Band members Related acts
- Dan Whitley -- vocals
- none known
Rating: 3 stars ***
Title: In Search of Justus
Company: Continental Recording Co.
Catalog: CFS 2287
Country/State: L.A., California ?
Grade (cover/record): NM / NM
Comments: still in shrink wrap (opened)
GEMM catalog ID: 5077
You never know what to expect with private press releases and this late-1960s obscurity was certainly no exception. The home made cover gave me the feeling it might be lame singer/songwriter material. Turns out my guess was dead wrong.
Unfortunately I know absolutely nothing about namesake Dan Whitley, or his songwriting partner Bobby Morphis. I've poked around, but as far as I can tell there's nothing to be found about the pair on the web. Likewise the liner notes to Whitley's late-1960s album "In Search of Justus" don't provide much in the way of information other than the album was produced by an outfit in Hollywood (The Bonwit Agency). Shame since the album was kind of intriguing and surprisingly well produced and arranged. It's certainly not a life changing release, but was better than most private press releases and sported a sound quality that you normally wouldn't expect from an obscurity like this. With Whitley and Morphis credited with writing about half of the 11 tracks, the album was also surprisingly diverse. Blessed with a versatile and likeable voice that occasionally recalled The Raiders' Mark Lindsey, Whitley seemed quite comfortable and capable of handling a variety of genres, including top-40 pop ('Summer Sidewalks'), singer/songwriter moves ('Since You Came Into My Life') and even mild psych-ish numbers ('Mr. Finn'). The set's commercial sound and occasional horn arrangements would probably sour hardcore psych fans, but that was largely offset by the album's quirkiness (how many artists do you know who would include a cover Eden Ahbez's 'Nature Boy') and the set's engaging sense of enthusiasm. Highlights included the sitar-propelled cover of Ahbez's 'Nature Boy', 'Looking Back At Life' and the catchy closer 'Go Away Now' (the latter sporting a nice guitar solo).
of Justus" track listing:
1.) Nature Boy (Eden Ahbez) - 2:23
2.) Summer Sidewalks (Dan Whitley - Bobby Morphis) - 2:45
3.) Mr. Finn (Dan Whitley - Bobby Morphis) - 2:26
4.) No Words Can Say (Dan Whitley - Bobby Morphis) - 3:45
5.) Since You Came Into My Life (Pete Lance) - 2:46
6.) Looking Back At Life (J. Walker) - 2:41
2.) A Lesson In Expenditure (Dan Whitley - Bobby Morphis) - 2:40
3.) Please Don't Say Good Bye (Ron Lemiuex - H. Peacocke) - 2:38
4.) Thinking of You (Dan Whitley) - 3:28
5.) Go Away Now (Dan Whitley - Bobby Morphis) - 2:51
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