Dave Baby Cortez – Rinky Dink/Getting right

The Chess UK singles – one by one

“Rinky Dink” by Dave Baby Cortez, one of the most recognisable instrumental hits of the 1960s because it was widely used on radio stations for programme theme tunes, was released in the UK on Pye International 7N 25159 in September, 1962. US Pop 10 US R&B 9.

Jackie and Tut


Herb Kent | Copyright control | tc437


Freddy Roulette | Past Blues | tc438

“Jackie and Tut” are mainly known for the funk record issued on US Chess 2008, “Ten-Two Double Plus/Hawaiian Punch”. Jackie and Tut had to be an alias, and it is. They are identified as Freddy Roulette (born May 3, 1939) and Herb Kent, the radio personality, in “Blues a regional experience” by Eagle and LeBlanc.

Herb Kent died on October 22, 2016 aged 88.

Herb Kent Obituary, Chicago Tribune

The Invincibles

Other web sites will tell you that the Invincibles were a vocal group from Los Angeles who specialised in the falsetto style of singing which was so popular from the late 50s to the early 70s. By the sixties a group called The Invincibles had the members David Richardson, Lester Johnson and Clifton Knight, and their records fitted that description, but it is not known if that is the same group as on this earlier recording which was issued by Chess in 1959. The sixties Invincibles group was not very successful, and folded. “Moonglow” is a typical late 1950s doo-wop group recording. I note that there are four composer credits on the label and these might or might not be group members – the names appear to be Hansen, Brown, Gretzia and Goode – in which case this recording is by a different Invincibles. Can anyone shed any further light please.

The Aesops’ Fables

The Aesops Fables are understood to have been an Australian group whose product was picked up for promotion and release by Chess on the Cadet Concept label. The group comprised of Cheryl Blake, Jimmy Doyle, Russell Dunlop, Michael Lawler and Gary Moberley. The group, which started off as an R&B cover group, disbanded and reformed in the early 1970s. Atlantic Records also released some records by a group with the same name, on their Atco subsidiary.

Richard Evans


Richard Evans | Funky 16 Corners | tc435

Song writer, arranger, band leader and record producer Richard Evans who, alongside or working in conjunction with Charles Stepney, created the Cadet Records sound, died in early October 2014 as reported by Funky 16 Corners.

Mr Evans was born in Alabama, but moved in Chicago, played on many recording sessions before doing so much at the Chess subsidiary Cadet Records where he is associated closely with the recordings of Ramsey Lewis, Dorothy Ashby, Odell Brown and the Organizers, Terry Callier, Marlena Shaw, and the Soulful Strings.

The Seminoles


The Seminoles | Reflections Music | tc420

Very little information is available about The Seminoles, who were a vocal group from Detroit. The lead singer is thought to have been Joey Finazzo (rear in the picture) and the other group members are known as Andy, Al, and Paul (front left to right) but no surnames for them have been found. They were associated with Roquel “Billy” Davis before he moved to Chess Records, and he took them with him. We are not aware of US release numbers for their material. The group then split up.

Joey Finazzo is better known as a member of the Reflections who has also sung with the Four Seasons and other groups and is still active but no biographical details are currently available.

Hank Ballard

Photo of Hank BALLARD and Hank BALLARD+ Midnighters

Hank Ballard in 1970. Echoes/Redferns/MTV | tc427

Rhythm and blues singer and songwriter John Henry Kendricks (Hank Ballard) was born on November 18, 1927 and died on March 2, 2003 of throat cancer. He started work on the Ford Assembly line in Detroit then in 1953 he joined a vocal group called The Royals, but to avoid confusion with the similarly named Five Royales, the changed the name of the group to The Midnighters. There was a string of successful recordings before he launched his solo career.

The video shows a French pressing.

Alvin Cash


Alvin Cash | Charly | tc430

Singer and actor Alvin Welch (Alvin Cash) was born on February 15, 1939 and died on November 21, 1999 of ulcer complications. He is associated with producer Andre Williams. He is best known for his recordings for another Chicago label, One-der-ful, and especially the song “The twine time” which was very popular in the UK’s Northern Soul scene.

Black Merda


Black Merda | Wikipedia | tc431

Black Merda were an R&B and rock group which started out providing backings for other singers, who can be heard on Motown and Brunswick recordings by Gene Chandler, Wilson Pickett, The Spinners, The Artistics, Billy Butler, and The Chilites. Originally known as The Soul Agents (a name also used by a British group in the 1960s), they were Anthony Hawkins, VC Lamont Veasey, Charles Hawkins and Tyrone Hite.

The Highlighters


The Highlighters | Funky Four Corners | tc433

The Highlighters began as a high school jazz group in the early 1960s and are understood to be Cliff Palmer, Richard “Boola” Ball, James Boone, James Brantley, Walter Webb, Dewayne Garvin and vocalist James Bell. Shortly after this release on Chess, James Boone and James Brantley formed a different band called The Rhythm Machine.

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