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One Track Mind! More Motown Guys - Cd Review

One Track Mind! More Motown Guys - Cd Review cover

I did wonder at one time after listening to some Motown compilations from some sources if all the quality recordings done by Motown had seen the light of day.  However, wonder no more because since Ace/Kent via compilers Mick Patrick and Keith Hughes locked themselves in Motown’s vaults I’ve some absolute classics have found their way to a new audience.  Not only have we had various releases covering various acts we have also had compilations covering Motown’s Guys and Girls.  Love And Affection, More Motown Girls was in my opinion a superb release and the Guys really do have to pull something special out of the hat to get close to the girls.

The first Motown Guys collection, “Satisfaction Guaranteed” was an excellent release and now we have the second entitled “One Track Mind! More Motown Guys”.

Motown legend Frank Wilson kicks off the compilation with one of the two tracks not recorded at Hitsville.  “I’ll Be Satisfied”.  Recorded on the West Coast with the Wrecking Crew replacing the Funk Brothers and doing a first class job too.  This delightful dancer is quite possibly my favourite Frank Wilson track and a new one to my ears.

 Ivy Jo Hunter’s “Where Are You” is pretty well known on the UK (and further afield) all-nighter scene having been played by various DJs for some years. Marv Johnson is next with the title track to this compilation “One Track Mind”.  Previously unissued but a great find and a superb dancer.

Many of the male greats of Motown feature on this CD. The Spinners, The Temptations and the Miracles all feature with two tracks apiece.  The Spinners version of Johnny Bristol’s “Tell Me How To Forget A True Love” is one of my favourites of the compilation.  Their other contribution “Imagination Running Wild” was originally assigned to Stevie Wonder but he never laid down any vocals.  My imagination is running wild wondering why Motown never released some of these tracks?  Many are far better than what the artists actually released, in my opinion of course.

01 I'll Be Satisfied - Frank Wilson


02 Where Are You - Ivy Jo


03 One Track Mind - Marv Johnson


04 Tell Me How To Forget A True Love - The Spinners

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The Temptations tracks featured both have Eddie Kendrick’s on lead. “I’d Rather Forget” is a forgotten track from the Getting’ ready sessions but was canned.  Their second contribution is “”I Got Heaven Right Here On Earth”.  Originally released on the Emperors Of Soul set but with David Ruffin on lead, this Kendrick’s take was only previously released as a download but now sees a release on a physical format.

The third group with two is The Miracles with the finger snapper “My Oh My What A Groove” from late 1963 and the more laid back “I’ve Gotta Find Myself (A True Love). Penned by Dave Hamilton the band track appeared on a previous Dave Hamilton Detroit Dancers compilation, here Smokey and The Miracles give us a nice soulful rendition recorded during the sessions for the “Away We A Go-Go” Lp.

The legend that is Edwin Starr makes an appearance for two tracks as well.  The first a reworked take of the Marvelettes and Vandellas “Boy From Crosstown”. Edwin gives a very different take on “The Girl From Crosstown” and one of his Gordy releases “Way Over There” immediately comes to mind whilst listening. His second contribution is “Head Over Heals In Love With You baby”. The Supremes had an earlier recording, which also lay in the vaults for many years.  Edwin’s version adds extra backing and strings.

Jimmy Ruffin contributes with an admirable take on “The In Crowd”, a hit for Dobie Gray. The vastly under-rated Monitors with Richard Street on lead vocals give us “Wish I Didn’t Love You So”.  A decent up-tempo dancer and one of the last tracks done by the group before Street left for the Temptations and ultimately the break up of the group.  The Fantastic Four give us “I’m Here Now That You Need Me”. Sweet James Epps could sing a nursery rhyme and make me want to listen.  One of my favourite groups and another I had never heard before.

Recorded at the time of their session work on the LP’s “Four Tops Now” and “Soul Spin”, the Four Tops with “Can’t Stop This Feeling” has sat in the vaults ever since and another that makes you wonder why?

05 The Girl From Crosstown - Edwin Starr


06 Think It Over (Before You Break My Heart) - Earl Van Dyke & The Soul Brothers


07 I'd Rather Forget - The Temptations


08 Imagination Is Running Wild - The Spinners


09 The "In" Crowd - Jimmy Ruffin


10 Wish I Didn't Love You So - The Monitors

11 I'm Here Now That You Need Me - The Fantastic Four


12 Can't Stop This Feelin' - Four Tops


13 My Oh My What A Groove - The Miracles


14 I Got Heaven Right Here On Earth (Alternate Version) - The Temptations

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Ed Cobb wrote “Touch Of Venus” which is better known by many by Sandy Wynns (actually Motown secretary and session singer Edna Wright) but Patrice Holloway and Marvin Gaye also recorded it.  Ace/Kent released the Patrice Holloway version on Patrice’s Love And Desire compilation and that juts left the Marvin Gaye version which finally see’s the light of day on a physical format after having only previously been available via download.  Marvin also chips in with a second track and an up-tempo dance track titled “Do You Wanna Go With Me”.

