Zero to 180 – Three Minute Magic

Discoveries of a Pop Music Archaeologist

Category: King Records

Bobby Smith
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Bobby Smith’s King Productions 1968-1973

Bobby Smith, we now know, had been commissioned by Syd Nathan to build a recording studio in Macon, Georgia — the adopted hometown of King Records’ biggest star, James Brown.  The following recordings were produced by Bobby Smith at Bobby Smith Studios, the recording location for these (Starday-)King-related releases — with

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"Boogie King"
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Merle Kilgore on Starday-King

Former Starday recording artist Merle Kilgore would have an unsuccessful stint at Columbia/Epic in the mid-1960s before rejoining the fold at the newly-expanded Starday-King (the King label having consolidated with Starday upon the death of its founder/owner Syd Nathan in 1968).  Starday historian emeritus Nathan D. Gibson interviewed Kilgore for 2011’s superb

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"Girl From Kookamunga"
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Lonnie Mack at King Records

Lonnie Mack‘s most famous recordings might be associated with Cincinnati’s other notable indie label from the roots rock era, Fraternity, but the hugely influential guitarist from Southeast Indiana also made a number of recordings at King Studios.  Ace UK’s Lonnie Mack anthology CD From Nashville to Memphis includes a “Lonnie

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"Going Back to Alabama"
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Mickey Murray LP II: Released?

Soul singer Mickey Murray recorded only two full-length albums over the course of his career — one for SSS International, 1967’s Shout Bamalama & Super Soul Songs  (the label’s first hit for Shelby Singleton), and the other, entitled People are Together, for King subsidiary Federal Records in 1970.  People Are Together

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"Fever"
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Milt B’s “Mod Popcorn R&B”

Philip Paul‘s stellar stick work really drives this “killer” instrumental version of “Fever” that features organ (Milt Buckner), bass (Bill Willis), and vibes (Gene Redd) — recorded at Cincinnati’s King Studios on March 5, 1963: “Fever” Milt Buckner (1963) Organ:  Milt Buckner Drums:  Philip Paul Bass:    Bill Willis Vibes:   Gene

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"Prayer of a Truck Driver's Son"
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King Truck Driver Bluegrass 45

Fans of both bluegrass and truck-driving country music take note:  “Prayer of a Truck Driver’s Son” was recorded by The Stanley Brothers In Cincinnati’s King Studios on September 20, 1965.  King issued the song as a B-side for “Never Again” in July, 1966. Gary B. Reid writes in The Music of The Stanley

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"I'm the Sexiest Gal in Town"
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Ruth Wallis: King/DeLuxe Artist

On February 28, 1966, blue humorist extraordinaire, Ruth Wallis, recorded four songs at Cincinnati’s King Studios, two of which — “I’m the Sexiest Gal in Town” b/w “I’d Rather Be Abroad” — would get released as King 6024, while the other two tracks (“C’est La Vie” and “Thru With Marriage”) remain

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"Somewhere Down the Line"
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Albert Washington’s Psych Funk

King Records Month 2018 — Extended Through October! After Syd Nathan passed, King Records was sold to Starday Records in 1968, who subsequently sold the combined Starday-King catalog to Nashville’s Lin Broadcasting.  The new King owners would revive the Deluxe label in 1969 or so – check out this interesting

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"Hi-Ballin' Daddy"
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Ann Jones & Her “All-Girl” Band

Is it really true, as Country Music Archive asserts, that Ann Jones And Her Western Sweethearts “was probably the first all-girl band in C & W music”?  Bill Sachs, in his “Folk Talent and Tunes” column for Billboard, reported in the November 13, 1960 edition — Ann Jones, King recording

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"These Are the JB's"
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The JB’s Debut: Polydor not King

The debut album by The JB’s — James Brown‘s backing band that included a group of Cincinnati musicians who would soon join forces with George Clinton’s Parliament-Funkadelic and later form the core of Bootsy’s Rubber Band — was originally scheduled for release in July, 1971 on the King label (SLP

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