Received a record the other day that I knew the title of but hadn’t seen this version before: Johnnie Mae Matthews – Lonely You’ll Be – Jam 103.
Turns out it’s quite a rare one (books at £150) but mine is not exactly mint (the seller described it as a filler copy!) but it only cost me just short of £25 quid (thanks again )
Click here to listen.
Now, Johnnie Mae released this at least 2 more times; first on Art 002 and then on a national release on Atco 6528. The Jam and Art labels are both local Detroit labels so they may well be different versions, if so it begs the question which version got the national release on Atco? (If you know please add a comment below.)
Calvin Williams also released the tune twice. First up on the Northern Del-La Record Co label (501) and then on a national release on Atco 6399.
I have both these versions (in fact 2 copies of the Del-La version so one is on my sales list) and to my ears they are different versions.
Click here to listen to Calvin on Del-La.
Click here to listen to Calvin on Atco.
This is born out by the credits on the label; the writer is obviously the same (Melvin Davis) but the producer credits are different. The Del-La copy credits it as a “Matthews and Marshall production” but on the Atco label this changes to “Produced by J. Hunter Marshall – Matthews”. I’m assuming J Hunter is an extra person and it looks like Mr Marshall has been demoted.
The Detroit music scene at the time was a pretty incestuous place and this looks like a tune that got bounced around a number of artists. Calvin Williams worked as a writer on some of Johnnie Mae Matthews labels so that’s probably how he got to record this tune after her.
On a lighter note (anorak off), All the versions I know are all excellent and I’m really please to get a copy of the Jam one as they don’t come up very often. If anyone knows of any other versions or can comment on the others by JMM please let me know.
“Lonely You’ll Be” on eBay: