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Five on the Black Hand Side: Greg Belson

With great pleasure we’d like to present this weeks Five on The Black Hand Side from a man who really needs no introduction but we’ll do our best to introduce him properly.  The gentleman that we’re speaking of is legendary DJ, Rare Soul and vintage R&B 45 collector and the man who always has our ears open when listening to his Diving Chord Gospel Show where he showcases some of the most incredible and rawest gospel Funk 45s known to man.  With out further delay we introduce to you Greg Belson and his 45′s of fury.

Willie Dale ‘Let your light shine’ (Lovie D)

This 45 is pretty much always in my box…..a superlative set starter that makes a statement from the get go. It’s a fairly recent discovery out of Bakersfield, CA and so far there’s not that many copies in circulation…..but that’s not what makes this record special. The impact of the opening 16 bars and the undeniably heavy funk arrangement make this a staple in my sets. Banger from start to finish!

Sounds of the City ‘Stuff and thangs’ (Sounds of the City)

I always like to take things back to the old school whenever possible, and this incredible instrumental harks back to the start of the Deep Funk era. This one’s aimed straight at the dancers, the b-boys and b-girls and anybody else that simply wants to get down. Killer drums, and for those that are hip to my style, y’all know that it’s always about the drums!

Gino Washington ‘Do you have that soul’ (Washpan)

It’s always great to roll out as many obscurities that I can get away with…..it keeps the setlist fresh and exciting for the dancers. Here’s one that does just that – usually known for his Northern Soul output, Gino creates breakbeat havoc with this drumled funk cut. Actually released twice, once on a b-side for the Atac label with a more straight ahead horn arrangement, and on his own Washpan label that you see here. Washpan has a $4000 soul rarity in the Tomangoes ‘I really love you’.…gimme this slice of brutal raw soul any day!

Duane Yates ‘Passin’ on by’ (N-Joy)

On to a 45 I first heard played by the legendary Mr Finewine. I try to broaden my sets with some vintage r&b, usually 60’s related, but I’ve been known to dabble earlier. This beast of a tune is always in my box, but definitely one of those records that can only be dropped when you know you’ve got the crowd on your side. The intro kinda lulls you into a false sense of security, then the drums enter stage and give you a large dose of smashmouth. Stunner…..!

Rosa Lee Brooks ‘Utee’ (Revis)

Carrying on with the r&b theme, this fits in nicely right after the Duane Yates cut. Another beat heavy cut, out of Los Angeles, this record has some stellar historical significance. Arthur Lee from 60’s psych rock group ‘Love’ wrote the tune on the flip of this 45, and was involved in the production of the ‘Utee’. He made a call to a young James Marshall Hendrix who was on the East Coast recording sides for the Isley Brothers….Jimi flew West and recorded his first ever guitar solo on this sublime cut. Heavy 45, and a great piece of history too!

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