Roscoe Shelton - Strain On My Heart
The late Roscoe Shelton's relative lack of chart success is not so unusual considering that Shelton was part of the generally overlooked Nashville soul scene. Shelton had made his start with the Fairfield Four, a gospel group whose long career is worthy of attention in its own right, and his tenure with them and the spinoff group, The Skylarks, provided well over a decade of experience to the singer by the time he started recording R&B in the early '60s. He would eventually make stops at quite a few Nashville concerns, most notably Excello, Sims and Sound Stage Seven, before getting out of the business at the dawn of the '70s. After nearly 25 years away, he hooked up with Nashville soul man Fred James and recorded and toured as a solo and as part of the Excello All-Stars until his death in 2002. In a perfect world, Shelton's bluesy soul sound would've made him a superstar, but at least soul fans can enjoy his magic both on CD and through his appearances on The Beat!!!!, which are now available on DVD. Today's selection, one of his only two hits (the other being "Easy Going Fellow," which has appeared on an earlier episode of the podcast), was a 1965 Sims release, and it shows off his style very well. This is a basic slow blues, but Roscoe really puts it over with his exciting singing, good backup vocals from a femme chorus, and a nice spoken interlude.
(EDITOR'S NOTE - I'm starting to get more feedback about using ZShare, both good and bad. I will try the service for the rest of the week and then I will make a final decision as to whether to stick with it. Keep sending feedback!)