Daddy B. Nice's - Guide to Today's Top Chitlin' Circuit Rhythm and Blues Artists


Daddy B. Nice's Corner


Hi Daddy B Nice from Blues & Rhythm magazine

Hi daddy B Nice,

you may be interested to learn that the UK based Blues & Rhythm magazine's latest issue features a review of the new Theo Huff release and the upcoming issue (issue 313) will feature a review of the Porretta Soul Festival in Italy along with photo's of the performing artists.

Ms. Jody

Also in this issue will be reviews of the new JJ Thames, Ms Jody, Adrena releases.

Thank you for your kind attention and keep up the great work you do for us soul/ blues fans.

Mike Stephenson

Daddy B. Nice notes:

Mike Stephenson’s interview with Vick Allen was featured in Daddy B. Nice’s “New & Notes” for August 20th.


Regarding Jefferson Blues Magazine (& Hostility To Southern Soul Music Among the European Blues Establishment)

Dear Daddy B Nice

First would like to thank you for your kind words regarding the Vick Allen interview. I feel honoured! But I would like to inform you that 2 years ago I left Jefferson both as editor and as president for the Swedish (then Scandinavian) Blues Association. The new staff decided to scrap the southern soul blues section which was my real pride and joy after spending close to 15 years to learn about the music (I started in 2000).

But before leaving The Jefferson Blues Magazine I was surprised by the anger and aggression some of our readers, but also some of the old timers, had regarding southern soul blues. It’s a big NO-NO. I tried hard to convince some Swedish festival arrangers to book at least one real southern soul act, but no. I still don’t understand why people who all their life has embraced blues music, reject southern soul blues as the functional projection of the 50’s and 60’s blues.

I’m stunned because the difference between the blues of Blind Lemon Jefferson and BB King is greater than between BB King and Ms Jody. Do You understand? Living Blues Magazine made some attempts in the late 90’s but today they are as far as I know concentrating on the nostalgic retro folk music market. The rest of the magazines go for a rock audience or for nostalgica where 60’s Stax soul and 50’s blues are in high esteem. The same goes for the European festival arrangers.

But I haven’t given up. Today I’m submitting articles and reviews to second oldest blues magazine in the world, the Finnish Blues News.

I’m cooperating with Mike Stephenson who was the writer of many great interviews for Jefferson. So far they have published a history of Southern Soul of today I wrote + interviews by Denise LaSalle and J-Wonn by Mike.

Yours truly
Anders Lillsunde
Contributor to Blues News in Finland/Former editor of Jefferson
Stockholm, Sweden

*********** - Chitlin' Circuit Southern Soul Music Guide

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Hello Daddy B. Nice,

I'm sure you already know this -- but Falisa JaNaye has received rave reviews for her show at Porretta; so has Stan Mosley. Great to see contemporary southern soul artists along with the venerated veterans at this festival!

Stan Mosley.

(And yes, I know that Toni Green and a few others have been similarly well received in previous years, so this is nothing new.) Even some old-school soul "purists" have spoken highly of Falisa and Stan. Theo Huff also earned kudos, but -- as much as I like and admire Theo -- his set is styled specifically to be an "old-school" tribute (the songs he chooses, his vocal delivery, etc.), so it's not quite the same thing as a more modern-minded artist like Falisa or Stan.

Not to flog a deceased equine, but I think that a lot of the reason is that when the "purists" finally get to hear someone like Stan or Falisa -- or, for that matter, many other contemporary southern soul artists -- in person, with a live band behind them, they realize how good a lot of these younger artists really are, and how much "true" soul they really have. It's the synthesized studio production on a lot of their recordings, I'm sure, that turns the old-schoolers off.

And yes, I agree with you that increasing numbers of artists are eschewing the fake horns, but the overall production (esp. the beats) remains largely synthesized in many (most?) cases. Bobby Rush's new live-band-in-the-studio recording is a rare exception. (And even that one, it turns out, has one track constructed from samples from previous studio recordings, along with some store-bought beats, all mixed so deftly that it's almost impossible to tell which one it is!)

David W.

Daddy B. Nice notes:

Originally inspired by the death of Otis Redding, the Porretta Soul Festival takes place annually in Porretta Terme, a picturesque mountain town in northern Italy. The festival is renowned as an international showcase for southern soul.

Coincidentally, Falisa JaNaye' charted this month on Daddy B. Nice's Top Ten "Breaking" Southern Soul Singles" for the first time since 2010 with "I Love You." An excerpt:

The Memphis diva returns with an adept vocal, a fine piano-dominated arrangement and a song with an atypically (for southern soul) lovely bridge and sophisticated key change, all within an admirably brisk three minutes.

Listen to Falisa JaNaye singing "I Love You" on YouTube.

Listen to Falisa JaNaye singing "You Won't Miss Your Water" live at the 2016 Porretta Soul Festival via YouTube.

Listen to Bobby Rush singing "Get On Up" live at the 2016 Porretta Soul Festival via YouTube.

See the official Porretta Soul Festival website.

Listen to Latimore's recorded version of "Let's Straighten It Out" while browsing photos by Pierangelo Gatto of the 2013 Porretta Soul Festival (where Latimore was featured) via YouTube.

*********** - Chitlin' Circuit Southern Soul Music Guide

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I really enjoy your site! I work with Living Blues magazine, and was putting together a caption for Larry Milton. Do you know how long he's been on the scene, and which labels that he's recorded for?


Scott Barretta
Greenwood, MS

Daddy B. Nice replies:

Larry’s definitely an “underground” artist. Don’t think he’s recorded a solo album. If so, it’s a long time ago-—long enough ago for me to forget. He has strong connections in Jackson, and if you want to pursue your search I’d start with the staff at radio station WMPR, starting with Wanda Evers. DJ’s Ragman, Handyman, or Cadillac Zack might know more.

Thanks for the compliment!

Daddy B Nice

Daddy B. Nice notes:

I whipped this reply back to the reader at a point when I was pressed for time. Subsequently, I looked a little more into Larry Milton's presence (or lack thereof) on YouTube and was surprised to find a lot of material and information on the artist posted in the last couple of years.

Here are Daddy B. Nice's most important entries historically, as traced through the Comprehensive Index, along with relevant YouTube links and credits previously unpublished.

Daddy B. Nice's Top 25 Southern Soul Songs Of 2006....

12. "Back In Love Again"--Larry Milton

Lush, romantic, yet its driving beat carries you along like a swiftly-moving river.

Listen to Larry Milton singing "Back In Love Again" on YouTube.

YouTube Credits:

Published on Dec 13, 2015
Produced William Woodard Jr., Arranged by Morris J. Williams
Wood Rat Publishing Company BMI

DBN notes: The antecedents for "Back In Love Again" (in terms of tempo, rhythm track, and background instrumentation) are Jesse Graham's "Mr. Mailman" and "Think Of My Baby." Also note the arranging duties by Morris J. Williams, the longtime Ecko Records-affiliated writer/producer.

Daddy B. Nice's Top 10 "BREAKING" Southern Soul Singles For. . .

FEBRUARY 2010....

1. "Knock My Boots"------------Larry Milton

After all the year-end hoopla of awards and listening to last year's records over and over again, I was craving something original, a fresh sound to usher in the new year. This is it. Based on the "Slow Roll It" melody, and taken to new heights by a much-deserving artist best-known for the song "Back In Love Again."

Listen to Larry Milton singing "Knock My Boots" on YouTube.

YouTube Credits:

Published on Mar 3, 2014
Knockin' the Boots
Original release Date: February 18, 2014
Label: CDS Records
Copyright: 2014 CDS Records

Daddy B. Nice's


4. "Knock My Boots"--------------Larry Milton

Who would have imagined that a "Slow Roll It" knock-off (and an underground hit at that) could make you forget the Love Doctor's star-crossed classic? In the space of four atmosphere-packed minutes Larry Milton goes from journeyman to genius.

