Cinema Verite: Funky16Corners on the decks,
spinning the very record you’re listening to.
“Listen – Shake and Shingaling Pt1 MP3″
I hope you’re all grooving on an excellent autumn weekend, and as prepared as possible for the beginning of another week strapped to the wheel.
I spent Friday night spinning with the Asbury Park 45 Sessions crew (more on that in a minute), but then spent five hours on Saturday, blowing, raking and bagging leaves.
Right now I feel as if I was run down by a bus.
Anyway, I didn’t feel much like doing anything today, but the keyboard and the interwebs beckoned, so here I sit hammering away at the laptop.
There have been some technical difficulties with the archiving of the DJ sets from Friday night (which should be resolved shortly, at which time I’ll upload the set), so I can’t offer you my full set, but I will bring you the record with which I opened.
Before I do that, a brief recap of the Sessions.
Things were – as they always are – supremely groovy, with an emphasis on heavy sounds and cool people.
This time out saw the return of Vincent the Soul Chef, and the mighty Devil Dick, as well as sets by your host DJ Prestige, Connie T Empress (thanks for that Shells side Connie!), MFasis, Jack the Ripper, DJ Prime and yours truly. Set lists to follow (as they become available).
Word up as well for the between set announcements by New York radio legend Bob Shannon.
The record I opened the set with, as always has to be something powerful, and I don’t think I disappointed.
Philadelphia’s Fairmount label – in addition to having one of my fave label designs – has in its discography a number of amazing 45s, including sides by Lonnie Youngblood, King Coleman, Shirley Vaughn, Bonnie and Lee (a personal favorite), Irma & the Larks and Frankie Beverly.
The record at the top of my list (and my set on Friday) is the storming ‘Shake & Shingaling Pt1’ by Gene Waiters.
Sadly, aside from a few vague clues that suggest to me that Waiters was a native Philadelphian, I’ve never been able to track down any information about him. This is especially disappointing because I’d be willing to go as far as to say that ‘Shake and Shingaling’ is one of the five or ten greatest records to come out of Phildelphia in the 60’s (and that is indeed saying A LOT).
‘Shake and Shingaling’ is one of those records that resides in the connective tissue between hard, sock soul and the birth of out and out funk.
While it is clearly built on a James Brown frame, it is no mere imitation. The production (by someone listed only as ‘Slater’) packs a huge helping of soul power into the grooves. I’d love to know who this guy was, because his work on ‘Shake and Shingaling’ is positively visionary.
The opening seconds of the song, where the drums, and then the bass come in is a real smack in the face. Whoever was playing the bass and drums had serious chops. The bass is heavy without being distorted, and the drums are poweful and right on the money, never too busy, but always pushing the dancers forward.
When Waiters comes in, followed directly by the horns and organ, the record is elevated to an entirely new level. The sounds emanating from the wax make me wonder if it ever got played on the radio, because I can’t conceive of a world where a record this hot didn’t turn into a huge hit. There are so many records, soul and otherwise that contain moments of brilliance but hold within them some quirk, oddity or poor musical choice, or are so bloody obscure that a realistic assessment would lead you to conclude that its marginalization is in some way justified.
When I listen to ‘Shake and Shingaling’, I don’t hear any of those negatives. The song and arrangement don’t take any wrong turns, always moving upward and onward when they should, never lagging. I wouldn’t be foolish enough to say that I haven’t dealt with this scenario before, as my crates hold dozens of such records.
It’s just that when you find a 45 like this, and play it over and over again, always hearing something new and exciting, you have to wonder what went wrong.
Why wasn’t it a hit?
Why didn’t Gene Waiters ever make another record?
Was he so excited when he heard the record that he ran out of the studio and got flattened by a bus?
Did he insult someone powerful in the world of Philadelphia radio?
Or, as is more likely the truth, did ‘Shake and Shingaling’, released on a label that never saw a major hit – merely fall through the cracks, like hundreds of other records released during the mid-60’s (I think 1966) and in the years before, and since?
When you pull down the ones and zeros, I want you to do two things.
