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CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
VariousMusic City Vocal Groups – Greasy Love Songs Of Teenage Romance, Regret, Hope, & Despair ... CD
Ace (UK), Late 50s/Early 60s. New Copy 2CD ... $21.99
A wealth of rare group soul and doo wop from the Bay Area scene – a good deal of which has never been issued before! The work here comes from the same Music City studios that have been brought to light in recent years as a treasure trove of 60s soul and 70s funk – and these tracks represent the rich legacy at Music City in the years before – the company's really special talent for recording vocal groups in all of their power! Many of the acts here are young, and have a nicely gritty feel – free from some of the more polished modes that were creeping into east coast doo wop at the end of the 50s, and much more in a stripped-down street corner mode – even though the Bay Area probably didn't boast as many street corners as New York or Philly! Instrumentation is often relatively spare – just a slight bit of rhythm that really lets the singers take the lead – and the set features a whopping 50 tracks in all, 34 of which appear here for the first time ever. Includes work by The Italics, The Klix, Bob & Jessie, The Corvettes, The Pagans, The Midnights, The 5 Campbells, The Holidays, The Girls, The Echotones, and many others. CD

Partial matches402
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
VariousSoul Ecstasy – Real 70s/80s Soul For Those Who Feel Soul ... CD
Expansion (UK), Late 70s/Early 80s. New Copy ... $11.99
Sublime soul all the way through – a tremendous set of modern and mellow cuts from the end of the 70s and start of the 80s – all put together with a really beautiful feel! There's a perfect balance here – between mainstream and underground, laidback and grooving – the classiest sort of soul from the time, and work that's light years away from both disco dancefloors and chart-oriented cuts. Expansion Records' Ralph Tee put the package together, and his approach here really takes us back to the time when the label first started catching our ear with their subtle, sophisticated approach to soul. Many tracks here haven't been reissued before, and even those that have sound wonderful in the company of the rest. Titles include "If You're Ready" by Beau Williams, "Let's Go All The Way" by Gayle Adams, "The Good Side Of Love" by Ronnie McNeir, "We're In Ecstasy" by Hubert Laws, "Evening Of Love" by Main Ingredient, "It's Alright With Me" by Patti Labelle, "Say You Love Me Girl" by Breakwater, "Never Had A Love Like This Before (inst)" by Tavares, "Here We Go Again (parts 1 & 2)" by Isley Brothers, "I Want To Be Where You Are" by Ronnie Dyson, "Can You Find The Time" by Champaign, "How Do You Take Your Love" by Major Harris, and "What About My Love" by Damaris Carbaugh. CD

Partial matches403
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
VariousStroboscopica Vol 3 – Jazzy Orchestral Latin Strobo Sounds From Cinematic 70s Filmworks ... LP
Plastic (Italy), Early 70s. New Copy ... $14.99
Insanely wonderful grooves from lost Italian sources! Like the other two volumes in this series, this third entry in the Stroboscopia set is a must-have if you dig 60s Hammond organ groovers, 70s keyboard funk tracks, and any sort of tune that has a slightly offbeat edge. The set list features 20 tracks in all – all instrumentals with the kind of funky and groovy sound that you'd expect to find on jazz albums by more famous funk artists, but which are equally great in this nicely packaged compilation! Titles include "Carter", "Joy Bells", "The Taste Of Repeat", "Asfalto", "Smooth & Manly", "Supermarket", "A Little Sad", and "Malcontento Popolare" – and artists include Rino De Filippi, Giuliano Sorgini, Puccio Roelens, Alessandro Alessandroni, and Mirot Lash. One of the best sets on Plastic we've heard in years! LP, Vinyl record album

