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The Danleers -> Bo Dollis & The Wild Magnolias'

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THE DANLEERS Bear Family BCD 15503 One Summer Night ● CD $21.98
The Brooklynite Danleers were initially a quintet, schooled by Mercury Records into being a second string Platters, the label's most successful black vocal group. But the outfit differed in approach - The Danleers had a tougher, less sappy edge to their material, including jumps and ballads (the group excelled on the latter). Led by Jimmy Weston, the harmoneers recorded for Amp, Mercury, Epic, Everest and Smash over an existence of six years. The CD covers their total output of two dozen sides, including their debut behind Pearl Galloway, and best known ballads One Summer Night/ Half A Block From An Angel. Six cuts duplicate the Mercury Vocal Group Album collection. 16-page book with fine, rare pics and discography. (OLN)

LARRY DARNELL Bayou 1005A The Ultimate Larry Darnell Hits Package ● CD $18.98
28 tracks,76 min, recommended
The only extensive collection available by this fine R&B singer. Though born in Ohio, Larry ended up in New Orleans in the late 40s, which is where he mostly associated with, having hits for Regal backed by Paul Gayten. He moved to New York in 50 when his career took off & recorded for a number of other labels, most which are represented here. The set starts out with one of his biggest, I'll Get Along Somehow, a 2-parter probably best known from the section used by Frank Zappa on his Later That Night - "I hold in my hand 3 letters dear, each from 3 stages from your fine, super fine career", & For You My Love. Also Boogie Oogie/ I'll Be Settin & I'll Be Rockin'/ Ramblin' Man/ Flame of Love and others. No info here except the song titles & a very brief biography. (GM)

JULIAN DASH Blue Moon BMCD 1050 The Complete Recordings, 1950-53 ● CD $16.98

BOBBY DAY Ace CDCHD 834 Rockin' Robin - The Best Of Bobby Day ● CD $18.98
28 track collection of sides recorded for Class and Rendezvous between 1957 and 1962.
BOB & EARL: Chains Of Love (alt Take)/ Gee Whiz/ Sweet Pea (alt Take)/ That's My Desire/ When She Walks (alt Take)/ You Made A Boo Boo/ BOBBY DAY: Ain't Gonna Cry No More/ Gotta New Girl/ Honey-suckle Baby/ I Need Help/ King's Highway/ Life Can Be Beautiful/ Little Bitty Pretty One/ Little Turtle Dove/ Mr & Mrs Rock'n'roll/ Oop-i-du-pers Ball/ Over And Over/ Rockin' Robin/ Saving My Life For You/ Slow Pokey Joe (alt Take)/ Sweet Little Thing : Say Yes/ Teenage Philosopher/ That's All I Want/ The Bluebird, The Buzzard & The Oriole/ Three Young Rebs From Georgia/ What Fools We Mortals Be/ When The Swallows Come Back To Capistrano

BOBBY DAY Collectables 5074 Golden Classics ● CD $11.98
Now on compact disc- The Bluebird, The Buzzard & The Oriole/ My Blue Heaven/ Come Seven/ Beep Beep/ I Don't Want To/ Life Can Be Beautiful/ Rockin' Robin/ Mr. & Mrs. Rock And Roll/ Three Young Rebs From Georgia/ Little Bitty Pretty One, etc.

THE DAYLIGHTERS Day 101 The Daylighters ● CD $18.98
27 tracks from the late 50s to mid 60s from this fine Chicago group. A mix of ballads and up tempo items they are also featured accompanying R&B vocalists Freddie Hall, Betty Everett and Donald Jenkins and bluesman Eddie Boyd.

THE DEEP RIVER BOYS Acrobat ACMCD 4262 Let's Go ● CD $13.98 $10.98
28 tracks, highly recommended
The Deep River Boys were a black vocal group formed in the mid 30s by baritone singer Harry Douglass. They recorded fairly extensively in the 40s and 50s doing both gospel and jivey pop material. In the 50s they toured extensively in Europe where they became very popular and recorded regularly. The notes to this collection by Opal Louis Nations are extensive but vague as to the date of these recordings here but I believe most of them are from the period 1946 through 1950. Highlights are six stunning acapella recorded for the obscure Pilotone label in 1945 or '46 including Get On Board Little Children/ Swing Low Sweet Chariot/ I'm Trampin' and others. On most of the other tracks they are accompanied by piano or rhythm section and tracks include Carmena Waltz Song/ I Am Bound For Sweet Canaan Land/ You Talk Too Much/ A Zoot Suit/ Cousin Jedidiah/ What Did He Say/ That's What You Need To Succeed/ Ain't Misbehavin', etc. Sound quality is generally excellent. (FS)

