Queen Patsy / Stranger Cole / Stranger & Patsy

Fabulous Songs of Miss Sonia Pottinger, Vol. 1

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Fabulous Songs of Miss Sonia Pottinger, Vol. 1 Review

by Steve Leggett

Although they both recorded several excellent solo sides, Queen Patsy (Millicent Todd) and Stranger Cole were at their absolute best when they sang duets with each other, emerging as Jamaica’s ska version of Marvin Gaye and Tammi Terrell in the mid-'60s with island gems like “Tonight” and the wonderful “Down the Train Line.” Both of these were produced by Sonia Pottinger, a groundbreaking woman who turned out quality hits in Jamaica’s cut-throat and notoriously male-dominated music business from 1965 into the mid-'80s. This set collects the above songs and several other Todd/Cole duets, along with several Todd solo sides, all of which were shaped, arranged, and put together by Pottinger. Technically it’s ska, with a little slowed-down rocksteady tossed in, but what it really wants to be is American R&B, and these cuts crackle with a passionate and gospel-styled passion. Highlights include the lovely “Tonight,” the perfectly realized “Down the Train Line,” the bouncy island shuffle “Fire in the Wire,” and Todd’s delightful turn at Buddy Mize’s “Hangin’ On.” Pottinger wasn’t flashy as a producer, but she knew what she was after, and the best of her productions -- most of which were done live -- sound like a gospel church service with a horn section gone secular and south into Saturday night dancehall territory -- where hearts are broken, shattered, and redeemed in the name of love. Sounds like soul, doesn’t it?

Track Listing

Sample Title/Composer Performer Time Stream
1 Stranger Cole / Queen Patsy / Stranger & Patsy feat: Millicent Todd 02:55 Amazon
2 Stranger Cole / Queen Patsy / Stranger & Patsy feat: Millicent Todd 02:44 Amazon
3
Stranger Cole / Queen Patsy / Stranger & Patsy 02:59 Amazon
4
Stranger Cole / Queen Patsy / Stranger & Patsy 02:17 Amazon
5 Stranger Cole / Queen Patsy / Stranger & Patsy feat: The Seraphines 02:40 Amazon
6 Stranger Cole / Queen Patsy / Stranger & Patsy feat: Millicent Todd 02:31 Amazon
7 Stranger Cole / Queen Patsy / Stranger & Patsy feat: Millicent Todd 02:55 Amazon
8 Stranger Cole / Queen Patsy / Stranger & Patsy feat: Millicent Todd 03:20 Amazon
9 Stranger Cole / Queen Patsy / Stranger & Patsy feat: Millicent Todd 03:22 Amazon
10 Stranger Cole / Queen Patsy / Stranger & Patsy feat: Millicent Todd 04:17 Amazon
11 Stranger Cole / Queen Patsy / Stranger & Patsy feat: Millicent Todd 02:46 Amazon
12
Stranger Cole / Queen Patsy / Stranger & Patsy 03:15 Amazon
13 Stranger Cole / Queen Patsy / Stranger & Patsy feat: The Seraphines 02:25 Amazon
14 Stranger Cole / Queen Patsy / Stranger & Patsy feat: Conquerers 02:02 Amazon
15
Stranger Cole / Queen Patsy / Stranger & Patsy 03:33 Amazon
16
Stranger Cole / Queen Patsy / Stranger & Patsy 02:38 Amazon
17 Stranger Cole / Queen Patsy / Stranger & Patsy feat: Millicent Todd 02:16 Amazon
18 Stranger Cole / Queen Patsy / Stranger & Patsy feat: Millicent Todd 02:30 Amazon
19
Stranger Cole / Queen Patsy / Stranger & Patsy 03:15 Amazon
20 Stranger Cole / Queen Patsy / Stranger & Patsy feat: Millicent Todd 02:25 Amazon
21 Stranger Cole / Queen Patsy / Stranger & Patsy feat: Millicent Todd 02:36 Amazon
22 Stranger Cole / Queen Patsy / Stranger & Patsy feat: The Seraphines 02:45 Amazon
23 Stranger Cole / Queen Patsy / Stranger & Patsy feat: The Seraphines 02:33 Amazon
24 Stranger Cole / Queen Patsy / Stranger & Patsy feat: Millicent Todd 02:33 Amazon
blue highlight denotes track pick