Tuesday, June 7, 2016

Great Obscure U.K. 60's R&B Sides: The Falling Leaves

THE FALLING LEAVES-She Loves To Be Loved/Not Guilty U.K. Parlophone R 5233 1965

I can't tell you a thing about this band really. Both sides of this 45 were introduced to me in the spring of 1987 via the essential See For Miles compilation album "Ready Steady Win" and promptly blew my little mod mind.  Both tracks are prime slices of mid 60's British r&b of the "mod jazz" vein to use a more recent vernacular on the genre.

"She Loves To Be Loved" starts out with some groovy flute, a twangy guitar and a combo organ, not unlike something straight off of Them's "Them Again" LP while the vocalist (who obviously took the "Mose Allison Vocals 101" class with Lindsey Muir, Georgie Fame and countless others..) coolly sings in a catchy, hip style about a girl who is setting the town on fire in her bright yellow sweater with a groove not too distant from "Hit The Road Jack". Add a bluesy harp solo with some twangy Hilton Valentine style licks and you have the classic mid 60's British rhythm and blues sound perfectly encapsulated on one seven inch piece of vinyl.

"Not Guilty" is a different slice of cake.  If it did not have some atmospheric flute and the combo organ (which brings to mind pre-Joe Meek era Riot Squad material) it could be a just another beat ballad (ala The Four Pennies or The Just Four Men) but these two ingredients keep it interesting and it's so bleak it's hard not to take a shine to it.

"She Loves To Be Loved" was thankfully rediscovered and contained on the incredible Past and Present "New Rubble" series on their "New Rubble Volume 3: Watch Your Step" CD (also available for download through iTunes) while the flip side remains unissued since the 1992 See For Miles CD issue of the 1987 LP "Ready Steady Win" with both cuts (new and used for an arm and a leg on Amazon these days).

NOTE: The band are NOT the same Falling Leaves who cut the Four Seasons "Beggars Parade" for Decca a year later.

Hear "She Loves To Be Loved":


Hear "Not Guilty" :


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