The Tempests (pt. 8): Touring, Boston’s Sugar Shack, and the LP release

E. Mark Windle 19 August 2021 Touring was relentless. In between it all, the Premier Talent Agency pushed The Tempests through a couple of multi-artist events, at The Mariners Festival, a USO show at Fort Eustis, Virginia. Then it was onto another at Trenton, New Jersey where a local promoter took all the money andContinue reading “The Tempests (pt. 8): Touring, Boston’s Sugar Shack, and the LP release”

The Tempests (pt.7): The Mercury-Smash Sessions Begin

E. Mark Windle. 2 August 2021 Mercury was a prominent player in the recording industry, owing much of its commercial success to astute activities of the founding fathers in the Chicago R&B and jazz recording industry through the 1940s and 1950s. The label had its ear to the ground and anticipated potential in exploiting theContinue reading “The Tempests (pt.7): The Mercury-Smash Sessions Begin”

The Tempests (pt. 6): Ted Bodnar and the Road to Mercury-Smash

E. Mark Windle July 2021. The Tempests were ready to take on the world, no doubt about that. Musicianship, vocal talent and enthusiasm for live performance were all there. What was needed now was a new industry link to point them solidly towards a fresh recording contract. Someone with local knowledge, connections, and production andContinue reading “The Tempests (pt. 6): Ted Bodnar and the Road to Mercury-Smash”

The Tempests (part 5): Hit Attractions

E. Mark Windle 13 June 2021 Whether it was the Branch’s decision or that of other members to extend the horn section in The Tempests is unclear. Personnel in the early days was fluid, though Jim Butt (trumpet) and Rick White (tenor sax) had already been with group for some time, and Jim had takenContinue reading “The Tempests (part 5): Hit Attractions”

The Tempests (part 4): Ready for the Soul Explosion

E. Mark Windle, June 2021. Whilst new bass guitarist Van Coble was an only child whose birth father who was killed in service during World War II, his childhood was otherwise reasonably comfortable. His mother Helen, who was a nurse, eventually remarried. The musical talent came from his Helen Coble and her sister: “My motherContinue reading “The Tempests (part 4): Ready for the Soul Explosion”

Giving Back: Soul Direction

E. Mark Windle  Jan. 2021 By its very existence, the soul scene has a responsibility to hold safe the history of the music it reveres. In various ways, much has been done to achieve this end; and not just through the physical support of soul nights, all-nighters, weekenders and Sunday chill-outs. Numerous websites and socialContinue reading “Giving Back: Soul Direction”

Introducing North Broad Street Records

E. Mark Windle 11 October 2020 COVID and lockdown has given the soul music community a lot of time to reflect on the state of the scene; not only on how the pandemic is shaping the social landscape, but also on changing musical directions. Regardless of individual sub-genre preference, the constant for many is theContinue reading “Introducing North Broad Street Records”

Mocha and Cream. The Global Records Story

E. Mark Windle 12 September 2020 The passing of Edwin James Balbier a couple of years ago went virtually unnoticed in UK northern scene circles: indeed few outside of the industry will recall his name. Yet, this individual would be the unwitting driving force behind one of the most popular (if brief) soul re-issue labelContinue reading “Mocha and Cream. The Global Records Story”