Tuesday, July 04, 2006

i'm watchin' you

glisten - Lucky 13 Pt. 11: Familiar Melodies, New Songs

Both of today's tracks feature sounds that'll likely sound familiar; the first tastes a bit like (the very much contemporary) Coasters 'Yakkety Yak'; the second is a dead-ringer for Sam Cooke's 'Wonderful World'... only it predates that classic by a good two years.

The Cadillacs - Peek-A-Boo

THe Harlem based band The Cadillacs are probably best known today for their mid-50's hit "Speedoo" (as in, "They often call me..."). 'Peek-A-Boo' was a success upon its release, climbing up to #28 on the pop charts and #20 on R+B; it also represented their sole foray into the British market prior to reissue. It may likely have seen some play in the Burlesques of the day, making this an rnb strip club throw-back of the elder variety. 'Get Low' it ain't; but you should still be able to shake it to this silly little doo-wop wonder without shame.

tell me more about it...

Neither iTunes nor eMusic offers much to speak of but you can buy a twelve dollar single disc best of for The Cadillacs from either Amazon or direct from Rhino. If you've a taste for this Lucky 13 stuff and a few extra bucks in your wallet though, why not supersize it for ten bucks more and get the three disc, mostly complete Cadillacs: For Collectors Only box set?
Read this enthusiastic, multi-part biography of The Cadillacs.
Everything you ever wanted to know about Cadillacs, but didn't have the cash to ask.
Listen to a snippet of'Peek-A-Boo's B-Side, the even catchier 'Lolita'.
Funny thing about somethin' as easy as peekaboo: no matter how simple it sounds, there's always someone who's gotta go and make it look hard.

The Travelers with Lou Rawls - I'll Always Be In Love With You

Formed in the 1930's, The Travelers AKA The Pilgrim Travelers kept touring and performing up until 1960. 'I'll Always Be In Love With You' finds the band at the end of its storied career giving a leg up to their newest frontman, a young Lou Rawls. Rawls and Sam Cooke were good friends and Cooke was intimately familiar with The Travelers; it's not too far fetched to imagine Cooke appropriating elements of this song to craft 'Wonderful World', one of the most loved and best known RnB songs of the past century. Of course, the pretty sing-song melody that 'Wonderful World' and 'I'll Always Be In Love' share is likely a bit older than either than of these, but doggoned if I can think of any songs that predates it off the top of my head. Any of ya'll got any ideas?

To the best of my knowledge, this little rarity has never been reissued (in fact, it's obscure enough that I had to reference this Keen records discography just to date the track) but seeing as this is a title that's more or less googleproof; I welcome correction on this point. Any Lou Rawls fans out there wanna school me?

tell me more about it...

Visit Lou Rawls official website.
Listen to more Lou Rawls and The Pilgrim Travelers at this admirable Lou Rawls obit post over at the always admirable The B Side.
Read more about the history of The Pilgrim Travelers.

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