Freitag, 25. März 2016

Lillian Offitt

Lillian Offitt
(Nashville, Tennessee & Chicago, Illinois)


Lillian Offitt
1957 – Miss You So / If You Only Knew (Excello 2104)
1957 - Just Lonesome! That’s All / Darlin’ I'll Forgive You (Excello 2124)

Lillian Offitt (& Grp.)
1958 - Can't Go On / Darlin’ Please Don't Change (Excello 2139)

Lillian Offitt
1960 - Will My Man Be Home Tonight / The Man Won't Work (Chief 7012)

Lillian Offitt (& Grp.)
1960 - My Man Is A Lover / Oh Mama (Chief 7015)

Lillian Offitt (& Grp.) / Lillian Offitt
1961 – Troubles / Shine On (Chief 7029)


Lillian Offitt was born on November 4, 1938 near Nashville, Tennessee. She had always been interested in music and began to seriously think of being a performer during her days as a student at Tennessee State University. On the evidence of her half dozen releases, Lillian Offitt was a plain but lusty blues shouter, of small stature and commensurate talent. She was still attending college when she visited the offices of Nashboro Records in the hope of making a gospel record. Owner Ernie Young suggested that she try secular music. In March of 1957 she made her first record for the Nashboro subsidiary Excello with “Miss You So” b/w “If You Only Knew” released on # 2104.

The 'A' side “Miss You So” started out as a good seller on the R & B charts. In June Offitt went to Chicago and made some personal appearances in support of her record which shows up as a top seller in that city. In August in Gary, Indiana, a big show honoring Vivian Carter on her eighth anniversary at radio station WWCA included Lillian Offitt performing live. Also on the bill were Magic Sam, The Spaniels, Dale Hawkins, The Dells, and many others. During Labor Day week in Chicago, Lillian appeared with Al Benson at the Regal Theater along with Red Prysock, Sil Austin, Amos Milburn, Ivory Joe Hunter, and The Spaniels. In September Lillian signed on for a five week tour through the south and southwest along with Lowell Fulson, Johnny "Guitar" Watson, and Ernie Freeman. The tour would kick off in Oklahoma City.

Late in the year Lillian Offitt moved to Chicago where she had a steady number of club dates and soon recorded her second side for Excello Records. “Just Lonesome! That's All” b/w “Darling I'll Forgive You” on # 2124. Through the early months of 1958 Offitt tried to repeat the success of “Miss You So” and in the spring Excello released “Darling Please Don't Change” b/w “Can't Go On” on # 2139. This record too failed to break into the top sellers and failed to get considerable airplay and soon Excello dropped her from the label’s roster.

Earl Hooker

In 1959 she began an extended stay as vocalist with Earl Hooker and his combo. Through Hooker, she met Mel London, owner of Chief Records. She was signed to record for the local Chief Records label in Chicago. “The Man Won't Work” b/w “Will My Man Be Home Tonight” on Chief # 7012. Continuing into the nineteen sixties, Lillian Offitt continued to perform and record with Earl Hooker. “Oh Mama” b/w “My Man Is A Lover” was issued by Chief on # 7015. In late 1960 her last effort for Chief was “Troubles” b/w “Shine On” on # 7029. She appeared at such Chicago clubs as Roberts Show Lounge and the Shangri-La. She left music to start a family, preventing her from joining the 1964 American Folk Blues Festival tour, her place taken by Sugar Pie DeSanto. She was last sighted in 1974 as part of the Streakers Rated-X Revue in St. Joseph, Michigan. Lillian Offitt then worked outside of the music field for many years in Chicago.



Miss You So

If You Only Knew

Just Lonesome! That’s All

Darlin’ I'll Forgive You

Can't Go On

Darlin’ Please Don't Change

Will My Man Be Home Tonight

The Man Won't Work

My Man Is A Lover

Oh Mama


Shine On

Terry Corin

Terry Corin
(New York)


Terry Corin
1959 – Our First Love / Carrot Top (Cue-P 818)
1960 - In Between Classes / Why Did You Tell Me Those Lies (WIZZ 718)

Terry & Her Boy Friends
1960 – Dream Date / Sick! Sick! Sick! (Colony 110)

Terry & The Mellos (feat. Terry Corin)
1960 – The Bells Of St. Mary / Love Express (Amy 812 / Quality 1252)

Terry Corin & The Mellos
1961 - Truly, I Love You Truly / Why Did You Do It (Rider 108)

Terry Corin (& Grp.)
1962 – My Ding Dong Heart / Twistin' And Cryin' All Alone (Mohawk 127)


Terry Corin took several shots at the teen tune brass ring back in the early '60s, but came up empty. It sure wasn't for the lack of trying. She first recorded solo and later with vocal backing. The nifty “My Ding Dong Heart” on the Mohawk Records label, which kick-started Dion & The Belmonts career a few years earlier, was recorded in their tiny studio on Broadway in the Big Apple. She also put out several singles as Terry Corin & The Mellos and Terry Corin & Her Boy Friends (“Twistin’ & Cryin’ All Alone”, “Dream Date”, and “Sick! Sick! Sick!”) but they all failed to chart nationally. “The Bells Of St. Mary” charted on Music Vendor for 4 weeks starting December 5, 1960, reaching #80.