THE DEEP RIVER BOYS Royale 102 Not Too Old To Rock And Roll ● CD $17.98
16 tracks, 39 mins, fair
The Deep River Boys formed in the mid 30s and recorded fairly extensively in the 40s doing both gospel and jivey pop material. In the 50s they toured extensively in Europe and I think these recordings were made in England around 1958. Accompanied by a dull big band they perform fairly uninspired renditions of R&R favorites like Shake, Rattle & Roll/ Rock A Beatin' Boogie/ Whole Lotta Shakin' Goin On and others. With a good R&B band and better choice of material they might well have proved they were not too old to rock & roll but here they just sound tired. (FS)

SAM DEES Kent CDKEND 125 Second To None ● CD $18.98
23 tracks, 78 min., recommended
Made up entirely of previously unissued Atlantic/ Moonsong material from the early 1970s, this collection is an antidote to pretentiousness. Such heavy soul hitters as Tyrone Davis, Z.Z. Hill, and Clarence Carter have covered his work, but Dees sings his own songs with an unmatched intensity and attention to vocal nuance. The arrangements are generally sparse--many are unfinished demos--which only serves to showcase Dees' rich, expressive voice. Musically and lyrically his songs avoid the usual soul clichés, though nearly every one is of the sad, lost-love variety. Few could sing the words "I'm gonna give you just enough rope to hang yourself" so sweetly they sound like a love letter. A real find. (JC)

THE DEL-SATINS Win 1001 Vol. 1 - Back From Lunch ● CD $16.98
31 cuts from early 60s featuring this New York vocal groups including solo outings by some of the members. Includes unissued songs and stereo versions.
' THE DEL-SATINS: A Little Rain Must Fall/ Ballad of A DJ/ Beaty Dean/ Best Wishes, Goodluck, Goodbye/ Can't Find The Girl On My Mind, Now/ Clicky Clack/ Counting Teardrops/ Guardian Angel/ I Really Do/ I Remember the Night/ I Wanna Know/ I'll Do My Crying Tomorrow/ I'll Never Know/ I'll Pray For You/ Is It A Dream/ Just A Little While/ Love, Hate, Revenge/ Miss America Teenager/ Please Be Mine/ Poor Little Sad Eyed Sue/ Remember/ She's Not Around Anymore/ She's So Wonderful/ Ski Beat/ Someone To Care/ Sweets for my Sweet/ Teardrops Follow Me/ The Prettiest Girl I Kissed Today/ Two Broken Hearts/ Who Cares/ Win or Lose '

THE DELFONICS Kent CDKEND 287 La La Means I Love You/ Sound Of Sexy Soul ● CD $18.98
24 tracks, 63 mins, highly recommended
The pioneers of "Phily Soul", the Delfonics, along with visionary producer Thom Bell, created the blueprint that Gamble and Huff and others would follow in the 70's, but in the beginning there were the first two Delfonics albums, released in 1968 and 1969 respectively. They originally came out on the Philly Groove label and both contained the smooth, heavily orchestrated sound of soul that come to full fruition in the early 70's. Both albums are a mix of lovely original songs and well chosen cover tunes; "La La Means I Love You" is the more memorable of the two, with the hit title song and follow-up I'm Sorry and excellent versions of pop and soul standards like Alfie/ Hurt So Bad and The Look of Love. As always, Kent has provided excellent sound and liner notes for the discerning listener, and two albums on one CD is certainly value for money. Anyone who is interested in the birth of Philly Soul should start right here with this thoughtfully packaged CD. (GMC)

