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  1. #1

    young Smokey Robinson covering "Adios My Desert Love" - by Nolan Strong & the Diablos

    Smokey is 14 or 15, I think, but he sounds about 10 or 11!
    A great cover for some young kids!

    "Adios My Desert Love"
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Iq_clXl1ypU

  2. #2
    uptight Guest
    Cool. I have the Diablos' 45 of this.

  3. #3
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    Very nice. I had only heard a more garbled version of that same tape before. It was Taken by Smokey around to the Detroit record companies to try to get one to sign The Matadors and have a release. They got to see Robert West. But he turned them down. I doubt that they got King/Federal or UA or Columbia/Okeh or any of the big companies to even take a listen. I wonder if they were heard by Johnnie Mae Matthews or Joe Von Battle, or James Braxton/(Mike Hanks)?

    Great photo of The Matadors (Miracles from 1957). Smokey must have been 15 or maybe 16. In 1958 they were signed by Berry Gordy, who placed them with George Goldner's End Records.

  4. #4
    Cool! thanks for a little background on it! Much appreciated.
    I posted that video on youtube, so if anyone wants a copy of the MP3, just get me your e-mail and I can send it to ya.

  5. #5
    Actually, if you want to download it, I just put it here:
    http://www.sendspace.com/file/3rhefa

  6. #6
    Haaaaaaaaa,this is why i luuuuuvvvvve this place wow young smokey only on sdf!!!

  7. #7
    This one surely deserves another outing on the Forum. Some nice harmonies on this Doowoply done tune but I understand Smokey was turned down by the Browns at Fortune.

    There must be other connections between Motown and Fortune records - I know The Pirates (Temptations) covered Nolan Strong's "Mind Over Matter" written by Devora Brown.

  8. #8
    That was great to hear a 15-year-old Smokey Robinson, along with Bill, Pete and the rest of the guys. Smokey sounds much younger than 15 hear.

  9. #9
    On the YouTube post comments, it was mentioned that this was sped up. Does anyone know if that was indeed the case?

  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by lockhartgary View Post
    On the YouTube post comments, it was mentioned that this was sped up. Does anyone know if that was indeed the case?
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    Yes, this version sounds about +2 or maybe +3 above precise 45 RPM over the good tape of the demo record I had heard from Ron Murphy's copy of it. But, 47 RPM is only slightly faster to the ear. I doubt that it was deliberately boosted like Northern Soul DJs do to increase the beats per minute. I think it could have been simply due to the equipment used to duplicate that particular recording that was made off the demo record, or a tape of it.

    I'm surprised that no one mentioned that the photo included on the link above was NOT The 1957 Matadors of the recording, but rather, of Smokey's FIRST group, The Five Chimes, formed in 1954. It's members included Smokey, Ronny White, Pete Moore, Clarence Dawson, and James Grice. The Matadors had the regular Miracles plus Claudette's brother, Emerson Rogers, who left in early 1958 to join The US Army.

    I seem to remember both Dawson and Grice being members of obscure Detroit groups in the early 1960s. I think I remember reading that Clarence Dawson was the brother of Downbeats' and Elgins' one-time lead singer, Johnny Dawson. I think he also sang at one time with Johnny Mitchell's Majestics. I can't remember which groups James Grice sang with, but I remember there were a couple during the early '60s. Does anyone here remember him, and Clarence Dawson?
    Last edited by robb_k; 03-29-2020 at 02:42 PM.

  11. #11
    Quote Originally Posted by mysterysinger View Post
    This one surely deserves another outing on the Forum. Some nice harmonies on this Doowoply done tune but I understand Smokey was turned down by the Browns at Fortune.

    There must be other connections between Motown and Fortune records
    - I know The Pirates (Temptations) covered Nolan Strong's "Mind Over Matter" written by Devora Brown.
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    You are right. There WERE other connections. LOTS of them!
    Lee and The Leopards, who had an early release on Gordy Records in 1962, recorded for The Browns on Fortune in 1964. Andre Williams, who sang solo, and backed by The Five Dollars and The Don Juans, and his New Group(which included Gino Parks) recorded for several years for Fortune, before they both moved to Motown in 1961.

    In late 1959, Berry Gordy approached Willie Jones, lead singer of The Royal Jokers, who had signed with Fortune in 1958, but were planning to leave them after no success, to sign with Motown. Willie didn't think the tiny Tamla Records could give him much exposure, so he got his group signed with major label, MGM, who put The Royal Jokers, and Willie on their Metro Records subsidiary. They had no hits, and drifted to small Detroit labels with no success, after that, Willie went back to Berry in 1961, but Gordy turned him down (turnabout being fair play!). After more lack of success, The Royal Jokers signed back with Fortune Records in 1963-64. Willie Jones later recorded for ex-Motowner, Popcorn Wylie's Soulhawk Records in 1967.

