Category Archives: Deep Soul

Deepies on a Wednesday

00:00 Joe Perkins — Try Love

  4:04 Rose Davis — Kiss Tomorrow Goodbye

7:24  Robert Earl — Love Will Find A Way

9:44 Phil and Del  — These Feelings



Slow, Soft, and Deep Soul Saturday at Raggedy’s (Love’s A Funny Thing)


Rockie Robins — For The Sake of A Memory

Seems Like The Love We Had Is Dead And Gone — Skip Mahoney & The Casuals

Fool Of The Year — Tavares

Bishop & The Wallace Bros. — Sad Man

Glen Miller — For The Good Times

Willie Hobbs — I Love You More Than You’ll Ever Know
Darnell Pittman — You Hurt Me
George Freeman — My Darling, My Darling
Willie Dishmon — I’m Walking Out On You
Thelma Jones — Salty Tears
Yvonne Elliman — She’ll Be The Home
Joe Simon — Magnolia

The Dells — I’m Drowning For Your Love



individ. tracks

Calvin Leavy — Is It Worth All That I’m Going Through?

Most of us probably have asked themselves this question at one point in their lives. And it is exactly this type of question that makes us aware of the significance of two very short, very simple words: yes and no. I couldn’t agree more with the 17th century Spanish Jesuit Balthasar Gracian who said that “No and Yes are words quickly said,” and that “they need a great amount of thought before you utter them.”

Back to the music, though. Calvin Leavy’s is a sad story. He was born in 1940 in Arkansas as the youngest of 15 children. He was off to a good start, first locally with his band The Leavy Brothers and later even nationally. His most famous song is “Cummins Prison Farm” whose lyrics draw from one of the Leavy Brother’s prison experience. The song, clearly a Blues tune, reached the R&B charts in 1970.

“Is It Worth All That I’m Going Through” was recorded in the late 70’s with his new group The Professionals. It is more of a Deep Soul than a Blues tune. You find his riveting electric Blues titles on two compilations. “The Best of Calvin Leavy ,”(TAM, 2000) and “Cummins Prison Farm,” (P-Vine 2003).

Unfortunately, Calvin Leavy was arrested in a drug related offence and sentenced to a life behind bars. He died in 2010 only 18 months before being eligible for parole. May his soul rest in peace. He truly left a legacy of wonderful Blues and Soul music behind.

The big question

Roscoe Robinson — One More Time

Roscoe Robinson’s tenor voice is at home in many genres. He sang with the finest of Gospel groups, The Five Blind Boys of Alabama as well as The Five Blind Boys of Mississippi. He has the know-how that keeps a Deep Soul ballad from becoming a schmaltzy tune. And he knew how to put the right amount of urgency into a Soul piece like “I’m Burning and Yearning For You.” In a nutshell, Roscoe Robinson has talent galore.

Roscoe Robinson was born 1928 in Arkansas. In the late 30’s his family moved to Indiana where, now in his early teens, he began singing with several Gospel groups. He started recording in 1951.
After switching to secular music in the 60’s, he had his first major hit, “That’s Enough,” for Wand in 1966. Before that happened, however, he was trying to make it through a dry spell by founding his own record label named after his wife, Gerri. (You’ll find the story here.)

In the 80’s he returned to his Gospel roots and recorded several albums.

His early recordings spanning from 1965 – 1965 are available on the fantastic collection “Why Must It End.” It was released in 2009 by Soulscape.

Today’s pick is the flip side of “That’s Enough,” the song he first recorded for his own Gerri label in 1965 but only  became a hit  after being released by Wand a year later.


Deepie: Jimmy Armstrong — You’re Getting Next To Me

Jimmy Armstrong is one of the many artists who should have been rewarded with a successful career, but never was. His singing is as soulful and intense as it can get. He released several 45’s between the early and late 60’s.

I’m posting my favorite song by him. If you would like to hear more of his music, please check  him out at Sir Shambling’s.


Bobby Moore — You’ve Got To Live For Yourself

When I first heard this song, I thought truer words have never been spoken — or sung. It reminded me on the Herman Hesse poem which claims that no matter how many friends you have and how many of them stand by you during good times, the hardest things in life you have to do all alone …



Watts Line — I Never Meant To Love You

Lol Things not always go as planned … I Never Meant To Love You just came up in my i-tunes playlist. It kind of reminded me to not make too many plans for the new year. Most of the truly important issues cannot be planned anyway. They just happen and develop a dynamic of their own.