THE DELL-VIKINGS Collectables 5001 1956 Audition Tapes ● CD $11.98

THE DELL-VIKINGS Collectables 5010 Golden Classics ● CD $11.98
14 tracks, 38 min., good. The first integrated rock 'n' roll vocal group to crack the Top 10 in 1957, the Dell Vikings (or Del-Vikings) were a big inspiration to many of today's stars including Paul Simon, who performed their Whispering Bells on his Graceland tour. The vocal group was formed by recruits on a Pittsburgh Air Force base in 1955, went through a bunch of personnel changes over the next five years before breaking up (a revival group with one original member continues on the oldies circuit), scored big hits with both Come Go with Me and Whispering Bells, and recorded a wide range of do-wop oriented arrangements of R&B, rock, country songs and even Over the Rainbow. While this album is fairly short, one might argue that these 14 songs are more than enough. Sound quality is good. ( LK)
THE DELL VIKINGS: Come Go With Me/ Don't Be A Fool/ Down In Bermuda/ Girl, Girl/ How Can I Find True Love/ I Want To Marry You/ I'm Spinning/ Over the Rainbow/ Watching the Moon/ What Made Maggie Run/ When I Come Home/ Whispering Bells/ Willette/ You Say You Love Me '

THE DELL-VIKINGS Collectables 8809 For Collectors Only ● CD $24.98
Two CD set. '

THE DELL-VIKINGS Flyright FLYCD 53 Volume 2 ● CD $16.98
A definite treat for the many fans of this major, but ever-changing vocal group. Without going into all of the details of their various shifts in personnel and record label, simply note that these 20 tracks come from the group's sessions with the Fee Bee label, and that half of them are previously unreleased takes or titles. And most of them are tantalizingly obscure, the better known Luniverse and Fee Bee titles having been released on Flyright's earlier, well done Dell Vikings compilation (CD-34). Among the titles issued here are Woke Up This Morning/ Hurricane Woman/ Billy Boy/ Please Say You'll Be Mine/ Stay Here With Me, and Baby Let Me Be. It's all solid material, mixing jumps, mid-tempo numbers, and ballads. The sound quality is good, even though four cuts come from the "only surviving acetates." Fine notes by Bill Millar, and a great cover photo of lead singer Corinthian "Kripp" Johnson decked out in a white jacket and a plaid bow tie. Get it while you can. ( DH

THE DELL-VIKINGS Sparkletone SP 99001 The Big Beat ● CD $19.98
22 tracks, 51 min., recommended By the time this pivotal vocal group had undergone its most famous personnel change, with former lead Kripp Johnson staying with one label to form a new group and the rest of the guys picking up a new member and heading for a new label, the guys who moved to the new label toned down their earlier rock 'n' roll stylings with just a dash of the prevalent pop music sound. All of this resulted in only one more real hit, Cool Shake, included on the Del Vikings disc reviewed below. Even so, the group's new sound was polished, professional, and worthwhile - as this volume and its companion demonstrate. Highlights on this first installment include the title track, What Have You Done to Me, Friendly Moon, Nobody's Kisses But Yours, Pretty Little Things Called Girls, Jitterbug Mary, Somewhere Over the Rainbow, and Snow Bound. Solid sound quality and brief notes. (DH)

THE DELL-VIKINGS Sparkletone SP 99002 Cool Shake ● CD $19.98
22 tracks, 50 min., recommended Volume two's program includes the aforementioned hit, Cool Shake, plus A Sunday Kind of Love, Come Along With Me, Down in Bermuda, The White Cliffs of Dover, Your Book of Life, Is It Any Wonder, Now Is the Hour, What'Cha Gotta Lose, and How Could You. All solidly performed in a style that might well remind one that their parent label at this point is the very same label that was home to the most successful 50's vocal group of them all, the Platters. No big deal, though. I like the music of both groups. And here on set number two the sound quality is equally good, but there are no notes at all. (DH)

THE DELLS Black Tulip 2636302 Oh What A Night ● CD $18.98
28 tracks, 73 min., recommended
 generous slice of the output of one of Chicago's finest doo-wop acts, and one that compares interestingly with that group's 1992 Vee-Jay disc, offering 12 tracks not on the earlier issue. Numbers unique to this set include Time Makes You Change, Tell the World, Darling I Know, Dance Dance Dance, Distant Love, My Dreams, and You're Still in My Heart. Duplicated tracks include Oh What a Night, Dreams of Contentment, Jo-Jo, Baby Open Up Your Heart, She's Just an Angel, My Best Girl, and Stay in My Corner. A winner from start to finish. Sound quality is impressive, and, sadly, there are no notes at all. (DH)