    Rockabilly singer, Johnny Powers, recorded for Fortune Records in 1958 and 1959, and had a release. He moved to Motown in 1961, and made quite a few recordings, but never had a release. At the request of Barrett Strong, Berry Gordy tried to get Nolan Strong to sign first with Tamla in 1959, and later, with Motown all through the early 1960s, but he always refused, so he could stay with Fortune, because he was so well treated by The Browns, he wanted to stay loyal to them.

    Melvin Davis recorded as a singer for Fortune during 1962 and 1963, and was an ad-hoc session player (drummer) at Motown for most of the early to mid 1960s. The Utopias recorded for Fortune in 1964, and had a release, and for Motown in 1966, with no release, then returned to Fortune's Hi-Q Records in 1967 (perhaps just a release of a 1964 or '65 recording?).

    Joe Weaver recorded for Fortune from 1954-1958, and was also a member and sometimes leader of their house band. He then moved on to be a member of Motown's house band led by Joe Hunter, from 1959 through 1963. He then recorded for Ex-Motowner, Don Davis, at Berry Gordy's first wife Thelma's parents' Day-Co and Thelma Records.

    The Five Jets (who included Joe Charles Murphy and Berry Gordy's ex-songwriting partner, Billy Davis (AKA Ty Carlo), as well as 2 members of Motown's Originals (C.P. Spencer and Walter Gaines). Billy (Roquel) Davis teamed up with Berry's sisters Gwen and Anna, in running Anna Records, who also had Berry as a producer. Joe Murphy, using the stage name, Joe Charles, recorded for Gwen Gordy's and Harvey Fuqua's Harvey Records, who had their offices in Motown's building, and recorded their productions in Motown's Snakepit, in 1963.

    Dave Hamilton recorded for Fortune in 1963-64 (He had a minor local hit with "Beatle Walk" in '64), and moved on to Motown. Walter Hamilton had releases for Fortune in 1958-60, and recorded in a few ad-hoc sessions at Motown during the early '60s. The Flaming Embers recorded for Fortune in 1965, later with Ric Tic in 1966, working with several ex-Motowners, and recorded with Holland, Dozier, and Holland at their Hot Wax Records.

    The Ferros recorded for Fortune Records' subsidiary, Hi-Q Records, in early 1958, just before recording as The Biscaynes, for Berry and Raynoma Gordy's RayBer Music Co., which leased their record to Detroit's Ridge Records. Following that, in early 1959 Gordy signed The Ferros (now called Nick(Ferro) and The Jaguars) to his new label, Tamla Records.
    Last edited by robb_k; 04-02-2020 at 02:21 PM.

  12. #12
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    As I haven't listened to the radio since 1970, and not bought new records since 1972, there are very few threads on SDF that hold interest for me. During the last week there have been 2! - for which I have much interest. Posters have asked 2 recent questions on this one, and one on the Carol Anderson/Ruby Yates threads for which I was able to provide long, detailed answers - and then, NOBODY came back!!! It's like my posts were the kiss of death for these 2 interesting threads.

    So, I am boosting this thread back up to the top again, so that anyone who would have wanted to see some answers to the questions and information about what went on back then can read them.

  13. #13
    2nd bump up.

  14. #14
    Robb thanks for that info you're an amazing font of knowledge on these subjects and I, for one, so welcome your contributions. I wish this thread had actually been in the Motown Forum as that's always my first port of call and it's actually quite rare I venture elsewhere (even to the DRATS Forum) so having re-ignited this thread I lost sight of it!

    As time goes on I'm finding myself drawn to find out more about Berry Gordy's work and influences prior to Motown. In fact, I think his work as song-writer and producer should get more exposure but at Motown there was so much talent and others became more prominent. But he still "kept his hand in", for example producing Jose Feliciano's first Motown album which was excellent. I think with an older ear I'm appreciating more the early 60s and late 50s stuff and wanting to find out more about it all. The very early Smokey clip I found very interesting.

  15. #15
    One of the Barrett Strong tracks I've most enjoyed "Tell All Your Friends" is actually listed as by Gino Parks and Barrett Strong. Gino also gets a mention above, but this track must be a bit of an oddity. Remained unreleased until the Barrett Strong Spectrum set and another version of the song by Freddie Gorman was also unreleased until they started the Motown Unreleased digital releases. Whilst most of these names came to my attention due to Motown, they've all got a pre-history thats worth exploring.