Best Out-Of-Left-Field Song of 2010:
Larry Milton
"Knock My Boots"

In addition, YouTube also has a surprising number of Larry Milton singles that never charted or received air play, published and posted by Knock On Wood Records, including some live appearances.

--Daddy B. Nice

Scott replies:

Thanks for following up on that -- I found a number of the videos and saw that he was on a Susie Q comp years ago.


*********** - Chitlin' Circuit Southern Soul Music Guide

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RE: RIP: Longtime Tyrone Davis Producer Leo Graham Passes

Tyrone Davis

Daddy B. Nice & Readers,

Leo Graham, longtime songwriter/producer for Tyrone Davis and also the writer of the Manhattans' "Shining Star" among other well-known songs, has passed away. We in Chicago mourn his loss deeply.

David Whiteis

See Daddy B. Nice's Artist Guide To Tyrone Davis. - Chitlin' Circuit Southern Soul Music Guide

RE: MYSTERY LADY'S "He Caught Me With The Wrong Drawers On"


It’s always a pleasure to check in on you & your website. I was wondering is this the same "He Caught Me With The Wrong Drawers On" song you’ve been referring to that DJ Big Money out of Lexington, MS plays on WAGR in the link? If so that’s actually her stage name! “The Mystery Lady” If not back to the drawing board! lol Anyways, THANKS for all you do!

Parrish "DJ PC Baby" Cratic
Aberdeen, MS

Listen to The Mystery Lady singing "Wrong Draws (He Caught Me With The Wrong Drawers On)" on YouTube.

Daddy B. Nice replies:

DJ PC Baby,

You just made my Saturday morning! Thank you for clearing up one of those long-standing "looking-for-a-song questions" I just love to pursue. First, here's my original write-up from the BEST OF 2015 page:

-------DECEMBER 2015---------

1. "He Caught Me With The Wrong Drawers On"----(Another Mystery Lady)

Here's something I've never done before--touting an unknown artist with a #1-ranking single--but I can't close out the year without giving "Wrong Drawers" the recognition it deserves as the greatest underground record of the year after Bishop Bullwinkle's "Hell Naw To The Naw Naw."

DJ Big Money (662-834-1025) plays the song every shift at 102.5 WAGR (Lexington, Tchula, Yazoo City, Mississippi), but he won't give out the name. There's a long southern soul tradition of female singers adopting aliases so as not to be disowned by their families, and I suspect that's the case here, only this singer may not yet even have an alias. Outrageously licentious, unrelentingly deadpan and funny, "He Caught Me With The Wrong Drawers On" cries out to be distributed as an artist's record and posted on YouTube.

I called her "Another Mystery Lady," so when I read your letter, my first impression was, "My God, you mean she actually took the arbitrary name I'd given her?" Then I went to the video and was stunned by the even greater coincidence. The singer is actually the original Mystery Lady who recorded "I Hear You Knocking (But You Can't Come In)." I just stumbled and bumbled upon her actual artist's name--as you point out--by accident!

Daddy B. Nice

P.S. On the YouTube version I hear what sounds like a cat meowing. I keep reaching down beside my chair to stroke one of my cats before they jump up on my computer keyboards. Does anyone else hear this?

Listen to The Mystery Lady singing "Wrong Draws (He Caught Me With The Wrong Drawers On)" on YouTube.

"DJ PC Baby" replies:

LOL, GREAT CATCH! That’s EXACTLY what it is & it’s also on the iTunes version. I just took a listen so it’s not your cats acting up! :D Glad I was able to be of some assistance & once again thanks for giving us southern soul lovers a platform & guide to keep up with those funky down home masterpieces!

One love

Parrish "DJ PC Baby" Cratic

Check out the original Mystery Lady/CD Baby album from which "Wrong Drawers" was re-discovered by DJ Big Money.

See Daddy B. Nice's most recent story about DJ Big Money and "He Caught Me With The Wrong Drawers On" in the July 24th "News & Notes" column of Daddy B. Nice's Corner. - Chitlin' Circuit Southern Soul Music Guide

Daddy B. Nice says: Thanks for all the "Get Well" letters...

Daddy B. Nice replies:

Any more, it seems like your Daddy B. Nice can't have one surgery without having two. (Kinda like a musical twin-pick.) My favorite "cheer-up" e-mail was the first, a little one-liner:

Just sending wishes for a speedy recovery to our beloved Daddy B Nice.


DBN: Noah, that "beloved" made me feel all warm and fuzzy. Thanks to all the well-wishers--you make me want to work even harder!

Daddy B. Nice

********** - Chitlin' Circuit Southern Soul Music Guide



RE: Ricky White, etc.

Daddy B. Nice,

Interesting points -- although, to my ears, Ricky did do a fine job on Donny Ray's latest -- good, strong, robust sound, at least in my opinion. I also liked Floyd Taylor's CDS release ("I'm 'Bout it 'Bout it" is just about the most infectious southern-soul dance track I've ever heard, and I admit I liked Simeo's hip-hop flavored fillips that gave it a more contemporary "mainstream" sound) -- CDS got some good work out of Stan Mosley, too. On the other hand, I remember being somewhat critical of Barbara Carr's CDS release, saying that she sounded a little stiff and uncomfortable, as if she hadn't been familiar with the material before she recorded it. Later on, she told me that that was exactly what had happened!

The Nellie Travis/Carl Marshall project -- yeah, for the most part, I agree as well. I don't have my CDs in front of me right now, but wasn't that the one on which they had Nellie singing an entire song that was obviously too high for her range? I was surprised that track actually got released.

Technically, I agree with you about programmed horns (for that matter, I'm not a big fan of programmed beats or programmed anything else) -- however, they're so ubiquitous that I've come to realize that I have to accept them if I'm going to listen to this music on its own terms. The rare sax solo or guitar break only serves to remind us what "might have been" . . . but then, after all: in a age of driverless cars, pilotless drones, workerless factories, etc., is it surprising that the same corporate forces that are de-skilling people and making them obsolete in other fields of endeavor have decided to make musicianless recording studios the mainstream state of the (ahem) "art" in recorded music?

I'm sure you've heard the story of the musician (I forget who it was, now) who was quoted as seeing an orchestra playing in the pit of a Broadway theater, turning to his friend, and saying in mock-shock, "Look at this! This will put two synthesizer players out of work!"

David W.

Read the story--Daddy B. Nice On Dylann DeAnna And The "Sound" of CDS Records--on Daddy B. Nice's Corner.

Go to Daddy B. Nice's reviews of the new DONNY RAY and RICKY WHITE CD's.

*********** - Chitlin' Circuit Southern Soul Music Guide


RE: Thanks From El' Willie

Daddy B Nice,

I was made aware last night that you actually placed me in your top ten breaking singles..and I must say that I was totally surprised. So I would like to thank you for that.. and another thing I would like to point out that, there was a lot of truth in the past critiques that you gave me , and i knew it to be true , and because of that , it made me better represent myself as an artist , a songwriter, a producer , and a vocalist..and it made me do something about it.. and the results were very pleasing to me, so to be honest I appreciate you for checking me at a time that I needed checking ,, so for that I say thank you.. Because, a wise man will listen his or her critics, because your so called friends , and your friends , won't always tell you the truth.. because in the business that i chose to be in you, I know that you can't please everyone, but everyone does have a voice, and an opinion , So I do think it is important to at least listen to it..and if one is true to oneself , one may find some truth in what someone else is saying , and if there is no truth in it you move on , but if there is just a little bit of truth in it ,, it can cause one to take that truth and expand on it ,,So i think it's important to listen and if , there is truth , it's always a plus ...

