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  1. #1

    New Vaulted unreleased Gloria Williamson acetate-Version of "I've Got A Right To Cry"

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    It is the same song that we thought The Velvelettes recorded, that I discovered in Motown's Vaults in 1976, and was sent to The UK in 1980, which was originally labeled as being by The Andantes (who, I had believed, sang in the background along with the non-lead Velvelettes. This version was recorded in mid 1963. But, I thought she left Motown when she quit The Vandellas, and Motown put The Vandellas on Melody Records, as "The Vells", because Gloria's leads sounded very different from Martha, and they knew that Gloria would not be with the group anymore, and people would expect to hear only Martha. She left the group in late 1962, if I remember correctly. I wonder if the story we heard as to why she left the group (to get married and have family) was not the real reason, and she left because she and Martha had differences, and she was still with Motown into mid 1963, recording solo, backed by The Andantes?



    I don't like it much. It's WAY, WAY below her normal quality level of what she recorded before, as lead of The Del-Fi's for Fred Brown and Joe Hunter's Kable and Mickay's Records, and the Brown/Hunter recordings that ended up on Billy Davis' Check-Mate Records, as well as her leads on The Vells record and on the couple of Vandellas' unreleased Motown cuts. I liked her voice and singing every bit as much as Martha's. But, on THIS cut, she sounds strained, and not concentrating on doing a good job, as if something else was on her mind. I have no problem with Quality Control rejecting this one when it was considered for release. However, upon hearing it several times, I think the version I found was also Gloria, but a different vocal take, and a different mix of background tracks. The unique voice tones seem to be the same for both singers. The other vocal was smoother and warmer. But, even so, it also failed to get pressed up during 1963.
    Last edited by robb_k; 04-11-2020 at 10:56 PM. Reason: Tried to add the missing letter "T" in the title word, "vaulted"

  2. #2
    Certainly a piece of history here and one can hear the strength of her voice. The song wasn’t too bad at all although this is the first time I have heard a Gloria solo. Is it safe to say that Gloria’s voice was similar or on par with Martha’s? Thanks for posting.

  3. #3
    Quote Originally Posted by detmotownguy View Post
    Certainly a piece of history here and one can hear the strength of her voice. The song wasn’t too bad at all although this is the first time I have heard a Gloria solo. Is it safe to say that Gloria’s voice was similar or on par with Martha’s? Thanks for posting.
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    I guess it's a matter of personal taste. But, I've always liked Gloria's singing a bit better. She was The Del-Fis' lead singer, and she and Martha split leading when they were together in the group at Motown, before Gloria left the group. Gloria generally sang smoother and sweeter, while Martha sang with more energy and emotion.

  4. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by robb_k View Post
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    I guess it's a matter of personal taste. But, I've always liked Gloria's singing a bit better. She was The Del-Fis' lead singer, and she and Martha split leading when they were together in the group at Motown, before Gloria left the group. Gloria generally sang smoother and sweeter, while Martha sang with more energy and emotion.
    Can ask where you confirmed the artists and title for this track and just as an addendum it is no longer unreleased.

  5. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by paul_nixon View Post
    Can ask where you confirmed the artists and title for this track and just as an addendum it is no longer unreleased.
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    I didn't actually confirm who the artist is. It was listed as such by the poster, (Anthony Reichardt), who may have the demo record, who posted it on You-Tube. He said "Afficianados at Motown said that it was she. I just assumed that "Gloria Jean Williamson" was written on it. On the other hand, the record photo shows that it is a Jobete Music acetate which were to prove ownership of the song, and almost always (if not always) had no singer listed on them. But, on my friend's post, which provided the YouTube link also showed a vinyl demo record (yellow with a turquoise top 1/3, which are the colours of a particular vinyl demo record blank that Motown sometimes used during the early to mid 1960s. So, I assumed that the artist and title were written on that one. The poster didn't mention the source, specifically. So, actually, it may be just more speculation.

    As to the title, that ("I've Got A Right To Cry") IS the official title of that song, as it matches the title written on BOTH different acetates I have seen of that recording, the first in Motown's tape room in 1976. Later, the instrumental tracks were found, and this H-D-H song was titled "Lead me, Guide Me". But that HAD to be some kind of error, because that title makes absolutely NO sense in relation to "I've Got A Right To Cry" 's lyrics. Perhaps that H-D-H instrumental was being prepared as a "Holland-Dozier" B-side for a 45 issue that had only one song recorded by the artist?

    If "Lead Me, Guide Me" was used as the official title of the previous unreleased vocal version of that song, that is ridiculous. I assume that is the case, and why you asked me this question.

    I will make a comment on that You-Tube post, asking Reichardt which afficianados informed him that the vocalist was Gloria Jean Williamson.

    We chose that one for a later LP of the "From The Vaults" planned series. It was a Jobete Music acetate with no artist name on it. At that time, no one could tell us who it was. Then, a while later, another acetate (Motown, NOT-Jobete) listed The Andantes on the record. But, we thought it might have been just a notation to indicate that The Andantes would sing a background track which would be added, and that the singer might have been one of The Velvelettes, or someone else. We had hoped to find documentation of the recording session to find out who it was. But, it became moot when "From The Vaults" was cancelled after the first LP.

    A friend taped it from my tape, and, in about 1980, it somehow got to The UK, where it was played on The Northern scene. THAT version (the same on both the Jobete and Motown acetates, was a different vocal take from THIS thread's version, and it sounds to me like it is also a different instrumental mix. We know from the dates, that they were around the same time in late spring, 1963. This vocalist sounds very much like the singer on the 2 acetates I saw and heard years ago (Tapes of which, I still have). It is a sloppier version (perhaps a first take?).
    Last edited by robb_k; 04-12-2020 at 12:04 PM.

