Readers around these parts know that Ace Records can be counted on for the finest in rare soul music – and three recent releases prove to be no exception. We’ll cover one of those titles today in our new Super Soul Round-Up, with more to come next week!
Spread Your Love collects the complete Minit Records singles recorded between 1966 and 1970 by singer-songwriter Jimmy Holiday, best-known for his co-writing credit with the incomparable Jackie DeShannon and her brother Randy Myers on the 1969 Top 5 hit single “Put a Little Love in Your Heart.” While that era-defining anthem isn’t among the 26 sides collected here, another original by the DeShannon/Myers/Holiday team is – “Yesterday Died,” also from 1969. Mississippi-born Holiday made his debut on record back in 1958 for the Four Star label; he went on to record for other small independents including Everest, KT and Diplomacy before landing at Minit Records.
New Orleans’ Minit label had been acquired by Liberty Records in 1963 at the same time as Liberty’s acquisition of Imperial Records; Imperial’s owner Lew Chudd had purchased Minit from Joe Banashak just months before closing the deal with California-based Liberty. Though Liberty initially closed down Minit, the name was resurrected in 1966 for the company’s soul signings. Calvin Carter, formerly of Vee-Jay, was brought in to head the new Minit, and he signed Jimmy Holiday in 1966. Carter was soon serving as Holiday’s producer, with Rene Hall handling many of the arrangements. Holiday’s first Minit single, his solo composition “Baby I Love You,” reached an impressive U.S. No. 21 R&B peak. Holiday was attracting attention; his LP The Turning Point – featuring a smoldering title track included here – even featured an endorsement from Ray Charles on the LP jacket. “Everybody Needs Help,” from 1967, scored the singer another Top 40 R&B hit.
Spread Your Love features other highlights including “I Wanna Help Hurry My Brothers Home,” a timely slice of socially-relevant soul for the Vietnam era complete with an impassioned rap; the upbeat duet with Clydie King, “Ready, Willing and Able” and follow-up “We Got a Good Thing Goin'”; and the funky title track recorded at American Studios in Memphis with producer Buddy Killen. The partnership with DeShannon, arranged by Eddie Reeves of publishing office Metric Music, made perfect sense for Holiday. Another innately soulful singer-songwriter, Jackie was also signed to Metric and Imperial (having begun her LP career at Liberty) and shared Calvin Carter as a producer. DeShannon and Reeves co-produced “Yesterday Died” with Holiday. It turned out that Holiday’s career at Minit, however, spanned the entirety of the reactivated label’s existence. “Baby I Love You” had been the third Minit single under the Liberty umbrella; 1970’s “I’m in Love with You” was the final Minit single.
Today, Jimmy Holiday is best remembered for his songs – among them “Put a Little Love in Your Heart,” The Raeletts’ “Bad Water” (also co-written with DeShannon and Myers), Sonny and Cher’s “All I Ever Need is You” (co-written with Reeves) and The Staple Singers’ “God Bless the Children.” But Spread Your Love reveals him as resonant a singer as a songwriter. Compiler Tony Rounce has added the two LP tracks not released on 45 to create a complete package of his Minit years. Nick Robbins has remastered.
You can order Spread Your Love: The Complete Minit Singles 1966-1970 below!
- Baby I Love You (32002, 1966)
- You Won’t Get Away (32002, 1966) (*)
- The Turning Point (32001, 1966)
- I’m Gonna Move to the City (32001, 1966)
- In the Eyes of My Girl (scheduled for Minit 32014, 1966)
- Give Me Your Love (32016, 1967) (*)
- Everybody Needs Help (32016, 1967)
- Ready, Willing and Able – with Clydie King (32021, 1967)
- We Got a Good Thing Goin’ – with Clydie King (32021, 1967)
- I Wanna Help Hurry My Brothers Home (32023, 1967) (*)
- We Forgot About Love (32023, 1967)
- The Beauty of a Girl in Love (32028, 1967)
- Everything is Love (32028, 1967) (*)
- Spread Your Love (32040, 1968)
- We Got a Good Thing Goin’ (32040, 1968)
- I’m Gonna Use What I Got (To Get What I Need) (32053, 1968)
- I Don’t Want to Hear It (scheduled for Minit 32053, 1968)
- I Found a New Love (32053, 1968) (*)
- Baby Boy’s in Love (32058, 1969) (*)
- If You’ve Got the Money, I’ve Got the Time (32058, 1969) (*)
- Yesterday Died (32079, 1969)
- Would You Like to Love Me (32079, 1969) (*)
- A Man Ain’t Nothin’ Without a Woman (32097, 1970)
- I’m in Love with You (32097, 1970)
- I’ve Got to Live While I Can (Minit LP 40005, 1966)
- Nobody’s Fault But Your Own (Minit LP 40005, 1966) (*)
All tracks are Minit singles unless otherwise indicated.
All tracks stereo except tracks indicated with (*) are mono.