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February 1999

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an amazon.com associate

Buy Oscar Toney Jr.'s CD today

Flashback

Oscar Toney Jr.
Oscar's Winners
Westside

Well children, once upon a time there was a company called Papa Don Productions. In the late 60's they had a string of hits on the Amy/Bell/Mala conglomerate featuring such notable artists as James and Bobby Purify, Mighty Sam McClain and Oscar Toney Jr., three of deep soul's most revered alumni.

If gospel influenced deep soul is your thing, and you are not familiar with Mr. Toney, buy this CD. Then sit back and listen to a voice from which legends are made.

There are a noticeable number of covers on this CD, titled Oscar's Winners. But as I've said many times in the past, I'd rather listen to a great tune recorded again than to one throwaway track after another of original material. Covers of Jerry Butler and The Impressions' "For Your Precious Love," Chuck Jackson's "Any Day Now," and James Carr's "Dark End Of The Street" all hold their own in comparison to the originals. That's quite an achievement when you are in such elite company. Of the remaining tracks, "A Love That Never Grows Cold," "You Can Lead A Woman To The Altar," and the absolutely killer version of "Without Love (There Is Nothing)," which closes this essential collection, are all tunes worthy of repeated listens. Three deep bows for Oscar Toney Jr ... 18 cuts of essential stuff.

--- Alan Shutro

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