  6. #6
    Without knowing any different upon first hearing the track above I would have said it reminds me in feel of The Andantes "Like A Nightmare" a little. Or a cross between that and The Darnells "Too Hurt To Cry" and The Marvelettes "Dance a While, Cry a While". But then again I get confused with "Come On Home" as either The Darnells or Holland Dozier.

  7. #7
    It was attributed to LaBrenda Ben on "A Cellarful of Motown! Vol 4". I did suggest it sounded like Gloria on "Motown Junkies", but that was a pure guess.

  8. #8
    Quote Originally Posted by 144man View Post
    It was attributed to LaBrenda Ben on "A Cellarful of Motown! Vol 4". I did suggest it sounded like Gloria on "Motown Junkies", but that was a pure guess.
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    LaBrenda Ben had too deep a voice to have sung on that recording. It was only put there because I put a placeholder name on my tapes -knowing that LaBrenda hadn't sung that. I should have remembered to make sure Rod didn't write that down, but would write "artist unknown" for that one, when he made his tape. Someone in The UK made carvers on all the unreleased Rod brought back in 1980, and there were other placeholder names I had used, (like "The Fascinators" for "All I have left are Memories", which was actually Sammy Turner, with The Serenaders behind him), all with their names nicely printed, looking very official, like they could have been made at Motown. So people refused to believe me when I told them those weren't the real artist names.

    I'll have to play this several times next to Gloria's lead on The Vells' Mel-O-dy Record, and listen to her leads on The Del-Phis Check-Mate record, and decide whether or not they are all the same voice. But, as Martha and the others explained in interviews what Gloria's explanation for leaving the group was, and that we never found any documentation for Gloria making any solo recordings after she left The Vandellas in mid 1962 (especially all the way until May, 1963), and supposedly left the music industry at that earlier date, it seems implausible to me.
    Last edited by robb_k; 04-12-2020 at 03:57 PM.

  9. #9
    I quite enjoy the song who ever is singing it.

  10. #10
    Sounds like Saundra Mallett to me? Could this have been recorded around the same time as "Camel Walk"?

  11. #11
    Quote Originally Posted by robb_k View Post
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    ...I'll have to play this several times next to Gloria's lead on The Vells' Mel-O-dy Record, and listen to her leads on The Del-Phis Check-Mate record, and decide whether or not they are all the same voice...
    Robb,

    What conclusion did you come to when you listened again to compare the voices? "Watch Him Now", which appears on Motown Unreleased 1962 - The Girls as by Martha & the Vandellas is apparently another track that has Gloria on lead.

    Also, it wasn't uncommon for two sets of lyrics to be written for one song [cf. Baby A Go Go; Countin' On You], so maybe there is another version of the song with different lyrics that could properly be called "Lead Me And Guide Me".

  12. #12
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    I listened to Gloria's leads on the Del-Phis' 4 cuts, and her Vells' lead, and "Watch Him Now", and I don't think Gloria is the singer on "I've Got A Right To Cry". I played about 6 Saundra Mallett songs from that period (1962-63, and her voice sounds closer, but not close enough for me to be convinced that she's the singer on "I've Got A Right To Cry".
    Last edited by robb_k; 08-28-2020 at 04:49 AM.

  13. #13
    In the Hollands book they quite clearly say that its LaBrenda

  14. #14
    I've only just got their book, so haven't started it yet.
    Because HDH sometimes speeded up or slowed down the vocal track, that makes it harder for us to identify the artist.

  15. #15
    Quote Originally Posted by 144man View Post
    I've only just got their book, so haven't started it yet.
    Because HDH sometimes speeded up or slowed down the vocal track, that makes it harder for us to identify the artist.
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    Well, they ought to know for whom the track was made, and who they recorded on it. So this one could be LaBrenda sped up. Or it could just be someone else singing the Jobete Music proof-of-ownership copy, and HDH had made another recording, later, with LaBrenda singing the vocal. We keep finding more and more unreleased Motown recordings from the 1960s. From my experience, it seems that only one artist singing a given song from the proof-of-ownership stage through artist demo through different artist tryouts and different 45 and LP takes, was a very rare situation at Motown. I'm never surprised at the discovery of another artist's previously unknown version of a song being turned up.

  16. #16
    Quote Originally Posted by robb_k View Post
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    Well, they ought to know for whom the track was made, and who they recorded on it. So this one could be LaBrenda sped up. Or it could just be someone else singing the Jobete Music proof-of-ownership copy, and HDH had made another recording, later, with LaBrenda singing the vocal. We keep finding more and more unreleased Motown recordings from the 1960s. From my experience, it seems that only one artist singing a given song from the proof-of-ownership stage through artist demo through different artist tryouts and different 45 and LP takes, was a very rare situation at Motown. I'm never surprised at the discovery of another artist's previously unknown version of a song being turned up.
    Every master of this track features the same vocalist at the same speed so I'm not sure what to make of that as there are quite a few of them

  17. #17
    Quote Originally Posted by paul_nixon View Post
    Every master of this track features the same vocalist at the same speed so I'm not sure what to make of that as there are quite a few of them
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    So, as I understand your point above, you are saying that the master tape of this song, credited to LaBrenda Ben, has the same artist on it as the Jobete Music proof-of-ownership (artist uncredited) acetate, sung at the same speed. Therefore, we know that LaBrenda Ben indeed WAS the singer on the only version of "I've Got A Right To Cry" that we know currently. Do I understand correctly?

    If that is so, I am really surprised that the much higher registered voice on "I've Got A Right To Cry" is so much higher and different sounding than any other recording of LaBrenda I've heard. On the master tape, does it list the back-up group? If so, is it The Beljeans (Andantes)?

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