1976 The Originals – Communique

The Originals, often called “Motown’s best-kept secret”, were a successful Motown R&B and soul group during the late 1960s and the 1970s, most notable for the hits “Baby, I’m For Real”, “The Bells” and the disco classic “Down To Love Town”. Formed in 1966, the group originally consisted of bass singer Freddie Gorman, baritone (and the group’s founder) Walter Gaines, and tenors C. P. Spencer and Hank Dixon (and briefly Joe Stubbs). Ty Hunter replaced Spencer when he left to go solo in the early 1970s. They had all previously sung in other Detroit groups, Spencer having been an original member of The (Detroit) Spinners and Hunter having sung with The Supremes member Scherrie Payne in the group Glass House. Spencer, Gaines, Hunter, and Dixon (at one time or another) were also members of The Voice Masters. As a member of the Holland–Dozier–Gorman writing-production team (before Holland–Dozier–Holland), Gorman (as a mailman) was one of the co-writers of Motown’s first number 1 pop hit “Please Mr. Postman”, recorded by The Marvelettes. In 1964 The Beatles released their version and in 1975 The Carpenters took it to number 1 again. This was the second time in pop history that a song had reached number 1 twice as “The Twist” by Chubby Checker, reached number 1 in both 1960 and 1961. In 2006, “Please Mr. Postman” was inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame.

Alvin Taylor wrote to me about the hit ‘Down to love town’: “We (he and Jeff Porcaro) both played simultaneously at the same time. Two drummers playing live. Like James Brown would do for some of his live shows. Jeff and I both played live on down to love town. We both read and played the identical drum pattern and performed it at the same time.” (thanks to Frédéric Huybens)

Tracks

1  Mr. Troublemaker (Michael B Sutton) 4:12
2  Count Me Out (Michael B Sutton, Pam Sawyer) 4:32
3  Down To Love Town (Don Daniels, Kathy Wakefield, Michael B Sutton) 5:25
4  Touch (Frank Wilson, Pam Sawyer) 4:25
5  Natural Loving Feeling (Michael B Sutton, Pam Sawyer) 3:37
6  Everybody’s Got To Do Something (Brenda Sutton, Michael B Sutton, Pam Sawyer) 6:32
7  Bring Me Together (Frank Wilson, Kathy Wakefield) 4:07
8  Just To Be Closer To You (Michael B Sutton, Brenda Sutton) 4:28
9  It’s So Real (Michael B Sutton, Brenda Sutton) 3:14
10  All I Wanna Do (Is Spend My Life Loving You) (Michael B Sutton, Pam Sawyer) 4:10

Media

Musicians

BassJames Jamerson
DrumsJeffrey Porcaro
DrumsAlvin Taylor
GuitarDean Parks
GuitarJay Graydon
GuitarRay Parker Jr
GuitarMelvin Ragin
GuitarSteve Beckmeier
GuitarBilly Cooper
ClavinetJohn Barnes
Fender RhodesJohn Barnes
Fender RhodesMichael Sutton
OrganMichael Sutton
PianoJohn Barnes
PianoMichael Sutton
SynthesizerMichael Sutton
PercussionEddie Brown
PercussionKing Errisson

Other Musicians

4 Touch

PianoLeonard Caston

Liner Notes

Producer – Frank Wilson, Michael B Sutton
Producer – Frank Wilson (Track 4)
Arranged By – Frank Wilson (Tracks 1, 3, 5, 7, 9, 10)
Arranged By – Michael B Sutton (Tracks 1, 3, 5, 9, 10)
Arranged By – Greg Poree (Tracks 1, 3, 5)
Arranged By – John Barnes (Tracks 1, 10)
Arranged By – David Blumberg (Tracks 2, 4, 6, 9)
Arranged By – James Anthony Carmichael (Track 6)
Arranged By (Synthesizers) – Frank Wilson, Michael B Sutton
Engineer (Mastering Engineer) – Jeff Sanders
Engineer (Recording Engineer) – Andrew Berliner, Kevin Beamish
Programmed By (Arp) – Bob Robitaille
Programmed By (Moog) – Chuck Thompson

Art Direction – Frank Mulvey
Illustration – Keith Batcheller

Recorded, Mixed & Mastered at Crystal Recorders, Hollywood, CA