Tuesday, February 05, 2013

Tuesday's Twosome # 17

... tonight with Margie Evans and Delmar Evans (I put the second name twice because they're not related, really, except musicallywise).

They were simply billed as »Delmar and Margie« on Johnny Otis's 1970 Epic LP Cuttin' Up and they feature on Side 2 with two remarkable duets, one funky and close to the pulse of the beginning '70s, the other a remake of a tune from 1950. And guess what? They outdid themselves with the one and the other. Maybe this was the secret of Johnny Otis, arguably the most important single r&b producer and impresario of all times, that he was able to reassemble his »Johnny Otis Show« in the late '60s (with new personnel) and still hit the nerve of the time after he had been around on the r&b scene since the mid-'40s. No little achievement, indeed.
     The first important result of his new Show was the Epic LP which came out in August 1970, just after the Johnny Otis Show had played the Monterey Jazz Festival. Delmar Evans and Margie Evans had been picked up by Otis to be part of his ensemble two years before, and while both can be heard as solo vocalists on various recordings (for Delmar, see also here), the Cuttin' Up LP has the two also duetting. Just some word on Margie Evans: She was born Marjorie Ann Johnson in 1940 and was basically discovered by Otis, as it were. She started singing backing vocals in the late '50s, but was then brought out as a solo voice by Otis; she then recorded from the 1970s through the 1990s and became mainly known among blues aficionados.

The two duets by Margie and Delmar are killer tunes. As said before, one is on the funky side, the other (»Double Crossing Blues«) classic r&b in a modern (and highly satisfying) garb. But both are equally compelling. Let's get to it!

Delmar and Margie: »Don't Stretch This Good Thing Too Far« /»Double Crossing Blues«
from the Epic LP # 26524 (1970):

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You may also listen to the original version of »Double Crossing Blues«, first released in 1950 (feat. the Johnny Otis Quintette with The Robins and Little Esther [Phillips] on Savoy # 731):

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