Tag Archives: Bayou City Soul

The First Bayou City Soul Mix Download

I was recently asked by the kind folks over at Peaceuvmine.com to contribute a mix of a handful of some of my favorite Houston-related soul 45s. It was supposed to be just a short little thing to be used as a compendium of sorts for the engagement I did with Flash Gordon Parks over at 4400 Almeda. After three canceled sessions (sorry guys!) I finally spent a couple hours rummaging through my Houston 45s and an afternoon at Peaceuvmine Studios later, this recording is what you get. What you hear is nothing more than thirty seven minutes of exactly what I wanted to listen to that day. From gritty r&b to sweet soul records that should of been huge hits but never quite made it past the Harris County line.

Give it a gander and please let me know what you think.

Bayou City Soul Tracklist:

1. The Fantastics – High Note (Copa)
2. Bobby Williams – Baby I Need Your Love (Sure-Shot)
3. The Insights – Turn Me On Sweet Rosie (Peacock)
4. Ambassadors of Soul – Cool Sticks Beat (Pt. 1) (Ovide)
5. The Cold Four – Love And Care (Drells)
6. Leon Mitchinson and the Eastex Frwy Band – I’ll Take You There (Mitchtone)
7. The 4 Avalons – {I Don’t Wanna Be A} Playboy (Ovide)
8. TSU Tornados – Please Heart Don’t Break (Rampart Street)
9. Joe Hughes -May The Best Man Win (Boogaloo)
10. Johnny Adams – {Sometimes} A Man Will Shed A Few Tears Too (Pacemaker)
11. The Soul Brothers f/ Harold Bennett – Blues For A Belly Dancer (Copa)
12. Johnny Williams – Honey Child (Cinema)
13. Miss LaVell – Stop These Teardrops (Duke)
14. The Americans of 72 – Crackerjack (Part 1) (Libra)
15. Archie Bell & The Dells – Houston TX (Atlantic)
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Speaking on Houston Soul Music

Just a quick note for any of those out there who may be interested. Saturday October 23rd, I’ll be speaking about the history of Houston soul music and then playing some of the best examples alongside DJ Flash Gordon Parks. If there’s something you’ve always wondered about a group or record from Houston, feel free to email me and we can try and discuss it during the lecture portion or afterward. This is a community-based event and I welcome all the interaction possible. There might be a few surprise musicians in the house but I’m not making any promises as of now. The evening will start at 6pm and be over by 9pm, so make sure to get there in a timely manner.

Saturday October 23rd.
4400 Almeda
Houston, TX

Here’s some more information about the event from the press release.

ROOTamentary examines the cross-section of generations, races, and cultures being exposed to Blues, Funk, Soul, and Jazz music. The program also promotes the significance of the “mom-and-pop” record store and the importance of vinyl preservation. This experience is designed to create a hyperlink that connects success to the stories of those recording artists that built the foundation. Young artists will be exposed to their musical predecessors to draw inspiration that will enhance the quality of their musicianship.

This month we will be focusing on artists from Houston TX and also highlighting the contribution of Duke/Peacock Records to music and culture. This will be the final chapter in our series….Special guest DJ Brett Koshkin will be stopping thru to share some of his rare 45s…..You don’t want to miss this!

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We Dance Just As Good As We Want

Photo by Mark Roach

Archie Bell Tightens Up

Last Week, I went out with Photographer Mark Roach and Assistant Extraordinaire Alex LaRotta to finally meet Mr. Tighten Up, Archie Bell and his lovely wife Juanita in the flesh. If you want to write and record the history of Houston soul music, you’d be hard pressed to come up with someone else that played such a vital roll in the story to start with.

The two were nothing but a pleasure to spend the afternoon with and Archie loaded us up with stories about starting out in Houston, what it was like touring Africa and plenty of other nuggets. Most interesting were some facts I had never learned in my years of research like the different figures that filled rolls as members of his group The Drells through their career and how Archie may have got his start in one very, very, very infamous local high school band.

You’ll be able to read all about it when the Bayou City Soul Project finishes later this year. Until then, check out a few of these great photos Mr. Roach took to tide you over and watch this video of Archie Bell and the Drells doing a live version of “Tighten Up.”
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