Correc-Tone Story
Thanks to
Graham Finch
Artwork and Website Design
Thanks to
Lowell Boileau

Many of Correc-tone’s recordings appeared on labels like Brent, Time, Cub, Checker, Ric-Tic, J&W, Double L and Vee Jay. Betty Lavett’s recorded her first 45 in 1962 at Correc-tone’s studio on 12th Street for Johnnie Mae Matthews.

Gino Washington – Puppet on a String
Betty Lavett – My Man, He's Lovin' Man

 Mr. Golden’s cash flow problems meant he did more than his fare share of wheeling and dealing and the only 45 on the Prince Adams label - an instrumental titled “Red Pepper” - was a prime example.

 It was likely cut at the 12th Street studio, as owner Ruth Adams had a record store just a couple of blocks south of Mr. Golden’s Correc-tone’s place. Keyboardist Rudy Robinson, who made his recording debut on the local hit, remembered that producer Sam Motley did some kind of deal with Mr. Golden for publishing rights of his song, which involved a couple of suits for Sam and nothing for him.

  Other local producers simply rented Correc-tone’s studio - Johnnie Mae Mathews cut Betty Lavett’s 1962 Atlantic hit “My Man” there, with Robert Bateman running the session. Laura Johnson paid for her own studio time and recorded two wonderful sides that came out in ’62 on Brent; the self-penned “Wondering If You Miss Me” and “I Know How It Feels”, which was written by Popcorn Wylie and Motown’s Janie Bradford.

 Laura, who worked in Correc-tone’s office, also had a hand in writing a couple of gems cut by Marva Josie. “Later For You Baby” was released on Brent’s sister label, Time, while her other 45 came out on the Sahara label. Both not only demonstrate Marva’s super voice, but also have all the ingredients that should have assured chart status: Mr. Golden must have truly wondered where he was going wrong.

Marva Josie’s Sahara 45 has its roots in Detroit.

 Robert Bateman was dating Timiko Jones and wrote “The Boy For Me”, which she recorded around March 1963. The song was sold to the Chess brothers in Chicago, who put it out on their subsidiary label, Checker. It might have become a hit if they had opted to switch the A-side to “Is It A Sin”, which is a much catchier tune – again courtesy of Popcorn Wylie. As it is, the disc seems not to have made it beyond the DJ-copy stage.

 And who knows what singer Willie Kendrick would have recorded if he had signed with Correc-tone and not Golden World?

 During his days hanging out at Mr. Golden’s studio, Willie remembers listening to a white guy sing his heart out. This was Stewart Ames’ recording “Angelina, Oh Angelina” and “King For a Day” – two tunes written by the super-talented Popcorn Wylie that were used by Mr. Wingate to start another of his labels: J&W.

 Not long after Willie Kendrick’s inaugural Golden World 45 came out, Sue Perrin had one 45 on J &W and another on Golden World, which were both likely cut on Grand River Avenue: “Recipe Of Love” was produced by Sonny Sanders and co-written by William Weatherspoon - and published with Correc-tone.

 Trying to differentiate Detroit 45s simply by record label becomes somewhat meaningless, as Mr. Golden’s Grand River studio advertised an array of recording services. It’s hard to say who went through the front door and difficult to ascertain what recordings were cut there during the 1960s.

 The Pacesetters’ two instrumentals obviously were because they were released on the label. The musicians likely hired the Mr. Golden’s space, paid William Weatherspoon to do the arrangements and then funded the pressing - nobody I have spoken to at Correc-tone can remember the group. Or the young Bobbie Downs, who had the next release on the label.

 However, one of the Pacesetters, the late Ronald Kossajda – a.k.a. Ron Koss - later became guitarist with a group called Scarlet Letter that had a couple of singles on Mainstream. He went on to be leader of Savage. Another member, Gary Praeg, was involved in a band called The Lazy Eggs that recorded for the local Enterprise label in 1965, while John Fraga later went on to be the bassist for 70s band The Rockets.

The Darrow Fletcher sounding Bobbie Downs seems to have disappeared completely.

 And Lillian Dorr is another singer who seems to have simply vanished. Before her 1963 Correc-tone disc she had a belting number on the Allrite label – but I’ve gleaned little else about her career.

The Moments’ disc was recorded at Correc-tone’s studio on Grand River, as was the Checker 45 by Timiko – pictured.

 However, James Davis of The Moments’ told me the group’s Hit label 45 was recorded on Grand River and Don Mancha said The Vandellas’ smash of 1964, “Dancing In The Street”, was born there.

 Don penned a tune called “Old Southern Beat”, but opted to sell it to Mickey Stephenson, who then had it rehashed down at Motown. The subsequent global success of “Dancing in the Street” only compounded Wilbert Golden’s sense of being outmaneuvered by Berry Gordy.

 One of the last Correc-tone 45s was by Danny Woods, who had been brought up from Atlanta by Betty Slater, a Detroit booking agent. Danny’s 1965 tune is another fine Sonny Sanders arrangement and is now a record that fetches several hundreds of dollars whenever it appears on eBay.

 Moody and raw, the recording is simply too black sounding to have been a pop chart hit. But Sonny used it as a template for Edwin Starr’s “Agent Double-O-Soul”, which became a national smash for Mr. Wingate’s Ric-Tic label in the summer of ‘65.

 It opened the door and from then on Sonny worked more and more for the deep-pocketed Mr. Wingate.

 After around four years of trying, Mr. Golden could see writing on the wall. He’d pumped as much cash as he had into his recording business and told me “I went in with $80,000“ He had very little to show for it.


Correc-Tone Story
Thanks to
Graham Finch
Lowell Boileau