Song Of The Day 1/24/2015: Young-Holt Unlimited - "California Montage"

Northern Soul Week: The final cut of what's been one of the more successful R&B theme weeks this blog has had (what theme weeks you guys are going to prefer is harder to predict than Walking Dead deaths) comes from Young-Holt Unlimited. Isaac Redd Holt and Eldee Young defected from Ramsey Lewis' soul-jazz trio -- they played drums and bass, respectively, on Lewis' hit "The 'In' Crowd," which is in itself a Northern Soul standard by way of Dobie Gray. Young & Holt played a more contemporary version of instrumental music, heavier on the soul than the jazz, and laced with gentle nods to pop and rock as well. You have probably heard their most beloved track "Soulful Strut" in various applications. If you have or have heard a copy of De La Soul Is Dead then you've heard a swatch of their cover of "Light My Fire" as one of the warehouse of samples on "A Roller Skating Jam Named 'Saturdays'." They were very useful, they were.

"California Montage" is a cover of a tune by pop instrumentalist and film composed Dave Grusin that originally appeared on the score of one of Paul Newman's more obscure movies, Winning. Grusin's original was an acknowledgement of how fully Burt Bacharach and Brian Wilson had infiltrated the California music industry with their major seventh chords, maritime vessels and sparkling wines. Young & Holt found nothing intrinsically wrong with that notion, but Holt gave it a backbeat so those libertine Californians would get an idea of what commitment sounded like. 
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