THE DELLS Dipper 204 The "Mighty" Dells With Johnny Funches, 1954-1960 ● CD $17.98
28 tracks, 74 min., highly recommended
Yet another look at this stellar Chicago vocal group, this time with a program that offers ten numbers plus one alternate take not on the "Dreams of Contentment" CD issued in 1992 and arguably superior sound quality. The cuts not on that earlier disc include Darling I Know, Christine, Tell the World, A Distant Love, Cherry Bee, I Can't Help Myself, You're Still in My Heart, and My Dreams. Duplicated cuts include Dreams of Contentment, She's Just an Angel, Jo Jo, Why Do You Have to Go, Wedding Day, Baby Open Up Your Heart, and, of course, the monster hit Oh What a Night. Top flight music matched with top flight production values here, including two group photos and solid liner notes. (DH)

THE DELLS Hip-O 40156 An Anthology ● CD $19.98
2 CD, 36 tracks, 144 min., Highly Recommended
About time someone compile a career-spanning collection around The Dells 1954-1991 recordings for Chi-Chicago, Argo/Cadet/Checker, Mercury, 20th Century, Vee-Jay and Virgin Records. Baritone lead Marvin Curtis Junior and tenor falsetto John Edward Carter are at the forefront on nearly every track, except for the early (Vee-Jay) sides that featured the original lead, the late John Daniel Funches Jr. (1935-1998). Marvin Junior's lead on Betcha Never Been Loved will surely convince you that he's without a doubt one the great baritone singers in all of groupdom, right up there with Maryland Pierce (of The Five Keys) and Teddy Pendergrass (of Harold Melvin & The Blue Notes). The 3 different versions of Stay In My Corner ('65,'68,'80), will also give you a glimpse as to why this group is celebrating 45 years of harmonizing. Yes, there is duplication with the previous MCA/Chess CDs, but I see no harm in listening again to those 1967-1970 Cadet sides, as Charles Stepney (1931-1976) was one of the great soul arrangers. Excellent notes by A. Scott Galloway. (EL)

THE DELLS Hip-O 02097 Ultimate Collection ● CD $13.98
18 tracks, 78 min, essential 1st, as far as I know, career spanning collection by one of the longest-lived groups in history - one personnel change since 53! It's easier to say what ISN'T here - their 50s VeeJay sides including the ethereal Oh What A Nite, but the wonderful '69 Top 10 remake Oh What A Night, is here, as well as all their fine Cadets hits '68-74 (There Is/ Stay In My Corner/ I Can Sing A Rainbow/ Love Is Blue) plus their two Mercury singles from '75 (We Got To Get Our Thing Together/ Our Love), their '78 comeback single for ABC Super Woman, their '80 hit for Chi-Town I Touched A Dream, & their amazing 1991 Top 20 hit for Virgin A Heart Is A House For Love. (GM)
THE DELLS: Always Together/ Give Your Baby a Standing Ovation/ Heart Is a House for Love/ I Can Sing a Rainbow/Love Is Blue/ I Miss You/ I Touched a Dream/ Learning to Love You Was Easy/ Love We Had (Stays on My Mind)/ My Pretending Days Are Over/ O-O I Love You/ Oh, What a Day/ Oh, What a Night/ Open Up My Heart/ Our Love/ Stay in My Corner/ Super Woman/ There Is/ We Got to Get Our Thing Together

THE DEMENSIONS Lorac 57430 My Foolish Heart - Hits & Rarities ● CD $18.98
29 tracks featuring 25 cuts recorded by this group between 1960 and '65 plus four solo sides by group member Lenny Dell in 1968. The group's two biggest hits Over The Rainbow and My Foolish Heart were poppish, doo-woppish reworkings of a couple of standards with a rock beat and strings. Many of their other songs are in the same vein - standards with interesting variations of the original tempo and melody. These include Again/ As Time Goes By/ Zing Went The Strings Of My Heart/ Fly Me To The Moon and others including a radical reworking of the HAnk Williams classic Your Cheatin' Heart as an uptempo rocker! There are also several cuts not originally issued. Some duplication with Relic 7030. (FS)
' THE DEMENSIONS: A Little White Gardenia/ Again/ As Time Goes By/ China Girl/ Count Your Blessings Instead of Sheep/ Don't Cry Pretty Baby/ Don't Say Goodbye/ Don't Worry About Bobby/ Fly Me to the Moon (In Other Words)/ I'll Come Home/ Just A Shoulder To Cry On/ Just One More Chance/ Love Came By/ My Foolish Heart/ My Old Girl Friend/ Nursery Rhime Rock/ Once A Day/ Over the Rainbow/ Over the Rainbow/ Searching For Love/ Seven Days A Week/ Sweet Georgia Brown (Prev unreleased)/ Take My Love/ This Time Next Year/ Ting Aling Ting Toy (China Girl)/ You'll Never Know/ Young at Heart/ Your Cheatin' Heart/ Zing Went The Strings of My Heart '

