It was the massive in-migration from the south during and just after the Second World War that made New York a mecca for rhythm and blues music. The whole city was aflame with music during the 50s. Musicians came in their droves. Old style country bluesmen, hip cool jazz players, crooners and balladeers, jump ‘n’ jive groups, solo performers – there was more than enough work for everybody. And behind them came the record companies, each one looking for talent to promote and make money from. And much of this melting pot of styles and musical approaches helped to form the new orthodoxy of the 60s – soul. These two CDs contain gospel-based blues ballads, uptempo dancers, vocal groups and duets, big bands, smaller combos, exciting one-offs – and everything in between. In fact the best of soul music in New York at the time – and it really doesn’t get much better than this.
‘Here’s a fantastic compilation covering the big Apple roots of Soul,. Every once in a while, I’ll get a collection that I keep finding myself needing to share the tracks with somebody, hearing some gem for the first time and it being so good that I had to grab someone and play it for them. Put that all together and you get a pretty special set, yet another great volume in a great series.’
(JM) NEW AT ROOTS & RHYTHM
‘Any CD that has the guts to open with a Ray Charles track must know what it is doing . This double CD contains 64 amazing tracks 9/10ths of which are totally new to me. The History of Soul guys who compiled this collection call upon material from Atlantic, King and also obscure labels. This is a must for anyone wishing to expand their knowledge and enjoyment of the early years of Soul.’
Groovesville Blog USA. Chicago