The Best of Philly Soul Vol. 3

Maureen Gray

This CD features 15 songs by the incredible artist, Maureen Gray.  Recorded between 1962 and 1964, they show Maureen's extraordinary talent at such an early age.

 

Maureen Gray began singing at the age of 3 and performed solo in a children's program at Carnegie Hall at the age of 5.  Discovered by songwriter/record producer, John Madara, at the young age of 12, she went on to record and achieve success with regional hits such as "Today's The Day," "Crazy Over You," "I Don't Want To Cry" and "Dancing The Strand," written by John Madara and partner, Dave White. 

 

Maureen went on to work with such greats as arranger, Paul Buckmaster, and sang with Billy Preston, George Harrison, Eric Clapton, David Bowie, John Lennon and Yoko Ono, just to name a few.  She continued her career as a singer/songwriter, going by the name "Girl," which originated with a group she formed called "Girl Talk."  Maureen Gray passed away on January 7, 2014.  She will be missed.  Rest in peace, Maureen.

 

This historical CD contains valuable information, when available, on the musicians who played on each song, the year the song was recorded and the studio where it was recorded.

 

This one-of-a-kind CD is presented by John Madara.  Along with partner, Dave White, he wrote and produced such timeless classics as AT THE HOP (Danny And The Juniors), THE FLY (Chubby Checker), YOU DON'T OWN ME (Leslie Gore) and 1-2-3 (Len Barry, who also co-wrote the song with Madara & White).  These and countless other hits by Madara & White helped to create "The Sound of Philadelphia."

 

All songs have been digitally restored and digitally mastered.

 

Make this historical CD a part of your oldies record collection!

 

Please come back to THAT PHILLY SOUND for more on your favorite Philly artists and groups and to purchase more classic CDs from our shop.

 

This CD features 15 songs by the incredible artist, Maureen Gray.  Recorded between 1962 and 1964, they show Maureen's extraordinary talent at such an early age.

 

Maureen Gray began singing at the age of 3 and performed solo in a children's program at Carnegie Hall at the age of 5.  Discovered by songwriter/record producer, John Madara, at the young age of 12, she went on to record and achieve success with regional hits such as "Today's The Day," "Crazy Over You," "I Don't Want To Cry" and "Dancing The Strand," written by John Madara and partner, Dave White. 

 

Maureen went on to work with such greats as arranger, Paul Buckmaster, and sang with Billy Preston, George Harrison, Eric Clapton, David Bowie, John Lennon and Yoko Ono, just to name a few.  She continued her career as a singer/songwriter, going by the name "Girl," which originated with a group she formed called "Girl Talk."  Maureen Gray passed away on January 7, 2014.  She will be missed.  Rest in peace, Maureen.

 

This historical CD contains valuable information, when available, on the musicians who played on each song, the year the song was recorded and the studio where it was recorded.

 

This one-of-a-kind CD is presented by John Madara.  Along with partner, Dave White, he wrote and produced such timeless classics as AT THE HOP (Danny And The Juniors), THE FLY (Chubby Checker), YOU DON'T OWN ME (Leslie Gore) and 1-2-3 (Len Barry, who also co-wrote the song with Madara & White).  These and countless other hits by Madara & White helped to create "The Sound of Philadelphia."

 

All songs have been digitally restored and digitally mastered.

 

Make this historical CD a part of your oldies record collection!

 

Please come back to THAT PHILLY SOUND for more on your favorite Philly artists and groups and to purchase more classic CDs from our shop.

Fan Reviews

***** Awesome cd by one of Philly's best!  Awesome.  This cd ranks right up there with all my Philly favorites.  Looked long for her songs and glad I stumbled upon you cats on the net.  Reviewer:  Al Makowski - CD Baby

***** How fortunate I was for stumbling on her while searching for...A lost and forgotten MINDBLOWING singer. How fortunate I was for stumbling on her while searching for versions of "I'm So Young" by The Students one night on youtube. Her version comes close to being as good as the original, especially regarding the back-up vocalists.She nails it....and many others, all on this heartfelt collection of songs. - Reviewer:  Paul Larsen - Amazon

***** A 1962 12-year-old One-Hit Wonder Who Would Make Her Mark As A Backing Vocalist.  Early 1960s vocalists Maureen Gray from Philadelphia and Doris Troy from New York experienced similar career paths in that they each had but one nationally-charting hit single in the U.S. before pursuing their careers as notable backing vocalists in the U.K. The differences were Doris, who started her career several years earlier, was 27 when she enjoyed her only hit and saw that hit (1963's Just One Look) make both the Billboard Pop Hot 100 (# 10) and R&B charts (# 3). Maureen, on the other hand, was all of 12 years old when she broke through in August 1962, just barely made the Hot 100 (# 91) with Dancin' The Strand, and never did crack the R&B listings.

She did, however, start singing at the very early age of 3 and after she turned 5 performed solo at Carnegie Hall in 1954 as part of a children's program. Never shy about her talent, at age 12 she walked into the Philadelphia record store owned by John Madara in 1961 and boldly told the owner she could sing! And Madara was not just your average store owner, having written (with Dave White) the 1957 # 1 smash (Pop and R&B) At The Hop for Danny & The Juniors and Chubby Checker's 1961 # 7 Hot 100/# 11 R&B The Fly.

Madara got her placed with the prestigious local label Chancellor, which enjoyed a distribution arrangement through ABC-Paramount (their first hit had been 1957's With All My Heart by Jodie Sands and were now home to such as Frankie Avalon and Fabian), and in 1961 they released her renditions of the Madara-White tunes Today's The Day/Crazy Over You on Chancellor 1082 and (Come On And) Dance/I Don't Want To Cry on Chancellor 1091. Both did well enough on a regional basis, but could not crack any national charts, and when the same thing happened early in 1962 with (I'm) So Young/There's A Boy on Chancellor 1100 it was decided to scale things back a bit by placing her with the tiny independent Landa Records, also based in Philadelphia.

And ironically it was there, in June 1962, that Maureen finally achieved some measure of national recognition when the Madara-White song Dancin' The Strand peaked at # 91 Hot 100 b/w Oh My on Landa 689. But that would be it as none among the following releases into 1964, three with a major label) could get her back on the charts: People Are Talking b/w a re-release of Oh My (Landa 692 in 1962); Slop Time/ Remember Me (Guyden 2072 in 1962); The Story Of My Love/Summertime Is Near (Mercury 72131 in 1963); and, in 1964, I'm A Happy Girl (Tra La La)/Goodbye Baby (Mercury 72227) and Eight Years/Lonesome (Mercury 72236).

Unfortunately, the last two sides are the only ones omitted from this otherwise great album which features digitally restored and mastered originals and comprehensive liner notes including, where known, the names of the various musicians involved. After going on hiatus in 1965 at age 16 to finish her education, Maureen would continue her career as a much in-demand backing vocalist for the likes of George Harrison, John Lennon, Yoko Ono, Eric Clapton, David Bowie, Bob Marley and Billy Preston, among others.

As for Madara and White, their song-writing skills would go on to emerge as major hits such as You Don't Own Me by Lesley Gore (# 2 Hot 100 in 1963) and 1-2-3 by Len Barry (# 2 Hot 100/# 11 R&B in late 1965).

This should be a prize acquisition for anyone into collecting all elements of the Girl-Group Sound. - Reviewer:  George O-Leary - Amazon

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