You Baby: Words and Music by P.F. Sloan & Steve Barri

You Baby: Words and Music by P.F. Sloan & Steve Barri


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You Baby: Words and Music by P.F. Sloan & Steve Barri

Though seldom thought of as a 1960s songwriting team on par with the greatest Brill Building composers of the same era, Los Angeles-based songwriters P.F. Sloan and Steve Barri were in the same league when it came to penning catchy pop
ock tunes. This CD has 25 covers of their material from their mid-'60s heyday (a few of which credit Sloan as sole composer), blending big hits with small hits, intriguing flops and obscurities, and little-known interpretations of songs more familiar as done by other artists. There are a bunch of big hits here, none more so than Barry McGuire's "Eve of Destruction," though most of these are more pop-oriented, less folk-rock-inclined songs like the Grass Roots' "Where Were You When I Needed You," Herman's Hermits' "A Must to Avoid," Jan & Dean's "I Found a Girl," and the 5th Dimension's "Another Day, Another Heartache." Sloan's more serious, Dylan-influenced side is also heard on the Turtles' "Let Me Be" and the Searchers' "Take Me for What I'm Worth." It's a good bet that the average P.F. Sloan fan (and in fact many '60s rock fans of all kinds) are already familiar with most or all of those recordings, and might be more interested by the inclusion of less celebrated rarities. It's not always the case that rarities are on par with the hits, but for the most part, the lesser-known tracks here are quite good, as well as testifying to the duo's remarkable versatility. For examples, check out the first-rate girl group pastiches of Ramona King's "You Say Pretty Words," Yvonne Carroll's "Please Don't Go," and the Ginger Snaps (featuring Dandee Dawson) "The Sh-Down Down Song (You Better Leave Him Alone)"; the faux Merseybeat of Canadian star Terry Black's "Can't We Go Somewhere" and Philip & Stephan's "Meet Me Tonight Little Girl" (the latter actually Sloan and Barri themselves under a pseudonym); Jan & Dean's exhilarating "(Here They Come) From All Over the World," which served as the theme song for the great 1964 rock concert movie The T.A.M.I. Show; the soul-pop of Betty Everett's "Someday Soon" (a transparent attempt to write a soundalike to her "You're No Good"); the Jan & Dean/Beach Boys facsimiles by Bruce & Terry and the Fantastic Baggys; and, most surprisingly, Ann-Margret's tough strut "You Sure Know How to Hurt Someone." In some instances, choices of uncommon covers over familiar hit versions weaken the musical quality, though these might be pleasing to record collectors. Mel Tormé's rendition of "Secret Agent Man" certainly isn't remotely as satisfying as the big Johnny Rivers hit of that same song, for example, and famed disc jockey Murray the K's "The Sins of a Family" (a standout in the catalog of songs Sloan recorded as a solo artist) is a grating novelty. Overall, however, it's both a very good listen and a representative assortment of highlights from Sloan and Barri's output (and more consistently listenable than the average volume in Ace's series spotlighting top '60s songwriters), enhanced by detailed liner notes with plenty of first-hand quotes from both Sloan and Barri.

Product Details

Release Date: 05/31/2010
Label: Ace Records Import
UPC: 0029667041126
catalogNumber: 6704112
Rank: 48735

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Steve Barri   Conductor
Mort Garson   Conductor
Phil Sloan   Conductor
Marshall Leib   Conductor

Technical Credits

Association   Arranger
Bill Holman   Arranger
Jerry Riopelle   Producer
Bruce Johnston   Arranger,Producer
Trade Martin   Arranger,Producer
Terry Melcher   Arranger,Producer
Jack Nitzsche   Arranger
Jimmy Webb   Arranger
Lou Adler   Producer
Steve Barri   Arranger,Composer,Producer
Jan Berry   Producer
Clark Burroughs   Arranger
Calvin Carter   Producer
Mort Garson   Arranger
Marc Gordon   Producer
Tony Hatch   Producer
Bones Howe   Arranger,Producer
Larry Marks   Producer
Marty Paich   Horn Arrangements,String Arrangements
Ray Pohlman   Arranger
Johnny Rivers   Producer
Joe Saraceno   Producer
Phil Sloan   Arranger,Composer,Producer
Allen Stanton   Producer
Johnny Pate   Arranger
Glenn A. Baker   References
Spencer Leigh   References
Malcolm Baumgart   Illustrations
Stephen J. McParland   References
Paul Zollo   References
Mick Patrick   Liner Notes,Illustrations
Harvey Williams   Illustrations
Tim Forster   Cover Photo
Martin Roberts   Illustrations
Harvey Bruce   Composer
Marshall Leib   Arranger
Jack Nitzsche   Illustrations
Bill Tobelman   Illustrations
Rob Kopp   References
Frank M. Young   Liner Notes

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