The Imperials – 1978 – Who’s Gonna Love Me
The credit of this post goes 100% to Trakbuv. He had the idea to send me a link of his LP which is special to him and here the introduction of his mail to me :
“I REALLY REALLY enjoyed writing this – I have taken an actual interview article (everything in “” is genuine) with the band promoting this particular LP, and added my own words as the fictitious Dwight Debussy.And those 2 ballads are so special to me – I can remember the day vividly I heard them on the radio, sat all on my own on a Saturday morning about 1am, everyone else having gone to bed.These moments can’t be described !!”
This is a @320 vinyl rip of the original Power Exchange LP including covers.
A1 Who’s Gonna Love Me (5:09)
A2 You Better Take Time To Love (5:27)
A3 Where You Gonna Find Somebody Like Me (4:00)
A4 I Really Think We Can Make It Together (3:35)
B1 Dance With Me (5:47)
B2 Do What I Gotta Do (4:14)
B3 Can You Imagine (3:04)
B4 No One Makes Love Like You Do (5:00)
Review by Trakbuv
“Welcome dear listeners to Station W.E.F.O.N.K with your host, Dwight Debussy – remember ‘that’s soul with a double D’, y’all ! Hope you’ve been good, but not too good – if you know what I mean. Well, this week we have the pleasure of the revitalised Imperials in our company. Who ? Well, I thought the same thing, until someone told me that they were the Imperials of ……’Little Anthony & the Imperials’ fame !! Well knock me out with a feather, whodda guessed ? Well, let me see here – what does ‘Dwight Debussy’s Definitive Soul Guide’ have to say. Mmm, my soul finger is flicking to ‘L’ – here we are ! Anthony Gourdine was born in New York City in 1940. At age 15, he joined a doowop group called the Duponts, but it folded a short time later. He then co-founded a group called the Chesters. They made one record, and subsequently changed their name to the Imperials at the suggestion of DJ Alan Freed. Little Anthony and the Imperials then proceeded to sign a record deal with End Records. Their first single on that label – which proved to be their biggest song ever – was ‘Tears On My Pillow’ in 1958. Two years later they had another top forty song with ‘Shimmy, Shimmy, Ko-Ko-Bop’. Blah, blah, blahdy blah…..hope you’re still awake out there, no sneaking off now.
So, without further ado, let’s introduce our fine guests. We have Harold Jenkins, the newest member Bobby Wade, and Clarence Collins, who is one of the original members of the doo-wap band, and actually pre-dates stereo folks !! So Bob, if you don’t mind me calling you Bob, what is it like working with folk old enough to be your granpappy ?
“Actually, I think people are amazed that we are so young, but the group started out in their mid teens, and although we’re all in our early 30s, we are like veterans.”
Yeah, I call my great granmama a veteran to be kind. Mind you, she did fight in 2 World Wars, and the Battle of Hastings. Anyway, I think the viewers at home would like to hear more about Little Anthony, after all, he is the famous one isn’t he, no disrespect, Rob.
“It’s Bobby. Actually, we talked to him just yesterday. He’s been in a couple of TV films quite recently and a TV commercial for Chevrolet, too. I think he occasionally does night club dates just as Little Anthony from time to time, also.”
So what is it with you guys, this is the SECOND time Little Anthony dumped you ? Ever considered washing more regularly ?
“Back in 1975, we not only lost Anthony, but our manager at the time, Don Taylor. However, Don happened to see us in Vegas in November of ’76, and he was so impressed he promised he would find us a record outlet. Within a short period, he had arranged Tony Silvester to cut 5 sides on us – ‘Who’s gonna love me’ being one of them. That was March last year and we heard nothing until the November when the single had been released in England. For the 6 months between – nothing – we started to forget about the session altogether !”
So what’s it like to be a second rate Stylistics, Don ?
“Well it’s funny, I joined (with Little Anthony) when we linked up with Avco Embassy Records (now H&L Records) and Thom Bell was assigned to produce us. I felt with a little bit of luck, we could have been very successful then, but the company tended to hide us behind the Stylistics and we kinda lost out.”
So did you ever feel like spiking Russell Thompson’s (Stylistics lead singer) coffee with testosterone to ensure his angelic vocals never grace another record. It’s not a crime to think it you know, Tom ?
“Well, erm…with respect to the current single, it took us a while to hear it was going down so well in England, and we understand that it is set for release in the States next month. And we feel that the follow-up single – ‘Where you gonna find somebody like me’ – is even stronger. And it’s not Tom, it’s Bobby !”
Sure, of course it is. Well that’s all we have time for, a world exclusive – Tony of Little Anthony & the Imperials attempts to poison the lead singer of the Stylistics – you heard it first here from your host, Dwight Debussy – ‘Have a nice D-D-Day y’all’ “
The above article contains actual footage taken from ‘Blues & Soul Magazine’, no.245 (Feb 14-27, 1978), page 34.
With respect to the album, this is an extremely classy event. Producer Tony Silvester has percolated a smooth aromatic flavour to the music that is warm and welcoming. The lead has a slight supper club approach, but his resonance is undeniably steeped in soulful sweetness. Even when it gets funky on ‘Can you imagine’, there is a polish to the groove. However I rushed out to buy this LP for just two ballads – played on a single radio show within a space of an hour, and never heard on the airwaves again. ‘You better take time for love’ is a deft brew of the hushed glow on a lover’s dawn – the saxophone, background vocals and strings basting a gentle, bitter sweet euphoria over its forlorn requester. Unbelievably beautiful and one of my all-time favourite ballads. Then we have ‘No one makes love like you do’ – another subtle movement as if not to break the rice paper it treads – floating on the warmth of burning platitudes. Gorgeous.
Now, all of you, leave a comment and share your opinion on the album and post and why not congratulate Trakbuv for another great contribution and review!