I'm not trying to jump on a bandwagon nor am I trying to make a songs that may sound like your favorite song, or artists, but I am trying to create a body of work that have real substance, and meaningful lyrics, that may touch someone in a more meaningful way, not just a song that's funny because I'm not a comedian, but if that work for some, God bless them, but my style is an extension of who I am and who I am is good enough for me, I'm a songwriter and I take it very serious,

So Daddy B Nice, thank you for your honesty, it helped me get myself back on the right track, but what It really did more than anything, it helped me make a conscience decision to stay true to myself, don't try to fit in, just be the best me that I can be.. and if I do that at the end of it all, if I do that, I will be pleased with the outcome whatever it may be, because all I had to give, was the best of me that I gave .. to some it may be enough, to others it may never be enough, but to me giving my best is enough for me as long as I can truly say, I truly gave my best..So thank you again Sir.. and may peace be with you and your family always .....

El' Willie

See Daddy B. Nice's Artist Guide to El' Willie.

To instantly link to all of the awards, citations and other references to El' Willie on the website, go to Willie, El' in Daddy B. Nice's Comprehensive Index.

********** - Chitlin' Circuit Southern Soul Music Guide

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RE: The Demise of the Blues Harp (ala Bobby Rush) in Southern Soul: Dorothy Moore playing blues harp!

Have you seen this? (She breaks out the harp at about 2:25)

Listen to the Dorothy Moore interview and playing of the blues harp on YouTube.


See original article--The Demise of the Blues Harp (ala Bobby Rush) in Southern Soul--on Daddy B. Nice's Corner.

********** - Chitlin' Circuit Southern Soul Music Guide

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Looking For A Song Letters: Echoes of Frank Mendenhall

Hi Daddy B

Your recent discussion in the Mailbag about the Jeff Floyd song prompted me to write in about a song I'm hearing DJ Ragman play in the afternoons on WMPR in Jackson. I think I heard him say it's by TJ Hooker Taylor. The song reminds me of another song, but I just can't put my finger on it. Do you know what I'm talking about?

Thanks for your help, hopefully,


Daddy B. Nice replies:

I do know the song you're talking about, George. It's T.J. Hooker's new single, "In The Rinse." The song you're hearing between the lines is Frank Mendenhall's "Party With Me Tonight," and I think TJ crossed the line--the professional line--in recycling the iconic rhythm track. He doesn't lift it per se, but his guitarist does such a faithful copy it demands a "shout-out" to the late great southern soul troubadour.

Daddy B. Nice

See Daddy B. Nice's Artist Guide to Frank Mendenhall.

Listen to the late Frank Mendenhall singing "Party With Me Tonight" on YouTube.

Listen to T.J. Hooker Taylor singing "In The Rinse" on YouTube.

See Daddy B. Nice's Artist Guide to T.J. Hooker Taylor. - Chitlin' Circuit Southern Soul Music Guide

LOOKING FOR A SONG LETTERS: Where can I find Robert "The Duke" Tillman's "Actions Speak Louder Than Words"?

Daddy B. Nice -

Good afternoon - Do you all know where I can purchase Robert Tillman's song, "Actions Speak Louder Than Words"? Im a mobile DJ in Clinton Mississippi.

DJ Double Dee

Daddy B. Nice replies:

Sorry for the delay, DJ Double Dee. I confused you with Doctor Dee, southern soul songwriter/performer and deejay at WMPR in Jackson, and I thought if anyone would know the answer to that question, you would. But you're not him, although I see you're from Clinton, so you may even know Doctor Dee. At any rate, I'd recommend calling WMPR (601-948-5950 request line / 601-948-5835 office) and asking Doctor Dee, Ragman, Handyman, Randy "Wildman Brown," Wanda Evers or Cadillac Zack where you can buy some kind of local copy of "Actions Speak Louder Than Words". That's all you're going to find, I'm afraid. Robert "The Duke" Tillman isn't known for taking care of business.

Daddy B. Nice

DJ Double Dee replies:

Good afternoon,

Thank you for the response. I did call WMPR last week. WMPR only had a promo copy and was not sure if song was released for purchase. I was unable to find the song on ITunes, BluesCritic, or CDbaby. Its a nice song so hopefully it will be made for purchase soon and I can add to my playlist. Thanks.

DJ Double Dee

Daddy B. Nice replies:

Incidentally, Tillman is performing at the Elks Club in Jackson this weekend (Saturday night) and at the Elks Club in Brookhaven (Sunday night).

See Concert Calendar.

DJ Double Dee replies:

Unfortunately, I will be out of town for family reunion and will miss the show. Hopefully I can find someone thats going and have them secure a cd from him. Thanks

DJ Double Dee

See Daddy B. Nice's Artist Guide to Robert "The Duke" Tillman.

Listen to Robert "The Duke" Tillman singing "I Found Love" on YouTube.

********** - Chitlin' Circuit Southern Soul Music Guide

RE: “These are the good old days, the glory days…”

Hey Daddy,

You have become indispensable. I especially like the way you tell it like is and hold southern soul to a high standard and don’t rubber-stamp everything for the sake of keeping everyone happy. If everybody did that, southern soul would be in a sadder state. Thanks in large parts to you, it’s thriving.

I wanted to give you a little shit about a column you must have taken down from Daddy B. Nice’s Corner—about the Memorial Day Concerts? You said “These are the good days, the glory days,” or something like that. What’s that? Just hyperbole? I mean, our acts aren’t even “national,” right? How can these be the “glory” days?

Thanks again for everything, and no offense intended,


Daddy B. Nice replies:

Hey, Demond’, no offense taken. When I look at the southern soul scene today, I feel like I’ve seen this before. I go back to when I was a little kid—long, long ago—pulling in the deep-south radio stations playing this wild, exotic pre-Rock&Roll R&B in the middle of the night, and much of it made it onto Top 40 and American Bandstand in those days (unlike today). (Actually, today YouTube is Top 40 radio, and sites like Daddy B. Nice are Dick Clark's Bandstand.) Elvis, the first white guy to play R&B, came in the late fifties. The Beatles came in the early 60’s, when all the young Brits were discovering blues records. Those early (black) R&B artists were eclipsed by (white) Rock and Roll. But for that magic time in the 50’s and early 60’s when it all sounded so new, those were the “glory days” for guys like Clyde McPhatter (”A Lover’s Question”), Little Richard ("Long Tall Sally”), Barrett Strong (”Money”), Ernie K-Doe (“Mother In Law”) and Little Eva (“The Loco-Motion”).

Those are the artists and the “raw & elemental” records that I equate to today’s Sir Charles Jones, T.K. Soul, Nellie “Tiger” Travis and Ms. Jody. None of them achieved the widespread fame they should have (well, maybe Little Richard), but they are remembered. And if and when a white southern soul artist comes along, followed by a rock and roll-like wave of Caucasian southern soul artists (it sounds strange even saying it, because the face of the music is black)….If and when that occurs, today’s artists will be lost in the din. You can see this effect already in the recent inroads made by African-American artists, totally unknown even five years ago--acts such as Tucka, Bishop Bullwinkle, J’Wonn and Big Pokey Bear--who have surpassed or at least equaled longtime performers like Sir Charles Jones and T.K. Soul in terms of drawing power on the chitlin’ circuit. So that is why I say these are the “glory days.” I think they’re going to get even better for southern soul, but I don’t think that’s necessarily true for all the artists popular today.

Daddy B. Nice

********** - Chitlin' Circuit Southern Soul Music Guide



THANK YOU LETTERS....Do you review Zydeco?

Daddy B. Nice,

I love your website. Your reviews on southern soul and blues music are excellent. I was wonder do you review Zydeco and if not can you tell me of a website that does.

