Various Artists

A Fine Time!: The Southside of Soul Street

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Sundazed gets props for issuing this 18-track collection of fingerpoppin' soul from Florida's Minaret label. While most of this music is hopelessly obscure to all but the most ardent collectors, that means nothing. Everything on this compilation, whether it's the slow, strolling soul blues groove of Willie Cobbs on "Don't Worry About Me," Doris Allen's brazen, sad, and flayed-heart soul on "Shell of a Woman," the tough, yearning swagger of Johnny Dynamite on "The Night the Angels Cried," or the whippety funk of "Bright Star" by John Hamilton and Allen, it's all killer no filler. This is Southern soul at its finest; it rocked the regional jukeboxes of barrooms, diners and bowling alleys in the late '60s. There are also cuts by the great Genie Brooks, and the spine slinking Double Soul. Sundazed has done an absolutely brilliant job in mastering these records for the CD era, and bringing back to the surface 18 cuts of burning, emotional intensity. Just get it.

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