FOURTH ANNUAL SOUL DETECTIVE MYSTERY CONTEST
That's right, folks, it's that time of year again... time for our Fourth Annual Mystery Contest! rather than go back to the infamous tape, I thought we'd try something different this year:
I know you're all familiar with the tune... and I'm digging this kind of beret wearing goateed bachelor pad version of it, but who, pray tell, is performing it? There is no artist listed on the label. All it says is that R&J Records is a division of Roye Dodge Studios, along with an address in New City, New York. New City? I had to google that one, but it turns out to be just north of the big town, up near Spring Valley, where the Thruway makes that big left turn. It seems kind of odd that a cool record like this would exist, without so much as a clue to who's working that Hammond, or smokin' that guitar, or blowing those fine horn lines...
Well, further googling turns up another R&J 45 at, you guessed, it Funky 16 Corners (you just knew Grogan would be involved somehow). Another swingin' cover of a top ten hit, once again the anonymous players get no credit at all, toiling on in obscurity all these years. Larry says that he discovered (although he doesn't say how) that 'Roye Dodge' was a choreographer, and that his guess is that these 45s were produced for use in dance schools "so that rooms full of students might have something to shuffle along with." But, like, where were they recorded? Who arranged them and produced them? And, I mean, it wouldn't have taken much to list somebody as the artist (like, say, The Roye Dodge Players or something like that)...
Just the sort of mystery we love here at Soul detective.
There is an excellent discography site called New York Soul Recordings, that focuses on obscure labels that released soulful 45s in the upstate regions of the Empire State, but, as fate would have it, the discographies end at the letter 'P' - so there is no information available about R&J.
SO, we're looking for any and all information about this tiny label, about Roye Dodge Studios, about where and when they recorded this 45, and - most importantly - about who our mystery artists might be. As always, the first to come up with an answer in the 'comments' will be our lucky winner. I'm not sure what this year's valuable prizes might be, but I'll figure out something while I'm down in New Orleans.