2CD, 57 tracks, very highly recommended.
This is the second volume (the first was That’s Where It’s At: West Coast Soul) compiling R&B that came mostly from Los Angeles recording studios during the early and mid 60’s. Although it says soul on the front of the tin, the contents here are actually a bit more diverse than that; doo wop, girl group pop, and the blues all get a look in throughout this set. Sure, there’s some well known people represented: Ray Charles (pre-Atlantic), Johnnie Taylor, Lou Rawls (w/Les McCann), Ray Agee, Sugar Pie De Santo, Lula Reed, and Larry Williams just to name a few. Whether it’s Williams and Johnnie Morisette getting bluesy on “Call On Me” and “Don’t Throw Your Love On Me”, respectively, the blues-meets-doo wop of the Rivingtons on “Deep Water”, the Pearlettes giving some girl group oomph on “Can I Get Him”, or Rawls and McCann jazzin’ up the place with “Sweet Lover”, there’s something for nearly every taste. And that’s just the first disc! The bottom line here is, the gang at History of Soul have produced another must-have collection.