THE DEVOTIONS Sting 8241 The Lost Tapes And All Their 45s ● CD $18.98
21 tracks from the early/ mid 60s - 10 tracks originally on 45s and 11 previously unissued tracks from the "lost tapes". Includes Rip van Winkle (two versions - one acapella)/ Tears From A Broken Heart/ Zindy Lou/ Loking For My Baby/ How Do You Speak To An Angel/ Secret Love/ Sunday Kind Of Love, etc.

THE DIABLOS Regency RR 111 Detroit Doo-Wops : The Diablos, Vol. 1 ● CD $18.98
Detroit's pioneer vocal group finally gets its digital debut with this thorough imported two disc set. That's the good news. The bad news, I'm afraid, is that the sound quality - even though it appears to be from the original tapes, complete with false starts - is painfully distorted in the louder portions of several songs, as if the session engineer had no idea that loudness can drive a tape recorder into distortion. That's a considerable limitation, but even with it, this music is too good to miss. Tracks on volume one include The Wind, I Wanna Know, Mind Over Matter, You're the Only Girl Delores, Adios My Desert Love, Someday, Teardrop from Heaven, Mambo of Love, and Try Me One More Time. The unsigned liner notes are solid. (DH)

THE DIABLOS Regency RR 112 Detroit Doo-Wops : The Diablos, Vol. 2 ● CD $18.98
Installment number two mixes early demos and outtakes with classic 50's takes and some uptempo numbers performed in the style of the Midnighters, with which I was previously unfamiliar. Featured numbers include For Old Time Sake, Jump Shake & Move, An Old Fashioned Girl, the 1959 version of I Wanna Know, Remember Me, White Christmas, Can We Talk This Over, Goodbye Mathilda, a remake of the Andy Williams hit Are You Sincere?, and a cover of Bobby Day's Rockin' Robin. The material here is almost as good as the material on volume one, and, if the sound quality were only up to contemporary reissue standards, both volumes would certainly be rated "essential." The notes are worthwhile. (DH)

BO DIDDLEY Chess 01761 Is A Gunslinger ● CD $9.98
15 tracks, 39 mins, highly recommended
Newly remastered CD issue of Checker 2977 from 1960 with 5 bonus cuts from around the same time - three of them previously unissued. The wild & wacky adventures of the True King of Rock & Roll continue with the classic title tune, & keeping with the Western theme, Bo dishes us up Cheyenne/ 16 Tons/ Whoa Mule (Shine) (the further adventures of Shine from Mule Skinner Blues) along with Ride On Josephine/ Diddling/ Cadillac (covered by The Kinks on their 1st LP). Two of the bonus tracks, the raw Working Man and Do What I Say were first issued on the original CD issue of this LP over ten years ago but the other three have never been out before including the ballad Prisoner Of Love, Googlia Moo and the I'm A Man flavored blues Better Watch Yourself. 12 page booklet features original cover art, new notes by Bud Scoppa and full discographical info. (GM/FS)

BO DIDDLEY Chess CHD2 19502 Bo Diddley ● CD $29.98
Three CD box set.'