Willie and Anthony — One Hand (Wash The Other)

It took me a while to find some info about the duo who can be heard on this recording. And while there’s at least some biographical info available on Willie, I couldn’t find anything on Anthony. This jewel of a deepy was written by Walter Simmons for  Jerry Butler and Gene Chandler, and it can be found on their 1970 album Gene & Jerry – One on One (Mercury).  


” Willie (Hill) and Anthony (Fontain) were one of the last of the great breed of male duos that used to be such a feature of the 60s soul scene. I don’t know of an earlier 45 than this superb ballad. Taken at a dead slow pace, the song’s structure and arrangement gives the gospel-drenched vocals centre stage. And given the commitment and lack of inhibition Willie & Anthony display that’s got to be right – a great performance! I always thought Molly Jo was a Georgia concern but the presence of Simtec and Wylie on the disc label argues a Chicago connection. Whatever – there wasn’t much soul as raw as this around the turn of the 70s and they continued to display this uncommercial approach on their 3 Blue Candle 45s later on that decade. The pick of these is “It’s never too late”, another crude and unpolished record at a time when Southern soul seemed to be losing it’s capacity to take listeners straight to the church. They came back with an 80s 45 on Soul-Potion, another tiny Georgia independent and I thought that was it until Ichiban released a CD by Willie Hill, “Leavin’ won’t be easy”, late last year. And how pleased I was that it was really very good indeed. Welcome back Willie we’ve missed you!”                             (

An here’s the link to a fairly recent article about Willie Hill. 

One Hand (Wash The Other)



Don’t you like the guitar? Absolutely wonderful … 

Joe Haywood — Warm And Tender Love

Everyone who has ever been in love knows the feeling Joe Haywood and Percy Sledge are singing about. Warm and Tender Love is without a doubt one of the most beautiful love songs ever. Of course, it’s a Percy Sledge classic, written by Irral Ida Berger and Bobby Robinson. The original, however, belongs to Joe Haywood who released it on the Enjoy label in 1964. (It was also released a little later on the White Cliffs label.)

The original version has a less elaborate instrumentation, but, in my opinion, the guitar alone makes up for the missing signature organ part of the original. In regard to the singing, Percy substitutes in his version a lot of tenderness for the passion in Joe Haywood’s version. I love both versions — of course.

Joe Haywood — Warm And Tender Love



And here is Percy Sledge’s version which is impossible to trump. I’ll always love you, Percy!

A Bag o’ Deepies

I guess it’s time for me to get off the disco and funk trip … So, for all you Deep Soul fans: here’s a bag of deepies. These tracks had been waiting on my desktop to be used someday in a themed Audioblog. Alas, at the moment time is bit tight around here; but I think you’ll like the tracks anyway …


Oh Dreamy Me — Dicky Williams

He’s Down On Me — Betty Green

Cloudy Days — Jim Coleman

That’s Where It’s At — The Hesitations

I Still Love You —  Jean Stanback

Don’t Let Go — Sweet Berry




Little Scotty — Slow That Disco Down

Well, here we go. Can’t please everyone, I guess. Having had all that disco music yesterday prompted a complaint from the Deep Soul department (DSD) whose director, Mr. Little Scotty, demanded to Slow That Disco Down or else  …

The title is from  Lost Deep Soul Treasures, Vol. 2, another beautiful compilation of true gems.



Please check more music by Little Scotty out here and here.

Deepie: Barbara and Gwen — I Love My Man / King Louie — I’ve Been Down So Long

Friday! Don’t know what to post today, though. I’m in a weird kinda mood … Can’t go wrong with a deepie or two. The two songs are from Lost Deep Soul Treasures 4 (Sounds of Soul, Import)





Deepie: Elmore Morris — It Seemed Like Heaven To Me

Elmore Morris, a cousin of BB King, was one half of Double Soul; the other half was Charles Cooper. As a duo they released only one single on Minaret. Both artists released more recordings of their own. Charles Cooper in another duo: Chuck and Mariann.

I agree with Sir Shambling that It seemed Like Heaven To Me (CrackerJack, 1962) is most likely Elmore’s best solo effort. To listen to more of his material please go here.

Sorry. There’s no pic. of the man — but his voice definitely makes up for it.



Jean Battle — Unsatisfied Woman

I don’t know why, but somehow I’ve switched into the bittersweet mode, and what kind of music could be better suited to that kind of mood than some sweet Deep Soul?

Jean Battle’s Unsatisfied Woman is one of the songs that squeeze the heart so hard it really hurts to listen to them. There’s hardly any other voice more qualified to sing this song — rich, warm, feminine, soft, and pleading. (If you ask me, her guy must have been a moron lol)

The song is a Sam Dees composition through and through and was released on Clintone in 1971.