Thank You.
D.J. Bigg-Mac

Daddy B. Nice replies:

Thanks, DJ Bigg-Mac. I don't know if there are any good zydeco information sites, but I can tell you that the best zydeco will increasingly be covered here. There's another great button-accordion tune coming in next month's Top Ten Singles: it's by Chris Ardoin. By the way, this southern soul connection to zydeco is not just a recent phenomenon. Denise LaSalle was singing "Don't Mess With My Tutu" way back when.

Daddy B. Nice - Chitlin' Circuit Southern Soul Music Guide

THANK YOU LETTERS.... Introducing Southern Soul's YouTube Mix Tape Deejays

Whats up Daddy B,

I enjoy reading your site and looking at your charts. Thanks for recognizing me, I appreciate it.

Melvin (Mr. Melvin)

Daddy B. Nice replies:

Appreciate it, Melvin. You’re the only one who got back to me. Keep up the good work.

But subsequently...

Hello Daddy B.

How you feelin.? Hey I just wanted to thank you for giving me, Dj Whaltbabieluv, a shout out in your April 21, 2016 article. It's a pleasure knowing that someone is taking notice and was thoughtful enough to write a article on us. Thank you for taking the time to do that.

If you don't have my youtube channel, you can checkout my mixes youtube @: Dj Whaltbabieluv

Daddy B. Nice replies:

I'm feelin' good, Dj Whaltbabieluv, I'm playin' new southern soul just like the Top 10 when I was a little kid, and I'm feelin' good. Thanks for all you're doing, and keep up the good work.

Daddy B. Nice

And subsequently, Daddy B. Nice wrote Mr. Melvin:

Saw the visual shout-out (to Daddy B. Nice) on your new mixtape. Thanks, Melvin. It’s cool.

And Mr. Melvin replied:

No problem man lol. You the man!


Daddy B. Nice notes:

To listen to Mr. Melvin's latest mixtape, go to Southern Soul Showtime: Zydeco Beat by Mr Melvin.

To listen to Dj Whaltbabieluv's latest mixtape, go to Southern Soul Mix 2016 - "Southern Fried" (Dj Whaltbabieluv)

Read the original article on Daddy B. Nice's Corner 2016 (Scroll down the page.)

********** - Chitlin' Circuit Southern Soul Music Guide




Hi Daddy B Nice!

I am Nikita Randle from Vicksburg, MS. I wanted you to be one of the first to know that I was formally known as Mys Niki. #10 single in October 2015 -- Candy Lover and #2 single in February -- Don't Make Me Do It. I have recently changed my stage name to "Nikita" and joined forces with T.K. Soul to produce my latest "Rules to the Game." There was a little confusion about another Soul/Blues singer who uses Ms. Niki as her stage name. I am a newcomer so I decided to use "Nikita" from this point on. I appreciate and respect everyone's gift. I don't want to step on any toes in this business as long as I can! Thanks for sharing the best music and knowledge!

Be blessed,

Listen to Nikita singing "Rules To The Game" on YouTube.

Daddy B. Nice replies:

Thank you so much, Nikita. That certainly clears up the mystery of such a "seasoned" debut. You are a very good vocalist, and you select good material. Sorry about drawing attention to your name. Maybe it's because people have always drawn attention to mine.

Daddy B. Nice

Daddy B. Nice notes:

"Don't Make Me Do It" was actually the #2 single in March 16, not February as Nikita states, beaten out for the top (#1) spot only by Jaye Hammer's "Trail Ride."

See Daddy B. Nice's original commentary on the song in Daddy B. Nice's Top 10 Singles. - Chitlin' Circuit Southern Soul Music Guide


Daddy B. Nice,

I just wanted to say what a great website you have. I just heard of Southern Soul for the first time from a book called "Dispatches From Pluto" about a guy who moves from New York to the Mississippi Delta. I did a Google search to find out more about it and came across your website. I'm amazed how many great groups there are that I've never heard of out here in California. I'm looking forward to exploring their music, which reminds me of the soul and R&B music me and my friends used to love back in the 70s, which I thought was gone forever.

Thanks again and God bless!


Daddy B. Nice replies:

Thanks so much. Like you, most of us fans came from other genres--rock, rap & hiphop, alternative & dance & electronica, country & folk & bluegrass, etc--looking for something more raw and elemental, not knowing it still exists in all its vitality. I think you'll find southern soul music will never let you down.

Daddy B. Nice

Mark replies:

Yes, raw is a good word for it. It doesn't have the perfect, flawless production values of some of the more popular music, but that's part of its appeal. By the way, I want to buy Bishop Bullwinkle's song but I can't find it for sale anywhere. I can only find it on Youtube. Is it available for sale anywhere?

Daddy B. Nice replies:

You must be an anomaly, Mark, just like Bishop Bullwinkle, because you want to buy the one southern soul song that's not for sale, in spite of accumulating some 20 million hits on its various YouTube postings. There is hope, however. The newest version of "Hell Naw" is registered with BMI, which means it may eventually be for sale. For the background on this and the latest on Bishop Bullwinkle, go to Daddy B. Nice's Guide to Bishop Bullwinkle.

Mark replies:

Gotcha, that is funny. This isn't the only southern soul song I wanted, I did buy a few others. When it came to BBW's song, I was able to download it from Youtube so I could listen to it on my Walkman, but, ironically, I wanted to pay for it so that he could reap the fruits of his labor. It turns out the labor wasn't entirely his! I think I will buy Bigg Robb's song so that HE can enjoy the fruits of his labor. : )

I appreciate the info.

Mark - Chitlin' Circuit Southern Soul Music Guide


Hi Daddy B Nice,

I love reading the info on your website!!

There was a young lady, Zy'Keyia, who recently wrote to you and asked about a song with the lyrics, "I am gonna make it right if it takes the rest of my life." I could hear the melody but couldn't get the song out of my head and had to find it. You're right, it is Jeff Floyd and it's from his single "Let's Get It On." I had written about it some years ago and I just realized that the video was taken down so I replaced it with an updated video. See my post:

Listen to Jeff Floyd singing "Let's Get It On" at Southern Soul Paradise.

As always, thank you for ALL the hard work you do!

Southern Soul Paradise

Daddy B. Nice replies:

Well thank you so much. I had this sneaking feeling that wasn’t new, but I couldn’t associate it with a song from his past. Good sleuthing!

Sample/Buy Jeff Floyd's "Let's Get It On" from the POWERHOUSE CD at Amazon. - Chitlin' Circuit Southern Soul Music Guide



I am interested in purchasing tickets for the Memorial Day Blues Show. Flyer says first 100 people enter for $15.00. Does that mean they are simply purchased at the gate and the first 100 there get that price or are they sold in advance? Also, if you are not one of the lucky first 100, what is the price?

Thank you so much as I look forward to being at the show. Although I am a true Lacee fan, this entire lineup is excellent! Thanks again for your help.


Daddy B. Nice replies:

I went back and checked the # and it is correct, Mary. You may want to try calling at odd times. For instance, the promoter may work days and only answer the phone at night, etc. I imagine the regular ticket prices will range from the usual $20 to $30. I would just suggest going, and it sounds like that's what you're doing. Have fun!

Daddy B. Nice

Mary replies:

Thanks so much for your reply. Have a great day!

Mary - Chitlin' Circuit Southern Soul Music Guide


Daddy B. Nice

Yes will you please tell me who sings the song with the "I am gonna make it right if it takes the rest of my life"?


Daddy B. Nice replies:

Hi Zy'keyia,

That's Jeff Floyd. It's a new single, I think, and I can't find an mp3 or YouTube version of the tune yet.

Daddy B. Nice

See Daddy B. Nice's Artist Guide to Jeff Floyd. - Chitlin' Circuit Southern Soul Music Guide

RE: Buying Jackie Neal's MONEY CAN'T BUY ME LOVE CD

Daddy B Nice:

Do you have the complete Money Can’t Buy Me Love CD? If so, how much is it and how soon can I receive it? I was on your website and when I clicked the icon… didn’t work.

