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Alexander Arthur - A Shot Of Rhythm`n`Blues 33 rpm EP (7 single/EP)€8,00
Alabama born, country soul pioneer, Arthur Alexander is one of those singers and songwriters almost all the big names of the music that we love name as a big influence. Hit songs like ”Anna”, or ”You better move on” are great examples of a superb talent in composing as well as a highly distinctive melancholic singing voice.
Keeping the line of the EP’s we are releasing on the label, we feature here a few rare examples of Alexander’s uptempo songs, like his cover of Clyde McPhatter’s ”Lover please” or his own original version of ”A Shot of Rhythm and Blues”, as well as both sides of the pretty elusive 45 released by him under the name of June Alexander, two songs (”The girl that radiates that charm” and ”Sally Sue Brown”) that already showcase all the ingredients that would make Arthur Alexander the favourite that he has always been.
Enjoy these beautiful sides!
Alexander Arthur - Lay Down Your Arms (CD)€13,00
ARTHUR ALEXANDER Jr. was perhaps the catalytic figure in the birth of Muscle Shoals as an important musical hotbed, ’You Better Move On’ being the first national hit recorded at Rick Hall’s legendary Fame Studios, in late 1961.
A profound influence on the early 60s Beat Boom/British Invasion, Alexander’s songs have been recorded by artists like The Beatles (who recorded three of his songs), The Rolling Stones, Bob Dylan, Elvis, Jerry Lee Lewis, Ike & Tina Turner, Dusty Springfield, Ry Cooder, Robert Plant, The Searchers, Johnny Kidd & The Pirates, Dave Edmunds, Johnny Rivers, etc.
This compilation includes all his early recordings for the Dot label in 1961-62, notably ’You Better Move On’, ’A Shot Of Rhythm And Blues’, ’Where Have You Been’, ’Soldier Of Love’, ’Anna (Go To Him)’, ’Go Home Girl’, and the stereo version of his LP, You Better Move On.
Also included is his unfeasibly rare debut single, ’Sally Sue Brown’/’The Girl That Radiates That Charm’, on which he was billed as ’June Alexander’ (’June’ being an abbreviation of ’Junior’).
Alexander died unexpectedly in 1993 on the verge of a major comeback, at the age of just fifty-three, which led to a massive revival of interest in his early recordings.
Alexander Arthur - You Better Move On + Do You Love Me + 14 bonus tracks (CD)€15,00
Alexander made a handful of single records that inspired a generation of artists. His 1962 Top 40 hit, “You Better Move On”, helped kick-start the famed Muscle Shoals music scene. The Beatles, The Rolling Stones, Elvis Presley, Bob Dylan, Ry Cooder and numerous other giants covered his unique country-tinged story-songs, and many took his unfettered brooding vocal style as a blueprint for their own. This quintessential release includes Alexander’s magnificent debut LP, You Better Move On, originally released in 1962 by the Dot label. It’s one of the all-time cornerstones of R&B and early soul, and shows what a formidable force Arthur was. This remastered collector’s edition also contains 14 bonus tracks from the same period, including the hard-to-find “The Girl That Radiates That Charm”, the outstanding “Go Home Girl”, and the self-penned “Anna (Go to Him)”, which became a Top 10 R&B smash and was later covered by The Beatles. These recordings are the building blocks of Arthur Alexander’s legendary musical legacy. It is enduring music and the epitome of southern soul.
ARTHUR ALEXANDER, lead vocals, plus:
Terry Thompson, Peanut Montgomery (electric guitar),
Forrest Riley (acoustic guitar), Norbert Putnam (bass),
David Briggs (piano), Jerry Carrigan (drums) and
Boots Randolph (saxophone).
Recorded in Muscle Shoals, Alabama, and Nashville, Tennessee, between 1961 and 1962.
INCLUDES 16 PAGE BOOKLET
Alexander Arthur - The Monument Years (CD)€18,00
by RICHARD YOUNGER
When Ace issued the LP A Shot of Rhythm And Soul (later expanded to The Greatest, CDCHD 922), the first of several Arthur Alexander releases that began in the early 1980s, no one was more surprised than the singer himself. Having given up on the music business several years earlier, the Alabama-born Alexander was living in anonymity in Ohio, driving a bus for a social services agency. By re-issuing such Dot classics from the early 60s as You Better Move On and Anna (Go To Him) – covered by the Rolling Stones and Beatles respectively – the collection inspired legions of new fans (including this writer, who went on to pen the singer’s biography) and reminded Alexander that his musical legacy would not be forgotten. That revelation ultimately helped the country-soul legend attempt a comeback in 1993, a few short months before he died in Nashville of heart failure.
If the Beatles ever wanted a sound it was R&B. That was what we would listen to, what we used to like, and what we wanted to be like Arthur Alexander.” – Paul McCartney
For many fans, Alexander’s recordings for Fred Foster’s Monument and Sound Stage 7 labels from 1965 through 1969 retain the greatest mystery, having never been reissued on any format. Now, Ace throws open the vaults to this long-lost phase in Alexander’s career with The Monument Years, 28 tracks that include all six of his singles for Fred Foster, along with a slew of previously unreleased material.
”Arthur was the reason we all made it. He had the first Muscle Shoals hit and it was he that showed us anything was possible.” – Dan Penn
Graced with productions by Foster (the man who catapulted the careers of Roy Orbison and Kris Kristofferson) and arrangements by Bill (”Raunchy”) Justis, Arthur expanded on his story-song format to deliver such straight-ahead pop-soul originals as (Baby) For You, Show Me The Road, and I Need You Baby. An interpreter of the highest calibre, he lent his smooth wounded baritone to an array of rock, pop, country and R&B covers by the likes of Neil Diamond, Dan Penn & Spooner Oldham, Joe South, Jerry Chesnut, and Joe Tex. Also featured are alternate versions of several sides cut for Monument’s publishing arm, Combine Music, including Tony Joe White’s The Migrant and Alexander’s masterpiece In The Middle Of It All.
”I first heard the song ’Anna’ on the first Beatles album and loved it. It was clear that Arthur was a strong influence on John Lennon’s singing, not just in that song but in many others that the Beatles performed.” – Roger McGuinn
Alexander’s years with Monument coincided with some of the darkest days of his life. Yet from the personal hell he endured, he was still able to shine in the studio. That not one of these tracks ever found their way to the charts is only one more disjointed piece in the puzzle of Alexander’s life. There are some beautiful tracks here, some exhilarating and soul-filled performances that stand alongside his finest work. For long-time fans and those new to Alexander’s abundant talents, The Monument Years will prove to be, indeed, monumental.
(Richard Younger is the liner note writer of this CD – and author of the highly recommended ”Get A Shot Of Rhythm & Blues: The Arthur Alexander Story”, The University of Alabama Press)”