Friday, 13 September 2013

The Jesters Cadillac Man b/w My Babe

This 45 was probably the last great single to be released on the Sun label, it was issued in 1966 and featured the frantic vocals of legendary session musician Jim Dickinson. The Jesters were a Memphis based rock group that featured Sam Phillips' son Jerry on rhythm guitar, the groups only Sun 45 was produced by Sam's son Knox. The A side Cadillac Man is a proto garage soul styled shouter, a real solid r&b rhythm in place and some throat shredding vocals from Jim Dickinson. Strangely enough Dickinson wasn't even an official member of the group, their lead singer had left the group just prior to them entering the studio. He was already an established session musician in Memphis at that point and would go on to become part of Atlantic Records' session group the Dixie Flyers, playing with Aretha Franklin, James Carr and Albert Collins. Cadillac Man has some of those funky chop chop piano chords, Dickinson takes full rein in the middle with some pounding solo work rock and soul Jerry Lee if ever there was one.

My Babe the classic Little Walter gem has been covered countless times and appeared to become a staple song for any R&B act in the late 50's early 60's. The song is given a different treatment, it has a Hi Heel Sneakers rhythm which was prominent at the time, it gives the song real impetus and funk. There were so many southern bands recording some amazing r&b records during the mid to late 60's. Where Dickinson's piano was the centrepiece of Cadillac Man the B-side features a great guitar solo, wailing,  piercing Hubert Sumlin inspired notes dominate the middle eight. The B side probably had more commercial potential and has a more polished cohesive sound.

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