Leo’s Sunshipp ‎- 1978 – We Need Each Other

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Leo's Sunshipp ‎We Need Each Other front

A really great underground groover from the 70s – an album that hardly got any circulation at the time, but which has gone onto become the stuff of legend over the years! The album’s a bit unusual, in that it almost feels like an expanded package of 12″ singles – as the a-side features four vocal tracks that are all great club numbers – then the b-side has all the same songs, but presented as instrumentals! There’s a nicely sophisticated feel to most numbers – almost in the Roy Ayers or Leroy Hutson side of the spectrum – more midtempo mellow club than any sort of disco – and the set includes the classic cut “Give Me the Sunshine“, and the original recording of “I’m Back for More“, which was the big hit for Al Johnson a few years later.

Tracks
A1 Give Me the Sunshine (Vocal) 6:32
A2 Im Back for More (Vocal) 5:19
A3 Down People (Vocal) 4:16
A4 Madame Butterfly 4:58
B1 Madame Butterfly (Vocal)4:47
B2 Im Back for More 5:25
B3 Give Me the Sunshine 6:32
B4 Get Down People 4:39

Leo's Sunshipp ‎We Need Each Other back

Don’t let the extraterrestrial name fool you — Leo’s Sunshipp played funky soul music and would have been around much longer if tragedy hadn’t struck. The band revolved around singers Kenny Stover, Johnny Simone, and Alvin Few; all were born under the astrological sign of Leo, thus the name. Stoveris the brother of Elgie Stover, who contributed to some Marvin Gaye songs and “The Bells” by the Originals; the Stovers are cousins of Harvey Fuqua (Moonglows and later Motown’s A&R director).Kenny is from Cleveland, OH, and grew up in the Hough area on 66th and Belvedere. He moved to Detroit with big brother Elgie and both did odd jobs for Harvey and Motown.

When the company moved to Los Angeles, the Stovers followed and Kenny landed a staff songwriting job, as did Elgie. He met Johnny Simone and the two, along with Barbara Thompson and Doria Glass, toured as backing singers for Marvin Gaye; that’s Simone and Stover you hear on Gaye’s Here, My Dear album. Simone migrated from Atlanta, GA, to L.A. to tour with Stevie Wonder. He was an original member of the Wallace Brothers, who — as high-school teens — made some crude but charming records for Sims Records and other labels. After the Wallace Brothers disbanded, Simone toiled withthe Naturals, who cut singles on Quadran, Calla, and Shout Records. After the Naturals, he relocated to Los Angeles, befriended Stover, and landed a gig backing Marvin Gaye on tour.

Leo's Sunshipp We Need Each Other label 1

An exciting showman with a vocal range from falsetto to a tough as nails, Marvin Gaye-ish tenor Simone sought the spotlight and was eager to get involved with another group. The two met Few, who little is known about, and formed Leo’s Sunshipp. In 1977, Leo’s Sunshipp had recorded four songs for a proposed album when Simone took ill; he never recovered and died of cancer in his early thirties. Lyons Records eventually finished and released We Need Each Other with eight songs, but four of the eight were simply alternate mixes of “Give Me the Sunshine“,”I’m Back for More“, “Get Down People” and “Madam Butterfly” with “Leo’s Sunshipp” the only non-repeating track. “Give Me the Sunshine” was a minor hit, but with the heart and soul of Leo’s Sunshipp gone, they disbanded. Stover joinedFinished Touch in 1978.

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Conversation for album: Leo’s Sunshipp ‎- 1978 – We Need Each Other

23 Comments
  • Grumpy
    Posted at 12:31h, 29 September 2015 Reply

    Thank you! (For this and other posts)

  • music lover
    Posted at 18:55h, 29 September 2015 Reply

    Looking forward! Thank you!

  • Mila
    Posted at 19:44h, 29 September 2015 Reply

    oh my god. This is truly heaven.

  • Tommy
    Posted at 07:24h, 30 September 2015 Reply

    The easybytez link says ‘no file’. Any chance you can fix? Thanks!!!

  • Joel
    Posted at 08:57h, 30 September 2015 Reply

    Wonderful music! I missed that and probably so many more great records! So thanks again for opening horizon.. Well down. Excellent blog informative quality blog.

  • Dabida
    Posted at 10:28h, 30 September 2015 Reply

    Getting no file (Thanks for all the great stuff here !)

  • Nikos
    Posted at 11:36h, 30 September 2015 Reply

    New easybytez link added.

  • Dabida
    Posted at 13:28h, 30 September 2015 Reply

    Downloading as I write = NIKOS you are a star ! Thank you.

  • Jimmy
    Posted at 17:58h, 30 September 2015 Reply

    Killer all the way

  • Τ2
    Posted at 09:08h, 01 October 2015 Reply

    Once again here I am, just to listen to this super amazing jam..

  • Rascal
    Posted at 09:11h, 01 October 2015 Reply

    This is a time machine! Brings me back to the seventies in no-time! Awesome!

  • Ameropio
    Posted at 10:47h, 01 October 2015 Reply

    this takes me right back to scholl youth club………..yeah the time of my life.

  • Sam
    Posted at 20:11h, 01 October 2015 Reply

    Another fantastic post! I just cannot get enough of this stuff! 🙂

  • Johnny
    Posted at 08:50h, 02 October 2015 Reply

    Thanks again my friend blessed love

  • Niels
    Posted at 08:53h, 02 October 2015 Reply

    Wooow this is good! Very smooth

  • Raul
    Posted at 12:13h, 02 October 2015 Reply

    you da man!!!!!!

  • Frank
    Posted at 11:34h, 04 October 2015 Reply

    All these black groups from the 60’s 70’s the music just tears your heart out !

  • Ron
    Posted at 11:37h, 04 October 2015 Reply

    I lived through the 60’s & 70″s, I wish that I could go back in a time ship.

  • Lars
    Posted at 09:09h, 07 October 2015 Reply

    Thanks so much for keeping this marvelous music alive!

  • Derek
    Posted at 10:24h, 08 October 2015 Reply

    Love it

  • Carlos
    Posted at 11:25h, 11 October 2015 Reply

    Can’t wait to hear this one, it sounds great! Your blog is amazing…I listened to two albums today that I discovered here during this year. Thanks again!

  • Phil
    Posted at 16:26h, 14 October 2015 Reply

    Just amazing

  • chrisco
    Posted at 14:04h, 02 November 2015 Reply

    great album….μπραβο παιδια

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