Partial matches404
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
VariousTru Thoughts 15th Anniversary ... CD
Tru Thoughts, 2014. New Copy 2 CDs ... $10.99 11.99
Great sounds from a great label – a company we've trusted for groundbreaking music for many years – celebrating their 15th anniversary with this specially-priced 2CD set! The package offers up loads of key musical moments from the history of Tru Thoughts – and shows a great evolution in styles, towards a point where the company is even more deeply soulful now than at their start – quite a change from other imprints who usually head in a much more commercial direction over the years. The package features 30 tracks in all – and titles include "Dust" by Hidden Orchestra, "Look Around The Corner" by Quantic & Alice Russell, "Lapwing" by Werkha, "Pushin On (situation edit)" by Quantic Soul Orchestra with Alice Russell, "Money Mad (Drumagick jungle rmx)" by London Posse, "Knock Knock" by Ty, "Badungdeng" by Sleepin Giants, "Dinosaurs" by Bonobo, "I Don't Wanna Stop (Marc Mac grown soul mix)" by The Bamboos, "Wasted Time" by Belleruche, "Steamin Blues" by Hot 8 Brass Band, "For A While" by Alice Russell, "Dancing" by Omar & Zed Bias, and "The Why" by Mark De Clive Lowe. CD

Partial matches405
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
VariousVamps Et Vampire – The Songs Of Serge Gainsbourg ... CD
Ace (UK), 1960s/1970s/1980s. New Copy ... $14.99
Serge Gainsbourg never slept – and during his short time on this planet, managed to cut not only a host of incredible records for himself, but also write and produce some amazing music for a whole host of female singers too! The work on this set is mostly French – and features a range that goes past just the likely compatriots from Serge's inner circle, to include bigger names from Parisian pop who were touched by his sublime songwriting skills, and his innate ear for a sexy groove! The album's a wonderfully focused collection of female French numbers – all of which have that undeniable slinky sound we love in Gainsbourg's own recordings too. Titles include "Pour Aimer Il Faut Etre Trois" by Isabelle Aubert, "Les Yeux Pour Pleurer" by Nana Mouskouri, "La Chanson De Prevert" by Vicky Autier, "La Javanaise" by Juliette Greco, "Baudelaire" by Catherine Sauvage, "Les Sucettes" by France Gall, "Elastique" by Charlotte Gainsbourg, "Tandem" by Vanessa Paradis, "Lulu" by Bambou, "Con C'Est Con Ces Consequences" by Jane Birkin, "L'Anamour" by Francoise Hardy, "Reves Et Caravells" by Michele Arnaud, "Jane B" by Jane Birkin, "Hier Ou Demain" by Marianne Faithfull, "Strip Tease" by Juliette Greco, and "Contact" by Brigitte Bardot. CD

Partial matches406
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
VariousViva Cubop! Vol 1 – Jazz The Afro Cuban Way ... CD
CuBop/Ubiquity, 1999. New Copy ... $5.99 16.98
Although the Ubiquity label originally started out as a home for rare groove and funky jazz, sometime in 1995 they began their Cubop imprint as a home for all of the great Latin jazz currently being played on the west coast. The label immediately became one of the best Latin ones out there – and the past 5 years have seen an amazing set of Latin jazz releases that stand as some of greatest of the past decade! This tasty set compiles 13 tracks from the small but rich catalog of the label – and it's not only a perfect introduction to their great work, but also a great sampler for anyone into Latin jazz with a classic flavor. Titles icnlude "The Last Dynasty" by Papo Vazquez, "Picadillo" by Johnny Blas, "Tanga" by the Afro-Rican Ensemble, "Tierra Va Tamblar" by Snowboy, "Descarga On Las Palmas" by Pucho & The Latin Soul Brothers, "The Creator Has a Master Plan" by Bobby Matos, and "Cavalie" by Franciso Aquabella. Great package, too! CD

