New Music For Old People: Brad Love, Mary Wells, Bobby Bland

Al Kooper

Al Kooper

This column is like the title says — its intention is to fill the gap for those of us who were satiated musically in the ’60s and then searched desperately as we aged for music we could relate to and get the same buzz from nowadaze. iTunes was the answer for me in 2003 and I have been following the new releases every Tuesday ever since I realized there was an endless stream of music I could enjoy there.

I also include older items that I felt were obscure originally and might not have been heard back then. The reason I am writing this column is to make sure others don’t miss this wonderful music. These are not top ten items; but they SHOULD’VE been!

1. “Warrior” — Brad Love

I’ve included maybe three other tracks from Brad but they were mostly ballads in the BeeGees vein. This is more original sounding but it’s decades old. It grows on you — trust me. He unashamedly attacks this full on and in the end I think it works, although for some it may be a guilty pleasure.

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2. “Bye Bye Baby” — Mary Wells

One of the very first hits on early Motown and the beginning of a string of them for Mary who had at least 15 hit singles, starting with this one. This is the ONLY one where she screamed her head off, however. All the rest were gentler such as “My Guy” or “You Beat Me to the Punch” to just name a couple. But here one can see the sweat-covered soul that originally formed her that could only originate in a Baptist church on Sunday morning. It’s also an early peek at the Motown sidemen obviously prior to bassist James Jamerson. Soul-drenched history on an old 45…

3. “This Time I’m Gone for Good” — Bobby Bland

We lost him in 2013 and this title eerily predicted it. It includes just about every vocal signature that Bobby invented in his long history of singing his heart out and it’s a better column-closer than “Bye Bye Baby.” We miss ya, Bobby!

This column originally appeared on The Morton Report. Click for more great selections from Al Kooper! As always, show some love to the Morton Report!

Photo Credit: Joe Mabel [GFDL or CC-BY-SA-3.0], via Wikimedia Commons

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