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Hip-o Select Spotlights The Funk Brothers on “That Motown Sound”

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Sure, now The Funk Brothers, Motown Records’ legendary in-house band, are notable names to pop and soul aficionados, thanks in large part to 2002’s Standing in the Shadows of Motown documentary and its Grammy-winning soundtrack. But for nearly the entire golden age of the Detroit label, the group was kept away from the spotlight. Hip-o Select’s newest title collects, for the first time on CD, the sole exception to that rule.

In 1965, Motown quietly released That Motown Sound, an album credited to Earl Van Dyke and The Soul Brothers. It’s not hard to guess who makes up the group (though label founder Berry Gordy insisted on the name change from “funk” to “soul”), and the familiar hit songs played on the album, including “Come See About Me,” “My Girl” and “Money (That’s What I Want)” are in fact the original backing tracks with new keyboard overdubs by Van Dyke, the band’s main keyboardist.

Van Dyke and the band were recording more sides even while laying down some of the most notable grooves in pop history. Some, including “Soul Stomp” and “The Flick,” were released as singles on Motown’s Soul imprint; many were left in the fabled vaults. A 1970 live album, The Earl of Funk, saw the band run through live covers of Motown hits as well as tracks by Ben E. King, Jimmy Webb, The Meters and Sly and The Family Stone.

The Funk Brothers moniker would be largely unused by the end of the decade (although Marvin Gaye credited them by name for the first time on 1971’s What’s Going On), and Van Dyke passed away in 1992 at the age of 62. But the legacy lives on like never before in this new, two-disc set, featuring both complete Van Dyke albums in stereo, all the non-LP sides and nine unreleased tracks. The set, housed in a digipak, also boasts new liner notes by Allan Slutsky, who penned the original Standing in the Shadows of Motown book and produced the documentary of the same name.

You can pre-order the set after the jump (the shipping date is listed as March 6), and get a look at the track list as well.

Earl Van Dyke, That Motown Sound: The Complete Albums, Singles & More (Hip-o Select/Motown B0016212-02, 2012)

Disc 1: That Motown Sound and bonus material

  1. Nowhere to Run
  2. Come See About Me
  3. You’re a Wonderful One
  4. How Sweet It is (To Be Loved by You)
  5. My Girl
  6. All for You
  7. Too Many Fish in the Sea
  8. Try It Baby
  9. The Way You Do the Things You Do
  10. Can I Get a Witness
  11. Can You Jerk Like Me
  12. Money (That’s What I Want)
  13. I Can’t Help Myself (Sugar Pie, Honey Bunch)
  14. Soul Stomp
  15. Hot ‘N’ Tot
  16. Mobile Lil the Dancing Witch
  17. He Was Really Sayin’ Somethin’
  18. All Day, All Night (Stereo Mix)
  19. Opus and Funk
  20. Too Many Fish in the Sea (Live in Paris)
  21. Soul Stomp (Live in Paris)
  22. 6 by 6
  23. There is No Greater Love
  24. The Flick Parts 1, 2, 3 & 4
  25. You Name It (Live at The Twenty Grand)

Disc 2: The Earl of Funk and bonus material

  1. Someday We’ll Be Together
  2. Rainy Night in Georgia
  3. Thank You Falettinme Be Mice Elf Agin
  4. Na Na Hey Hey Kiss Him Goodbye
  5. Wichita Lineman
  6. The Flick
  7. Cissy Strut
  8. Stand by Me
  9. My Cherie Amour
  10. Fuschia Moods
  11. The Stingray
  12. The Whip-a-Rang
  13. Runaway Child, Running Wild
  14. Gonna Give Her All the Love I’ve Got
  15. Fever in the Funkhouse (Alternate Mix)
  16. Behold
  17. Greedy Green
  18. Up on Your Feet
  19. Too Busy Thinking About My Baby
  20. Ode to Benny B.

Disc 1, Tracks 1-12 released as Motown LP MS-631, 1965
Disc 1, Track 13 released on Soul single S-35014, 1965
Disc 1, Tracks 14-15 released as Soul single S-35006, 1964
Disc 1, Tracks 16, 19, 21 and 25 and Disc 2, Tracks 16-20 previously unreleased
Disc 1, Track 17 from A Cellarful of Motown (Motown 544 619-2 (U.K.), 2002)
Disc 1, Track 18 from A Cellarful of Motown Volume 2 (Motown 982 929-7 (U.K.), 2005)
Disc 1, Track 20 from Motortown Revue in Paris (Tamla TM-264, 1965)
Disc 1, Tracks 22-23 released as Soul single S-35028, 1966
Disc 1, Track 24 released in two parts as Soul single S-35018, 1965. Parts 3 and 4 are previously unreleased
Disc 2, Tracks 1-12 released as Soul LP SS-715, 1970
Disc 2, Tracks 13-14 released as Soul single S-35059, 1969
Original mix of Disc 2, Track 15 released on Motown Year by Year: The Sound of Young America – 1969 (Motown 530 525-2, 1995)

Written by Mike Duquette

February 27, 2012 at 18:15

One Response

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  1. Definitely going to pick this up!


    February 27, 2012 at 18:55

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