First, give ‘Shake and Shingaling’ a few serious listens on a nice pair of headphones.
Then, plug the ole pod thingy into some big speakers and turn the volume way up.
Put your hands on the woofers and feel the bass, then get up and start dancing (preferably with someone you dig).
It should become immediately obvious why I opened my Asbury 45 Sessions set with this record.
One of the really basic, primal reasons for wanting to DJ over a big PA is to be able to hear a hot record pulse from the huge speakers in a way that effects the listeners (hopefully dancers too) in a physical way. The bass thumps their chests, the treble lights up the pleasure centers in the brain and the beat possesses their hips and legs and makes them want to get up and move. It’s precisely the feeling that makes me into the soul music evangelist that I am, that makes me drag my tired, leaf-lowing bones over to the computer when I’d rather be falling asleep, and lay yet another sermon on you all.
Listen to ‘Shake and Shingaling’ and get some of this religion brothers and sisters.
When you’re done, and positively dripping with the soulful spirit, raise a glass to Gene Waiters – wherever he is – and say ‘Thank you soul brother!’.
Asbury Park 45 Session 11/23
Gene Waiters – Shake & Shingaling Pt1 (Fairmount)
Marlena Shaw – California Soul (Cadet)
The Highlighters – Lulu (Chess)
Gunga Din – Snake Pit (Valise)
The Fabulous Fantoms – The Mau Mau Pt1 (Big Deal)
Freddy Scott & his Orchestra – Pow City (Marlin)
Marva Whitney – Things Got To Get Better (Get Together) (King)
The Exotics – Boogaloo Investigator (Excello)
Lionel Hampton & his Inner Circle of Jazz – Greasy Greens (Glad Hamp)
Senor Soul – Don’t Lay Your Funky Trip On Me (Whiz)
Lavell Hardy – Don’t Lose Your Groove (Rojac)
Wee Willie Walker – Ticket To Ride (Goldwax)
Eldridge Holmes – Pop Popcorn Children (Atco)
Brother Jack McDuff – Theme From Electric Surfboard (Blue Note)
Roy Thompson – Sookie Sookie (Okeh)
Village Callers – Hector (Rampart)
Brown Brothers of Soul – Cholo (Specialty)
Spinners – It’s a Shame (VIP)
Laura Lee – Crumbs Off the Table (Hot Wax)
Bobby Taylor & the Vancouvers- If You Love Her (Gordy)
Connie T Empress Playlist
Beware The Stranger – Hypnotics (La Coupe UK)
Keep On Keeping On – The Vibrations (Okeh)
Leaving Here – Tommy Good (Gordy)
Karate – The Emperor’s (Mala)
I Don’t Want Trouble – Barbara & The Browns (Stax)
Oo Wee Baby – The Ivy Tones (Red Top)
Whiplash – The Shells (Conlo)
Sweet Things You Do – Eddie Floyd (Stax)
I Wanna Jump – Ike & Tina Turner (UA)
Twist It Up – Herbert Hunter (Hit)
You Ain’t Ready – Lou Courtney (Riverside)
Why Girl – The Precisions (Drew dj copy)
You Hit Me Right Where It Hurt Me – Alice Clark (Canterbury)
Everybody’s Going Wild – Curtis Lee & The KCP’s (Rojac)
She Tried To Kiss Me – Butlers (Liberty Bell dj copy)
Skiing In The Snow – The Invitations (Out Of The Past reissue)
DJ Prestige Playlist
Intro: Lou Rawls – You Made Me So Very Happy/ Capitol
Jimmy Castor – Psycho Man/ Capitol
Stoned Soul Picnic – One Dollar Hotel/ Raw Wax
Wilson Pickett – Engine Number 9/ Atlantic
Marsha Hunt – (Oh No!) Not the Beast Day/ Vertigo
Ground Hog – Bumpin’/ Gemigo
The Brothers and Sisters (feat Sister Gheri) – Chained/ Calla
Hot Butter – Getting It On/ Dynamo
Dennis Coffey – Getting It On ‘75/ Sussex
