Monday, October 09, 2006

Some Kind Of Wonderful

Soul Brothers Six - Some Kind Of Wonderful

“I was dating this girl… and I said ‘You know? You’re some kind of wonderful’… That’s how it came about.”

Smooth chat up lines usually make for lame songs. However, the Soul Brothers Six’s ‘Some Kind Of Wonderful’ is exactly what it says on the label. This is the record that can claim to have sucked me into the deep and expensive world of Northern Soul music - a 7-inch record that captured my imagination, my heart, and my wallet. My U.S. original is now one of my most cherished possessions, and it has nothing to do with how much I paid for it. You can pick up re-issues of this track for a fiver, and I strongly recommend that you do if you get the chance. A classic piece of 1960s Atlantic soul, ‘Some Kind Of Wonderful’ never really made the big time for the Soul Brothers Six, peaking as it did at number 91 in the Billboard chart in 1967. However, a true sign of a classic if ever there was one, the track has been covered many, many times over. Huey Lewis & The News, Steve Marriott and Grand Funk Railroad are some of the more notable artists to have covered it, as well as more recently, Joss Stone, and most despicably, Toploader.

The Soul Brothers Six were a six-piece for a while, although they started with seven, and they were sadly not all brothers. The main man in the band was the lead singer, guitarist, composer and arranger, John Ellison. He is responsible for this song, which is not only a personal favourite of mine, but is still a guaranteed Northern Soul classic on the dance floors up and down the country. The opening bars set the rhythm and a lovely guitar caresses the vinyl before Ellison’s vocals come crashing over the top. I’d love a voice like that, but fear I would need to smoke two packs a day to get anywhere near that kind of contained roughness. The flip side of ‘Some Kind Of Wonderful’ is another Ellison tune, ‘I’ll Be Loving You’ and is in many people’s opinion, a better pick than the A-side. As with all great Northern Soul records, there are probably a hundred more facts and debates to be had, but sometimes it’s good to remember that these songs are just meant to be listened to and enjoyed.

Soul Brothers Six biography at All Music
Search ebay for Soul Brothers Six