The Coasters - Soul Pad
The Coasters, with songs and production support from the legendary songwriting team of Leiber and Stoller, are known to anyone who knows anything about music or the 1950s due to their comic gems "Charlie Brown," "Yakkety Yak," "Along Came Jones" and so many others. Although their glory years were behind them by the time the group recorded today's selection, the alchemy between the group and Leiber and Stoller was still there. "Soul Pad" was released as a Date single in 1967 and reissued as a King single in 1972 (during the short period that Leiber and Stoller owned the label). "Soul Pad" adds a touch of '60s funk to the sly comedy and vocal style that was the foundation of the Coasters' classic Atco recordings. There aren't many places where "jazz and funk" and "Thelonius Monk" are thrown together for a rhyme, but, unsurprisingly, it's here. It should be noted that the Date single is a double-sided treasure, because its flip is the excellent funk reading of "Down Home Girl," in which Leiber and Stoller's new lyrics (the song had formerly been recorded by New Orleans legend Alvin Robinson) bring even more comedy. ("Down Home Girl" was also reissued, but as a separate single.) It's even funkier than "Soul Pad"; I'll have to post it another time.