Partial matches407
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
VariousViva Cubop! Vol 3 – The Essential Latin & Afro-Cuban Jazz Collection ... CD
CuBop/Ubiquity, 2003. New Copy ... $5.99 16.98
Long live Cubop – one of the greatest labels for Latin music in the past 25 years, and still one of the imprints that most frequently graces our turntables! Cubop have stepped in where many other labels fail –resurrecting a solid, classic style of Latin jazz that isn't always recorded with such care and respect. Work on the label has features some of the greatest talents – young and old – of the sometimes-neglected west coast scene, as well as essential work by other players who've been influenced by older recordings by those originators. This 13 track set features a great selection of work from Cubop – and includes a few exclusive and rare tracks, next to others from some of the best releases on the label. Titles include "Kimbisa" by Bobby Matos, "My Favorite Things" by Francisco Aguabella, "My Dream Boogaloo" by Pucho & The Latin Soul Brothers, "Bemba Colora" by Jack Costanzo, "Back To The Roots" by Dave Pike, "Juan Jose" by Papo Vazquez, "Barrets Bag" by Har You Percussion Group, "Tresguanco" by Derf Reklaw, and "Skin & Bones" by Johnny Blas. CD

Partial matches408
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VariousWants List – 17 Soulful Rare Grooves ... CD
Soul Brother (UK), Late 60s/1970s. New Copy ... $11.99
A great tribute to the concept of the "wants list" – that crumpled piece of paper that nearly every record collector carries around with them, a listing of hard to find recordings that they're always trying to track down! The set is a great mix of obscure 60s and 70s soul, with a real focus on the kinds of cuts that are all pretty darn important – but also equally hard to track down on their own. Mellow soul is the dominant groove here, making the package a winning set of some killer tunes that are equally appealing now as they were back in the day! Titles include "Touch Me Take Me" by Rita Wright, "Light My Fire" by Erma Franklin, "This Feeling's Rated X-Tra" by Carl Carlton, "One Girl Too Late" by Brenda & The Tabulations, "Let Me Be" by The Duncans, "Mon Belle Amour" by Ann Pebbles, "I Think I'm Falling In Love With You" by Natural High, "I Just Got To Know" by Bennie Johnson, "City Of Brotherly Love" by Soul Survivors, "I'm Always Dancing To The Music" by Benny Golson, "Making Love" by Lou Ragland & GLO, "Hearts & Flowers" by GC Cameron, and "Beware" by Lou Courtney. CD

Partial matches409
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
James BrownAmazing James Brown & The Famous Flames ... CD
King/Universal (Japan), 1961. New Copy ... Around May 13, 2015
Amazing is right – because even at this early stage, James Brown was a killer – sounding harder and heavier than most of his pre-soul contemporaries – and busting out in a stunning sound that instantly put him on the map! This overstuffed early set features some great tracks that move past the more famous hits – 12 numbers that show James at a key point between R&B and early soul. Titles include "Just You & Me Darling", "Dancin Little Thing", "Lost Someone", "You Don't Have To Go", "And I Do Just What I Want", "Come Over Here", "Love Don't Love Nobody", and "The Bells". Reissued with the original cover too! CD

Partial matches410
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
James BrownIt's a Man's Man's Man's World ... CD
King/Universal (Japan), 1966. New Copy ... Around May 13, 2015
James Brown, proud and loud – a smoking 60s album that provides a great link between his earlier styles and his freer roots – with a brilliant blend of funk, soul, and a touch of raw R&B! Given the power of The Godfather at this point, there's no denying that even the older cuts have a punch that few others could match – making for a record that feels mighty darn unified, despite the stretch of time between a few of the recordings. Titles include the funky gems "Ain't That a Groove (pts 1 & 2)", "The Scratch", "Is It Yes or Is It No", and James' great version of "The Bells" that's always been one of our favorites – plus Just You & Me", "I Love You Yes I Do", "Come Over Here", and "I Don't Mind". The cover also comes with an "autographed" photo of James on the back with the text "James Brown Fans – Frame This 8 x 10 Picture" – and an image that says "Soul Brother #1 Is Peeking At You Thru The Key Hole"! CD