Here’s another great recording of the song by Barbara Stant


Loleatta Holloway — Cry To Me

I came across this song while I was searching for some cover versions of the eponymous Solomon Burke song. I decided to put off the post on the cover versions and put Loleatta Holloway’s fabulous song up instead. Here’s what heartache sounds like.



The singer died in March this year. May her soul rest in peace.

The Montgomery Express — Left Me With A Memory

Happy Sunday. And happy Father’s Day to all the dads — except the deadbeat lousy losers, of course, who don’t know the meaning of the word “father.”

Today’s pick is from an album I found on Funk My Soul. This album is one of the rare recordings that stand out among the rest in that all the tracks are beautiful. It’s been difficult for me to pick a song for today’s post, but I kind of fell in love with Left Me With A Memory because it’s one of these tunes that leave me with goose flesh all over. In addition to the warm, rich baritone voice, the arrangement is soothing the soul — just listen to that saxophone. You’ll hear more of that sax and the rest of outstanding musicians participating in the album on the album’s title song and Party Fever, two  pieces in the best of Funk tradition …

Get the CD here. You need to get this one!




Weepy Wednesday — Deepies

I am in the mood for a deepie or two. And I found  two tracks from the Lost Deep Soul Treasures that suit my mood perfectly. This collection of beautiful Deep Soul titles encompasses 5 volumes, and I encourage  all you Soul lovers — not only the Deep Soul fans — to check them out. You will see a myriad of unfamiliar artists’ names, but, trust me, you will enjoy hearing them.

I Won’t Cry — Pete Cook (Vol. 3)

Weep No More — Terry and Tyrants (Vol. 2)

Friday’s Child  — Billy Dearborn (Vol. 5)




5 Degrees Fahrenheit — Vibrations

Get the album here



Ray Crossen — Would You Still Say I’m The One You Love

“If, as a record-buying generation, we’re now better served and better informed about such seminal performers as B.B. King, Dion, Slim Harpo or even the likes of Jaibi and Little Willie Littlefield, then it’s no thanks to the major companies who have sat on the material for the last half-century. Instead, it’s been companies like Ace who went digging and unearthed some of the finest and most influential records of the postwar era.”  (

I may add that ACE’s KENT Soul label accomplished the same for Deep Soul, Northern Soul, and Southern Soul. The New York Soul Serenade compilation piles up one rare beauty on top of another: Chuck Jackson, The Platters, Walter Jackson, Judy Clay — all of them top notch artists who definitely knew how to serenade their audiences …

Today’s pick from this album is by Ray Crossen. I can’t help but compare the background harmonies to those of the Temptations. What do you think?



John Baldwin — Stop This Crying

What a great Monday for a deepie. I found this song a long time ago on Sir Shambling’s site, and what I love about it is the naturalness both of the singing and the music. If there’s something like honest music, I would call this song an example of such a phenomenon.

Sorry — no pic. Just the sweet and gentle voice of one Mr. John Baldwin.



Percy Sledge Special

Spring time without a Percy Sledge special is simply unfathomable for me. I have said it probably a dozen  times before — and I will say it again — it was him who got me interested in soul music. I used to listen to Percy’s music on balmy spring evenings, the windows wide open, the evening breeze playing with the curtains, and me just drifting off into another world … Life was just good.

Back home in Germany in the 60’s and 70’s only a handful of soul singers were played regularly  on the radio stations.  Percy was one of the most played ones. The others were Otis Redding, Wilson Pickett, The Four Tops, and  The Supremes. Oh, I forgot Arthur Conley and Aretha Franklin. As most of you may have guessed, what we got to hear were mainly these artists’ biggest hits.

Nevertheless, When A Man Loves A Woman, Sweet Soul Music, and I Can’t Help Myself  had me hanker for more of these tunes and buy whatever Soul records I could find. Most of them were compilations, I remember.

There is much talk about the Deep Soul genre, that peculiar cross between gospel, blues, soul and country. But hardly ever is Percy Sledge mentioned as the artist who ought to be considered it’s source. I don’t think there are too many Deep Soul singers who can compete with Percy Sledge when it comes to intensity and urgency.

Anyway. I will always love Percy and his smooth and creamy yet soaring tenor voice. First loves never really die …

So here we go:

A Sweet  Woman Like You

You’re All Around Me

Out of Left Field

Hanging Up My Heart



AL Gardner — Just The Touch

Al Gardner is a little known artist with only a few 45-recordings to his name. He was most likely born in Selma, AL and cut his first single in the 60’s for Lupine. This track was posted on Sir Shambling’s site. All  I can say that this is one great Deepie. Al Gardner sure had the voice to become a successful singer. But as so many artists, he seemed to have vanished from the music scene.



