Vibrating Vibrations: The OKeh and Epic Singles 1963-1968

Vibrating Vibrations: The OKeh and Epic Singles 1963-1968

by The Vibrations

CD

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Overview

Vibrating Vibrations: The OKeh and Epic Singles 1963-1968

For a group that only had mild success on the charts, the Vibrations had a pretty long career, putting out numerous records throughout the 1960s and lasting until the mid-'70s. While they didn't stay at the Columbia-distributed OKeh and Epic labels for all that long, it was about as long a stint as they managed with any label. The Vibrating Vibrations collects 26 tracks recorded for the imprints between 1964 and 1968, a few of them previously unreleased. (Despite what the subtitle says, these were recorded from 1964-1968 and not 1963-1968, an unusual slip on the usually scrupulous Kent/Ace label's part, as the liner notes clearly state the group didn't sign to either of these labels until July 1964.) And despite the length of the CD, it's not really a best-of either of the Vibrations' entire career or of their stay at OKeh and Epic in particular. It's not only missing their earlier, more rock & roll-oriented hits "Peanut Butter," "The Watusi," and "My Girl Sloopy"; it doesn't even have all the chart singles they landed on OKeh and Epic, the collection being assembled to avoid their covers of pop standards and emphasize their most soulful sides of the era. But despite the involvement of some very big names (Curtis Mayfield, Carl Davis, Eugene Record, Kenneth Gamble, and Leon Huff) of Chicago and Philadelphia soul as producers and/or writers of much of the material, it's thoroughly average mid- to late-'60s soul that lacks either standout songs or a particularly strong group identity. There are quite a few stylistic nods to major Motown and Chicago soul acts, such as the Four Tops and the Impressions (whose Curtis Mayfield wrote "Don't Let It Hide"). But to be cold, it's just alright, nothing special. Peak cuts include "Love in Them There Hills," a 1968 Gamble & Huff production with an uncharacteristically tough and serious sound that edged into the bottom of the charts, and "Canadian Sunset," which has more close-harmony pop in the mix than they usually employed. But "If You Only Knew," which is annoyingly derivative of Little Anthony & the Imperials' "Goin' Out of My Head," is a low point; "Watusi Time" and "Sloop Dance" are shameless retreads of raucous pre-OKeh Vibrations records, and one guesses the previously unissued "I Peeped Your Hole Card" might have been vetoed for release on the grounds of the disagreeable title alone. It really might not have been a bad idea to include the group's low-charting pop covers (one of the Beatles' "And I Love Her") after all, if only to ensure a little more variety.

Product Details

Release Date: 10/14/2008
Label: Kent Records Uk
UPC: 0029667230421
catalogNumber: 304
Rank: 69024

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Vibrations   Primary Artist
Riley Hampton   Conductor
Teacho Wiltshire   Conductor

Technical Credits

Eddie Heywood   Composer
Eugene Record   Composer
Manny Kellem   Producer
Bert Berns   Composer
Roland Chambers   Composer
Wes Farrell   Composer
Kenny Gamble   Composer,Producer
Norman Gimbel   Composer
Riley Hampton   Arranger
Leon Huff   Composer,Producer
Richard Rome   Arranger
Gerald Sims   Composer,Producer
Teacho Wiltshire   Arranger
Johnny Pate   Arranger
Tony Rounce   Liner Notes,Memorabilia
Bill Millar   Memorabilia,Photo Courtesy

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