The Hit Pack, ironically named as they never had a hit for Motown and “Didn’t I’ didn’t even reach the pressing plant to see a release via 45.   Maybe their faces didn’t fit as this is another that leaves you wondering why it never saw a release.  It does though seem upon listening reminiscent in parts of material by the Spinners or Contours so maybe those upstairs didn’t want anything spoiling?

Instrumentals are not really my thing but if they are what you dig then you get three on this compilation.  “Think It Over (Before You break My Heart)”
 a great dancer by Brenda Holloway.  Here the Funk Brothers and possibly the Detroit Symphony Orchestra supplying strings give us the band track, credited to Earl Van Dyke and the Soul Brothers.  Earl’s second contribution is “Heart To Heart” which heavily features Earl on the organ.  Originally intended for the Creations but they presumably left before they could record any vocals so all we have is the band track.  The third instrumental is Choker Campbell’s Big Band with their interpretation of the Impression’s “It’s All Right”.

As the CD draws to a close we have two early Motown records, both from 1963.  The first from Johnny Bristol who would go on to write and produce many hits for Motown.  “Kissing In The Shadows is an earlier solo recording by Johnny later done by Tammi Terrell.  “Singing” Sammy Ward was a well-known R&B artist around Detroit and one of Motown’s early signings. His “That Won’t Do” is a decent R&B number and one of his later recordings before he would leave Motown in 1964.

The Detroit Legend Richard “Popcorn” Wylie close the CD with the up-tempo rocker “Goose Wobbling Time”! yes you read it right “Goose Wobbling Time”. Popcorn sings “ You shuffle your feet, you wobble like a goose, you break out with a quiver and you turn your hips loose.  You wobble wobble here, you wobble wobble there…….” Priceless, it will bring a smile to your face at the very least and a fitting end to the compilation.

15 The Touch Of Venus - Marvin Gaye


16 Head Over Heels In Love With You Baby - Edwin Starr


17 Heart To Heart - Earl Van Dyke & The Soul Brothers


18 Didn't I - The Hit Pack


19 Do You Wanna Go With Me - Marvin Gaye


20 I've Gotta Find Myself (A True Love) - The Miracles


21 It's All Right - Choker Campbell's Big Band


22 Kissing In The Shadows - Johnny Bristol


23 That Won't Do - Sammy Ward


24 Goose Wobbling Time - Popcorn Wylie


16 previously unreleased tracks, the rest only available as part of Motown’s year download series.  Not as strong a compilation as it predecessor but I’d give this 3 out of 5 overall but it is a worthy addition to any Motown collection.  As you would expect from Kent you get the excellent and informative sleeve notes written by Keith Hughes and featuring some superb publicity photos of the acts,

Karl Chalky White

March 2016

Tracks

01 I'll Be Satisfied - Frank Wilson
02 Where Are You - Ivy Jo
03 One Track Mind - Marv Johnson
04 Tell Me How To Forget A True Love - The Spinners
05 The Girl From Crosstown - Edwin Starr
06 Think It Over (Before You Break My Heart) - Earl Van Dyke & The Soul Brothers
07 I'd Rather Forget - The Temptations
08 Imagination Is Running Wild - The Spinners
09 The "In" Crowd - Jimmy Ruffin
10 Wish I Didn't Love You So - The Monitors
11 I'm Here Now That You Need Me - The Fantastic Four
12 Can't Stop This Feelin' - Four Tops
13 My Oh My What A Groove - The Miracles
14 I Got Heaven Right Here On Earth (Alternate Version) - The Temptations
15 The Touch Of Venus - Marvin Gaye
16 Head Over Heels In Love With You Baby - Edwin Starr
17 Heart To Heart - Earl Van Dyke & The Soul Brothers
18 Didn't I - The Hit Pack
19 Do You Wanna Go With Me - Marvin Gaye
20 I've Gotta Find Myself (A True Love) - The Miracles
21 It's All Right - Choker Campbell's Big Band
22 Kissing In The Shadows - Johnny Bristol
23 That Won't Do - Sammy Ward
24 Goose Wobbling Time - Popcorn Wylie

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More information via

http://acerecords.co.uk/one-track-mind-more-motown-guys




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Chalky

Great review of this fantastic set, with tracks from the vaults that are as good as many releases in the 60s. Every home should have one.

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Some of these tracks are fantastic, The Marv Johnson track is 100 per cent NS, Unbeilievable that these tracks were never released.

ML

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Astonishing collection. I guess Motown could only release so many singles, but how some of these stayed in the vaults is breathtaking. So good it dislodged the Jack Ashford collection out of the CD player for a full day!

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