The 13th Amendment – The Stretch/ Soul Stream
Otis and Carla – Tramp (x2)
Lowell Fulsom – Tramp/ Kent
Gloria Taylor – Grounded/ Silver Fox
Gus “The Groove” Lewis – Let The Groove Move Ya/ Tou Sea
Nina Simone – Save Me/ RCA
Willie Gresham & the Free Food Ticket – Step By Step/ Majesty
Mophono – Tighten Up Remix/ CB Records
Della Reese – Compared To What/ AVCO Embassy
Elijah and the Ebonies – Hot Grits!/ Capsoul
TNT Band – Meditation/ Cotique
Devil Dick Playlist
Sir Joe and Free Soul – (I’ve Got) So Much Trouble In My Mind – Mantis
Bob Franklin’s Insanity – Don’t Lose What You Got (Trying To Get Back What You Had) – Westbound
The Moods – King Hustler – Red Dog
Fantastic Epics – Fun and Funk Part III – Tories
Third Guitar – Down To The River – Rojac
The Wild Magnolias – Smoke My Peace Pipe (Smoke It Right) – Polydor
Ike & Tina Turner & The Ikettes – Contact High – Liberty
Sound Experience – 40 Acres and A Mule – Soulville
Iron Knowledge – Show Stopper – Tammy
Masters Of Soul – I Hate You (In The Daytime And Love You At Night)- Duke
Bags – It’s Heavy – GSF
Vincent the Soul Chef Playlist
Soul Theme-King Curtis (Atco)
No Matter What Sign You Are-Diana Ross & The Supremes (Motown)
Tuck’s Theme-Bill Deal & The Rhondels (Heritage)
Here It Is-Dorothy Moore (Malaco)
It’s Your Thing-Dennis Coffey & The Lyman Woodward Trio (Maverick)
Filet De Soul-The Flaming Ember (Hot Wax)
Funky Music Sho Nuff Turns Me On-Edwin Starr (Gordy)
Funky Worm-Ohio Players (Westbound)
I’ve Got Just The Thing-Lou Courtney (Riverside)
Got Myself A Good Man-Gladys Knight & The Pips (Soul)
Do What You Wanna-Ramsey Lewis (Cadet)
My Love’s A Monster-Clea Bradford (Cadet)
Get It (Come And Get It)-Jay Dee Bryant (Enjoy)
Shake And Fingerpop-Jr. Walker & The All Stars (Soul)
Ack A Fool-The Sister & Brothers (Calla)
O Wow-Panic Buttons (Gamble)
Get Into Something Pt. 2-Isley Brothers (T Neck)
Blow Your Mind-Sound Experience (Philly Soulville)
DJ Prime Playlist
tyrone davis – a woman needs to be loved (dakar)
screamin’ jay hawkins – i put a spell on you (collectables)
israel tolbert – big leg woman (warren)
isley brothers – work to do (t neck)
jean knight – you think you’re hot stuff (stax)
detroit sex machines – rap it together (soul track)
the meters – cabbage alley (reprise)
calvin arnold – funky way (venture)
midnight movers unltd – put your mind in your pocket (renee)
dyke and the blazers – funky bull pt. 1 (original sound)
the 8th day – it’s instrumental to be free (invictus)
don covay – ice cream man (atlantic)
linda jones – makes me surrender (loma)
dr. john – right place, wrong time (atco)
latin breed – hard to handle (funk45)
black heat – chip’s funk (atlantic)
james brown – ain’t it funky now (polydor)
the staple singers – this world (stax)
antibalas – family affair (mind)
jj malone – it’s a shame (galaxy)
a small change deconstruction – steviano italiano (bstrd boots)
soulful strings – within you, without you (cadet)
jerry o – karate boo-ga-loo (shout)
alvin cash – keep on dancing (toddlin’ town)
dyke and the blazers – we got more soul (original sound)
ricardo ray – nitty gritty (alegre)
the electric express – it’s the real thing pt. 1 (lingo)
hank ballard – come on wit’ it (king)
bronx river parkway – agua con sal (t&s)
peggy scott & jo jo benson – soushake (sss international)
spanky wilson – little things mean a lot (mothers records)