  16. #16
    Quote Originally Posted by mysterysinger View Post
    Robb thanks for that info you're an amazing font of knowledge on these subjects and I, for one, so welcome your contributions. I wish this thread had actually been in the Motown Forum as that's always my first port of call and it's actually quite rare I venture elsewhere (even to the DRATS Forum) so having re-ignited this thread I lost sight of it!

    As time goes on I'm finding myself drawn to find out more about Berry Gordy's work and influences prior to Motown. In fact, I think his work as song-writer and producer should get more exposure but at Motown there was so much talent and others became more prominent. But he still "kept his hand in", for example producing Jose Feliciano's first Motown album which was excellent. I think with an older ear I'm appreciating more the early 60s and late 50s stuff and wanting to find out more about it all. The very early Smokey clip I found very interesting.
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    Take a look in the SDF Archives, in the "Classic Threads Section". We had a thread many years ago, titled something like "Pre-Motown Gordy Productions, which included label scans of almost ALL of Berry's and Gwen's pre-Motown work (I think we were only missing one). It included not only every side they produced, but every song they wrote that came out on vinyl. Back at that time, Detroit music industry veterans, like Ron Murphy, Ralph Terrana, Dennis Coffey, Bob Babbit, Stu Bass, Lynn Bruce, Bob Ohlsson, Mike McLean, Clay MacMurray, and big Motown collectors like myself and Carl Pelagrino, and Detroit Soul researcher, Graham Finch, all of whom talked about those days. I hope that thread wasn't lost when Lowell changed SDF's platform, and we lost 2/3 of our 2001-2012 threads.
    Last edited by robb_k; 04-07-2020 at 08:18 PM.

  17. #17
    Quote Originally Posted by mysterysinger View Post
    One of the Barrett Strong tracks I've most enjoyed "Tell All Your Friends" is actually listed as by Gino Parks and Barrett Strong. Gino also gets a mention above, but this track must be a bit of an oddity. Remained unreleased until the Barrett Strong Spectrum set and another version of the song by Freddie Gorman was also unreleased until they started the Motown Unreleased digital releases. Whilst most of these names came to my attention due to Motown, they've all got a pre-history thats worth exploring.
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    Wow!!! A Gino Parks and Barrett Strong duet??? I don't remember ever seeing that in The Vaults! I definitely want to hear it. Is it up on You-Tube?

  18. #18
    Hey Robb we're in luck cos "Tell All Your Friends" is available on YouTube and it is obviously a duet. DFTMC tells is that this is Gino Parks and Barrett Strong. I do like this track a lot.

    It is one of the 10 previously unreleased tracks on the UK Spectrum/Tamla Motown CD Complete Motown Collection of Barrett Strong - tracklist

    1 Money (That's What I Want)
    2 Oh I Apologize
    3 Yes, No, Maybe So
    4 You Knows What to Do
    5 I'm Gonna Cry (If You Quit Me)
    6 Whirlwind
    7 Money and Me
    8 You Got What It Takes
    9 Two Wrongs Don't Make a Right
    10 Misery
    11 Let's Rock
    12 Do the Very Best You Can
    13 Tell All Your Friends
    14 Actions Speak Louder Than Words
    15 Believe It or Not
    16 Who's Taken My Place
    17 I'll Make It Up to You
    18 Sugar Daddy
    19 That's All You Need
    20 (You're) Too Young
    21 You Need Me
    22 What Is Love





  19. #19
    I'll have a look in the archives and hopefully find the thread you refer to as that seems like it would be ideal to have a comprehensive list of pre-Motown Berry.

  20. #20
    Quote Originally Posted by mysterysinger View Post
    I'll have a look in the archives and hopefully find the thread you refer to as that seems like it would be ideal to have a comprehensive list of pre-Motown Berry.
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    I tried to find "The Classic SDF Threads" section. But, it doesn't seem to exist anymore. So you'll have to look through all the year by year sections, starting from 2004, all the way to 2010 until you find it.

  21. #21
    Quote Originally Posted by mysterysinger View Post
    Hey Robb we're in luck cos "Tell All Your Friends" is available on YouTube and it is obviously a duet. DFTMC tells is that this is Gino Parks and Barrett Strong. I do like this track a lot.

    It is one of the 10 previously unreleased tracks on the UK Spectrum/Tamla Motown CD Complete Motown Collection of Barrett Strong.

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    Not bad at all. It sounds like Barrett is the lead, and Gino is the slightly delayed echo.

  22. #22
    Yes I like that song TAYF a lot.. Thanks for that info Robb I shall look forward to finding it in the archives.

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