Thank you.


Daddy B. Nice replies:

Hi Kathy,

The Barnes & Noble link is out-of-date because the album has gone out of print. However, the CD Universe link works....see below:

Jackie Neal - Money Can't Buy Me Love CD

This item is not available directly from CD Universe, but it is available through our partnership with Amazon.

Available from Amazon Marketplace.

3 Used from $149.95

I know...the price.....Ouch!!

--Daddy B. Nice

Listen to Jackie Neal singing "Money Can't Buy Me Love" on YouTube.

See Daddy B. Nice's Artist Guide to Jackie Neal.

Shop Jackie Neal CD's in Daddy B. Nice's CD Store. - Chitlin' Circuit Southern Soul Music Guide

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Daddy B. Nice's Top 10 Souther Soul Singles

9 pm, Tuesday, Wednesday & Thursday, August 30, 31, & September 1, 2016. The D Hotel and Casino, 301 Fremont St., Las Vegas, Nevada. Women in Music Expo. Nellie "Tiger" Travis, BB Queen, Lady A., MC: Kattman.

7 pm, Thursday, September 1, 2016. Gaylord Palms Resort Convention Center, 6000 West Osceola Pkwy., Kissimmee, Florida. Tom Joyner (WDLT Mobile AL. DJ) Family Reunion. Cupid.

Friday, September 2, 2016. James M. Trotter Convention Center, 402 2nd Ave. North, Columbus, Mississippi. Lenny Williams, Avant.

Friday, September 2, 2016. Greenwood Cultural Center, 322 North Greenwood Avenue, Tulsa, Oklahoma. T.K. Soul.

12 am, Midnight, Friday, September 2, & 12 am, Midnight Saturday, September 3, 2016. F. Jones Corner, 303 N. Farish St., Jackson, Mississippi. Stevie J. 601-983-1148.

2 pm, Saturday, September 3, 2016. On The Green, Mound Bayou, Mississippi. 8th Annual Homecoming Festival. Nellie "Tiger" Travis, BB Queen and more.

8 pm, Saturday, September 3, 2016. Jackson Steele Community Center, 607 Freedom Road, Whitehall, Alabama. L.J. Echols, Tucka, Toia Jones and more. 3334-662-8208.

Saturday, September 3, 2016. Waterview Casino, 3990 Washington St., Vicksburg, Mississippi. Willie Clayton. 601-636-5700.

Saturday, September 3, 2016. Downtown Bar & Grill, 520B Walnut St., West Helena, Arkansas. Vick Allen and Velvet Soul. 870-714-2940.

Saturday, September 3, 2016. Harlow's Casino, 4280 Harlows Blvd., Greenville, Mississippi. T.K. Soul. 662-335-9797

4 pm, Saturday, September 3, 2016. 1930 Wall Hill Road, Byhalia, Mississippi. Big Pokey Bear, J'Wonn, Karen Wolfe, Veronica Ra'elle. Gates open 12 Noon. 662-501-6163.

Saturday, September 3, 2016. Magic Spot II, 1805 Bailey Ave., Jackson, Mississippi. Narvell Echols, Summer Wolfe, Klutcher. 601-592-7080.

4:30 pm, Saturday, September 3, 2016. The Fair Ground, Highway 69 East, Columbus, Mississippi. LaMorris Williams, Sweet Angel, Big Yayo, Kenne' Wayne, Lacee, Jennifer Watts, B.J. Miller. Gates open at 1:30 pm.

1 pm, Saturday, September 3, 2016. 7 Norris Street (Downtown), Charleston, Mississippi. Chris Ivy, Lomax, Avail Hollywood, Ricky Da Soulman Burton. Gates open at 10 am. 662-404-6381.

6 pm, Sunday, September 4, 2016. Mississippi Coast Coliseum, 2350 Beach Blvd., Biloxi, Mississippi. Southern Soul Explosion. Willie Clayton, Tucka, Jeff Floyd, Lebrado. Gates open at 4 pm, rain or shine. 228-594-3700. MC: Iceman.

Sunday, September 4, 2016. Q.V. Sykes Park, Meridian, Mississippi. T.K. Soul, Omar Cunningham, Bigg Robb, Ms. Jody.

Sunday, September 4, 2016. Copiah County Fairgrounds, Gallman (Hazlehurst), Mississippi. Copiah County Family Reunion. Vick Allen, Terry Wright, T.K. Soul, Equanya. 601-668-0160.

Sunday, September 4, 2016. Henry B. Gonzalez Convention Center, 900 East Market St., San Antonio, Texas. Betty Wright. 210-207-8500.

Sunday, September 4, 2016. Metropolitan, 310 Andrew Higgins Drive, New Orleans, Louisiana. All White Affair. 504-473-2537. Tucka and more.

Sunday, September 4, 2016. Madison County Amusement Park, 850 Sulphur Springs Road, Canton, Mississippi. Big Pokey, Robert "The Juice" Lenoir, Andre' Lee, JR Blu. Gates open at 10 am. Horse racing in early PM. 601-213-8377. MC: WMPR DJ Handyman.

6 pm, Sunday, September 4, 2016. Jay's Farm Place, Sawyerville, Alabama (Tuscaloosa). Bigg Robb, Steve Perry, Lacee, Kenne' Wayne, T.J. Hooker Taylor and more. 205-792-6610.

3 pm, Sunday, September 4, 2016. The Grand Palace, 1377 CR 436, Coffeeville, Mississippi. Avail Hollywood, Terry Wright, Andre' Lee, Mr. Sam. 662-230-2669.

Sunday, September 4, 2016. Riverfront Park, 100 1st Avenue North, Nashville, Tennessee. Rewind Music Festival. Lenny Williams, Zapp, Adina Howard and more.

2 pm, Sunday, September 4, 2016. Hub City Dragway, 331 Eatonville Road, Hattiesburg, Mississippi. O.B. Buchana, Krishaunda Echols, J'Wonn, Nathaniel Kimble. Gates open at 10 am. 601-447-4452.

Sunday, September 4, 2016. Winnfield Civic Center, 800 N. Grove St., Winnfield, Louisiana. Sir Charles Jones, Ghetto Cowboy, Rhomey, Emerson Hill. 318-628-3413, 318-413-1083.

5 pm, Sunday, September 4, 2016. Downtown, Monroe, Louisiana. Vick Allen, Avail Hollywood, Wilson Meadows, Ms. Charli, Nicole Jackson and more. 318-807-1737.

6 pm, Sunday, September 4, 2016. Jay's Farm Place, 24 County Rd. 15 Corner Hwy. 14 & Lock 6 Rd., Sawyerville, Alabama (Tuscaloosa). Lacee, Bigg Robb, T.J. Hooker Taylor, Steve Perry, Kenne' Wayne. Gates open at 2 pm. 205-792-6610.

Thursday, September 8, 2016. Isle of Wight, United Kingdom. Isle Of Wight Festival 2016. Candi Staton, The Who, Adam Ant, Queen, Iggy Pop and many more. See festival website.

Thursday, Friday, Saturday & Sunday, September 8-11, 2016. Plaza Hotel & Casino, 1 South Main St., Las Vegas, Nevada. Big Blues Bender. Bobby Rush, Kenny Neal, Jarekus Singleton, Mr. Sipp, Keb' Mo', Delbert McClinton, Roy Rogers, Cyril Neville and many more. 800-634-6575. See festival website.

Friday, September 9, 2016. Yoshi's, Jack London Square, 510 Embarcadero West, Oakland, California.Bobby Rush. 510-238-9200.

Friday, September 9, 2016. Six Shooters Ranch, 809 J.J. Lemmons, Hutchins, Texas. Jeter Jones & The Perfect Blend Band.

12 am, Midnight, Friday, September 9, 2016. F. Jones Corner, 303 N. Farish St., Jackson, Mississippi. Sorrento Ussery. 601-983-1148.