BO DIDDLEY Hip-O Select 11076 Road Runner - The Chess Masters, 1959-1960 ● CD $29.98
Limited edition (5,000 copies) two CD set with 52 tracks featuring all the recordings Bo made for Chess between February 1959 and January 1960. The hits had begun to dry up and the only hit from this period is the great Road Runner but Bo and his band were trying out a wide variety of material and in January Bo set up a studio in his home. This set includes 22 previously unissued songs or alternate takes and three tracks never released in the USA. Comes with 16 page booklet with notes by Bo's biographer George White.
BO DIDDLEY: (* - unissued, ** - unissued in the USA) Better Watch Yourself/ Bucket (take 1)**/ Bucket (take 5)**/ Cadillac/ Come On Baby (instrumental Run-through Take 3)*/ Come On Baby (take 2)*/ Come On Baby(take 4)/ Darling Tell Me/ Deed & Deed I Do/ Deed & Deed I Do (alt. take)*/ Diddling Aka Tash/ Gonna Tell It Like It Is*/ I Love You So Aka The Beat/ James' Instrumental/ Jungle*/ Lazy Woman (alt. take 1)*/ Lazy Woman (take 3)/ Let Me In/ Let Me In (alt. version 1)*/ Let Me In (alt. version 2)*/ Limbo/ Limbo Aka Limber/ Limbo Aka Limber (alt. take)*/ Look At My Baby/ Love You Baby/ Mama Mia/ Mumblin' Guitar/ Nursery Rhyme Aka Puttentang/ Prisoner Of Love (fast Version)*/ Prisoner Of Love (slow Version)*/ Road Runner/ Road Runner (alt. take)*/ Run Diddley Daddy/ Say Man, Back Again/ Say Man, Back Again (alt. take)/ She's Alright/ She's Alright (alt. take)*/ She's Alright (mindy-lou) (alt. take)*/ She's Alright (unedited Version)/ Signifying Blues/ Signifying Blues (unedited)/ Silly Willy/ Spend My Life With You/ Story Of Bo Diddley Aka My Story/ To Each His Own/ Uknown Title Issued As Run Diddley Daddy**/ Walking (take 2)*/ Walking (take 4)*/ What Do You Know About Love/ Willie Fell In Love (version 1)*/ Willie Fell In Love (version 2 Take 10)*/ You Know I Love You So

BO DIDDLEY Last Call 3135522 Turn Up The House Lights - Live In France 1989 ● CD $15.98
13 tracks, 75 min., good
In which the late great square guitar slinger runs through such classics as I'm A Man, Mona, and Who Do You Love before an appreciative audience in Rennes, France, in December 1989. At the end, a pair of songs from a 1975 Woodstock, New York, show are tacked on, as is an interview recorded after the Rennes show. The band is not especially sharp and the recordings themselves (as opposed to the performances) offer occasional flaws that interfere with an otherwise persistently mediocre show. Only on Who Do You Love, which features one of the coolest lyrics ever, does the band and Mr. Diddley finally catch fire, and that's 7 songs in. The heat spills over into Mona but then Make Up Your Mind Tonight turns down the flame and only smolders for a while. (At least it proves he didn't need the shave-and-a-hair-cut-two-bits beat to sound good.) Despite a few bright moments, this is primarily of interest for completists and superfans. (JC)

BO DIDDLEY MCA 112 163 The Best Of Bo Diddley - The Millenium Collection ● CD $11.98
12 tracks collection with some of his best Checker sides - Bo Diddley/ Diddley Daddy/ Mona/ Dearest darling/ Crackin' Up/ Road Runner, etc.

BO DIDDLEY & MAINSQUEEZE Universe 143 Vamp ● CD $17.98
Rock 'n' roll pioneer recorded live at various locations in Europe in 1984 with British band including Eric Bell/ guitar, Dick Heckstall-Smith/ saxophone, Dave Moore/ keyboards, etc. Includes Bo Diddley/ Everleen/ You Can't Judge A Book/ I'm A Man, etc.

DION Ace CDCHD 644 The Best Of The Gospel Years ● CD $18.98
DION: Center Of My Life/ Come To The Cross/ Daddy Golden Sun Silver Moon/ Day Of The Lord/ He's The One/ Healing Train For Glory/ Hymn To Him/ I Believe (sweet Lord Jesus)/ I Put Away My Idols/ New Breed Of Man/ New Jersey Wife/ Simple Ironies/ Still In The Spirit/ Sweet Surrender/ The Truth Will Set You Free/ You Need A Love'

DION Ace CDCHD 895 Inside Job/ Only Jesus ● CD $18.98
19 tracks, 79 mins, fans only
Not a new release but not reviewed before. This re-issues Dion's religious themed records from 1980 and 1981 respectively. Dion is in fine voice, but the music is definitely late-70's soulful rock and you don't get a chance to forget that you are listening to Christian music. I do love Dion and classic Gospel music, but I had a hard time getting into this collection. Still, big fans of Dion and/ or of Christian music will appreciate. (JM)

DION Ace CDCH 915 Runaround Sue - The Best Of The Rest ● CD $18.98
24 tunes most making their first appearance here. Many are alternate takes, some from the So Didn't You Do That The First Time? LP (Ace 155) but many never issued anywhere. Includes 2 takes of the title tune, plus The Wander/ Little Diane (without the kazoo solo), Lonely Teenager , all in real stereo, as are the tracks here from Alone With Dion , never before issued in stereo, taken from recently discovered master tapes ( GM)

DION Ace CDCHD 936 Return Of The Wanderer/ Fire In The Night ● CD $18.98
2 late-70's albums by Dion, who was still wandering in search of that elusive pop stardom. 18 cuts.

