This journey began when I first slapped my ears around these two sublime soul tracks back in 2013. The group from Minneapolis, Minnesota that gave you “I’m Under Your Spell” on M&M Records, a former Monster hit on the soul scene played under the guise of “Merlin & The Magicians” which remains pretty elusive to this day and still a dance floor winner. I had the feeling that with these 2 tracks from the previously unissued catalogue that they needed to be on the format that would give them the greatest platform.
Now the journey is nearly complete!!
Soul-direction has handpicked what we believe are the two stand out tracks from the 2013 Numero “1514 Oliver Avenue Basement” Album and unleashed them onto the DJ’s favourite format 7″ Vinyl. We wanted to treat this release as a double A sided release due to the absolute perfection of both tracks, because when it comes to crossover/modern soul music this is just a prefect double sider and we hope you agree.
Jimmy Jam Harris was just 16 when he began writing and arranging for Minneapolis 11-piece Mind & Matter. Boasting a perfectly calibrated vocal quartet, an aggressive rhythm section, and stacks of Rhodes, Rolands, and Hammonds, the danceable act failed to win favor with frigid Midwest audiences. recorded in 1977, a bundle of never-before-released basement demos throw Harris’ beloved Philadelphia Sound into an unfinished root cellar, pelting it with Clavinet attacks, disco skats, and infectious hooks. Named for the street address of its underground uptown building,
1514 Oliver Avenue (Basement) is James “Jimmy Jam” Harris’ first foray into songcraft has produced a unique and somewhat organic style of dynamic soul music.Alto Vocals – Glenny “Ittiim” HardgeBaritone Vocals – Lawrence “Sabu” BrownBass – Joe RayDrums – Don TurnerElectric Piano,Electric Piano,Synthesizer– James Harris IIIElectric Piano, Organ, Gary McCrayGuitar – Rodney ClarkPercussion – Barry DillardSaxophone, Electric Piano – Troy WilliamsTenor Vocals, Vocals [Falsetto] – Turhan BeyTenor Vocals – Everett “Jawanza” Pettiford*