Song Of The Day 2/6/2015: Dee Mullins - "Love Makes the World Go ‘Round, But Money Greases the Wheel"

Dee Mullins
Alt-Motown: Mel-O-Dy Records wound up being Motown’s country music subsidiary label. They began releasing singles in June 1962 from the likes of Lamont Dozier and The Vells, but in February 1963 they released a single from The Chuck-A-Lucks: “Sugar Cane Curtain” backed with “Dingbat Diller;” the B-side had more than a little down-home-ness to it. Mel-O-Dy went full-on country after that, with linchpin artists Howard Crockett and Dorsey Burnette leading the way. Crockett wrote the Johnny Horton hit “Honky Tonk Man” under his real name, Howard Hausey. He found mild success in the latter part of the ’50s on shows like Louisiana Hayride.

Not sure what led him to the doorstep of Berry Gordy, but Crockett was Mel-O-Dy’s most prolific releaser of singles in the label’s abbreviated existence. The hell of it is that Mel-O-Dy’s country singers were all pretty damn good. Crockett did a couple of songs based on the Horton sub-genre of historical semi-fiction, and nicked a little from Johnny Cash as well. But who didn’t, really?

Howard Crockett.
Crockett, who as Hausey was a fairly versatile songwriter, composed the Bakersfield-esque “Love Makes the World Go ’Round, But It’s Money That Greases the Wheel” for Texas singer Dee Mullins, a young troubadour whose biggest moment was singing the sequel to “Harper Valley P.T.A.” in 1967, and also for a weird piece of drinking propaganda with the economic, flawlessly accurate title “Beers.” Crockett was flushed out of the mainstream country scene, retired at the end of the '70s, and died in 1994. He might've gotten off light.

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