Saturday, September 10, 2016. Embarcadero Marina Park North, 400 Kettner Boulevard, Downtown Waterfront, San Diego, California. San Diego Blues Festival. Bobby Rush and more. See festival website.

7 pm, Saturday, September 10, 2016. Union County Fairgrounds, 334 West Hillsboro St., El Dorado, Arkansas. Southern Soul Showdown: T.K. Soul vs. Big Pokey Bear. T.K. Soul, Pokey Bear, Magic One, M.P. Soul, Nicky Parrish, The Unique Soul Band. 870-866-7441. Gates open at 6 pm. 870-866-7441.

Saturday, September 10, 2016. Collins Civic Center, 300 Main St., Collins, Mississippi. L.J. Echols, R.J. Scott. 601-765-0714. Doors open at 8 pm.

Saturday, September 10, 2016. Festival Park, 2911 E. Robinson St., Orlando, Florida. Sir Charles Jones, Bishop Bullwinkle, Lomax and more. 321-806-5117.

8:30 pm, Saturday, September 10, 2016. Empire Event Center, 4905 Clio Road, Flint, Michigan. Willie Clayton, James Smith. Doors open at 7 pm. 810-339-5978.

8 pm, Thursday, September 15, 2016. City Winery, 650 North Avenue, Ponce City Market, Atlanta, Georgia. William Bell. Doors open at 6 pm.

Thursday, September 15-Monday, September 19, 2016. Carnival Liberty, Galveston, Texas. Southern Soul 4-Day Cruise, Galveston-Cozumel-Galveston. Big Pokey Bear, Tucka, Cupid. 888-653-7461.

Friday, September 16, 2016. Southern Soul Lounge, 1605 Marshall Street, Shreveport, Louisiana. Jeter Jones.

Saturday, September 17, 2016. Hwy 70, Emerson, Arkansas. Sharon Hester's B-Day Bash. Jeter Jones, Crystal Thomas.

Saturday, September 17, 2016. Mama D's, Bassfield, Mississippi. Ra'Shad "The Blues Kid", Klutcher, Summer Wolfe, Narvell Echols.

12 pm Noon, Saturday, September 17, 2016. Washington County Convention Center, 1040 South Raceway Road, Greenville, Mississippi. 39th Annual Delta Blues & Heritage Festival. Bobby Rush, Dorothy Moore, Dexter Allen, JR Blu, Sweet Angel, Grady Champion, Karen Wolfe, O.B. Buchana, Eden Brent and more. 662-335-3523. Gates open at 10 am. Contact e-mail:

Friday, September 23, 2016. Radio City Music Hall, 1260 Avenue of the Americas, New York, New York. Aretha Franklin.

Friday, September 23, 2016. Belle of Baton Rouge, 103 France St., Baton Rouge, Louisiana. Theodis Ealey.

8 pm, Saturday, September 24, 2016. Durham Armory, 220 Foster Street, Durham, North Carolina. The Heavy Hitters of Soul. Ms. Jody, Sir Charles Jones, Lacee, Lenny Williams, J. Red. Doors open at 7 pm.

Saturday, September 24, 2016. Columbus Civic Center, 400 4th St. Columbus, Georgia. Betty Wright, Shirley Murdock, Shirley Brown, T.K. Soul.

Saturday, September 24, 2016.Carver Park, 2nd Avenue North, Bessemer, Alabama. Marvel City Soul Music Festival. Willie Clayton.

Saturday, September 24, 2016. Hangaround Trail Ride, Highway 171, South Mansfield, Louisiana. Jeter Jones.

Saturday, September 24, 2016. American Legion Post #248, Hooks, Texas. Ra'Shad "The Blues Kid," Jim Bennett, Jesi Terrell, Klutcher, Summer Wolfe.

10 pm, Saturday, September 24, 2016. Good Times, 1735 Culver Road, Tuscaloosa, Alabama. LaMorris Williams, Terry Wright, Big Ro Williams. Doors open at 8 pm.

7 pm, Sunday, September 25, 2016. Sanchez Multi-Purpose Center, 1616 Caffin Avenue, New Orleans, Louisiana. Black Sunday Line Dance Explosion. Cupid, Nicole Jackson, Lebrado, VIC, Lacee, Till 1, Yadonna West, O.G. Los, DJ Jubilee. 504-994-5189.

Sunday, September 25, 2016. Coach's Corner Club, 7439 S. Westmoreland Rd., Dallas, Texas. Summer Wolfe, Jesi Terrell, Narvell Echols, Ra'Shad "The Blues Kid", Jim Bennett, Klutcher, Narvell Echols. 972-283-4448.

Friday, September 30, 2016. Federal City Auditorium, 2485 Guadalcanal St., New Orleans, Louisiana. New Orleans Views Awards Show. Jeter Jones, Big Pokey Bear, Tyree Neal, Veronica (Ra'elle). 504-217-5003.

8 pm, Saturday, October 1, 2016. The Centre, Halifax Community College, 200 College Drive, Weldon, North Carolina. The Down East Southern Soul Concert featuring The Heavy Hitters Of Soul. Vick Allen, T.K. Soul, Sir Charles Jones, Kenne' Wayne, Lacee. Doors open at 7 pm. 919-827-2033.

12 pm, Noon, October 1, 2016. Cook Family Park, Highway 79 Between Pine Bluff & Altheimer, Altheimer, Arkansas. Ms. Jody, Nellie "Tiger" Travis, Bobby Rush, Jaye Hammer, Bishop Bullwinkle, Willie P., Diedra. 501-413-7683.

Saturday, October 1, 2016. Leflore County Civic Center, 200 Highway 7 North, Greenwood, Mississippi. Theodis Ealey.

6 pm, Sunday, October 2, 2016. Mr. G's Supper Club, 1547 West 87th St., Chicago, Illinois. Lomax, JoJo Murray, Willie White. Doors open at 4 pm.773-445-2020.

Saturday, October 8, 2016. Majestic Theatre, 224 East Houston Street, San Antonio, Texas. Smokey Robinson. 210-226-5700.

Monday, October 10, 2016. B.B. King Blues Club, 237 W. 42nd St., New York. Bobby Rush. 212-997-4144.

9 pm, Saturday, October 15, 2016. Big Skate Event Center, 12099 Marsh Road, Bealeton, Virginia. Tribute to Hardway Connection: 35th Anniversary. Roy C, J. Red, Donnie Ray, Maurice Wynn, Shay Denise. Doors open at 8 pm. 301-233-2951.

Sunday, October 16, 2016. Sellersville Theater 1894, 24 West Temple Ave., Sellersville, Pennsylvania. Bobby Rush. 215-257-5808.

Saturday, October 22, 2016. Peabody Opera House, 1400 Market St., St. Louis, Missouri. Aretha Franklin. 314-499-7600.

7:30 pm & 9:30 pm, Saturday October 29, 2016. Corner Theatre, 211 E. Pleasant Run Rd., Desoto, Texas. The Metropolitan Dream Center of Dallas Presents. Eddie Cotton, B'Nois King Band. 972-524-8900

Wednesday, November 23, 2016. Montgomery Performing Arts Centre, 201 Tallapoosa St., Montgomery, Alabama. T.K. Soul, Bigg Robb, Calvin Richardson, MC Lightfoot. 334-481-5100.


E-mail concert listings and corrections to:


******** - Chitlin' Circuit Southern Soul Music Guide


All material--written or visual--on this website is copyrighted and the exclusive property of, LLC. Any use or reproduction of the material outside the website is strictly forbidden, unless expressly authorized by

To be posted with any reproduction--in part or whole--of Daddy B. Nice’s Concert Calendar: the Southern Soul RnB logo: - Chitlin' Circuit Southern Soul Music Guide

As long as you follow this procedure, you are welcome to reproduce the calendar.

