Tuesday, January 17, 2012
Eli "Paperboy" Reed "Come and Get It" (2010)
When I think about classic soul, & the ocean of that material, there are a couple things that separate the great from the good. First, the songs themselves -- there some incredible songwriters working at the time, and their craft shows. Second, the singers. The genre depends so much on unique vocal stylists (and harmonists) that the exceptional singers do really stand out.
(Strangely enough, I've realized that the musicians were so universally great, that they tend to be a wash. There must have been thousands of top notch R&B musicians playing all over the country in the 60s & early 70s -- even the most obscure tracks on compilations seem to have rediculously tight bands.)
Unfortunately Eli "Paperboy" Reed seems to have neither exceptional material nor an exceptional voice. All this material is well done, but no better than the obscure nonhits included in crate digger oriented compilations. When you're competing with the top names from Stax, Motown, etc, you really have to be exceptional.