Central Rocks: The Central Ave Scene 1951-58, Vol. 2

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Richie Unterberger
Like the first volume of this series, this gathers a couple of dozen recordings from the vaults of the Combo label, which recorded a good deal of R&B in Los Angeles in the 1950s. A focal point of that scene was a strip of Central Avenue, hence the title. Its appeal is mostly to hardcore R&B collectors: there's just one hit and even that's in an alternate version and only a few performers of fairly wide repute, and seven of the tracks are previously unreleased outtakes or alternate takes. It's standard mid-'50s-style R&B from the honkers-and-shouters style, though these are pretty spirited performances with a good sense of humor, even if they're not too ...
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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Richie Unterberger
Like the first volume of this series, this gathers a couple of dozen recordings from the vaults of the Combo label, which recorded a good deal of R&B in Los Angeles in the 1950s. A focal point of that scene was a strip of Central Avenue, hence the title. Its appeal is mostly to hardcore R&B collectors: there's just one hit and even that's in an alternate version and only a few performers of fairly wide repute, and seven of the tracks are previously unreleased outtakes or alternate takes. It's standard mid-'50s-style R&B from the honkers-and-shouters style, though these are pretty spirited performances with a good sense of humor, even if they're not too different from each other in melody or approach. The "hit" indeed, the only national hit that Combo had is an alternate take of 1954 Gene & Eunice's Top Ten R&B single "Ko Ko Mo," though it should be noted that actually the duo released two versions of that song around the same time the other was on the Aladdin label. A few of the other bigger names include Chuck Higgins, one of whose tracks is "Real Gone Hound Dog," an obscure 1952 "answer" record to "Hound Dog"; Joe Houston, another of the numerous honking saxmen heard on this disc; the Ernie Fields Orchestra, who'd later have a number four hit with "In the Mood" on a different label; and Jack McVea. The most memorable thing here, however, might be Higgins' "The Blacksmith Blues," with some of the most incoherently nonsensical, drunkenly sung lyrics you're apt to come across anywhere.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 3/8/2005
  • Label: Ace Records Uk
  • UPC: 029667006224
  • Catalog Number: 1037
  • Sales rank: 203,656

Tracks

Disc 1
  1. 1 Wine - Ernie Fields & His Orchestra (2:33)
  2. 2 Big Fat Mama (2:21)
  3. 3 Told You Twice - Cledus Harrison (2:20)
  4. 4 You Lied - Mamie Ree (2:07)
  5. 5 Ain't Got No Money (2:06)
  6. 6 I Love That Kind of Carryin' On (2:12)
  7. 7 The Chase - Paul Preston & His Orchestra (2:17)
  8. 8 The Blacksmith Blues - Chuck Higgins Orchestra (2:42)
  9. 9 Wino (2:41)
  10. 10 No Need Acting Like That - Young Wolf (2:25)
  11. 11 Watts - Brother Woodman (2:33)
  12. 12 Haste Makes Waste (2:21)
  13. 13 Baby Baby Take a Look - Robbin Ray (2:27)
  14. 14 Twisted - Paul Preston & His Orchestra (2:34)
  15. 15 Flip-Top Box - Chuck Higgins Orchestra (2:32)
  16. 16 Caught - Young Wolf (2:39)
  17. 17 Hot Mama - Ethel Brown (2:38)
  18. 18 Curfew - Joe Houston (3:06)
  19. 19 Love My Baby - Robbin Ray (2:38)
  20. 20 Ko Ko Mo (2:44)
  21. 21 Yaka Boo - Jack McVea & His Combo (2:13)
  22. 22 Your Loving Is Just All Right - Mamie Ree (2:25)
  23. 23 Real Gone Hound Dog (2:10)
  24. 24 Central Rocks (2:36)
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Album Credits

Performance Credits
Al Smith Vocals
Daddy Cleanhead Vocals
Technical Credits
Jim Dawson Liner Notes
Joe Houston Composer
Chuck Higgins Composer
Buddy Banks Composer
Gene Ford Composer
Jack Holmes Composer
Duncan Cowell Mastering
Jake "Vernon" Porter Composer
Eunice Levy Composer
Charles Higgins Composer
Cledus Harrison Composer
Dick Hugg Composer
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