Sunday, 17 May 2009

“The Platinum Collection” by JOE TURNER. A Review of the 2007 Rhino CD Compilation.

“…Monday Washing On The Line…I See Yours Right Next To Mine…”

Europe's "The Platinum Collection" is one of a large number of collections issued in 2007 to celebrate the label's 60th Anniversary - and Big Joe Turner deserves his place in that list of excellence. It consists of 21 mostly rocking Fifties Rhythm' n' Blues tracks - a huge number of which charted between 1951 and 1959. It's issued at a budget price and has that great Rhino remastered sound throughout.

At budget price, the inlay isn't detailed, and there's a few gems on here that are off the beaten track when it comes to hits sets for the lovely Big Joe - so here's a song-by-song breakdown (58:33 minutes):

All tracks (except 16) are USA 7" singles:
1. Shake, Rattle And Roll - 1954 on Atlantic 1026 [A]
2. Flip, Flop And Fly - 1955 on Atlantic 1053 [A]
3. Honey Hush - 1953 on Atlantic 1001 [A]
4. Well All Right - 1954 on Atlantic 1040 [A]
5. Hide And Seek - 1955 on Atlantic 1069 [A]
6. Morning, Noon And Night - 1956 on Atlantic 1080 [B-side to 7]
7. The Chicken and The Hawk (Up, Up And Away) - 1956 on Atlantic 1080 [A]
8. Corrine Corrina - 1956 on Atlantic 1088 [A]
9. Boogie Woogie Country Girl - 1956 on Atlantic 1088 [B-side to 8]
10. Midnight Special Train - 1957 on Atlantic 1122 [A]
11. Rock A While - 1956 on Atlantic 1100 [B-side to 12]
12. Lipstick, Powder And Paint - 1956 on Atlantic 1100 [A]
13. Midnight Cannonball - 1955 on Atlantic 1069 [B-side to 5]
14. The Chill Is On - 1951 on Atlantic 45-949 [A]
15. Oke-She-Moke-She-Pop - 1953 on Atlantic 1016 [B-side to 17]
16. You're Driving Me Crazy - 1956 USA LP "Boss Of The Blues" on Atlantic 1234
17. TV Mama - 1953 on Atlantic 1016 [A]
18. Tomorrow Night - 1959 on Atlantic 2044 [A]
19. Don't You Cry - 1952 on Atlantic 45-970 [A]
20. Sweet Sixteen - 1952 on Atlantic 45-960 [A]
21. Chains Of Love - 1951 on Atlantic 45-939 [A his debut single for Atlantic]

"TV Mama" features Elmore James on trademark slide guitar and it's said that Fats Domino is the one tinkling away on the ivories in the background. Both "Corrine Corrina" and "Lipstick, Powder And Paint: feature backing vocals from the girl group The Cookies, while Van "Piano Man" Walls puts in lovely keyboard flourishes on "Boogie Woogie Country Girl".

"Teen-age Letter" has witty and sharp lyrics that are the equal of Chuck Berry's finest, while "Morning, Noon And Night" features the wicked brass of The Blues Kings - as well as racy words that will put a naughty smile on your face. "Tomorrow Night" is a cover of LaVern Baker's 1955 Atlantic hit, while "You're Driving Me Crazy" is not a track you see on most JT compilations and it's a gem - almost like WWII swing in places - the brass uplifting like Glenn Miller. In fact there's not a duffer on here anywhere...

Ruth Brown, LaVern Baker, The Clovers, The Coasters - they were all sensational Fifties acts for Atlantic, but my heart has always been with "Big" Joe Turner. My son - who is 18 and has Autism - has played this man's wonderfully uplifting R 'n' B since he was 5 - driving us near crazy with it sometimes - and yet in truth - I never tire of him or his music. Cracking tunes, huge voice, big personality, witty and clever lyrics - everything about Big Joe Turner's Atlantic sides is magic.

Sold for four pounds retail and even less online - this compilation is a steal at twenty times that price - and something you need in your life.

Dig in and enjoy and I envy you the journey.

PS: the other Atlantic artists in "The Platinum Collection" series are: LaVern Baker (see REVIEW), Archie Bell & The Drells (see REVIEW), Brook Benton (see REVIEW), Booker T & The M.G.'s, Ruth Brown, Solomon Burke, Clarence Carter (see REVIEW), The Clovers (see REVIEW), Arthur Conley (see REVIEW), Don Covay, The Detroit Spinners, Eddie Floyd, King Curtis, Barbara Lewis (see REVIEW), The Mar-Keys, The Persuasions, Sam & Dave, Percy Sledge (see REVIEW), Carla Thomas, Rufus Thomas and Betty Wright

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Spines of Exceptional CD Remasters

Spines of Exceptional CD Remasters

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