Thursday, 20 January 2011

“Couldn’t Hold Back If I Tried To”

I've been meaning to share this 45 with you for a while now and I was trying to work out the best moment for it. Rather than drop it into a mix where it may not get the full appreciation it deserves, I've opted to post it on it's own in all its full glory.

Joy Lovejoy's 'In Orbit' is an absolute full on monster of a record. My fellow Hook & Slinger, Hoppin' John has been championing this 45 at our night to huge effect of late, which prompted me to procure my own, albeit slightly damaged copy. It's a ballsy upfront Northern stomper with a fantastic horn section to rival any other. And once Miss Lovejoys vocal's kick in, it certainly takes no prisoners!

It was originally released in the US on Checker Records in 1967, the UK release on Chess came a little later in 1972. It has also seen a second press on Chess and a re-issue on Argo Records due to it's increasing popularity on the Northern Soul scene (In Orbit was also included in The Northern Soul Top 500).

Checker_1188a.jpg Chess_6145_010.jpg argo.jpg

It appears that there is little to no information on exactly who Joy Lovejoy was, although I'll be happily proved wrong if anyone has anything to offer on her identity! A great deal of speculation remains, with several theories surrounding her identity. The biggest being that she was someone performing under a pseudonym (possibly even Fontella Bass????) from the Chess/Checker Stable. This could even stretch to being another major artiste tied to a different label other than Chess or Checker, recording as 'Joy Lovejoy' to get round licensing issues. This was a trick often used, and you only have to look as far as artists such as James brown to find examples of this happening.

The other theory, and the most likely IMHO, was that Joy Lovejoy was a Chess/Checker backing or session singer, and was given her "15 minutes of fame". And as this to my knowledge was the only release by her, the 'powers that be' must have deemed the take up on her efforts not worthy of any further 45s.

Regardless of who she was this is two and a half minutes of quality soul! Enjoy!

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