The Clovers

Clovers (aka Rock And Roll)

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The Clovers' debut album was among the earliest LPs issued by Atlantic Records, appearing the same year as the Drifters' debut long-player and, like that platter, assembled from existing singles. Originally titled "Rock and Roll", it was repackaged the following year as The Clovers. This is an amazingly consistent album, considering that its material was assembled from sessions spread across more than five years, almost as many different lineups, and two lead singers, Buddy Bailey and Charlie White, as well as varying quartet and quintet (and even sextet) lineups of the group. The spread of songs and styles is enjoyable, however, and very much representative of the Clovers' sound, from surprisingly subtle sexual odes ("Middle of the Night"), to raunchy rhythm numbers ("Hey Miss Fanny"), ballads both achingly romantic ("Devil or Angel"), and upbeat ("Lovey Dovey"), and pounding laments ("Little Mama," "I Got My Eyes on You"), and encompassing early-'50s R&B, and its poppier, more upbeat, mid- to late successor ("Love Love Love"), from the middle of the decade. "One Mint Julep" is nowhere in sight, but this is still a great record with a killer array of 14 songs. The cover, featuring the six-man lineup of the group, is also pretty cool.

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