Tousaaint, Allen


Band members               Related acts

- Jospeh Modeliste -- drums

- Charles Moore -- guitar

- Arthur Neville - keyboards

- Leo Nocentellu -- guiatr

- George Porter Jr. -- bass

- Alan Roberts - percussion

- Alfred Toussaint -- vocals, keyboards

 

 

 

- none known

 

 

 


 

Genre: soul

Rating: **** (4 stars)

Title:  Southern Nights

Company: Reprise

Catalog: MS-2186

Year: 1975

Country/State: New Orleans, Louisiana

Grade (cover/record): VG/VG

Comments: minor seam wear

Available: 1

GEMM catalog ID: 4859

Price: $20.00

 

 

Yeah, Glen Campbell had the smarts to cover the title track and score one of his biggest hits with his upbeat Dixie-ish interpretation.  While Campbell's version was a well deserved hit, let me tell you it doesn't have anything on Allen Toussaint's strange, watery original (this may sound strange but to my ears the original has always sounded like something off of The Beatles' White Album).

 

Co-produced by Toussaint and long time sidekick Marshalll Sehorn, 1975's "Southern Nights" was the man's third and final album for Reprise.  In spite of backing from The Meters, this was also Toussaint's strangest and in many ways most interesting release for the company.  Before going on, a quick warning.  Anyone looking for a heavy dose of New Orleans funk will probably be disappointed by this album.  Sure, there are some distinctive New Orleans influences scattered throughout the ten Toussaint originals.  'Basic Lady' and ' When the Party's Over' are both pretty down and dirty, but the bulk of the collection sports a dreamy aura that's almost psychedelic in nature ...  Yeah I know that sounds weird, but material like the rock-influenced lead off number 'Last Train', 'You Will Not Lose' and the title track all reflect a 'trippy' feel.  Hard to adequately describe this, but picture being caught in a thick bayou fog after drinking a case of Voodoo beer and you'll start to get a feel for the album.  That's certainly not intended as a criticism, since I think the album's exceptional for those very reasons.  Propelled by Toussaint's wonderful voice, the set's full of quality material with only one or two true clunkers - the title track keeps popping up between songs which quickly becomes kind of irritating.  Personal favorites include the laconic 'What Do You Want the Girl To Do' (better than Boz Scaggs' cover, but not as appealing as Bonnie Raitt's version) and the downtrodden and painful closer 'Cruel Way To Go'.  

 

Reprise also tapped the album for a couple of singles:

 

- 'Country John' b/w '' (Reprise catalog number 1334)

 

and the 12" disco single: 

 

- 'When the Party's Over' b/w 'Country John' (disco mix) (Reprise catalog number PRO-603)

 

"Southern Nights" track listing:
(side 1)

1.) Last Train   (Allen Toussaint) - 

2.) Worldwide   (Allen Toussaint) - 

3.) Back In Baby's Arms   (Allen Toussaint) - 

4.) Country John   (Allen Toussaint) - 

5.) Basic Lady   (Allen Toussaint) - 

 

(side 2)
1.) Southern Nights   (Allen Toussaint) - 

2.) You WIll Not Lose   (Allen Toussaint) - 

3.) What Do You Want the Girl To Do?   (Allen Toussaint) - 

4.) When the Party's Over   (Allen Toussaint) - 

5.) Cruel Way To Go Down   (Allen Toussaint) - 

 

 

 

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