martes, 24 de noviembre de 2009

Erma Franklin: Soul Sister - The Brunswick Collection (1969-1970)

During an appearance on the Oprah Winfrey Show, the hostess asked Erma Franklin, "What is it like to be the sister of Aretha?" Before Erma could answer, her sister, Aretha interjected, "Erma is her own woman!" "Her Own Woman" could be the title of Erma Vernice Franklin's biography. It seems that, through the years, the eldest daughter of The Rev. Clarence and Barbara Franklin did her own thing and achieved her own individual success, though her musical accomplishments were always overshadowed by those of her younger sister. Erma had her chances to record for Chess and to join Motown's early roster, but it was in 1961 that she successfully auditioned for Epic. Unfortunately, she was frustrated with the label's choice of directions for her and waited out her contract while spending 1961-1966 on the road. Then, when Aretha's career suddenly took off at Atlantic, Erma signed with producer/songwriter Bert Berns' Shout Records. 'Piece of My Heart,' a song Berns had co-written with Jerry Ragovoy, became Franklin's first Top Ten R&B hit in 1967; sadly, before Franklin could begin work on a proper LP, Berns died suddenly of a heart attack, throwing the company into chaos. In the meantime, Franklin backed her sister on many Atlantic recordings, and toured the U.S. and Europe. She signed with Brunswick in 1969 and scored a minor R&B hit with 'Gotta Find Me a Lover (24 Hours a Day),' also releasing her second LP, Soul Sister. On this album, she worked in Chicago with Johnny Pate, Sonny Sanders, and Willie Henderson for a harder-hitting sound than Aretha's, really in the groove with the best of Brunswick from the late '60s. But once again Franklin found herself with a label that didn't know what to do with her; after Brunswick nixed a proposed session with Aretha in the producer's chair, Franklin waited out her contract and moved back to Detroit in 1972 to work at a public relations firm. She performed with Aretha off and on through the '80s and '90s, and eventually took an upper-level job at the Boysville children's charity. She passed away in 2002, after a battle with cancer. Here I gathered all of Erma Franklin's Brunswick recordings, including her magnificient album Soul Sister, from 1969, and all of the non-LP singles recorded for the label between 1969 and 1970. Erma's vocals are incredible, equally at home with the original tracks on the record, as well as some late '60s hits that are nicely soulized by the boys in the band. Titles include 'Hold On I'm Coming', 'Light My Fire', 'By The Time I Get to Phoenix', 'Change My Thoughts from You', 'For Once in My Life' plus the singles 'I Just Don't Need You (At All)', 'It Could've Been Me', 'Whispers (Gettin'Louder)', '(I Get the) Sweetest Feelin'', and the previously unreleased 'Higher and Higher'. Note that the first two singles were omitted from Super Soul Sister, the 2003 reissue of Erma's Brunswick LP with bonus tracks. For her earlier catalogue, check HERE or buy (and share, if you please!!) the new compilation Piece of Her Heart: The Epic and Shout Years.,,
Erma Franklin performing her much rarer version of the Jackie Wilson Northern Soul classic 'I Get The Sweetest Feeling':

7 comentarios:

Nosi dijo...

Ray dijo...

excellent posting



scottdavida dijo...

Just thought I'd let you know that one of your wishlist is posted on

Linda Lewis Say No More .....

hope you keep up the hard work.... you really produce the goods, day after day



Bill dijo...

I`m echoing the last comment about constantly producing the goods.Can`t get enough of this blog. Your choice of music is superb.THANKS!

superete dijo...

Excellent compilation of Ruth Brown.
I invite you to visit my blog ( for the disc "black is brown and brown is beautiful"

pedro dijo...

another great pick nosi thanks

HeavySoulBrutha DaveB. dijo...

Thanks so much!