Thursday, December 23, 2010

The Staples Ebony Magazine September 1965

Another great article in Ebony is the above which contains some fantastic behind the scenes photos. Read more

Little Gary Ferguson Ebony Magazine May 1966

One of the most interesting articles that I have come across so far on my trawl of Ebony magazines has been one on Little Gary Ferguson. The above photo shows Gary on The Beat show.

Last I read Gary and his family were living in Dallas in Oak Cliff.

Debra Youngblood: Queen Of The Go Go

We have had features on IDR before about Go Go dancing. I came across an article about the craze in a copy of Ebony magazine dated April 1966 on Google Books. The article featured the "Queen of The Go Go" Debra Youngblood - the wife of Lonnie Youngblood. The above photograph shows her being crowned at the Tremount Lounge in New Jersey.

I thought the best record to go with the photo would be Rex Garvin's classic:

But then Lonnie also cut Go Go Shoes:

Lou Rawls Ebony Magazine November 1966

Continuing with articles from Ebony magazine - the above photo shows Lou Rawls in Chicago's South Side in 1966. The article can be found in Ebony November 1966 in Google Books.

Ray Pollard In Ebony Magazine

I've recently been trawling through copies of Ebony magazine which are now available on line through Google Books.

The above photograph is from an a July 1970 article entitled 'The Prize Winners' featuring a photograph of soul hero Ray Pollard who was then performing in a play called No Place To Be Somebody. Ray is wearing the dark suite.

The Congo Room & Mission Impossible Update

Barbara Bain in Mission Impossible
Twistin' Kings Congo Pts 1 & 2 Motown

Recently, a Facebook friend posted the theme music to Mission Impossible on my wall. This prompted me to visit an old IDR post on the programme. The episode of the programme which I posted on has since been made available on Youtube. I have posted the clip below the original post:

Channel 5 US in the UK has been showing re-runs of the US TV series Mission Impossible from the first season.
One show was The Carriers. The synopsis is as follows:
Enemy agent Janos Passik is preparing to train 200 foreign agents to infiltrate the U.S. and engage in some form of bacteriological warfare. The team figures out that Passik has created a replica of a "typical American town" so as to train his agents to learn how to blend into American society. Rollin, Cinnamon, Barney, and bacteriologist Roger Lee replace the new group of recruits and must then find their way to the research lab. They soon realize that the American-trained agents will be infected with a highly contagious plague and then sent into American to kill millions. The group must not only destroy the plague samples but make sure that Passik and his superiors do not find out that the destruction was deliberate.

One of the things that interested me most in the show was the infiltration role given to Cinnamon played by Barbara Bain. She is seen practising to be a go-go dancer for her role in the Tiger A-Go-Go in Philadelphia. We see her learning to go-go dance in a club called the Congo Room in the phoney US town. She is seen wearing regulation go-go gear and could have stepped out of Hullabaloo! What intrigued me was the use of the name Congo Room. I suppose the choice would seem appropriate to makers of the series in that the Communist agent would be looking for obvious examples of degenerate of Western culture. What better than using the name of the famous Las Vegas club in the Sahara Hotel.

The name Congo is a fanciful allusion to a mythical Congo and has given its name to everything from chocolate bars to songs and clubs. Perhaps someone thought that it sounded exotic and harks back to "Congo Square"in New Orleans. In the 19th Century, the square was a gathering in New Orleans for both free and enslaved African-Americans to meet for marketing, music-making, and dancing.

The name Congo originally derives from the name for the ancient Kingdom of Kongo. The Kingdom of Kongo was an African kingdom located in west central Africa in what are now northern Angola, Cabinda, Republic Of The Congo and the western portion of the Democratic Republic Of The Congo. The name was also given to one of Africa's largest rivers.The Congo is also the name for a cylindrical Caribbean drum with double skins introduced to Guyana, Trinidad & Tobago as well as being the name of a cylindrical drum found in the Dominican Republic.

Congo River

The producers of Mission Impossible must have had the famous Las Vegas club based in the Sahara Hotel in mind when they made the series.The Sahara Hotel and Casino is located on the Las Vegas strip. The Moroccan-themed hotel has 1,720 rooms and a casino covering more than 85,000 square feet and sits on 55 acres including the empty adjoining land. The Sahara is the last remaining "Rat Pack" hotel, and is the northernmost resort on the east side of the Strip. The hotel was opened in 1952 by Milton Prell just outside of the City of Las Vegas, and was the sixth resort to open on the Strip. The resort was built by Del Webb. In late 1954, the hotel hired jazz musician Louis Prima to be their late night lounge act, one of the earliest ones on the strip. Along with his then wife Keely Smith and sax player and sax player Sam Butera, they created one of the hottest latenight attractions on the Strip.

In 1961, the hotel was purchased by Del Webb. In 1962, The hotel became known for featuring top performers over the years, including Tina Turner, the Beatles, Johnny Carson, and Ann-Margret. Fast forward to today, there is certainly no shortage of exceptional entertainment available at the Sahara Las Vegas Theatre, the Casbar Lounge and the Congo Room at the Sahara Vegas.

I decided to use the Twistin' Kings "Congo Pts 1 & 2" to go with the post. This is a real tittyshaker and features in Mr Fine Wine's top 10 of tittyshakers! I thought the sleazy little number went well with the club featured in Mission Impossible and you can just imagine girls geting on stage to do their thing to the music of the Twistin' Kings. I am no expert but I assume the drums which can be heard in the instrumental are "congo" drums.