--Daddy B. Nice

From Daddy B. Nice's BEST OF 2014 page...


The year did not begin auspiciously. Floyd Taylor, son of the late great Johnnie Taylor and a contemporary southern soul headliner in his own right, passed away on February 21st, causing his stepbrother TJ to remark, "He died pretty much the way my dad died: a heart attack (at too young an age)." A masterful and discerning vocal interpreter, Taylor's career was notable for spanning southern soul's two generations of songwriters, from the best of Charles Richard Cason and Lawrence Harper (of his father's generation) to Simeo Overall of the new.

A few days later Eddie Holloway, a lesser-known but seminal figure renowned for contemporary southern soul classics like "I Had A Good Time," "Poor Boy" and "My Mind's Too Strong," passed away in obscurity, without fanfare.

A young recording artist (Jeter Jones) trying to break into the southern soul market released an album whose instrumental tracks Daddy B. Nice--in a CD review--recognized as identical to certain Bobby Jones and Chuck Roberson songs of the recent past, setting off a firestorm of litigation between Desert Sounds CEO Charles Peterson and his former producer, Eric "Smidi" Smith.

Daddy B. Nice himself underwent a lung cancer scare and finally had surgery in May, returning successfully after two bouts in the hospital to discover that "Funky" Larry Jones, owner of the Soul & Blues Report, a monthly compendium and summary of southern soul deejay playlists and a vital niche in the southern soul internet community, had died. Other websites (Boogie, Blues Critic) made attempts to provide the same function, but at year's end the loss was still felt and seemed irrevocable.

That, along with the June death of Don Davis (the producing genius behind Johnnie Taylor) and the early-September passing of Joe Poonanny, the Weird Al Yankovich of the chitlin' circuit and the last of a dying breed of blues parodists, was the bad news.

The good news was that, stimulated by an invitation to Kim Cole's Celebrity Birthday Bash in Hattiesburg, Mississippi in July, your Daddy B. Nice rebounded to attend (and chronicle) three multi-act southern soul concerts in thirty hours, including getting out on the dance floor.

There was cause. Southern Soul stars were appearing everywhere across the Deep South, from Texas to the Carolinas. A month later, Southern Soul Labor Day concerts and associated sales would surpass a million, and the concerts continued to proliferate, populating weekends throughout the calendar that would have been few and far between ten years ago.

But what really uncorked the euphoria in 2014 was the return to recording of southern soul's younger-generation leading lights, Sir Charles Jones and T.K. Soul. After long absences (especially in Sir Charles' case), both performers produced sets of significant material with fresh yet authentic sounds, in T.K.'s case stripped-down, acoustic-dominated arrangements.

The two CD's, combined with the much-anticipated debut by J'Wonn (I GOT THIS RECORD) and the latest drop from O.B. Buchana, made it a banner year for male vocalists.

Women, not so much. For the second year in a row Denise LaSalle and Shirley Brown were sorely missed. Both appeared only rarely, and neither released new product. Ms. Jody and Nellie "Tiger" Travis were relatively quiet after big years in 2013. Sweet Angel reposed and, as expected, Peggy Scott-Adams (whose early partner, JoJo Benson, died just before Christmas) failed to follow up on her 2012 return to southern soul. Candi Staton and Uvee Hayes returned with new CD's, however.

Some of the major male stars--known for productivity--were also MIA in 2014. Mel Waiters, Theodis Ealey, Latimore and Bobby Rush produced little new studio work, and in pursuit of an elusive Grammy that even the late Johnnie Taylor and Tyrone Davis never won, Willie Clayton's new album disconcerted some longtime fans with its slide into atmospheric, Isley-style soul.

Young Grady Champion was the year's sensation (following fellow Jacksonian J'Wonn in 2013). Champion drew a cover story in "Living Blues" magazine after signing with Malaco Records for his new album BOOTLEG WHISKEY. Rare for a Delta artist, Champion drew national interest and crossover appeal.

Waiting in the wings, and getting no respect, was Chicago phenomenon Theo Huff, whose "It's A Good Thing I Met You" drew high praise (#5 for the year) from Daddy B. Nice for its approximation of--you guessed it--vintage Willie Clayton.

Lil' Jimmie's dance jam "She Was Twerkin'" was the underground sensation of the year, the subject of constant fan queries on where to buy--the answer was always, "Nowhere." Which reminded your Daddy B. Nice of an old Lil' Jimmie song called "I'm Not Going Nowhere," a song so full of double-negatives you're not sure what he means.

A young artist named Wood redid Nellie "Tiger" Travis's "Mr. Sexy Man" with a lounge-band sound ("Foxy Lady"), drawing copyright ire.

Tyree Neal, Pokey and Adrian Bagher formed a group called The Louisiana Blues Brothers.

Memphis-based Anita Love (Humphrey), former back-up singer for Sweet Angel, had an out-of-left-field smash with "Keep Knockin'", while Memphis-based songwriter John Cummings continued his transformation into a first-rate recording artist.

Vick Allen was in a stage play in Jackson, Mississippi, while singles ("Crazy Over You," "True To Me") continued to spit out of his going-on-three-year-old SOUL MUSIC album like candy from a child's Christmas wind-up toy.

Steve Perry of "Booty Roll" fame thought better of his name change to Prince Mekl and became good old Steve Perry again.

WAGR in Lexington, Mississippi and its colorful deejay, Big Money, became the exciting new southern soul station to stream on the Internet.

And last but not least, storied DJ Ragman returned in December to WMPR in Jackson, Mississippi--also on the Web--doling out southern soul music in the afternoons with his trademark, champagne-fizz optimism.

By the end of the year, life in Southern Soul was good.

--Daddy B. Nice


************* - Chitlin' Circuit Southern Soul Music Guide


From Daddy B. Nice's BEST OF 2013 :

SOUTHERN SOUL MUSIC: THE YEAR IN REVIEW Despite the usual attrition 2013 was a fantastic year for the last "segregated music" in America (as singer/songwriter Luther Lackey called Southern Soul music in an insightful "farewell" interview with Daddy B. Nice in January), with steady output from veterans and buzz-filled epiphanies seemingly on a monthly basis by a parade of bright new and/or little-known performers.

Not to be mistaken for your mama's southern soul, 2013 was the year of Nellie "Tiger" Travis's "Mr. Sexy Man," called in many quarters the "number-one song" in America. Even Medea (aka comedian Tyler Perry), boasted that the song--the result of Travis' reunion with writer/producer Floyd Hamberlin--was her favorite during a guest stint on The Steve Harvey show.

One of the keys to the song's popularity was the line in the chorus, "what-yo-name-is?" (which Medea mimicked perfectly), proving once again that good English grammar ("What is your name?") just doesn't (don't?) make sense in the world of blues.

Like a 100-year flood, "Mr. Sexy Man" crept into media outlets long known for eschewing southern soul music, but close in its wake, especially throughout the established chitlin' circuit, was Ms. Jody's "Just Let Me Ride," in which the fiercely competitive diva "saved the horse and rode the cowboy," in the process notching her finest club song to date.

And Ms. Jody also took the music beyond its roots, winning (and triumphantly performing) at the Carolina Beach Music Awards for her single "Still Strokin'," the title tune from the same CD featuring "Just Let Me Ride."

The successes of Nellie "Tiger" Travis and Ms. Jody marked the ascension of a new generation of divas: both had started out as the best of a class of newcomers around 2005.

But the ultimate southern soul high of the year, at least for the insiders fortunate enough to hear his debut in the Delta (Jackson, Mississippi, the heart of the music), was the Big Yayo-tutored singer J-Wonn's "I Got This Record."