DION Collectables 2794 Deja Nu ● CD $15.98
First album in a number of years by this pioneer doo-wopper using the same techniques and equipment used for his early hits. Mostly original songs in an older style along with a couple by Bruce Springsteen.

DION & THE BELMONTS Collector's Choice 071 The Complete Dion & The Belmonts ● CD $29.98
Two CD set. A great collection of 49 tracks featuring all the cuts recorded for Mohawk and Laurie by Dion DiMucci and his group including the Mohawk sides issued as by Dion & The Timberlanes and as The Belmonts. Includes all their hits (I Wonder Why/ No One Knows/ A Teenager In Love/ Where Or When/ When You Wish Upon A Star, etc), 45 rpm single sides (The Chosen Few/ Teenage Clementine/ I've Cried Before/ A Lover's Prayer, etc), LP tracks (My Day/ You Better Not Do That/ September Song/ Swinging On A Star/ It Was Never Meant To Be, etc), alternate takes (Tag Along/ I Wonder Why/ A Teenager In Love/ Every Little Thing, etc), studio talk and more. 16 page booklet has extensive notes and rare photos.

DION Saguaro Road 19667 Heroes - Giants Of Early Guitar Rock ● CD $18.98
15 tracks, highly recommended
At 68 years old Dion has been rockin' and rollin' for 50 years and judging from this record he's ready to rock for another 50 more! Dion has taken 15 of his favorite rock 'n' roll classics and given them his own distinctive treatment faithful to the spirit of the originals but with enough of a modern feel to appeal to a modern audience. Most of the artists he has chosen to cover were artists he worked with when they were in the prime including Eddie Cochran (Summertime Blues), Buddy Holly (Rave On), The Everly Brothers (Bye Bye Love) and others. Dion's vocals are incredible - he could easily be half his age and he is joined by a superb band with hot guitarist Robert "Crow" Richardson. Think you never want to hear another version of Blue Suede Shoes - well think again! This is not some old geezer going through the motions - Dion is obviously having the time of his life and the feeling is infectious. There is also a bonus 45 minute DVD with Dion and Richardson talking about the music and the guitarists that provided some of the inspiration for the project which is interesting if a bit repeptitive. Check it out! (FS)

DION Yellow Label 42312 The Road I'm On ● CD $29.98
2 CD, 35 tracks, 101 mins, highly recommended
The name Dion needs no introduction to anyone who loves doo wop; Dion and the Belmonts created some of the most sizzling, shimmering singles of the late 50's: I Wonder Why/ A Teenager in Love and the immortal Where or When. When Dion went solo in 1960 the hits continued: Runaround Sue/ The Wanderer/ Lovers Who Wander and more were big business in 1961-62. All of his early material was recorded for independent label Laurie, but from 1963 to 1968 Dion was contracted to Columbia Records as their bid to (finally, after years of head-in-the-sand hostility) gain some rock and roll cred. Dion was eager to incorporate his love of the Blues (as opposed to Rhythm & Blues) into his music, and the tracks he cut for Columbia reflect this desire. During this period there were hits--notably the Drifters cover Ruby Baby, Dion original Donna the Prima Donna, and Lieber & Stoller's Drip Drop--but mostly he was finding his own musical voice. To listen to the jazz/blues take on Baby Please Don't Go, and the folk rock blues of Woody Guthrie's 900 Miles and his own The Road I'm On (Gloria), is to hear the sound of raw, unbridled talent. However, it's five tracks on Disc Two, produced by the legendary Tom Wilson (who helmed the early recordings of Bob Dylan and Simon & Garfunkel), that make the CD worth the price of admission: the folk rock of Knowing I Won't Go Back There/ My Love/ Tomorrow Won't Bring the Rain/ Time in My Heart For You (all written or co-written by Dion) and Tom Paxton's I Can't Help But Wonder Where I'm Bound, are as good as anything by the Turtles, the Mamas & the Papas, and other contemporary folk-rockers, while the ramshackle blues of All I Want To Do is Live My Life sounds like a statement of purpose (even if it was written by Mort Shuman). Originally released by Columbia/Legacy in 1997, this excellent re-issue by Yellow Label proves that Dion, contrary to popular belief (thanks to a nasty herion habit), made credible music prior to his "comeback" with Abraham, Martin & John. (GMC)
DION: 900 Miles/ A Sundy Kind Of Love/ All I Want To Do Is Live My Life/ Baby Please Don't Go/ Born To Cry/ Can't We Be Sweethearts/ Chicago Blues/ Donna The Prima Donna/ Donna The Prima Donna (Italianversion)/ Drip Drop/ Drop Down Baby/ Fever/ Gonna Make It Alone/ I Can't Help But Wonder Wherei'm Bound (Original Mix)/ I'm Your Hoochie Coochie Man/ It's All Over Now, Baby Blue/ Johnny B. Goode/ Katie Mae/ Kickin' Child/ Knowing I Won't Go Back There/ My Love/ Ruby Baby/ Ruby Baby (Alternate Version)/ Spoonful/ The Road I'm On (Gloria)/ This Little Girl/ This Little Girl Of Mine/ Time In My Heart For You/ Tomorrow Won't Bring The Rain/ Too Much Monkey Business/ Two Ton Feather/ Will Love Ever Come My Way/ Work Song/ You Can't Judge A Book By It's Cover/ You Move Me

