Billy Preston

Organ Transplant

  • AllMusic Rating
    4
  • User Ratings (0)
  • Your Rating

AllMusic Review by

These nine songs from Billy Preston's stint at Capitol Records in the mid-'60s, re-released on the budget Pickwick label, are proof that even a budget compilation can have value decades later, even if it clocks in at a little over ten minutes a side. A cover photo with Frankenstein film images superimposed over artwork makes for an interesting double-entendre -- the transplanting of this organ music from one label to another. A young Preston stares out from the back on an album of truly great stuff. Instrumentals with sometime cameo vocals on James Brown's "I Got You (I Feel Good)," "The 'In' Crowd," and "In the Midnight Hour" are all played with a passion. The spirited performances detail Preston's skillful chops -- regardless of the cash-in nature of this release. "Arranged by Sly Stone" is splashed on the cover close to the other keyboardist's name, but that only hints at the collaboration. The pair co-wrote "Advice," "Free Funk," and "It's Got to Happen," with wonderful results. The nuggets here, though, are interesting renditions of music by two groups Preston would eventually join -- a laid-back reinterpretation of "Hard Day's Night" -- drawn out almost in Vanilla Fudge fashion with a nice harmonica and an up-tempo R&B rendition of "(I Can't Get No) Satisfaction." The music holds up outside of this inexpensive translation with a rawness missing on Preston's own slick '70s hits. It's so good it makes you want to go out and find the original Capitol releases from which Pickwick lifted these titles.

blue highlight denotes track pick