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The Singles, Vol. 3: 1964-1965

James Brown 8/7/2007


The Universal Music Group's Hip-O Select imprint is an Internet mail-order division devoted to high-priced, limited-edition collections of music from the Universal vaults. Its James Brown series, starting with The Singles, Vol. 1: The Federal Years: 1956-1960 and continuing with The Singles, Vol. 2: 1960-1963, has presented Brown's recordings as they were issued in chronological order on 45-rpm records. While that has meant skipping over LP tracks, especially in the second volume, and sequencing somewhat out of order of actual recording dates, it's an approach that has given a good sense of Brown's musical progression. Unfortunately, complications in Brown's career make The Singles, Vol. 3: 1964-1965 a bit of a mess. At the end of 1963, Brown entered into a contract dispute with his record label, King Records. He stopped recording for King and even signed a contract with another label, Smash Records (a subsidiary of Mercury Records). But King went right on putting out Brown singles by delving into its catalog of LP tracks and altering other previously released recordings without Brown's knowledge, much less permission. For example, Brown's Live at the Apollo album had been a big success in 1963, so King overdubbed screams and applause onto Brown's 1956 recording "Please, Please, Please" to make it sound like a live performance and re-released it as a single in January 1964; it's now the opening track here. Meanwhile, Brown was uncertain of his direction, and his first recordings for Smash included forays into covers of jump blues (Louis Jordan's "Caldonia") and straight blues (Guitar Slim's "The Things That I Used to Do") to which his fans did not respond. Like an obsessive record collector cuing up one single after another, this album dutifully follows the peculiar month-by-month progression of King's barrel-scrapings interspersed with Brown's floundering, as the recording dates of the tracks jump back and forth. The listening experience from this uneven and inconsistent material is jarring. Eventually, Brown found his feet and came to an accommodation with King in time to cut such classics as "Papa's Got a Brand New Bag, Pt. 1" and "I Got You (I Feel Good)," which appear toward the end of the second disc. But in the meantime, this is an album of tracks with a selection and sequencing that make sense only to a discographer. ~ William Ruhlmann
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  1. # Track Artist Length
  2. 1 Please Please Please James Brown 2:43
  3. 2 In the Wee Wee Hours [Of the Nite] James Brown 2:39
  4. 3 Again James Brown 2:32
  5. 4 How Long Darling James Brown 2:56
  6. 5 Caldonia [Single Version] James Brown 2:41
  7. 6 Evil James Brown 2:49
  8. 7 The Things That I Used to Do James Brown 2:49
  9. 8 Out of the Blue [Single] James Brown 2:12
  10. 9 So Long [Single Version] James Brown 2:44
  11. 10 Dancin Little Thing James Brown 2:3
  12. 11 Soul Food Pt. 1 James Brown 2:3
  13. 12 Soul Food Pt. 2 James Brown 2:22
  14. 13 Out of Sight [Single Version] James Brown 2:21
  15. 14 Maybe the Last Time [Single Version] James Brown 2:57
  16. 15 Tell Me What You're Gonna Do James Brown 2:10
  17. 16 I Don't Care James Brown 2:51
  18. 17 Think [1964/Live at the Apollo][Single Version] James Brown 1:59
  19. 18 Try Me [Strings Version] James Brown 2:32
  20. 1 Have Mercy Baby James Brown 2:11
  21. 2 Just Won't Do Right James Brown 2:40
  22. 3 Fine Old Foxy Self James Brown 2:7
  23. 4 Medley: I Found Someone, Why Do You Do Me Like You Do, I Want You So Bad [Single Version] James Brown 2:8
  24. 5 This Old Heart James Brown 2:16
  25. 6 It Was You [Single B-Side Version] James Brown 2:41
  26. 7 Devil's Hideaway James Brown 2:44
  27. 8 Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf? [Single Version] James Brown 2:42
  28. 9 I Got You [I Feel Good][Original 1964 Album] James Brown 2:27
  29. 10 Only You James Brown 2:50
  30. 11 Papa's Got a Brand New Bag, Part. 1 [Single Version] James Brown 2:5
  31. 12 Papa's Got a Brand New Bag, Part. 1 James Brown 2:8
  32. 13 Try Me [Single Version] James Brown 3:6
  33. 14 Papa's Got A Brand New Bag [Single Version 1965] James Brown 2:39
  34. 15 I Got You [I Feel Good] James Brown 2:45
  35. 16 I Can't Help It [I Just Do-Do-Do] James Brown 2:31
  36. 17 Lost Someone [Single 1965] James Brown 2:40
  37. 18 I'll Go Crazy [Single 1965] James Brown 2:17

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