Sunday, May 21, 2006

Desert Island Ipod

If I were on a Desert island then this is a song I would have on my Ipod (if I had one), and right now it means a lot, it is by Jackie Lee and is called '(I'm in my) Darkest Days'..., and yes right now it seems that I am in my Darkest Days (Spiritually).

Some info on Jackie first...

West Coast soul man Jackie Lee's real name was Earl Nelson and he recorded under various names including Jay Dee, Earl Cosby, and Chip Nelson. What was wrong with "Earl Nelson" in the first place I'll never know, it sounds like a perfectly good name for a singer to me. His biggest claim to fame was being one half of Bob & Earl along with Bobby Relf who, of course, recorded "Harlem Shuffle" in 1964 (note for trivia buffs: Barry White played piano on it). Surprisingly that classic tune wasn't a hit at first and had to wait until 1969 when it became a Top 10 hit in England. After that "flop" Earl went solo, changed his name to Jackie Lee and had a big smash in 1965 with another song based around a dance called "The Duck" which led to a cash-in album filled with "dance" numbers like "Hully Gully" "The Bounce" and even a remake of "Harlem Shuffle."

His 1966 single "Darkest Days" was way more than another novelty dance ditty though. This is an intensly soulful record with a galloping beat (and castanets!) over which Jackie turns in a passionate vocal, playing a man at the end of his emotional rope. Clearly the smiley guy in the nice cardigan above had hidden depths. Though Lee recorded mostly for the LA-based Mirwood label this came out on the New York ABC imprint for some reason.

Text and picture from


billy westwood said...

This is cool, but I'm glad that we have advanced in our music making capabilities. Know what I'm saying? I like that hi 60s/70s pimp voice!


Dave said...

I know what you mean, I just love how these guys cut tracks direct to acetate in the studio. You get the energy on the track, not always a polished performance, but lots of little studios on the east and west coast, people trying to escape the poverty by making it big, maybe trying to copy Motown, just trying get across 110th street.
Kind of what following Jesus is about, just living it raw and real.

Anonymous said...

Your are Nice. And so is your site! Maybe you need some more pictures. Will return in the near future.


Free Blog Counter