Partial matches411
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Lou DonaldsonMr Shing-A-Ling ... CD
Blue Note (Japan), 1967. New Copy ... Around July 1, 2015
Funky funky Lou Donaldson – and one of the first albums to feature the tight drum work of Idris Muhammad behind Lou's horn – so early, in fact, that Muhammad's listed here on the label as Leo Morris, which was his original name! The group also features Blue Mitchell on trumpet, Jimmy Ponder on guitar, and Lonnie Smith on organ – and they all wail together in a sound that bridges the gap between Lou's earlier Blue Note soul jazz, and the later funky mode of his jazz funk years! Tracks include "The Humpback", "Peepin", "The Kid", and the fantastic cover of "Ode to Billie Joe" that's as much a sample cut as "Pot Belly"! CD

Partial matches412
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Lou DonaldsonPretty Things ... CD
Blue Note (Japan), 1970. New Copy ... Around June 3, 2015
A massive classic from Lou Donaldson's funky years with Idris Muhammad on drums – an album that's filled with lots of bottom-heavy grooves, plus some great work on alto, guitar, and organ! Muhammad's drums are in fine fine form here – right up there with his other LD Blue Note work, if not even better – and the rest of the lineup features Leon Spencer and Lonnie Smith on organ, Ted Dunbar and Melvin Sparks on guitar, and Blue Mitchell on trumpet – all top-shelf players who really make the album kick nicely. Titles include the classic cut "Pot Belly", which was sampled by Tribe Called Quest and about a hundred others – plus "Curtis Song", "Sassie Lassie", "Love", and a version of "Tennessee Waltz" that's even a nice one too! CD

Partial matches413
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
✨✧ Billy HigginsOnce More ... CD
Red (Italy), 1980. New Copy ... Around May 1, 2015
Really swinging work from one of our favorite drummers ever – a set that has Billy Higgins working with pianist Cedar Walton and tenorist Bob Berg – in a groove that's right up there with their famous Eastern Rebellion recordings! Walton's piano has a tone that's recorded a bit more sharply than on other dates from this time – kind of a ringing quality that makes for a slightly different sound than usual, especially on the numbers that have him starting out with solo passages. Tony Dumas completes the group on bass – often with a low end that's really appreciated – and titles include the great tune "Amazon", penned by Berg – plus "Horizons", "Estate", "Sabia", and "Plexis". CD

Partial matches414
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
KinksKink Kontroversy ... LP
Reprise/Sanctuary (UK), 1966. New Copy (reissue)... Spring 2015
Ray Davies is really coming into his own by the time of this third album by The Kinks – penning almost all the tunes in the set, and really starting to stretch out with some of his more unique ideas! The songs are already beginning to show that picture postcard side of British pop that was the Kinks stock in trade during their best years – and the themes and subjects are really expanded from the group's music of the previous years – already shaking off their American influence, and bringing the world a decidedly English version of rock and roll. Of course, the album does feature the group's wonderful cover of "Milk Cow Blues" – still a nice link to the earlier years – plus the Davies originals "When I See That Girl Of Mine", "I Am Free", "Till The End Of The Day", "The World Keeps Going Round", "I'm On An Island", "It's Too Late", "You Can't Win", "Where Have All The Good Times Gone", "Gotta Get The First Plane Home", and "Ring The Bells". LP, Vinyl record album

Partial matches415
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
✨✧ M-TetMike's New Adidas/All Growns Up ... 7-inch
Lugnut Brand, 2015. New Copy ... Early May, 2015
Tight, upbeat funky instrumental grooves from The M-Tet! "Mike's New Adidas" mixes up a breezy, easygoing mode with a rollicking underbelly – all sunny organ grooves and raw, heavy drums. Where that side radiates bright Cali instrumental soul, the flip "All Growns Up" has a slower, seedier jazzy funk vibe that's ultimately just as loveable. Nice stuff from this reliable west coast combo! 7-inch, Vinyl record

