Rick Hall, right, with Robert “Bumps” Blackwell and Little Richard, left, at Fame Studio, Muscle Shoals, Alabama, 1970 | Getty Images |tc504
The record producer Roe Erister “Rick” Hall, who produced a number of sessions for various artists which were released on Chess labels, died on 2 January 2018.
In 1960 with two partners he started Fame (Florence Alabama Music Enterprises) and opened a first primitive studio above a drugstore. The partnership was dissolved in 1961, and Hall kept the Fame name.
That year Arthur Alexander came in with a song he had written, a mid-tempo country-inflected R&B ballad called You Better Move On. Hall liked it, put a small group of musicians together for a recording session, and took the tape to Nashville, 120 miles away, where he licensed it to Dot Records. The record was a hit and the $10,000 Hall earned was used to build a better studio.
One of the many Chess released recordings made at Fame and produced by Rick Hall is appended.
Tommy Tucker and the Esquires | Iowa Rock and Roll | Restored by Google | tc490
This rock group from Iowa is understood to have also recorded under the name of Tommy Tucker and the Esquires, whose line up is understood to have included Mark Boals, Al Kuehl, Garry Wright, Tom Welby, Tommy Tucker and Fred Ell.
Tenison Stephens | Inside Jazz | tc482
Bay area and Hawaii jazz musician Tenison Stephens is best known for his work with Phil Upchurch, but little is known of this gentleman, who recorded for other labels including Back Beat.
Can anyone provide any further information about this artist, please?
The Happy Return were a 1960s rock group from St. Louis, Missouri who made a small number of records, one of which was issued on Cadet in 1969. Ot is not known if they were named after the novel of the same name by C. S. Forrester. The line up of the group was Steve Noack , Tom Noack, Jim Cunningham, Jimmy Albright and Rick Carrell. The Cadet single was produced by Norman Petty (of Buddy Holly fame) at his Clovis, New Mexico studio.
Esmond Edwards | Copyright control | tc451
Musician, record producer, recording engineer and photographer Esmond Edwards was born in Nassau on October 29, 1927 and died in California on January 20, 2007.
As Wikipedia puts it,
… He studied radiography at the Jersey City Medical Center, and while working there pursued an avid interest in photography and music. Using his years of piano lessons as a background, he began creating jazz compositions in his teen years, and ultimately combined his creativity in music and photography into a very prolific and successful career.
Coleman Hawkins LP Cover, 1959, photographed by Esmond Edwards | Copyright control/Prestige | tc452
After working for Prestige Records from 1957, he moved to Chess as an A&R man in the early 1960s and began producing jazz, folk and blues records for the Argo/Cadet label.
He received many silver and gold records, and also won a Grammy for his work.
Edwards’ photographic work has been displayed in New York’s Lincoln Center Jazz Archives, around the world, and in The New York Times Magazine and others.
Chicago based blues singer Jessee Anderson recorded a number of sides for the Chess group, usually produced by Gene Barge and Milton Bland. He went on to record with other producers, including Curtis Mayfield, for other labels, with some success. He began his singing career in the 1950s recording for Federal with “Willie Wright and the Sparklers”. I have not been able to find any biographical details for this artist, or any recent performances by him.
Can anyone help, please?
The Chess UK singles – one by one
“Bring back the love of yesterday” by The Dells was released on Chess 6145037 in February 1975.