Being the vinyl nerd I am, it was a real bonus to see two big boxes of seven-inch singles on the merch table at the Sharon Jones and The Dap-Kings show at the Barrymore on Wednesday. While this meant I would end up hauling around a bag of 45s during the concert, I was glad I made the effort to pick up some early on, as a number of records were sold out after the show.
For those who can't get enough Sharon Jones, perusing the discography of singles released through Daptone Records -- a dozen Jones titles so far, not including three now-rare discs on the earlier Desco label -- reveals that there's quite a few songs exclusive to the vintage format for collectors to track down.
Here's a roundup of some of the more notable discs; a number of them can even be heard currently at the band's MySpace page for those who don't have a turntable.
"Pick It Up Lay it in the Cut"/"Hard Eight" (Daptone 1011)
In the tradition of the classic funk and soul singles her sound is built on, many of Jones' Daptone singles feature instrumental versions of the A-side on the flip. That's the case here, with "Hard Eight" showcasing saxophone instead of Jones' vocals on an alternate, higher-key version of the single.
"Genuine," parts one and two (Daptone 1016)
Direct from the land of James Brown's late '60s sides, this one is a seven-minute workout that fades down and back up for the side change in the middle of Jones holding a note, a nod to the limitations of the format. Is that annoying? In some ways, yes -- but it's nowhere near as annoying as the "clunk" of an 8-track doing the same thing in the middle of, say, "In-A-Gadda-Da-Vida."
"What if We All Stopped Paying Taxes?"/"This Land is Your Land" (Daptone 1019)
The Dap Kings statement on how to bring "Mr. Politician" back in line is backed here with their Woody Guthrie reinvention from the "Naturally" LP. Essential.
"I Just Dropped in to See What Condition My Condition Is In"/instrumental version (Daptone 1022)
Lebowski fans rejoice -- the soul version of the First Edition's psych side trip you've been waiting for is here!
"I'm Not Gonna Cry"/"Money Don't Make the Man" (Daptone 1031)
This one's got it all -- breaks (including some crazy sax by Neal Sugarman), wicked syncopation and a stunning Jones vocal -- and is destined to be a DJ classic. The flip is an instrumental version featuring even more sax.
Other singles exclusives by Jones and The Dap-Kings include "Settling In," the flip of the "100 Days 100 Nights;" and a reggae version of "How Long Do I Have to Wait For You." I missed snagging those at the show, but did luckily get a copy of opener Charles Bradley and the Menahan Street Band's deep soul stunner "The World is Going Up in Flames"/"Heartaches & Pain." Bradley's got four more singles on Daptone-associated labels, and I hope a long player is in the works!