Partial matches416
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Dave Mackay & Vicky HamiltonDave Mackay & Vicky Hamilton ... CD
Impulse (Japan), 1969. New Copy ... Around May 20, 2015
One of the grooviest albums of the late 60s – a lost vocal treasure from the team of Dave MacKay & Vicky Hamilton! The pair were sort of like a hip version of Jackie & Roy – usually singing together on their tracks, with a mixed male/female vocal approach that sounds totally great – and which really fits the breezy mood of the tunes on the set! Dave himself plays Fender Rhodes and piano on the album – along with an odd little combo that includes flute and tenor played by Ira Schulman, percussion by Francisco Aguabella, and guest sitar by Bill Plummer. The whole thing's got an amazing feel that's equal parts groovy jazz and sunshine pop – and tunes include a great reading of Tom Scott's "Blues For Hari", Flip Nunez's classic "See You Later", and the original tracks "Jacques The Junkman", "Samba For Vicky", "Now", and "Moon Rider". CD

Partial matches417
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Three SoundsThree Sounds (Blue Note 1600) ... CD
Blue Note (Japan), 1958. New Copy ... Around July 1, 2015
Great early work by the Three Sounds, before they'd lapsed a bit too much into their formulaic trio style on Blue Note – and when they were adding some excellent little flourishes to the music to distinguish themselves from the rest of the crowd. Drummer Bill Dowdy's in great shape here, working his way across the kit with the ferocity of a bossa drummer – adding in lots of great fills that bring out the best in Gene Harris sharp piano work. Plus, the album even features a bit of Harris on the celeste – creating a cool vibes-y sound on the track "Blue Bells". Other titles include "O Sole Mio", "Goin Home", "It's Nice", and "Both Sides". CD

Partial matches418
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Allen ToussaintSouthern Nights ... CD
Reprise (Japan), 1975. New Copy ... Around May 20, 2015
Damn great work from Allen Toussaint – a record that was cut at a time when he'd really made his way into the mainstream of American music, yet could still come across with a hard New Orleans groove! The title cut, "Southern Nights", is a perfect illustration of this fact – as it was written by Toussaint, but became a big hit for Glen Campbell, who recorded a very soppy version of the number. Yet here, Allen turns it into a weird trippy tune – produced with great Sansu production, and backing by New Orleans legends like Leo Nocentelli, George Porter, and Art Neville – all of whom help the tune bristle with new energy, and a really sinister groove. The rest of the record continues in a similar vein – with a spacey LA mellow sound that actually works great for Toussaint's vocals, and gives them a wild flanged-out sound that's pretty amazing – and downright spooky at points! Titles include "Southern Nights", "Basic Lady", "Last Train", "Worldwide", "You Will Not Lose", "When The Party's Over", and "What Do You Want The Girl To Do". CD
Also available Southern Nights (180 gram pressing) ... LP 18.99

Partial matches419
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
✨✧ Cedar WaltonEastern Rebellion 3 ... CD
Timeless/Solid (Japan), 1980. New Copy ... Around June 17, 2015
The lesser-known third album by Cedar Walton's landmark Eastern Rebellion combo – one of the most important indie soul jazz groups of the late 70s, still going strong on this set! The lineup is still the same as on the second set – with Bob Berg on tenor, Curtis Fuller on trombone, and the wonderfully solid team of Billy Higgins and Sam Jones on rhythm. However, the sound here is slightly different – with a more conscious sense of disharmony at times – creating an unsettling edge that replaces the warm, fluid feel of earlier records. The change shows that Walton and the group were still growing and searching – and titles include "Incognito", "Firm Roots", "Seven Minds", and "Never Never Land". CD

Partial matches420
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
✨✧ Cedar WaltonEastern Rebellion 4 ... CD
Timeless/Solid (Japan), 1983. New Copy ... Around June 17, 2015
The fourth album in the killer Eastern Rebellion run – with a slightly bigger group than before! In addition to Cedar Walton's amazing work on piano, the set also features Curtis Fuller on trombone, Chocolate Armenteros on trumpet, Bob Berg on tenor, David Williams on bass, and Billy Higgins on drums. Titles include "Close Enough For Love", "Manteca", "Groundwork", and "I Am Not So Sure". CD

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