10 Jun 2021

Memphis

A Must For The Fans of the STAX Sound

'This comp features 24 Stax/Volt b-side tracks from 1964-1968. The release notes informs us that this is the first time out on cd for all the 24 and for most the first time seen the light of day since the initial single release back when. Source wise all it seems are from the original singles mono masters apart from Johnnie Tailor's opener which is offered up here via a new stereo mix.'

'The premise of Kent/Ace's compilation The Other Side of the Trax: Stax-Volt 45rpm Rarities 1964-1968 is so simple, it's startling that it's taken until 2016 to do: anthologize the flip sides of singles whose A-sides previously saw release on compact disc. Remarkably, none of the 24 singles on The Other Side of the Trax have seen release on CD and these are no obscure acts, either. Johnnie Taylor, Rufus Thomas, Carla Thomas, William Bell, the Mar-Keys, Eddie Floyd, Sir Mack Rice -- these are the artists that built Stax-Volt into a Southern soul powerhouse between 1964 and 1968, the years when Stax released their 45s on a blue, not yellow, label. Each of these B-sides fell through the digital cracks but The Other Side of the Trax does a wonderful service of collecting these dynamite sides, presenting almost all of them in their original mono mixes (Taylor's "Changes" is the only one with a new stereo mix). Sometimes, the flip is nothing more than a fun throwaway -- the Mar-Keys' grooving "Beach Bash" pops to mind -- but usually these ingles are inspired: sharply written tunes that hum along to a tight groove. To those who aren't hardcore collectors -- i.e., the kind who would already own the original 45s -- this is something akin to a revelation: it's like finding a jukebox full of classic Stax you've never heard.' -Allmusic Review by Stephen Thomas Erlewine

'The Other Side Of The Trax' brings you two-dozen Stax and Volt B-sides that have thus far managed to avoid release on CD. Given how well-known some of the artists are, that might seem unlikely, but this is indeed the official CD debut of all 24 tracks. And what great tracks they are. It must have been really difficult for the company’s A&R team to consign them to B-sides when they are clearly of A-side quality.
 In the time that has passed since they were issued on 45s, many have achieved greater popularity among collectors than their A-sides. With the exception of Otis Redding, Sam & Dave and Booker T & the MGs – whose entire Stax/Volt catalogues are available elsewhere on CD – you will hear from every major act to have recorded for the company between January 1964 and March 1968. All tracks are taken from the original singles masters, with the exception of Johnnie Taylor’s northern soul classic ‘Changes’, which appears in a new stereo mix. The rest are the way they were meant to be heard – in pristine Memphis mono. (Tony Rounce)


1. Johnnie Taylor - Changes 2:30
2. Carla Thomas - Separation 2:40
3. Ivory Joe Hunter - This Kind Of Woman 2:21
4. Rufus Thomas - Sho’ Gonna Mess Him Up 3:03
5. Barbara & The Browns - You Belong To Her 2:37
6. William Bell - Don’t Stop Now 2:18
7. The Mar-Keys - Beach Bash 2:05
8. Eddie Purrell - My Pride Won’t Let Me 2:31
9. Johnny Daye - I Need Somebody 2:44
10. Eddie Jefferson - Uh-Oh (I’m In Love Again) 3:02
11. Dorothy Williams - Watchdog 2:30
12. Oscar Mack - You’ll Never Know How Much I Love You 2:14
13. Barbara & The Browns - Please Be Honest With Me 2:36
14. William Bell - Ain’t Got No Girl 2:49
15. Carla Thomas - A Boy Named Tom 2:31
16. Gorgeous George - Sweet Thing 2:45
17. Eddie Floyd - Hey Now 2:14
18. Sir Isaac & The Do-Dads - The Big Dipper 2:22
19. Rufus Thomas & Carla Thomas - We’re Tight 2:09
20. Sir Mack Rice - I Gotta Have My Baby’s Love 2:20
21. Eddie Floyd - Under My Nose 2:41
22. Johnny Jenkins - Bashful Guitar 3:05
23. Linda Lyndell - Here Am I 2:12
24. Johnnie Taylor - Strange Things (Happening In My Heart) 2:18

Notes
Incl. 16 page booklet