Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
This should not be forgotten
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Let's hope that more artists such as Garnett Mimms have their material transferred over to compact disc; it would be a shame for music like this to be lost because their material is not widely enough known to turn a profit for record companies. This compilation covers two releases that speak not only as the individual wonders it contains, but also almost as a musical history of the artist. If you can listen to "As long as I have you" and not get chills, you have no soul. The newly remastered sound is rich and clean throughout. The packaging is kind of drab, but the liner notes are good. What really matters with this release is the material. It could come in a clear plastic bag on a plain cd, and it would still be the most colorful album I own."
He Arrived Maybe A Year Or Two Too Late
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Garnet Mimms had the misfortune to arrive on the scene, as it were, in late 1963, just before the first wave of the British Invasion and at a time when the Billboard R&B charts were about to be suspended for the better part of a full year.
Born Garrett Mimms in Ashland, West Virginia on November 16, 1933, but raised in Philadelphia, like many young black singers he started out doing gospel with several groups, among them The Evening Stars and The Harmonizing Four, but his first time on record came with The Norfolk Four at age 20 in 1953. After military service he put together The Gainors in 1958, trying out the new Doo Wop sound that was beginning to take hold on Philadelphia street corners, and even cutting several singles for the Red Top label.
In 1961 Mimms and Sam Bell split from The Gainors to hook up with Zola Pearnell and Charles Boyer [not THE Charles Boyer] to form The Enchanters and moved to NY City where they eventually got a contract with United Artists thanks to Bert Bernes, a noted songwriter and producer. Bernes and partner Jerry Ragavoy (also an orchestra leader of note who backed Frankie Avalon on many of his hits) then handed the group a new song they completed in 1963, and when Cry Baby hit the stores, juke boxes, and airwaves it seemed like instant success.
Billed to Garnet Mimms & The Enchanters, it spent three weeks at the # 1 R&B position in the fall of 1963 and also made it to # 4 on the Billboard Pop Hot 100 b/w Don't Change Your Heart. At once Mimms was drawing comparisons to the likes of Jackie Wilson, heady stuff that was only enhanced when the follow-up release became a two-sided hit. A cover of Jerry Butler & The Impressions' For Your Precious Love peaked at # 26 on the Hot 100 in December, while the flipside, Baby Don't You Weep, also did well, reaching # 30 Hot 100.
Both certainly would have been even bigger R&B hits - but that chart suddenly no longer existed. By the time of his third release, Tell Me Baby [# 69 Hot 100 b/w Anytime You Want Me], billed just to Garnet Mimms, The Beatles virtually owned the pop charts. It's too bad this CD couldn't have been expanded by one track to include the side that charted and you have to wonder why it never appeared on the original vinyl LP that contained the uncharted flipside.
In any event, in the early summer of 1964 he was back with The Enchanters on One Girl, which topped out at # 67 Hot 100 while the B-side, A Quiet Place, made it to # 78. In September, Warner released I Wanna Thank You, billed only to The Enchanters, and this stalled at # 91 Hot 100 b/w I'm A Good Man. It seems this may have been a previously-unreleased side pushed onto the market to take advantage of their current popularity. Whatever the case, neither side is here.
In November 1964, another United Artists release, Look Away, went to # 73 Hot 100 b/w One Woman Man [not included here], by which time any Top 40 chart positions not filled by The Beatles were being taken up by the likes of Peter & Gordon, The Animals, Rolling Stones, Manfred Mann et al. The invasion was in full swing. Nor did Mimms fare any better early in 1965 with a cover of the 1961 Jarmels hit, A Little Bit Of Soap, seeing it struggle to a # 95 Hot 100 b/w I'll Make It Up To You.
Then Bernes and Ragavoy came up with I'll Take Good Care Of You and, with the R&B charts now restored, it went to # 15 there and also to # 30 on the Hot 100 b/w Prove It To Me. But that was to be it for Mimms and hit singles in the 1960s.
In 1967 he went to the U.K. where he performed with Jimi Hendrix, and towards the end of the decade again went into the recording studios of both MGM and Verve, the noted Jazz label, without singles success. Finally, in 1977, he tried funk with What It Is for the Arista label but, billed to Garnet Mimms & Truckin' Company it only reached # 38 on the R&B charts.
If this CD is re-stocked and you are looking for all the Garnet Mimms hits plus many of their B-sides, I would recommend you grab a copy because it is miles ahead of the others currently available."
Soul from the golden age
Paul Mercieca | Perth, Western Australia | 08/24/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Two classic albums back to back with sleeve notes by the late and sadly-missed Dave Godin, whose typically tortured and passionate syntax graces this belated reissue. From the spinetingling 'Cry baby', to the before-its-time metrosexual 'It was easier to hurt her', the latin-tinged mariachi trumpet-laden 'Look Away' and the ripsnorting northern stomper 'Looking for You' - this is a gem of a CD. It reminds us how much Garnett Mimms meant to the early days of Soul, not least in Britain where he toured a couple of times - and how much the less famous early to mid sixties singers achieved for posterity, not to mention writers and arrangers of the calibre of Bert Berns and Jerry Ragovoy. More please!"