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  1. #1
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    Who was "Little Nicky Soul" and his group?

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    Anyone know who Little Nicky, M. Alexander and L. White are, or about Shee Records [[its owner and staff)? It was located at 563 E. Tremont Ave, Bronx, NY.

    "I Wanted To Tell You" by Little Nicky Soul was released on Shee101. Sounds like about 1964 or 1965. But the song, itself, has 1962 style. I'm an expert on ZTSC Columbia Midwest [[Terre Haute/Chicago) pressing plant code #s, but not quite so good on ZTSP East Coast plant [[I think that's in Pennsylvania). Anyway, 94,000 seems to be about right for around late 1964. "I'm On The Outside Looking In" was pressed around that number [[somewhat before), as was "Look Away" by Garnet Mimms & Enchanters [[slightly after).

    It's a great slightly uptempo group sound. The group behind him is very, very good. The lead can sing. You've gotta give him that. It's well-written, too. Richard Tee did a great job arranging it. He's my favourite New York '60s arranger. The lead guitar is great, but I'd have had the piano more upfront. The drummer's part is excellent -and excellently played-got to be Pretty Purdie.

    It's a dead rare, Northern Soul favourite. I've never seen it, and I've looked through probably more than a few million 45s in my time. So, I can see why the price is where it is [[$1,100.00 US). I can't afford to buy it. But, I wouldn't mind having a digital recording of it). Right now anyone can listen to it on You-Tube. But I don't have the ability to downloaded it from the video.

    Here's a link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uz6KDz2Q-KA

    I'm curious to hear what you all think of it.


    Maybe M. Alexander and L. White were in a group with Little Nicky? The music writing sounds a LOT like 1961-62 mid-tempo Motown group songs. It sounds a LOT like the stuff Robert Bateman was writing with Brian Holland and Freddie Gorman, and then the kind of sound his songs had at Correc-Tone [[where he went when he left Motown in early 1962). I could hear Wilson Pickett singing it, with The Falcons backing him up, just like his 1962-63 cuts for Bateman. Bateman took that same style with him to New York, and he used Richard Tee, exclusively, as his arranger.

    This was probably a Bronx Soul group. I'm sure I've got some records by this guy as the lead of a group, or as Nick ______, with a last name. He's certainly not Nick Ashford [[about as far off a voice as possible). I bet I also have some records produced by M. Alexander [[also having his full first name). I wonder if these guys were under contract to another company at the time. Otherwise, why all the secrecy with the names [[no last name for Nick, no first name for the producer). Richard Tee didn't have to worry as the outside arranger.

    Any Northern Soul fans out there who know about this record and label? Mark? Ady? Davie?
    Last edited by robb_k; 07-15-2011 at 10:58 PM.

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    I have since found out there was a Shee 100 by The Four Arts [[who I think must have been singing background on the 2 Little Nicky cuts). Their A side was titled: "Who Do You Think You Are".
    Members of the Four Acts on Shee 100 were Lee Gilliard, Cleve Gilliard, Dave Richards and Ike Richards. Their writer and producer was L. Roberts. They must have been the group that backed Little Nicky Soul on She 101. In addition, I've been told that Little Nicky had another Shee release [[ostensibly 102), and was "Little Nicky C" on Bay Sound Records [[so maybe he was from Baltimore?). L. White was Lucille White. And BMI has her co-writer listed as Sidney Barnes rather than the record's producer, "M. Alexander" [[Monty?) The Four Acts had a release on another label. I've also been told that Little Nicky had another release on Shee [[102?).


    Has anyone heard The Four Arts cuts, an/d or know who L. Roberts was?
    Last edited by robb_k; 07-16-2011 at 06:08 PM.

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    Does anyone have the label information for The Four Arts on Shee 100, and/or know what was the other release of The Four Arts, and what label released it? Anyone have The Little Nicky C on Bay Sound? I'd like to find out who was involved in all those productions.
    Last edited by robb_k; 07-16-2011 at 06:07 PM.

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    The Music publisher, "Elsid" Music was owned by Sidney Barnes. So, I guess he was at least a co-owner, and maybe ran the label.

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    ive got Nicky C on Baysound....great uptempo blue eyed Northern Soul.....heres a scan Robb..
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    Quote Originally Posted by platters81 View Post
    ive got Nicky C on Baysound....great uptempo blue eyed Northern Soul.....here's a scan Robb..
    Thanks.
    Blue eyed, eh? So then he's not the same bloke as "Little Nicky Soul" from New York.

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    i must admit im assuming blue eyed by the sound of the 45.....i have a wma soundfile i did if you want it Robb.....

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    I know of no other release on Shee for the Four Arts or Little Nicky Soul, The Four Arts is supposed to have come out on Cloverlay but never seen one or even seen a listing for it.

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    Quote Originally Posted by chalky View Post
    I know of no other release on Shee for the Four Arts or Little Nicky Soul, The Four Arts is supposed to have come out on Cloverlay but never seen one or even seen a listing for it.
    The Cloverlay was a re-issue. I've seen it listed. There was no other Four Arts on Shee. But there's a poster on Soul Source who claims to have seen another Shee release by Little Nicky Soul [[102?) auctioned off on E-Bay a few years ago. I can't confirm that that is true. I've never seen any other listing. I assumed that the poster who commented on the other Four Arts record on another label was referring to two OTHER songs, and NOT to the Cloverlay re-issue. But I don't know that for sure.

