Don Julian

The Jerk: The Money Recordings

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AllMusic Review by Richie Unterberger

Although this compilation is billed to Don Julian & the Larks, in fact 21 of the 26 tracks are credited to the Larks, the group who had the Top Ten 1964 hit "The Jerk" and for whom Julian sang and wrote most of the material. For reasons not explained in the liner notes, two of the cuts are solely billed to Don Julian; two to the Meadowlarks, with whom he had recorded prior to the Larks; and one to Don Julian & the Meadowlarks. Logistical confusion aside, the important thing to know is that all of these recordings were done for the Money label between 1964 and 1967, all feature Julian, and usually they were credited as the work of the Larks. "The Jerk" is a great early soul dance hit, but even if you're head over heels in love with that cut, you might not often be in the mood to hear no less than seven other songs based around the dance called the jerk, as there are on this anthology. Even when the Larks aren't singing about the jerk specifically, they're often doing similar cheerful soul based around a dance, like "Can You Do the Duck" and "The Skate." Within the narrow thematic confines of that approach, the Larks offered pretty solid upbeat soul with a substantial Motown influence, not always specifically derivative of "The Jerk" itself (even when those words prominently featured in the lyrics). Occasionally Julian and his cohorts did step outside the format for anachronistic doo wop-like numbers, some sounding like they might have been outtakes from Julian's previous projects, recorded before 1964. Julian's solo single "What Chance Has a Man" saw him getting into lush soul with strings, and a couple of the later cuts are fair Temptations approximations. And, to cap things off, there's a previously unissued alternate take of the song that is all most people will hear of the Larks, "The Jerk."

Track Listing

Sample Title/Composer Performer Time Stream
1 Don Julian feat: The Larks 02:38 Amazon
2 Don Julian feat: The Larks 01:51 Amazon
3 Don Julian feat: The Larks 02:47 Amazon
4 Don Julian feat: The Larks 02:48 Amazon
5 Don Julian feat: The Larks 02:48 Amazon
6 Don Julian feat: The Larks 02:26 Amazon
7 Don Julian feat: The Larks 02:47 Amazon
8 Don Julian feat: The Larks 02:34 Amazon
9 Don Julian feat: The Larks 02:21 Amazon
10 Don Julian feat: The Larks 02:10 Amazon
11 Don Julian feat: The Larks 02:47 Amazon
12 Don Julian feat: Don Julian & the Meadowlarks 02:57 Amazon
13 Don Julian feat: The Larks 02:11 Amazon
14 Don Julian feat: The Larks 02:54 Amazon
15 Don Julian feat: The Larks 02:39 Amazon
16 Don Julian feat: The Meadowlarks 02:55 Amazon
17 Don Julian 02:44 Amazon
18 Don Julian 02:43 Amazon
19 Don Julian feat: The Meadowlarks 02:46 Amazon
20 Don Julian feat: The Larks 02:45 Amazon
21 Don Julian feat: The Larks 02:58 Amazon
22 Don Julian feat: The Larks 02:31 Amazon
23 Don Julian feat: The Larks 02:41 Amazon
24 Don Julian feat: The Larks 02:39 Amazon
25 Don Julian feat: The Larks 02:45 Amazon
26 Don Julian feat: The Larks 02:24 Amazon
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