D2D Vinyl Record
"...part of APO's astonishing direct-to-disc series...a delicious live session...Tate reaches down to the soles of his shoes to deliver exquisite takes on two trademark songs from his classic Verve LP, 'Look At Granny Run Run' and 'Ain't Nobody Home,' plus four others. The backing band is note-perfect for the session, the sound bordering on the cavernous. Best of all, over 40 years after his debut, the voice is intact." - Ken Kessler, Hi-Fi News, July 2010
"...Gary Gold has worked with artists as legendary as Smokey Robinson and Chuck Berry. Recently he made his first APO recording as the drummer for the veteran soul singer Howard Tate along with other seasoned pros - and afterwards said, 'It's a step up from anything that any of us have done...the highest possible standards recording-wise. What a blessing.'...That this music is getting recorded and released is by itself a good thing, but the fact that it comes out on audiophile vinyl is a whole lot of icing on the cake. As for the sound, this was analog like I remembered it (minus the hiss, wow, and flutter), with a warm, in-the-room feel from the drums, bass, and acoustic piano and a rich, full sound from acoustic guitars." - Jeff Wilson, The Absolute Sound, April/May 2010
Singer Howard Tate cracked the R&B Top 20 three times in the late 1960s, left music and endured hardship and anonymity for nearly 30 years and beginning in the early 2000s returned to his rightful place as one of America's most revered soul performers.
Tate was born in Macon, Georgia, in 1939 and moved with his family to Philadelphia as a young boy. In his teens, he joined a north Philadelphia gospel group, the Gainors, that also featured to-be star Garnet Mimms. The group recorded in the early 1960s for Mercury Records and Cameo Records before Tate left to become the featured singer of organist Bill Doggett's group.
In the mid-'60s, Mimms urged producer Jerry Ragovoy to check out Tate, and from 1966 to 1969 Tate and Ragovoy recorded about 10 singles, the first for the Utopia label, the rest for Verve. "Ain't Nobody Home" (1966), "Look At Granny Run Run" (1966) and "Stop" (1967), all written or co-written by Ragovoy, each charted R&B Top 20. But to rock audiences, Tate was best known as the original performer of "Get It While You Can," which became one of Janis Joplin's signature tunes. Tate's debut album, Get It While You Can, was released in 1966 to tremendous acclaim. Rolling Stone called the album "a spectacular showcase of suave, muscular good-powered singing, heavily influenced by Sam Cooke, with a joyous, shrieking falsetto that became Tate's trademark."
Tate recorded a few more singles for Lloyd Price's label, Turntable, before reuniting briefly with Ragovoy for sessions on Atlantic. After one more single on Epic in 1974, Tate all but vanished. Despite his success, he was unhappy with how the music business was treating him, never having seen any royalties.
Tate sold securities in the New Jersey and Philadelphia areas into the 1980s when he succumbed to substance abuse and endured a very tumultuous period of homelessness and personal loss. He turned his life around and began work as a minister and counselor in the early 1990s. Then in 2001, a musician Tate had toured with back in the 1960s saw him in a supermarket and within hours Tate's old producer, Jerry Ragovoy, was calling, resulting in a return to the studio for the Grammy-nominated Rediscovered. He followed up with Howard Tate Live in 2006, A Portrait Of Howard - with guests Lou Reed, Carla Bley and Larry Goldings - in 2007 and Blue Day in 2008.
Music luminaries have recognized and celebrated Tate's trademark voice throughout the years, with Elvis Costello calling him "the missing link between Jackie Wilson and Al Green." Among the well-known musicians that have covered songs originally recorded by Tate are Joplin ("Get It While You Can"), Jimi Hendrix ("Stop"), Hugh Masekela ("Stop"), B.B. King ("Ain't Nobody Home"), Ry Cooder ("Look At Granny Run Run") and Grand Funk Railroad ("Look At Granny Run Run").
|1. Look At Granny Run Run||2. Sweet Sixteen||3. Louisiana 1927||4. I’ll Be Home||5. Dear Lord||6. Ain’t Nobody Home|
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