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    Quote Originally Posted by platters81 View Post
    i must admit im assuming blue eyed by the sound of the 45.....i have a wma soundfile i did if you want it Robb.....
    Yes, thanks, I'd love to hear it. Then I can compare it to Little Nicky on Shee.

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    Now that I've found out that BMI has Sidney Barnes and Lucille White as co-writers of the 2 songs, rather than the "M. Alexander" and L. White on the record label, and knowing that the music publisher, Elsid Music belonged to Sidney Barnes, I conclude that Sidney Barnes used M. Alexander as an alias, to avoid problems with his contractor, Jobete Music Co. He and partner, George Kerr were contracted as songwriters [[and demo recording producers) with Motown's Jobete Music's New York office [[run by Raynoma Gordy). It's clear that Barnes was "moonlighting" with productions on Shee Records. The Four Arts' 2 cuts on Shee were also published by Elsid Music. I think that Barnes was, at least, co-owner of the label [[maybe with a money partner), and he ran the label. Lucille White was also a writer in Kerr & Barnes' crew at Jobete Music.

    They worked there until mid 1964, when Raynoma had quantities of Mary Wells' "My Guy" pressed up and she sold them, herself, to dristributors on The East Coast, and kept the money to fund The NY Jobete office. Berry Gordy shut down that office immediately, and "fired" all the contractees [[Kerr & Barnes and their crew, George Clinton and his crew, and Gene Redd, Jr. and his crew, plus Raynoma and Eddie Singleton [[managers).

    Before that happened there was an evergrowing straining of the relationship of Gordy towards Raynoma and Eddie and their office. It was clear that he never intended to finance their operations properly or support them in any way. He proved that by signing only The Serenaders and Sammy Turner to Motown recording contracts, and allowing only one release each on them, with absolutely no marketing push.

    Raynoma had likely also promised to get record releases for Clinton's Parliaments, and possibly The Parlettes and maybe Tamala Lewis. She probably had promised releases for Redd's Roy Handy and The Prophets, and maybe to Kerr & Barnes for The Dolls, Carole Moore, and possibly The Tokens. When it was clear that little would happen on that front, Sidney Barnes may have decided to moonlight, to make some extra cash. That may explain why his name doesn't appear on the Shee Records. Later, after The Jobete NY office was closed, and his contract was over, he could have folded his M. Alexander songwriting rights in with his under his real name.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by platters81 View Post
    i must admit im assuming blue eyed by the sound of the 45.....i have a wma soundfile i did if you want it Robb.....
    Thanks for the sound file. Yes, I agree, it's DEFINITELY Blue-eyed Soul, and DEFINITELY not the same singer as Little Nicky Soul.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by robb_k View Post
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    The Cloverlay was a re-issue. I've seen it listed. There was no other Four Arts on Shee. But there's a poster on Soul Source who claims to have seen another Shee release by Little Nicky Soul [[102?) auctioned off on E-Bay a few years ago. I can't confirm that that is true. I've never seen any other listing. I assumed that the poster who commented on the other Four Arts record on another label was referring to two OTHER songs, and NOT to the Cloverlay re-issue. But I don't know that for sure.
    I've seen it listed on Cloverlay but don't think I've seen a number for it and like I said I've never seen a copy.

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    Robb K, he sounds like John Gary Williams a little to me. I like the song; and it would have been radio friendly for that time.

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    Posted this on Soul Source little earlier...


    I've been talking to Sidney [[Barnes). He helped Shee Records get started, came up with the name and even drew the logo.

    He didn't know the Four Arts as he had left by the time they arrived.

    However Little Nicky Soul was in his words a young guy and a dear friend of his from Newark, NJ. His real name was Nichalous Faircorth and Sidney gave him his name of Little Nicky Soul.

    The credits were as guessed an alias because as you said Robb he was under contract to Motown.

    Sid did say he has been a BMI writer since 1963.

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    Thanks, Chalky. Nice to get information from the actual participants.

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    more in fo with more to follow hopefully....

    I told Sidney the group names for the Four Arts and he still said he doesn't know them.

    Larry Roberts was part owner and along with other partners they wanted help putting together a record label, they asked him [[Sidney) for help and that they would pay him so he gave them the help they needed.

    Richard Tee was a piano player who worked at Jobete, he later worked as musical arranger for Paul Simon and Aretha Franklin.

    Sidney does say he didn't think Little Nicky did any more recording so that casts doubt on a second 45???

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    Been offline for a week, as my PC was in the shop...anyhow, I can't much to this, other than it's dead rare...without looking in my [[outdated) Manship guide, I think it was in the 400-500 range.

    Best,

    Mark

  19. #19
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    The Four Arts would be around 350/400 at a guess, don't see too often. Little Nicky Soul was around 800 to 1k, a few have surfaced recent times, not all in good nick though.

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