THE DIPLOMATS Collectables 5733 Here's A Heart ● CD $11.98

THE DIXIE CUPS Collectables 6024 The Very Best Of The Dixie Cups - Chapel Of Love ● CD $13.98
16 track collection featuring all their Red Bird hits and more - Chapel Of LOve/ Iko Iko/ Girls Can Tell/ Gee The Moon Is Shining Bright/ Gee Baby Gee/ All Grown Up/ You Should Have Seen The Way He Looked At Me, etc. Also includes an unreleased alternate of People Say and an acappella version of Iko Iko.

THE DIXIEBELLES Collectables 5829 Golden Classics ● CD $13.98

NELLA DODDS Kent CDKEND 282 This Is A Girls Life - The Complete Wand Recordings ● CD $18.98
15 Tracks, 38 mins, highly recommended
Nella Dodds is one of those names that has been forgotten through the mists of time, but should have had a career as stellar as any popular R&B singer in the early 60's. Originally from Maryland, she was discovered in Philadelphia and cut her records there, all of which are included on this marvelous collection. Nella's voice was similar to Mary Wells', but less coquette-ish, and her songs were cast in the imitation-Motown style that was prevalent at the time. But these sides go beyond mere imitation into the realms of genius; for example, Nella's version of the Supremes Come See About Me -- cut after it was discovered buried on the Motown group's "Where Did Our Love Go?" Album--is a near note-for-note copy, and yet it doesn't sound contrived or of lesser quality in the least. It was the release of Nella's version on 45, that prompted Motown to rush-release the Supremes' version, which naturally became the bigger hit. But just the fact that Detroit felt threatened by this Philly upstart speaks volumes about Nella's potential. And that potential can certainly be savored on these exceptional tracks; she could rock an up tempo number (as on Come Back Baby/ A Girl's Life/ Finders Keepers, Losers Weepers, and Honey Boy) or wring emotional juice out of a ballad (the seductive show-stopper You Don't Love Me Anymore, the B-side of Come See About Me, written by a young Kenny Gamble). Nella could do it all, and do it as well as--if not better--than anyone on Motown at the same time. Unfortunately, as was typical of the times, she didn't get the breaks that others did, her singles didn't click, and she subsequently because disillusioned with the business and quietly bowed out. But we have her legacy--all of her singles plus three unreleased tracks--and as always Kent has done a masterful job of repacking this material: the package is attractive, the liner notes are excellent (including bringing us up-to-date on Nella's whereabouts now), and the re-mastering is crisp and clean. The quality of these songs is so excellent, that it's a wonder that the "Northern Soul" crowd hasn't discovered these tracks yet. Whatever, everyone should check out "This is a Girl's Life", you won't be disappointed. (GMC)

BILL DOGGETT & HIS COMBO King 5009 All His Hits ● CD $9.98
14 tracks - Big Dog Blues (Part One)/ High Heels/ Honky Tonk, Parts 1 &2/ Sweet Lorraine/ Ram-Bunk-Shush/ Hold It, etc

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