Monday, October 12, 2009

Lee Allen & His Band

I was sitting in my office at 1311 Portage Avenue, and this was over 20 years ago, with a mail order catalogue in my hands. I wasn’t very busy in those days. But I had this catalogue. It had pages and pages of singles, all reissues of old hits, and not having endless sums of money, I had to pick 10. I think it was 10. It probably cost me $20 plus shipping.

I think I just started from A, figuring that over time I’d get through more of the list, but I really only ordered that once, and I can’t remember why that is. Maybe they never sent me another catalogue.

But A: I ordered Steve Alaimo, and this track, by Lee Allen, was on the other side. Whoever put these reissues out decided to turf the original B sides, and pair different artists on one single, or 2 hits by one artist, and that creates more value at the expense of authenticity, but it worked for me.

Lee Allen was a session man, he played sax on all those big hits by Little Richard, and he one hit on his own. So I have all his hits here…

Lee Allen & His Band:

Walkin’ With Mr. Lee – With the rock and roll instrumental still in its infancy, Lee Allen came out with this scorcher, which takes up where Raunchy left off. It tends to be, unfortunately, a rather underrecognized and underrated sax-based number, but dig that walking rhythm. It was in the top 50 in early 1958.

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