Eddie Floyd – “Knock on Wood” (1966)

October 18, 2008 at 1:57 pm (Stax)

Another classic from the Stax label, from 1966, this song has been covered many times over the years (Amii Stewart having a big hit with it in 1979, in a discofied version). Eddie Floyd wrote the song with MGs guitarist Steve Cropper and it became a smash R&B #1 hit. The song was originally written with Otis Redding as the intended singer. Floyd kept it to himself and even though the Stax brass were not enamoured with the song, it became big anyhow. It still sounds great 42 years later.

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Marv Johnson – “Come to Me” (1959)

October 18, 2008 at 1:49 pm (Motown)

This release from Jan. 1959 on the Tamla imprint is technically the very first Motown release – the song that got the whole ball rolling.
It made the Top Thirty on the charts. Johnson had other hits in the early days of Motown, but is now unfairly forgotten. Johnson’s early singles would be the precedent to the future sound and success of the label. 

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The Foundations – “Build Me Up Buttercup” (1969)

October 18, 2008 at 1:38 pm (Music)

I just felt like hearing & posting this classic soul pop hit by this multi-racial English group. They were one of the most authentic soul acts coming out of England at the time. This song made it to #1 in America (#2 in England) and was used to memorable effect in the 1998 comedy There’s Something About Mary (in the closing credits). This song always sounds great, no matter how many times I hear it. That vocal gets me everytime.  

(Audio only)

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Rare Earth – “I Just Want to Celebrate” (1971)

October 18, 2008 at 1:31 pm (Funk, Motown)

Motown’s first white rock group. This hit was released on the Rare Earth subsidiary in June 1971. They had many hits during the early 70s in a funky rock vein.

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Source Direct – “Call & Response” (1997)

October 18, 2008 at 1:18 pm (Electronica)

Released on the Science label comes this drum & bass classic, featured in the movie Blade.  Most of this English duo’s releases are moody & brooding. Good stuff.    

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Squarepusher – “Venus No. 17” (2004)

October 18, 2008 at 1:12 pm (Electronica)

The great Squarepusher, from July 2004, on the Warp label. He has put out many great records over the years in the drum & bass genre, as well as putting out an album that sounded like an updated take on the kinds of fusion albums Miles Davis was making in the early 70s.

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Wagon Christ – “Thick Stew” (2001)

October 18, 2008 at 1:05 pm (Electronica)

Luke Vibert aka Wagon Christ (aka Plug), released this downtempo creation March 6, 2001 on the Ninja Tune label.
Vibert has put out many albums over the years under his various aliases.

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Jimmy Ruffin – “What Becomes of the Brokenhearted” (1966)

October 18, 2008 at 12:19 pm (Motown)

Jimmy Ruffin, older brother of Temptations singer David Ruffin, had his biggest hit on Motown with this timeless song. Jimmy was originally asked to be the singer with THe Temps, but declined in favor of David. Though he had other minor hits and still continues to tour, he never became the star he was meant to be. With this song though, his place in history is secure.

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The Fleshtones – “Soul City” (Video – 1979)

October 18, 2008 at 12:19 pm (Music)

This video, The Fleshtones’ first, was created by a guy named M. Henry Jones and was made with a budget of $650. It took him several months of painstaking effort to create the video (due to limitations of the time) and used it as his thesis for school. The song was cut in 1978 but the finished video wasn’t ready until Feb. 1979. It was very well-received at the time and considered groundbreaking for that era. Unfortunately, and perhaps due to the fact that videos were not yet considered important for promoting songs, it didn’t result in a hit for The Fleshtones.     

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Stevie Wonder – “As” (1976)

October 18, 2008 at 3:24 am (Motown)

Taken from the double album Songs in the Key of Life, Stevie from 1976. This song has a great gospel feel to it.

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