The Story Of Jimmy 'Preacher' Ellis 1963-1972 - out on Tramp Records
Jimmy "Preacher" Ellis (not to be mistaken with the Jimmy Ellis, singer for The Trammps, who left us last year) was born in Arkansas, grew up in Seattle and is now living in Texas. In the 60s he released two handfuls of soul 45s, from blues, R&B and proto-funk to psychedelic funk and seventies soul, for labels such as Jewel, Space, Kris and Romark. Most of the tracks from this superb anthology are reissued here for the first time, either on CD with a 12 page booklet or on superdeluxe double-gatefold vinyl edition, with rare photographs and detailed liner notes for both. Late 60s track 'Put your Hoe To My Row' should brightfully light the soulful dancefloors, while 70s soul piece 'Looking Thru The Eyes Of Love' will appeal to all the retro-funksters out there, deep into Truth & Soul & Daptone stuff. The Afro-American political blues of closing track 'Don't Tax Me In' is also an obvious one to play these days with lyrics that haven't aged a bit!
Jimmy 'Preacher' Ellis - The Story Of Jimmy 'Preacher' Ellis 1963-1972
(CD/2LP/Digital) Tramp Records TR 9020, 2013-01-21
01. Since I Fell For You
02. Go Head On
03. Cry, No More
04. I'm Gonna Do It By Myself
05. Work With What You Got
06. Puttin It On Your Mind
07. Dance To The Drumbeat
08. Put Your Hoe To My Row
09. A Fool For A Friend
10. Jimmy Preacher Ellis –Kiddio
11. Baby I Love You
12. Tough Competition
13. Looking Thru The Eyes Of Love
14. That's The Way I Am
15. Happy To Be (The Man You Like To See)*
16. I Gotta See My Baby
17. I Just Wanna Be Myself
18. Don't Tax Me In
(* vinyl-only bonus track)
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Jimmy "Preacher" Ellis & The Odd Fellows - "Put Your Hoe to My Row"
Press Release :
Jimmy Preacher Ellis was born in 1935, in the rural farming community of Foreman, Arkansas. Like most youths, his first singing experience came in church, where he and his brother both sang. By 1950 Ellis had moved to Seattle, Washington where he began singing in the choir at the nearby Mount Baker Baptist Church. Eventually his vocal talents came to the attention of the Reverend F.F. Billups who asked Jimmy to join The Traveling Four, since their baritone singer had just quit. By 1955 The Traveling Four split up, and Ellis, now 20 years old, entered the military service. By the late 1950s, he was back in Seattle and began to seriously pursue his interest in playing the guitar. In spite of his developing instrumental skills, Ellis wasn’t quite ready for a solo career. Instead, he recruited former ex-Traveling Four members, Tony Harris and Billy Marshall, to form a doo-wop group called The Centuries. Finally, in 1964 Ellis became a solo blues act, and a legend was born.
Ellis took the road south to Los Angeles in hope of doing some recording. In the same year he released his debut 45rpm single under his own name. After that he got introduced to Ferdinand ‘Fats’ Washington who, by this time, had already garnered a well-deserved reputation as one of the finest R&B songwriters in the business. Washington started his own label called Movin’ in the mid 1960s on which Ellis recorded a pair of 45s. Soon later two additional Ellis singles appeared on Ride, another of Washington’s record labels. In 1969 Ellis hooked up with producer Mel Alexander, recording a number of sides for his Kris and Space labels well into the 1970s.
And this is it, the fourth release in “The Story of” series on Tramp Records. All these songs have been originally released on 45rpm single only and most of them are available for the first time since its release 40+ years ago. From the detailed liner notes to the classic packaging, you can be assured of the refined taste and heartfelt care that went into this entire production.
The 12-page CD booklet contains his detailed biography incl. label scans and promotional photographs. The vinyl version comes as a deluxe double-gatefold LP.