Monday, June 04, 2007

The Carter Brothers: "Do The Flo Show" (Jewel)

Woo-hah! Here's a record that I really dig, not just because it cooks all the way through, but it's also one of the oddest dance tunes I've ever heard. Of course, we all know that there were all sorts of dances and all sorts of dance records to go with them. But what makes this record particularly unusual is its use of a steel guitar. It starts off with a blazing horn riff that never changes all through the song, but then adds this steel guitar that gives it a sort of country twang while the band's rhythm section plugs along.

Information is a little scant on this one, but I recommend you look up Scott Soriano's excellent "Crud Crud" blog and read his entry on it. There you can learn that the Carter Brothers were a threesome that recorded seven singles for the Jewel label between roughly 1965-1967. (Please correct me if I'm wrong.) You can also learn that "Do the Flo Show" is comped on a Japanese-only 2-disc compilation that goes for 50 bucks! What matters most to us here at "It's Great Shakes" is the intensity of the song's groove (and it's got one, believe me) and its all-out strangeness.

For while the horns and the steel guitar are doing their thing, a vocal chorus goes "Do the Flo Show" over and over and the lead vocalist shouts out commands throughout. One choice example: "Now you can do any dance you want/But when you do the mashed potatoes/Whoah-whoah be careful/Don't slip in the gravy." You just gotta hear this one for yourself, cause you need cool schoolin' and I'm not foolin'.


Todd Lucas said...

Gotta agree with you on this one, just a great tune all the way around.

Vincent said...

Oh yeah, I've been a fan for about four years myself. I have the complete recorded works of these guys which can be downloaded from eMusic for much cheaper than fifty bucks. Definitely worth the investment.