I have to say I’m usually not one to be bowled over by the seasonal festivities, especially not this early in the proceedings. And in truth this year is no exception, but – recklessly? – I have decided to give you a post a day from here on up to Christmas Day – a Feel It advent calendar! Don’t expect Christmas themed tracks, nor many wordy posts, just plenty of vinyl in the usual vein.
I’m kicking things off with a follow on from the Jackie Moore post the other day. This is the other “gotta share it straightaway” 45 I alluded to.
I went on a run of missed targets on ebay recently. Sniped three times in a row. I wasn’t surprised to be honest. I’m not in the big league when it comes to bidding, so when I go chasing records that are extra special I’m always likely to lose out in the end. It’s good to take part in the race though. One of the three I missed out on (just, as it happens) you can see and hear over at The Singing Bones. Yes, it turned out it was Ana-B (I had guessed as much) who beat me to the sublime Ella Brown 45, at least I know it’s gone to a good home.
There was a silver lining to my recent ebay woes though. One of the three records missed I was given a second chance offer on, and so now, after all, I am the proud owner of this Margie Joseph 45 – “Never Can You Be”. This is a demo so has the same song on both sides. It’s possible the original buyer pulled out when they realised this as the issue of this 45 has “One More Chance” on the other side (yes, I got one more chance although I didn’t get “One More Chance”!) which is something of an evergreen “in demander” on the Northern/Crossover scene I believe. It would have been nice to have an issue copy but it was “Never Can You Be” that I was really after. “One More Chance” may garner the attention due to its dance floor friendliness but I think “Never Can You Be” is the real jewel – Stax/Volt must have thought so as this demo copy proves it was obviously originally intended to be an A side, and Margie Joseph herself singled it out as one of her favourites in an interview she gave a few years ago.
I love the arrangement on this track. It has a big city jazz feel, but at the same time it is underpinned with a really churchy organ. The song was written by W Turbinton, aka Willie Tee. It was very probably him on the organ and the jazzy feel would be down to his brother Earl. Both, sadly, passed away in 2007. Also, of course, there is Margie Joseph. In the 60s and 70s there were so many great soul singers who didn’t get the success or recognition they deserved, and unfortunately Margie Joseph could be said to be one of them – such a beautiful voice.