Pull up a stump by the fire with me (this one is a bit crackly).
Car Boot sales have just about finished now but there is one (at least) in my area that seems to continue through the winter. I paid it a visit this morning, pickings were thin, but I did come away with this 70/71 thereabouts Atlantic compilation album. The sleeve attracted me initially, and then I pulled the record out and saw it was an Atlantic plum/orange label so that was it – I knew I was going to buy it. There is something about the this label that presses all the right buttons for me, don’t ask me why though, It’s not as if it triggers a wave of nostalgia as my interest in music and records started at about the time Atlantic retired those particular colours on their album labels, and I never owned one at the time.
The album turned out to be rather more scratchy than I had hoped (why is it I can’t see half of the scratches and scuffs until I get home?), but was well worth the 65p I paid for it. Side One, Track Five (sandwiched between Yes and Led Zeppelin) really made me prick up my ears. Janis Joplin I initially thought, but then realised whoever it was would relegate Janis to a distant also ran in any singing competition. The tracklisting told me it was a group called Cold Blood. I admit I had not heard of them before.
A quick bit of Googling later I can tell you that the singer is Lydia Pense (great voice) and Cold Blood hailed from the Bay Area. They released four albums between 1969 and 1973 and then a couple more with Lydia as main billing, and are still touring.
This track is, of course, a cover of Barbara Lynn’s classic that came out on Tribe (another great label design) and was issued as a 45 on the San Francisco label (yet another great label design!) which is where Tower Of Power started life, and I’m wondering if ToP’s mighty horn section are making an appearance here.
Compilation and sampler albums raison d’etre was undoubtedly to make you explore artists and bands you may otherwise not. Well, 40odd years after this one was released its power is still intact as it has certainly got me wanting to hear more of Cold Blood, and Lydia Pense!