With only word-of-mouth, local air-play and one meagerly-recorded live-with-boombox YouTube video on the sidewalk of Farish Street (remember the Rue Davis song?), J-Wonn became an overnight sensation, the charisma and sensitivity of his vocal compelling your Daddy B. Nice to call his coming-out party "dramatic enough to recall Sir Charles Jones' 'Friday' or LaMorris Williams' 'We Can Do It (Impala)'."

Deejays called this song "the #1 song in the WORLD," (How's that, Nellie Travis?), but it was really the #1 Song in the Delta, where its popularity thrust J-Wonn on stage with Willie Clayton and subsequently led to headlining gigs with the likes of respected Southern Soul veterans Wilson Meadows and Dave Mack.

J-Wonn's lightning-speed acceptance--without a published CD--wasn't unique. Only a few months earlier, during the heat of the summer, a young performer whose only claim to fame was being the little sister of singer/songwriter L. J. Echols, put out a single called "Mad Dog 20-20."

An anthem to low-budget, country-style inebriation, with brother L.J.'s admirably rustic guitar picking for background, Krishaunda Echols' "Mad Dog" (which your Daddy B. Nice called "the best thing since the late Jackie Neal") broke with only a YouTube video, without the benefit of distributed single or CD.

In the span of two months, Ms. Echols became a feted headliner at Mississippi southern soul concerts, most exceptionally headlining a show at the Laurel, Mississippi fairgrounds with the greatest divas in Southern Soul (Peggy Scott-Adams, Denise LaSalle and Shirley Brown), with the radio spot featuring Krishunda's "Mad Dog 20-20" exclusively in the commercial.

So fast did events unfold, there was often a disconnect between the day-to-day Southern Soul media, which catered to and supported the small but vital network of established Southern Soul artists, and the emerging younger generation of new acts, largely introduced by Daddy B. Nice, often with little distributed product--J-Wonn, Krishunda Echols, T-Baby, Fredrick (King Fred) Hicks, Adrian Bagher among them--who more often than not had little access to the chitlin' circuit network of the older generation.

Unheralded, young, Delta-based producer Big Yayo (Stevie J's "Because Of Me," LaMorris Williams' "Impala"), was again at the heart of the action, producing not only T-Baby's "The Swag" but J-Wonn's resplendently-arranged ballad, "I Got This Record." And Big Yayo's 2012 success with the disco-edged, Dave Mack-sung, club anthem "Booty Talking" presaged the success of Nellie Travis' similarly-driven "Mr. Sexy Man" in 2013.

Another vital stream of new southern soul music came from a traditional bastion of the genre, southern Louisiana and the Gulf Coast, where--with the demise of the once-invaluable Chico's Radio--WDLT Mobile's deejay Nikki DeMarks fought the good fight, championing artists like Stephanie McDee, Cupid and Tucka, whose "Sweet Shop" seduced listeners.

"Twerking" finally hit the mainstream. Hey, America: Louisiana's Jackie Neal was doing it and singing about it a dozen years ago.

And Jackie Neal's little brother Tyree finally moved out of her shadow, producing Big Cynthia's best work in years, not to mention producing fellow Louisianan Pokey and providing the irrepressible guitar lick in the Louisiana-based, "return-of-the-southern-soul-queen" Stephanie McDee's instant classic, "When I Step In The Club."

2013 was noteworthy for the publication of David Whiteis's monumental primer to contemporary Southern Soul: Southern Soul Blues (University of Illinois Press).

The overwhelmingly-accurate, exhaustively-researched tome was the first up-to-date analysis of contemporary Southern Soul in cloth and paper, lending further credence (in the mainstream) to the genre's still obscure existence.

Whiteis wrote (and confirmed with your Daddy B. Nice) that the term "southern soul blues" was a compromise--that the phrases "southern soul," "soul-blues" and "southern soul blues" were all used interchangeably in the book. Yet, such was the heft of the book's influence that respected European online critic Heikki Suosalo wrote that:

“Soul-Blues” is now in the U.S.A. the common term for the music we used to call and still call in Europe “southern soul.” Even though some artists like Willie Clayton don’t like the phrase “southern soul” in terms of describing his music – and Chicago isn’t very south, I agree – I’ll still use it anyhow, because it’s an established, respectable term, going all the way to the 60s. Among European soul music lovers, it’s a positive term and it conjures up an image of certain kind of music, highly emotional and powerful. It’s not necessarily tied up with geography, but purely sound. We also have “northern soul”, and every black music fan and club-goer in Europe understands what we’re talking about."

In the critical sphere, 2013 was also the year Daddy B. Nice completed his Top 100 21st Century Countdown, two and a half years in the making, and the first ranking of southern soul artists since his Top 100 Southern Soul Artists a decade earlier, with Sir Charles Jones replacing the late Johnnie Taylor as the #1 Southern Soul Artist. Mel Waiters, Willie Clayton, T.K. Soul, Bobby Rush, Ms. Jody, Shirley Brown, Theodis Ealey, O.B. Buchana and Bigg Robb rounded out the top ten.

A vocalist some industry people doubted existed emerged from anonymity in an interview with Daddy B. Nice: Will T., the mysterious singer of the original "Mississippi Boy," (often attributed to Charles Wilson), one of the most iconic and oft-covered songs in contemporary Southern Soul. It was written by the same Floyd Hamberlin of this year's "Mr. Sexy Man" fame and most recently covered by Sir Charles Jones under the title "Country Boy."

2013 posted outstanding CD's by some of Southern Soul's banner artists: Theodis Ealey, Vick Allen, Mel Waiters, Ms. Jody, O.B. Buchana, Klass Band Brotherhood and Donnie Ray, to cite only a few.

2013 witnessed the passing of some of the music's most beloved practitioners: Artie "Blues Boy" White, Gus Geeter (of Alabama's King Tutt Band) and Tina Diamond. And in December, to the consternation of the blues community, Robert "Chick" Willis--in his heyday one of the most risque of performers--passed on to Soul Heaven.

Onetime enfants terribles Bobby Rush and Willie Clayton found themselves the elder statesmen of traditional rhythm and blues, with old classics like Rush's "Hard Feelin' With Me" (from Blind Snake)...

Different strokes
For different folks.
Special kind of stroke
For the soulful folks."

...and Clayton's "Can We Talk" (from Full Circle), dressed up with reggae dancehall trimmings, rematerializing in current air play and wowing a new generation.

Lyrical highlights that made 2013 a little more distinctive:

"Hey mista sexy man,
What yo name is?"
Nellie "Tiger" Travis, "Mr. Sexy Man"

"Everyone's watching you throughout this room,
Women watching men watching you.
Jealousy is kicking in."
Mel Waiters, "Hottest Thing"

"Tonight we're eating perch with tartar sauce."
Big "Ro" Williams, "Good Love Muscle"

"They conversated (sic) for awhile."
Vick Allen, "My Baby's Phone"

"Just like Al Green said,
'I'm tired of being alone,'
Thank God for the men
That made these smart phones."
Billy "Soul" Bonds, "Get Her With My Twitter"

"They call me Pokey,
Big pokey bear,
Anytime you need me, baby,
I'll be there."
Pokey, "They Call Me Pokey"
(from an album entitled JOSEPHINE SON POKEY)

"We didn't know a damn thing about bills.
Thought we were living it up like in Beverly Hills.
Plenty of Kool-Aid and government cheese,
Collard greens and black-eyed peas.
Man, those were the good old days."
Vick Allen, "I'm Tired Of Being Grown"

"I'll tell you what.
Stop giving up the cookie
And see how long he stays around."
Nellie "Tiger" Travis to Adrena in "Another Woman's Man"

And, from the debut of the year...

"I caught 'em at the grocery store.
I caught 'em in the Mall.
Saw 'em at the casino,
But my grandma even caught 'em at bingo."
J-Wonn, "I Got This Record"

--Daddy B. Nice

************* - Chitlin' Circuit Southern Soul Music Guide




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