Saturday, March 17, 2012

Gotta moan sometimes

I can still remember the day Paul Johnson played this early Swan Silvertones record for me. I could not even believe what I was hearing . . . this was way beyond what gospel quartet singing I’d heard up to that point, groups like the Sam Cooke edition of the Soul Stirrers and the Dixie Hummingbirds, even the ’60s Vee-Jay recordings of the Swans. But this! That slammin’ rhythm with Claude Jeter and the Swans all over it as rubber-voiced Rev. Robert Crenshaw breaks in and wrestles it to the ground. I read years later that Crenshaw was asked to leave the group because of his tendency to take over territories claimed and unclaimed. . . .

(Claude Jeter, Rev. Robert Crenshaw, John Manson (tenors); Paul Owens, John Myles (baritones); Henry Bossard (bass); unknown drums.)

Trouble In My Way – The Swan Silvertone Singers – 1953

Photo: The Swan Silvertones in 1965. Top row, left to right: Louis Johnson, William Connor, Paul Owens. Bottom row, left to right: Linwood Hargrove, Claude Jeter, John Myles. From The Gospel Sound by Tony Heilbut, Simon and Schuster, 1971.

1 comment:

  1. Very impressive performance, this one! thanks