Various Artists

The Bullet and Sur-Speed Records Story

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Founded in Nashville by W.C. "Red" Wortham, a former jazz guitar player from the 1930s, the Bullet Records and Sur-Speed Records imprints were just two of the so-called independent "custom labels" that Wortham established in music city (others included the Avenue, Silver City, Slam, Viking, and Gold Mine labels), and these combined labels issued hundreds of country, blues, R&B, soul, and gospel sides in the region. This collection concentrates on the R&B and soul side of things, and features some true lost gems like Johnny Bragg's gliding "Just Walking in the Rain," the funky instrumental "Midnight Soul" by Shy Guy Douglas, Willie Gunn's mock-epic "Old Man," and several tracks by the Buford Majors Band, most notably the fine "Cry Cry," that are a kind of gospel-pop hybrid. Several of these selections are new to the CD era, making this anthology not only an intriguing listen but also a real find for Southern soul and R&B collectors.

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