Rare Tracks from Detroit, Vol. 1-7

Various Artists

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Rare Tracks from Detroit, Vol. 1-7 Review

by Andrew Hamilton

This is not a mammoth box set, but individual CDs -- released by Marginal/Bar Records, a Belgian record company -- being reviewed together. The theme is the same: rare recordings by Motown artists who are unknown to casual fans. We're talking about the likes of Bunny Paul, Gino Parks, Connie Van Dyke, Mike & the Modifiers, Christine Schumacher, Connie Haines, Debbie Dean, La Brenda Ben, Henry Lumpkin, Lee & the Leopards, Herman Griffin, Sammy Ward, Terry Johnson, and many, many more. Each LP contains around 25 tracks. Many cuts are obscurities by familiar artists, the household names like Marvin Gaye, the Miracles, the Marvelettes, the Supremes, the Temptations, and the Four Tops; there are also offerings from one hit wonders, including Barrett Strong, Shorty Long, and Eddie Holland. Collectors have scoured the world trying to find these recordings on 45 rpm, and have paid good money for copies of France Nero and Linda Griner's only Motown releases. But, because of poor sound quality, you take the bitter with the sweet; play these after a newly engineered CD and you'll get an attitude.