Friday, January 7, 2011

Rick James... and Neil Young?

The Mynah Birds were a Canadian R&B band based in Toronto, Ontario in the 1960s. Although the band never released an album, it is famous as one of the earliest efforts of a number of musicians who went on to be successful-- namely the vocalist Rick James, Neil Young and Bruce Palmer (who went on to form Buffalo Springfield), as well as Goldy McJohn and Nick St. Nicholas (who went on to become Steppenwolf).

Although Mynah Birds signed a deal with Motown, Rick James was arrested (for having deserted the US Navy) and all recordings were shelved by the record company. Not until 2006, with Motown's release of "The Complete Motown Singles, Vol. 6" was this track ever heard.

It's amazing to listen to the youth of James' voice on this track... and it sounds like he's attempting an early Mick Jagger swagger sound... which is ironic considering that Jagger was obsessed with Muddy Waters.

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