Wednesday, April 23, 2008

SOME STUFFS: Rhino Handmade releases two brand new Charles Wright compilations

Rhino Handmade is a subsidiary of the great Rhino Records, and it is within the halls of the Handmade that you can find some incredible new compilations, live albums, box sets, and rarities. Rhino Handmade are about to release two new compilations gathering previously unreleased music from Charles Wright & The Watts 103rd St. Rhythm Band:

Image Hosted by The first is called Puckey Puckey: Jams & Outtakes 1970-1971, and the songs come from the recording sessions that produced the Express Yourself(1970) and You're So Beautiful (1971). All of you soul and funk fans know how hard it can be to find some of these records (be it 45's or LP's) in VG+ to M- condition, but it's even more RAER to find any labels going into the archives and releasing things that were never meant for released, material that usually is regarded as trash. You not only get a few alternate versions of the familiar, but full jam sessions, including a 30-minute take of "Puckey Puckey". We're talking about a band that featured James Gadson and Al McKay, and the fact that these jam sessions still exist is more reason to pick up this collection.

Image Hosted by The second release is a previously unreleased live recording done in 1968. Live At The Haunted House - May 18, 1968 shows the band when they were still playing covers, trying to be heard and noticed to crowds who were discovering their brand of soul. Almost every soul group wanted to become the next James Brown, or try to have a bit of that Motown or Stax sound, and the group found themselves including a wide range of music that definitely moved the crowd, including versions of "(I Wanna) Testify" (then a hit single by The Parliaments), "Papa's Got A Brand new Bag", "Philly Dog", "Mustang Sally", "(I Can't Get No) Satisfaction", and "Day Tripper". The California Sound we know today really didn't exist at this point, but there was something brewing in the Bay Area while musicians in Los Angeles found themselves wanted to become more than just the recording studio elite, the session musicians who played on almost any and every record that came out of the city. These recordings by The Watts 103rd St. Rhythm Band show a group also in development, but who would be responsible for a solid sound that influenced funk and soul throughout the 70's and became an inspiration for many hip-hop producers and DJ's.

  • Each title is a 2CD set, and both are limited editions with only 5000 copies of each being pressed. Both contain liner notes from Oliver "O-Dub" Wang, and loads of previously unreleased photos. Get your copies now by clicking here and here.