Hercules / Gossip
The four most famous brothers from New Orleans are Aaron, Art, Charles and Cyril Neville. From the ‘60s to the present day each has been involved in helping create the rich musical legacy of one of the world’s most fascinating cities. Being the founding member and keyboard player of The Meters, Art is probably the best known, although it was Aaron who was the first to have success through music with his #1 hit ‘Tell it Like it Is’ in 1966. His next project was with brother Cyril with a funk band called the Soul Machine, and in 1975 he recorded Hercules before forming The Wild Tchoupitoulas with Charles and Cyril. Problems with the pressing of the Hercules 45 meant they were deemed as faulty so the record never got a proper release; it’s most likely that they were all destroyed, since originals are almost impossible to find. However, record hunters have been known to turn up white label promos, but as they were all pressed on styrene rather than vinyl, they’re notorious for sound deterioration after just a few plays. We’re happy to point out that our reissue is the real deal – pure and simple grade ‘A’ 100% virgin vinyl! A superb song that is remembered by all who hear it, not just down to the soulful vocals but also to one of the simplest, catchiest and memorable bass lines in soul music history.
Cyril Neville’s Gossip was released on a 45 on the Josie label. It too is not easy to find, though copies do exist and you can get one for about £50. The backing band is none other than the Meters, with Art doing his thing on the organ. As you might expect, the music is pure, raw, New Orleans funk - but set off with a nice twist of electric sitar. So there you have it – you can pay a small fortune for a nasty styrene copy of Hercules – and add fifty quid for a copy of Gossip – or you can have another one of our beautiful Jazzman reissues, with the previously unreleased FULL LENGTH version of Hercules taken from master tapes - for peanuts. Go figure!