic tracks)
Vinyl For Collectors: Free At Last (2LP-set) - Gusto GD 5034X
 Fever - Little Willie John - A Fast Life, Strange Death and the Birth of Soul by Susan Whitall & Kevin John (US 2011) Search on Little Willie John
Little Willie John at Wikipedia
Little Wille
All music guide.on Little Willie John
Little Willie at The Blues Database
Discography   at Soulful Kinda Music

      R&B Top 10 Hits:
1955  All Around The World
1956  Need Your Love So Bad
1956  Home At Last
1956  Fever    5w
1956  Letter From My Darling
1958  Talk To Me, Talk To Me
1960  Sleep
1961  Take My Love (I Want To Give It All To You)
These Ones Are Good Too:
1956  Suffering With The Blues
1959  Leave My Kitten Alone
1960  You Hurt Me

"Miss Peaches" - "Miss Dynamite" - "The Matriarch of Soul" - singing R&B rave-ups, soul ballads, and raw blues in full energy. Was billed with The Peaches on the early Modern sides. Had frequent bouts with heroin addiction (especially after the break with Harvey Fuqua - of the Moonglows), cured in the late ´70s. Worked in San Francisco, Los Angeles (from 1954), Cleveland (Ohio), Chicago (from 1960) and Los Angeles again (also recorded in Muscle Schoals, Alabama). Is an important member of the blues scene of today. Had at least three major careers: 1950s for the Biharis, 1960s for the Chess brothers (with the early hits arranged by Riley Hampton); and now as a super blues star. Born: Jamesetta Hawkins January 25, 1938, Los Angeles, Calif. Died in Riverside,California January 20, 2012. First recording: L.A. November 25, 1954 Wallflower /Hold Me Squeeze Me - Modern 947. Records for: Modern 54-57, Kent 1958, Argo 60-64, Cadet 65-71, Chess 72-76, Warner 78.
Essential CDs:
Heart &Soul . Hip-O Select B0015545-02 (4CD8
R&B Dynamite - Flair/Virgin 2-91695/Ace CDCH 210
or : Hickory Dickory Dock  - Ace CHM 680
and: Essential Etta James (2CD Argo/Cadet) - MCA/Chess MCD2-9341
or: The Chess Box (3CD - 1960-74) - MCA 088112288-2

For Collectors: The Complete Modern and Kent Recordings (2CD) - Ace CDCHM 21085 (41 tracks)
and: The Very Best of - The Chess singles (3CD) - Spectrum 9827741
or: Tough Woman, The Early Recordings 1955-1960 (2CD) - Jasmine 3013/4
Reading: Rage to Survive - The Etta James Story by Etta James and David Ritz (US, 1995) Search on Etta James
Etta James at Wikipedia
All music guide.on Etta James
Etta James at The Blues Database
| Etta James official | Etta James |

Etta James Discography

     R&B Top 10 Hits:
1955  The Wallflower (Roll With Me Henry)   4w
1955  Good Rockin´ Daddy
1960  All I Could Do Was Cry
1960  If I Can´t Have You
         (with Harvey Fuqua as Etta & Harvey)
1960  My Dearest Darling
1961  At Last
1961  Trust In Me
1961  Don´t Cry, Baby
1962  Something´s Gotta Hold On Me
1962  Stop The Wedding
1963  Pushover
1964  Loving You More Every Day
1967  Tell Mama
These Are Some Real Treats:
1956  W-O-M-A-N
1957  The Pick-Up
1958  I Hope You´re Satisfied
         (with Fuqua as Betty & Dupree)
1960  A Sunday Kind Of Love
1960  I Just Want To Make Love To You
1961  Spoonful (Etta & Harvey)
1967  I´d Rather Go Blind

Productive hit-maker, singer/songwriter with a deep gospel-schooled baritone - "The Nat King Cole" for the new black generation. Started as a sophisticated gospel singer with the Camden Jubilee Singers and later wrote hits for Nat Cole and Clyde McPhatter. Became a huge star during the early ´60s with producer Clyde Otis and arranger Belford Hendricks. Worked in South Carolina, NYC 48, Nashville 62, Muscle Shoals (Alabama), NYC again. Born: Benjamin Franklin Peay September 19, 1931, Camden, South Carolina. Died of complications from spinal meningitis May 9, 1988. First recordings: 1949 with Bill Langford´s Langfordaires for Columbia; with Jerusalem Stars 1951 and possibly with the Golden Gate Quartet in 1953; first solo recordings with The Sandmen December 14, 1954 Somebody To Love - Okeh 7052; first solo recording May 25.1955 Ooh on Okeh 7058 (featuring the Dandmen); 1955 Give Me A Sign on  Epic 9188 and The Wall on Epic 9199. First recordings for Mercury already in 1955 - It's Just A Matter Of Time and in 1956  So Many Ways and Endlessly - the first Merucry recording were not issued until late 1958. Benton was contracted to RCA after the first Mercury recordings: If I Had known on RCA 564 (recorded June 1957) in New York; and Million Miles From Nowhere for Vik (recorded November 14, 1957). First new recordings for Mercury New York early 1959 for the album It's Just A Matter Of Time. Records for: Epic, Vik, Mercury 59-65, RCA, Reprise, Cotillion 69-71, Stax, All Platinum, Olde World 79.
Essential CD: The Best Of Brook Benton - Polygram/Mercury 830772-2
or: Endlessly - The Best of.. - Rhino RHCD 75324
CD For Collectors: Forty Greatest Hits (2CD) - Polygram 836755-2
The Silky Smooth Tones of Brrok Benton - Jasmine (2CD) JASCD 687
Reading: There Goes That Song Again by Herwig Gradischnig & Hans Maitner (2010) (German 334 pages with lots of photos and discography) Search on Brook Benton
Brook Benton at Wikipedia
All music guide.on Brook Benton
The Brook Benton Juke Box
| more on Brook Benton
Brook Benton Discography

