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Little Royal

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Little Royal – know to his mama as Royal Torrance – recorded for a number of labels in the 60’s and 70’s, creating his best known/remembered for the Tri-Us subsidiary of King records.
The King association is apt because the artist that ought to come to mind upon hearing much of Little Royal’s material is none other than the Godfather of Soul, James Brown.

‘Razor Blade’ is a very solid bit of meat and potatoes funk 45-ism, with a rubbery pimp-walk of a guitar line laid over a snappy 4/4 drum beat (with a break, of course…) and a sharp horn chart. Torrance had a sound that was probably too derivative to ever elevate him from the B-list of soul artists, particularly considering that his vocals were very similar to those of James Brown. Despite this limitation, Royal recorded fairly frequently in the ’60s and ’70s for labels including Carnival, Excello and Tri-Us, a Starday-King label. For the latter label Royal cut his most well-known material with the “Crazy Cajun,” Huey P. Meaux, as producer. Today’s selection was the instrumental B-side of his 1972 Tri-Us single “Jealous” (a reworking of Garland Green’s smash 1970 hit “Jealous Kinda Fellow” that gave Royal a rare taste of chart success) and has become a breakbeat favorite.

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  • fbelmont

    Man, so that's where that bassline comes from!

    15 Jan 2011 Reply

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