Sunday, July 23, 2017

Geater Davis - I'll Play The Blues For You

re-post from 2013 

"Vernon "Geater" Davis (29 January 1946 - 29 September 1984) was an American soul singer and songwriter. He has been described as "one of the South's great lost soul singers, an impassioned stylist whose voice was a combination of sweetness and sandpaper grit."

Davis was born in Kountze, Texas. In the late 1960s he was heard performing, along with Reuben Bell, by record producer Allen Orange. Orange arranged for them to record in Birmingham, Alabama, and started his own House of Orange label to release their output. Geater's first release, "Sweet Woman's Love", in 1970, reached # 45 on the Billboard R&B chart. His follow-up singles on the House of Orange label, including "I Can Hold My Own" and "Best Of Luck To You", were less commercially successful, but he recorded an album, Sweet Woman's Love, which is now considered a classic of the deep soul genre. He often wrote or co-wrote his own material.

After Orange closed his label in 1972, Davis recorded for the Luna label, and then for John Richbourg's 77 label, where several of his recordings such as "I'm Gonna Change" and "A Whole Lot Of Man" were made at the FAME Studios in Muscle Shoals. His 1973 single, "Your Heart Is So Cold" reached # 64 on the R&B chart. However, Davis' records did not generally sell well, despite heavy touring on the blues and chitlin circuits. He recorded for the Ace label in the mid 1970s, and later issued some disco singles on the revitalised House Of Orange label. In 1981 he joined the MT label run by James Bennett in Jackson, Mississippi, which issued several singles and an album, Better Days.

Davis died of a heart attack in Dallas, Texas in 1984 at the age of 38."

15 comments:

pmac said...

Didn't realize he was so young when he died. Geater's voice made me believe he was much older. Huge under appreciated talent. Thanks for the post KC.

Feilimid O'Broin said...

It's inexplicable to me why Davis was not more well known. His voice reminds me of finely-smoked brisket with a piquant sauce chased down by an original formula Dr. Pepper that makes you glad to both have taste buds and have traveled through rural Texas in search of the perfect authentic smokehouse. Then again, Bobby Bland never benefited from the late 60's blue revival because blues men and women who played guitar ruled the day.

To me, Davis is one of the reasons I keep checking this blog daily. Like James Carr, O. V. Wright, Arthur Alexander, or Ann Sexton, he's one of those southern soul singers that I read about but regrettably did not here on northern radio when I was growing up. I rely on this blog to play catch up and fill in the many gaps, and rue that Davis and so many singers are now gone or no longer recording. I hope you decide to post more of Davis' music here. I know PatSoul provided Davis's Sweet Woman's Love but I'd love to listen to some more.

rivercityslim said...

I have an Australian AIM set that is apparently material recorded for Luna and Seventy Seven from '72 - '73, but I've never heard this stuff before. Thanks.

wouter said...

i've never heard of Geater Davis, which makes this an exciting post!
missed the earlier post of his other album completely...

thank you for the chance to hear him, KC!

dS said...

thanks for this one! LIstening to Geater for the past two days straight! please do post the other compilation if you can! More Geater please...

hervé said...

What a fantasttic Blog! I've just discover it, and there is a lot of greatyalbum. From Geatyer Davis, I appreciate greatly the lost soul album. So could you repost the I'll Play the blues album? Thanks again-Hervé

rb said...

Can you please review the link for Geater Davis as it seems it's the same as for the earlier "Duke Recordings" of Buddy Ace. Thanks in advance

KingCake said...

http://www.embedupload.com/?d=3DLRJLSIDO

Andrea McWashington said...

Geater was my maternal grandmother's brother. I've heard many stories of how talented he was. When I lived in Anchorage, Alaska I met a random stranger who said Geater was his mentor. Warms my heart to know he was such an awesome and talented person whom I'm related to.

KingCake said...

One of my favorites, died far too soon~happy to provide some of his wonderful tunes to his niece.

KingCake said...

http://www101.zippyshare.com/v/suIFOXU9/file.html

GuitarGus said...

I have this Great post
Cheers

KingCake said...

stray tracks from Dr Hepcat - http://www101.zippyshare.com/v/nVwHjZbZ/file.html

Tommy C said...

Thank you for all the Geater Davis. Great stuff

Feilimid O'Broin said...

I have already waxed verbosely above, so I'll simply thank you for the re-post and note the following. I lived in Dallas, yes, in the city, from 1988 to 1998 and frequented Deep Ellum and other musical environs, and never heard of Geater Davis. Worse, none of my friends mentioned him even though we frequently discussed blues and soul music. To me this is criminal, so my Dallas friends ought to be happy that the statute of limitations has expired and, as for me, I'm taking the fifth so I won't incriminate myself for the crimes of omission and obtuse ignorance. Thank Jah for Chitlin's and its ongoing effort to make me and others aware of musicians and singers we should have and wished we had known when they were living. You're doing Ha Shem's work, le Roi.

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