Gene King — Never Walk Out On You

This is an example of a mighty fine horn section that makes a song quite special. The intro toNever Walk Out On You is simply stunning in my opinion.

Posted by Raggedy at 3/16/2011 12:33:00 AM 0 comments  

Clyde Dean — Can You Keep A Secret

Clyde Dean probably has only released one single of which he wrote both sides. Today’s track came up on my playlist, and I thought I should share it. Such unmistakable Southern Soul tracks as Can You Keep A Secret always have me hum and dance along.

Posted by Raggedy at 2/21/2011 07:15:00 PM 0 comments  

E(a)rnest Jackson — Why Can’t I Love Somebody

(Picture from Ernest Jackson’s website.)



According to Sir Shambling’s,  Ernest Jackson most likely came from the same place he produced all his recordings: Baton Rouge. His late 60’s material was released by BOFUZ, while it was the Stone label that released his 70’s cuts. In the 80’s, Ernest Jackson had signed with Royal Shield.

Despite his obvious talent, he never made it to the top — where he definitely belonged. Alas, listen yourself and tell me why a voice like Ernest’s should be known only to a few lucky music lovers?

Apparently, the artist is working at a restaurant in Baton Rouge, where he’s not only waiting but also singing.

Today’s pick is from 1974.



>Archie Walker — I’m Asking Forgiveness / A Change Is Near


Archie Walker is one of the artists who only seemed to have released a handful recordings. I think it is  regrettable not to have more material available by this artist. It certainly would have been interesting to hear how his voice had changed over time.
His voice may not be exceptional, but in its modesty (for the lack of a better expression) it is touching me. He’s not trying to impress his audience, but is singing his song as if he were by himself — in the shower, maybe?
I found the tracks — of course — at Sir Shambling’s.  At first, I was going to post only I’m Asking Forgiveness, but A Change Is Near definitely deserves to be posted too. The song’s title already hints at the original it is based upon: Sam Cooke’s A Change Will Come. The latter song’s musical arrangement is no doubt brilliant — I especially love the guitar.

Now, get an earful of that sweet 60’s sound of Archie Walker. 

>O. V. Wright — Trying To Live My Life Without You Babe /Without


I always had a soft spot for O. V. Wright, and when I heard his take on Trying To Live My Life Without You, I knew I had to post it. O. V. does a great job with the song. Nevertheless, this song “belongs” to Otis Clay who recorded the original in 1972 for the Blind Pig label. (See my posts about Otis Clay here.)
The second song is simply a beautiful Deepie. And Deepies were O.V’s forte without a doubt. 

>That Deep, Deep Soul …


I am a hopeless sucker for some good Deepies … I won’t lie about it. Although my taste for that genre has earned me lots of funny looks (especially from my husband.) But no persecution or intimidation will keep me from delving into that sound of pain and misery and longing and crying and — you know what else.

Here’s a little bit of info about the genre which I consider the all-inclusive one, because it includes elements of blues, rock, country & western and, of course, a huge dose of gospel. Deep Soul is not about words; it is all about feeling. Rhythm is the key to Deep Soul — the all embracing genre in American music which originated from the African-American churches of the South. Funny enough, however, the majority of its creators have been whites. I say “funny” because, to me Deep Soul sounds as black as music can probably sound compared to the relatively white-scrubbed Motown sound, for example, which was almost exclusively the creation of black artists.
Pioneering Southern/Deep Soul artists were such greats as Ray Charles, James Brown (yes), Bobby Blue Bland, Rufus Thomas or Allen Toussaint.
So, how come my otherwise very nice husband, frowns at the genre? I think I know. It’s the simplicity, or rather the lack of highly “manicured” arrangements. And that’s exactly what I love about Deep Soul: Give me just the basics — but send them straight to my heart.
During the 60’s Memphis Soul era, Deep Soul was at its best with Stax artists like Otis Redding, Sam Cooke , Carla Thomas, Eddie Floyd, Johnnie Taylor, and …. Wilson Pickett’s stepping stone into his ever so glorious solo career was — you may have guessed it — the sound of Deep Southern Soul. But there is a host of artists who were not quite as successful as those I’ve just mentioned. These are the ones I would like to showcase in my Deep Soul posts.

Obrey Wilson — Break Away Baby
Roy Arlington — Everybody Makes A Mistake Sometimes
Tiny Watkins — Forbidden Fruit

For everyone who wants to start a Deep/Southern Soul collection, I would recommend Dave Godin’s Deep Soul Treasures series.