Dream Date

Sick! Sick! Sick!

The Bells Of St. Mary / Love Express

Truly, I Love You Truly

Why Did You Do It

My Ding Dong Heart

Twistin' And Cryin' All Alone

Sonntag, 20. März 2016

Tiny Topsy

Tiny Topsy
aka Otha Lee Moore Hall
née Otha Lee Moore
 (Chicago, Illinois)



Tiny Topsy / Tiny Topsy (bb The Charms) (uncredited)

1957 – Miss You So / Aw! Shucks Baby (Federal 12302)

Tiny Topsy & The Charms

1957 - Come On, Come On, Come On / Ring Around My Finger (Federal 12309)

Tiny Topsy / Tiny Topsy (& Grp.)

1958 – You Shocked Me / Waterproof Eyes (Federal 12315)

Tiny Topsy (& Grp.) (female chorus)

1958 - Western Rock 'N Roll / Cha Cha Sue (Federal 12323)
1959 - Just A Little Bit / Everybody Needs Some Loving (Federal 12357)

Tiny Topsy (& Grp.)

1961 - How You Changed* / Working On Me Baby (Argo 5383)
*on promo single labeled as After Marriage Blues

Tiny (bb The Charms) (uncredited) / Tiny (& Grp.) (female chorus)

1963 – Aw! Shucks Baby* / Everybody Needs Some Loving (King 5815)
* alt. take, recorded in 1957


1957 – A Woman’s Intuition (Federal)


Tiny Topsy was one of those marvellous big-voiced women of the mid to late 50s, in the vocal style of Big Maybelle, LaVern Baker and Big Mama Thornton, who possessed a set of lungs to match her 250 pound physique. She was born May 22, 1930 in Chicago and began performing with Al Smith’s band in Chicago in 1945. This group split in 1952, with Smith becoming an in-house band leader for the likes of Chance, Parrot and Vee-Jay, but without Tiny's involvement.

Tiny's first recording session for Federal Records was held in Cincinnati on July 9, 1957 and resulted in the bouncy "Aw! Shucks Baby", with a great tenor solo by Ray Felder. Backing group were The Charms (with no mention on the label). It was a screamer equal of LaVern Baker. The flip was a cover of “Miss You So”, a Top 10 R&B hit for Lillian Offitt. A third track from this session, "A Woman's Intuition", remained unissued until 1988.

On her next single “Come On, Come On, Come On” b/w “Ring Around My Finger” she was backed by The Charms again, and this time The Charms got label credit. Her following single was “You Shocked Me” b/w “Waterproof Eyes. “Come On, Come On, Come On” and “You Shocked Me” were kick ass rockers in the vein of Etta James.

Tiny Topsy's fourth Federal single “Western Rock 'N Roll” b/w “Cha Cha Sue” is a very interesting one. “Western Rock 'n' Roll” incorporates snippets of then-current hits (“Lollipop”, “At The Hop”, “Get A Job”, “Short Shorts”). It opens with gunshots and was released before “Western Movies” by The Olympics. So it looks like the sound effects on “Western Movies” were inspired by “Western Rock 'n' Roll” instead of the other way round.

Tiny Topsy with Richard E. Stamz

Tiny Topsy certainly was a trendsetter, because her next single (and her last one for Federal) was the original of what has become a classic : “Just A Little Bit”, paired with “Everybody Needs Some Loving”. Rosco Gordon had a # 2 R&B hit with his version of “Just A Little Bit” in 1960 and the song has been covered by countless people, including Jerry Lee Lewis “Southern Roots” album. After leaving Federal Tiny Topsy had only one further single released, "Working On Me Baby", coupled with “How You Changed” (Argo 5383). An alternate take of “Aw! Shucks Baby” with “Everybody Needs Some Loving “on the flipside was released by King Records in 1963.

Jet, September 3, 1964
Jet, September 10,1964

Although Tiny Topsy never became a big name star and frequent occupier of the charts, her records were always great  She died on August 16, 1964 at the very young age of 34 of brain hemorrhage in Chicago.



Miss You So

Aw! Shucks Baby

Come On, Come On, Come On

Ring Around My Finger

You Shocked Me

Waterproof Eyes

Western Rock 'N Roll

Cha Cha Sue

Just A Little Bit

Everybody Needs Some Loving

How You Changed (aka After Marriage Blues)

Working On Me Baby

Aw! Shucks Baby (alt.)

A Woman’s Intuition