The Second Disc

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Archive for May 4th, 2011

Long Live Rock and Roll! Dio Compilation Due in U.K. This May

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Ronnie James Dio passed away in 2010, but his spirit has lived on rather nicely in the world of reissues. In recent years, Universal in the U.K. has released expansive deluxe editions of the vocalist’s work with Black Sabbath and Rainbow, not to mention a few archival releases through his own estate’s Niji Entertainment Group. Now, Universal Music Catalogue will add another compilation to the mix for U.K. fans – one which covers, in two discs, all of the artist’s major-label acts.

Mightier Than the Sword: The Ronnie James Dio Story, collects tracks from virtually every band Dio ever fronted, from Elf and Ritchie Blackmore’s Rainbow to Black Sabbath, Dio and Heaven and Hell (the reformed Dio-led lineup of Black Sabbath that performed in the late 2000s). There’s even a track from the lesser-known solo project by ex-Deep Purple bassist Roger Glover, released in 1974.

Expect the set in U.K. shops on May 30 and a week later in the States. A full track list and order link follows after the jump. Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Mike Duquette

May 4, 2011 at 18:23

Motown Treasures Coming From “Josie and the Pussycats” Star Patrice Holloway

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Though her fame was eclipsed by older sister Brenda, the late Patrice Holloway is still well-remembered by legions of Motown fans worldwide.  The co-writer of “You’ve Made Me So Very Happy” and a voice for Hanna-Barbera’s cartoon stars Josie and the Pussycats, Patrice receives her first-ever CD anthology courtesy of Ace’s Kent label.  Love and Desire: The Patrice Holloway Anthology was originally slated to coincide with Kent’s release of Brenda Holloway’s The Early Years in 2009, which collected Brenda’s pre-Motown sides.  The project’s delay turned out to be for the best, as Ace has since entered into a relationship with Motown allowing unreleased material to finally see the light of day.  So Love and Desire, due on June 7 in the U.K., will round up all nine of Patrice’s Capitol single recordings plus all sixteen tracks she recorded for Motown, ten of which have never before been released.

Patrice Holloway was born in 1951 into a musical family and began penning songs with her older sister Brenda while in her teens.  A one-off single produced by Hal Davis appeared on the small Taste label in the summer of 1963 and she could be heard, uncredited, on a number of girl group discs.  The Davis connection led to the Holloway sisters becoming the first West Coast artists signed by Berry Gordy to his burgeoning Motown empire.  It wasn’t long, though, before Gordy advised Patrice to continue her studies and graduate from school.  While Brenda’s “Every Little Bit Hurts” was an immediate success at Motown, only one single trickled out for Patrice. “Stevie” b/w “(He Is) The Boy Of My Dreams” appeared in December 1963 on Gordy’s V.I.P. imprint in tribute to Little Stevie Wonder.  Yet before graduating high school, Patrice’s background vocals were heard accompanying artists such as Sam Cooke, Johnny Rivers and Ike Turner.  After her departure from the Motown roster, producers Billy and Gene Page snagged Patrice a deal with Capitol.

At Capitol, Patrice worked first with the Page brothers, and then with David Axelrod, who was producing Lou Rawls at the time.  None of Patrice’s Capitol singles set the charts ablaze, but they kept her profile up and later became favorites on the U.K. Northern Soul scene.  The Northern Soul movement saw “Stolen Hours” become an all-time favorite, and Patrice gained a large, appreciative audience abroad.  As the seventies emerged, Holloway continued singing background vocals (she can be heard on Joe Cocker’s famous “With a Little Help From My Friends”) and signed to Lou Adler’s Ode label as part of all-star gospel aggregation Brothers and Sisters of Los Angeles.

It was back at Capitol, though, that Patrice gained onscreen immortality along with Cathy Douglas and Cherie Moor (later Cheryl Ladd) as a member of animated trio Josie and the Pussycats.  Holloway portrayed Valerie opposite Douglas’ Josie and Moor’s Melody in the Hanna-Barbera cartoon series which spawned an album and singles on Capitol.  Producer Danny Janssen (also well-known for his work with The Partridge Family) fought for the inclusion of the African-American Holloway in the cartoon group, and animation and television history was made.  Kent’s comprehensive Holloway overview includes virtually all of the singer’s solo tracks but none of the Josie and the Pussycats material.  (A 2001 Rhino Handmade limited edition was a quick sell-out and fetches high prices today.  Perhaps Ace will consider a reissue in the future?)

A few more solo tracks at Capitol followed the Pussycats’ success, but commercial success again eluded Patrice under her own name.  When Josie went off the air, Patrice kept busy lending her vocals in support of Joe Cocker, Thelma Houston, Delaney and Bonnie, Billy Preston, Bobby Womack, and Neil Young.  She contributed songs as a writer to the soundtrack to Diana Ross’ Motown-produced film Mahogany in 1975, and continued working until her death in 2006.

Hit the jump for the full track listing plus discographical information for this exciting new anthology! Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Joe Marchese

May 4, 2011 at 12:27

In Case You Missed It: A Full Spectrum of U.K. Compilations in May

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The Spectrum family of labels in the U.K., which includes the catalogues of what Americans count toward Universal Music Group, have a few affordable compilations on the market in the coming month from a diverse crop of artists.

On May 23, the label will release compilations from Styx as well as both Fleetwood Mac and Rod Stewart. (The latter two artists, whose catalogues reside with Warner Music Group in the U.S., will focus on each act’s “early years.”) It’s also worth noting that Spectrum has released a few other similar compilations in recent months, including sets for Big Country, Stevie Wonder, Thin Lizzy and Shalamar (the last of which came with a bonus disc of 12″ remixes).

For completeness’ sake, we’ve provided track lists and order pages for all six of these sets, in case anyone wants to grab some copies. Read on after the jump!

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Written by Mike Duquette

May 4, 2011 at 10:09