In the early 1960s a strange phenomenon was occurring. English groups like the Beatles and the Rolling Stones were falling in love with American Soul music and introducing their versions of these songs to their audiences in Europe.
Meantime in the U-S, acts like Gladys Knight and the Pips, Martha and the Vandellas, Aretha Franklin, Marvin Gaye, James Brown, The Temptations, The Supremes, et al, had yet to breakthrough with the American public, but they were right on the verge.
Enter The Seven Souls.
This racially integrated Band from Los Angeles led a movement that began to expose mostly-White American audiences to the music that was about to revolutionize American rock–American Soul music; the same music the classic movie “The Blues Brothers”, captured so artfully many years later!
The Seven Souls would go on to open for James Brown and the Righteous Brothers, and they would tour Europe while the “British Invasion” led by the Beatles, was happening in the U-S.
One of the founding members of the Seven Souls, Billy Ray Deiz, was forced to leave the group when President Johnson suddenly escalated the war in Vietnam, and Billy Ray found himself training as a Marine Corps rifleman at Camp Pendleton.
He didn’t go to Vietnam, and he never lost his love for music, and he never stopped writing songs. (One of these songs, “I Still Love You” which Deiz co-wrote with Seven Souls band mate Henry Moore, has become a Northern Soul classic in the UK).
More recently Deiz, working with producer Cliff Goldmacher, assembled a stellar group of Nashville musicians to record a song that, though current, hearkens back to those classic soul days of the 1960s-“Rather Have Sooner”. And “Rather Have Sooner” is finding an audience, having recently jumped to #9 in Broadjam’s list of the top ten Indie songs in Oregon.
It’s destined to be a classic and now you can sample it for free on Soundcloud and if the mood strikes you, purchase it on Amazon.com or iTunes. You’ll find it featured on the MIGHTY GIRL ep by Billy Ray Deiz.
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