Rocky Roberts Just Because Of You

Great live version of Northern classic:

Monday, December 20, 2010

Boogaloo to Salsa Clips

A collection of clips from interviews for a documentary I am working on about Latin music in New York from 1965-70, featuring Joe Bataan, Larry Harlow, Johnny Colon, Joey Pastrana, Richie Ray, Harvey Averne, Jimmy Sabater, Pucho Brown, Bobby Marin, Nicky Marrero, Kent Gomez and Jose Mangual Jr. Mathew Warren

Boogaloo to Salsa Clips from Mathew Warren on Vimeo.


It is obvious that lead singer, Jimmy Beaumont, long ago achieved the hope that he once expressed for The Skyliners to be remembered as one of the best harmony groups of all time. The Skyliners created a new style of music by combining the streetwise harmonies of rhythm and blues groups like the The Moonglows and The Flamingos with the most sophisticated modern harmony style of The Four Freshman and The Hi Los. Just as important a factor in their longevity was the business partnership between lead vocalist Jimmy Beaumont and aptly named manager, Joe Rock, that kept the act commercially viable for over four decades. Except for Elvis manager, Colonel Tom Parker, and The Beatles Manager, Brian Epstein, there is perhaps no other manager whose name is more associated with a group.
Read full article

Harvey Averne Interview

I spoke with Harvey Averne several times over the past summer, mostly by phone, where our conversations eventually turned from latin jazz and his own personal experiences as a performer to his experiences with superstar Eddie Palmieri, with particular focus on the “Unfinished Masterpiece” controversy, which we discussed at length. Naturally, it is Mr. Averne’s side of the story, raw and uncensored. He is now living in Daytona Beach, Florida, where he maintains a somewhat low profile, albeit not oblivious to the current trends in the latin scene. “Unfinished Masterpiece” notwithstanding, I decided that our readers needed to get more of an insight into Harvey the man, the musician, his label and his experiences within “latin” music circles. So here it is, with the hopes that you will not only enjoy his anecdotes, but that you will also become more informed. Read full interview by

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Colin @ Leaf Liverpool 8/12/10 Playlist

I was asked to DJ at Another Media's Christmas Party at the Leaf, Bold Street Liverpool.

Here is my playlist:

Kip Anderson You'll Lose A Good Thing UK President
Jimmy Holiday Yesterday Died Minit
Fugi I'd Rather Be A Blind Man Cadet
James Carr Life Turned Me That Way UK Kent/Goldwax EP
Barbara Perry You Ain't Woman Enough UK Kent/Goldwax EP
The Ovations Rockin' Chair UK Kent/Goldwax EP
George & Greer To Me It's Storming UK Kent/Goldwax EP
Roscoe Shelton What Is It Baby? Tee Jay
Sam Dees Fool Of The Year UK Shotgun
Sam Dees Train To Tampa UK Shotgun
Dee Edwards Why Can't There Be Love German Vogue
Eddie Floyd You Must Be Dreaming UK Shotgun
Eddie Floyd Missing You UK Shotgun
Della Reese It Was A Very Good Year UK HMV
Lou Johnson (There's) Always Something There To Remind Me UK London
Frank Polk Years Of Tears French Capitol EP
Frank Polk Trying To Keep Up With The Joneses French Capitol EP
Rodger Collins Foxy Girls In Oakland French America
Eddie Parker Love You Baby French Googa Mooga
Derek Martin Sly Girl French Atco
Don Covay You've Got Me On The Critical List Atlantic
Jimmy Robins Lonely Street Tangerine
Laura Lee To Win Your Heart Ric Tic
Bobby Bland Call On Me Duke
Terry Callier Look At Me Now Cadet
Dells Make Sure Cadet
Donald Lee Richardson You Got Me In The Palm Of Your Hand Soulsville
Johnny Sayles Anything For You Minit
Hoagy Lands Why Didn't You Let Me Know Spectrum
The Montclairs Hung Up On Your Love Paula
Arthur Alexander I Need You Baby Monument
Esther Phillips Just Say Goodbye Atlantic

I was intrigued at the venue and here is what I found:

65-67 Bold Street.
Built 1828 as a chapel. Rebuilt in about 1850, the upper floor became a place of entertainment, called the Queen’s Hall, Panorama Hall, Queen’s Operetta House and Bijou Opera House. This phase finished about the early 1890s when the upper floor became the Yamen Café. The art deco frontage was built in 1935 for W. Watson, motor car dealers. Note the repeated “W” motif. The upstairs room still looks rather like it did in the Yamen Café days.

Friday, December 10, 2010

Sir Ted Ford I Wanna Be Near You Shotgun 45

Sir Ted Ford

Here's the latest release from Paul Mooney's Shotgun label. Only seems like yesterday when I bough this on Ardent back in the 70's when Paul first released it. In fact, it sounds better than ever - great to see it available again!

'I Wanna Be Near You' and 'Disco Music' by SIR TED FORD are released back-to-back on Shotgun SHOT 105 on Monday, December 6th.

Both tracks are in heavy demand after being overlooked by most people when originally released as individual singles in 1977 and 1979.

The tracks have been remastered at Suite Sixteen and sound better than ever.

All Shotgun singles are available from all good dealers and copies can also be ordered direct from Selrec.

Thanks for the huge support for our recent singles by Eddie Floyd (SHOT 104) and Sam Dees (SHOT 103). Watch out for news of SHOT 106 which is scheduled for January 2011.

Email for more info.