Sydney Joe Qualls (RIP)

Sydney Joe Qualls RIP
We unfortunately have more sad news this week on The Science of Soul involving another great singer, sadly Sydney Joe Qualls has passed away in Chicago. He may not be a household name but he was highly respected by his fellow artists and music lovers alike, so it's only fitting that I pay a musical tribute to celebrate his legacy.

On a happier note it's been confirmed that Baltimore native, and former Temptation, Damon Harris will be receiving the WMEL life time achievement award posthumously and I am honoured to say I have been invited to present the award to Damon Harris Jr, The Ceremony will be in Baltimore, Maryland, later this year in November, more details will follow over the next few months. 

Musically this week I have new releases from UK soulman Laville, and it's great to get new product from Wendell B, namely "Beautiful", it's  track from his forthcoming album that's due a little later in the year. Other new released music comes from Darryl Perry and I'll be dipping into current albums from The Undisputed Truth, Marc Staggers and Bobby Helmz. I have not forgotten the Old Skool folks, so there is plenty to bring back those memories of yesteryear. So Sit back and enjoy.

Playlist for Sunday 10-03-2019
Hour One
The Bar Kays - Open Up Your Heart
Laville - Thirty One
Edwin Starr - Sweetest Thing
The Undisputed Truth - Truth Gon' Set You Free
Bobby Helmz - Doo Doo Wop
Marc Staggers - Crazy Bout You Girl
Joyce Irby & Howard Hewett - Because You
Victor Fields - Thinking Of You
Willie Hutch - Lucky To Be Loved By You

Sydney Joe Qualls tribute: - 
  1. I Don't Do This To Every Girl
  2. Run To Me
  3. I'm Being Held Hostage
  4. The Next Time I Fall In Love
  5. How Do You Say Goodbye
Alternative player installed today, if it doesn't work in your country please message us (bottom of page) Sorry also all earlier players are no longer working.

Hour Two

Chuck Cissel - Understanding Man
Odia Coates - Make It Up To Me Baby
Darryl Perry - Inside Of Your Love
Prince Philip Mitchell - Make It Good
Impact - Taboo
Esther Phillips - S.O.S
Major Harris - Loving You Is Mellow
Keith Floyd - Just Kickin' It
Wendell B - Beautiful
Keith Barrow - You Know You Want To Be Loved
Tyrone Davis - Be With Me
The Manhattans - I Wanta' Thank You

Tribute biography:-
Sidney Joe Qualls was a Southern-born soul singer who was heavily influenced by Al Green. Although his sound did capitalise on the success of the Reverend, he did have a quality that was all of his own. He released a couple of LP’s that are heavily sought after gems, one released at the back end of the 70s on 20th Century featuring ‘I don’t do this’. This is his debut on Dakar Records which bathes unashamedly in all that is so rich about the early 70s sound. A classic.

Research indicates that Mr Sidney Joe Qualls (often spelt Sydney) was raised in the small town of Jacknash in Arkansas where he turned professional after leaving high school with a voice enriched by the joys of testifying to the Lord. In itself, this would appear to be a relatively traditional education for most soul greats. But it is the small town of Jacknash that is so curious. For this has been cited as the birthplace of the Reverend Al Green, although most biographies reference Forrest City. I have been unable to confirm if Jacknash is a small satellite town of Forrest City, but if Misters Qualls and Green did grow up within throwing distance of one another, that would be quite significant. For Sidney’s primary influence is undeniably the great Al Green. Indeed, after his meeting with Otis Leavill prior to moving to Chicago and signing for Dakar Records, Otis believed he had welcomed the ‘new Al Green’ to the fold.

Brundswick LP 1974
Originally set up by Carl Davis while still under contract to Brunswick Records, Dakar was coming to the end of its near decade of soul decadence. However, Carl still had a lot of spirit left in him which he duly graced this record with. Several singles were released from this delicious morsel : the tremendous “How can you say goodbye” – an awesome reminder of how Al Green could tear up those midtempo ditties with the utmost ease; the beautifully arranged, tunefully complex “Where the lilies grow”; and the vibrant “Run to me” – a thumping goodie from one of my favourites, Sam Dees. Interestingly, there is a heavy influence of Sam Dees in his singing approach, especially if you are familiar with Sam’s version. The influence is even more apparent on my favourite track of the platter, the crippling “I’m being held hostage”. One listen to this and you’ll willingly sell your house to fund the ransom. And again the Sam Dees are subtly present on my other favourite, “The next time I fall in love” - a huge hit with the rare groove circuit for all the reasons that make this genre those addictive.

1979 Chi-Sound LP
His most powerful ‘Al Green’ performance is probably the sublime “Can’t get enough of your love”, complete with those bumping Hi Records skins and a creative girl chorus. There are a couple of tasty bluesy funk numbers in the title track and “Shut you mouth”, a very nice, light pop number in the shape of “Please help me”, and the sole ballad, a cover of “If you don’t know me by now” - which I feel only serves to highlight his weaknesses, and none of his strengths. As an album, this is an exceptionally fine tenderiser for the soul with too many high points to fit these pages. As an artist, I feel he had more to offer than being another Al Green clone that, when he hints at those Sam Dees inflections (also check out his glorious ‘I Don’t do this’ favourite), really captures a unique timbre that is something special indeed. - Delite radio

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