     R&B Top 10 Hits:
1959 It´s Just A Matter Of Time   9w
1959  Endlessly
1959  So Close
1959  Thank You Pretty Baby   4w
1959  So Many Ways   3w
1960  Baby (You´ve Got What It Takes) (with Dinah Washington)   10w
1960  A Rockin´ Good Way (with Dinah Washington)    4w
1960  Kiddio   9w
1960  Fools Rush In
1961  For My Baby
1961  Think Twice
1961  The Boll Weevil Song
1962  Lie To Me
1962  Hotel Happiness
1963  I Got What I Wanted
1963  My True Confession
1964  Going Going Gone
1964  Another Cup Of Coffee
1964  Too Late To Turn Back Now
1964  A House Is Not A Home
1970  Rainy Night In Georgia  1w
More Of His Best:
1957  A Million Miles From Nowhere
1967  You´re The Reason I´m Living


"The Master", "Prince of Soul" - Rebellious and super-talented church-influenced soul singer, who was the main star of Detroit´s Motown sound. Sang in his father´s Apostolic church and later with the Marquees. Joined Harvey Fuqua in a reformed Moonglows and drummed for Motown. Worked in Washington (DC) and came to Detroit in 1960. Married to Berry Gordy´s sister Anna 1961-1975. After the death of Tammie Terrell, Marvin had problems with drugs and moved to Europe for several years. Made a successful come-back in Los Angeles. Born: Marvin Pentz Gay, Jr. April 2 1939, Washington, DC. Died by a fatal shot from his father after a quarrel April 1, 1984, Los Angeles, Calif. First recordings: Washington, DC 1957 with the Marquees Wyatt Earp for Okeh; with the Moonglows Mama Loochie for Anna/Chess; first solo: Detroit, c:a May 1961 Let Your Conscience Be Your Guide for Tamla. Records for: Tamla 61-81, Columbia 82-85.
Essential CD: The Very Best of.. (2CD) - Universal/Motown 014 367-2
CDs for Collectors: The Marvin Gaye Collection (4CD) - Motown MOTD4-6311
or: The Master 1961-84 (4CD) - Motown 314530492-2.
Reading: Divided Soul - The Life of Marvin Gaye: David Ritz (US, 1985)
and Trouble Man - The Life and Death of Marvin Gaye: Steve Turner (2000)
Marvin Gaye, My Brother: Frankie Gaye with Fred E. Basten (US 2005) Search on Marvin Gaye
Marvin Gaye at Wikipedia
All music guide.on Marvin Gaye
Marvin at The Blues Database

| Marvin Gaye |
Marvin Gaye |

     R&B # 1 Hits (of His 37 Top Tens):
1965  I´ll Be Doggone 1w
1965  Ain´t That Peculiar 1w
1968  Ain´t Nothing Like The Real Thing  (with Tammi Terrell)    1w
1968  You´re All I Need To Get By  (with Tammie Terrell)     5w
1968  I Heard It Through The Grapevine   7w
1969  Too Busy Thinkin Of My Baby 6w
1971  What´s Going On 5w
1971  Mercy Mercy Me (The Ecology)  2w
1971  Inner City Blues (Make Me Wanna Holler) 2w
1973  Let´s Get It On   6w
1976  I Want You   1w
1977  Got To Give It Up   5w
1982  Sexual Healing   10w
Other Hits and Best Ones:

1962  Stubborn Kind Of Fellow
1963  Hitch Hike
1963  Pride And Joy
1963  Can I Get A Witness
1964  You´re A Wonderful One (Pop #15)
1964  Try It Baby (Pop #15)
1965  How Sweet It Is (To Be Loved By You)
1966  It Takes Two (with Kim Weston)
1967  Ain´t No Mountain High Enough
1969  That´s The Way Love Is

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