Patty & The Emblems -
Mixed Up, Shook Up Girl
Patty and The Emblems were a relatively one-hit-wonder, with this being their one. The tune was written by Leon Huff (of Gamble and Huff fame) and was originally released in '64. The group and Huff both hail from Camden, although Huff later moved to New York, then Philly to do work on many successful sessions (i.e. The Ronettes, Carol King, etc). Pat Russell lead the group, which was also comprised of members Eddie Watts, Vance Walker, and Alexander Wilde. "Mixed Up, Shook Up Girl" reached its climax at #37 on the Billboards. They went on to do more recordings for Herald, then Congress and Kapp, but all fell slightly short of the hit mark.
This LA group is a mystery of sorts. The members weren't exactly clear, but it is known that they share members with another L.A. group, The Jaguars (seen in pic), including Manny Chavez and Herman "Sonny" Chaney. The songwriting credits throughout their career elude to the idea that there might have been switch in members over the years. The Sevilles recorded for several West Coast labels, including JC, Cal-Gold and Galaxy. Through the moves, they maintained a strong relationship with producers Fred Smith and Cliff Goldsmith, most famous for their work with another L.A. group, The Olympics. The biggest hit for The Sevilles was "Charlena", which was released originally on JC, then again on Galaxy. "Baby" was released in 1963, and was to be the last record put out by the group. As is the L.A. style, I am assuming they probably disbanded to become involved in other projects.
The Royal Masters -
You're The One
Don't Leave Me This Way
I recently went to Houston, to sit in on a dj set with my buddy Brett Koshkin. The following day, I ended up scoring this record through one of our mutual friends. This is a doo-wop grail of sorts, and both sides are completely mind blowing. The Royal Masters cut this 45 in the late '50s, and it is produced by the amazing and notorious Huey Meaux, better known as THE Crazy Cajun. Meaux shopped this record to NY-based Guyden, but no too long after its release, the band, lead by songwriter Fred Kibble, changed its name to Masters of Houston and then to Masters of Soul (seen in pic) and began to put out several colossal records for the legendary Houston label, Ovide. - Thanks to JW for lacing me with this one!!
Side Note: Brett Koshkin is a music writer and also has a blog featuring rare Houston soul, psych, and garage. It can be found HERE.
Wesley Paige & Master Three -
Got To Find Out For Myself
This soul stomper has been one of my favorite spins as of late. There is no info to be found on Wesley Paige (or the Master Three), but the label, Rojac, has a profound and soulful history. The New York label has many collectible 45s including a roaring version of "96 Tears" by Big Maybelle and the funk grail "Baby Don't Cry" by The Third Guitar. The label was run by Jack Taylor, who also ran it's sister label Tayster. Taylor penned most of the Rojac library, including this upbeat B-side, as well as the deep soul flip. Towards the early 80's, Taylor steered Rojac in the direction of the up-and-coming Hip Hop scene and released several influential rap singles, including several by pioneers Lovebug and Starski.