According to Wikipedia, Sylvester Stewart joined The Viscaynes in 1961 when he was 17. Apparently, the band were one of the very few integrated doo-wop vocal act around, as they featured two white females, two white males, a Filipino male, and Stewart. After some singles had been released, including “Yellow Moon”, he was then signed by Autumn Records label boss Tom Donahue as a producer/songwriter and not long afterwards the band broke up. Sylvester was soon Sly Stone, and of course formed the Family Stone, which featured among many others Jerry Martini who also played on “Yellow Moon”. Now, I only have a digital copy of this release, but can only hope it details where all these songs come from, as it does not include any of the single releases, A or B sides. It is a typical early Sixties release with the vast majority of the 19 songs on offer being less than 3 minutes long, but I found there were actually plenty on here to enjoy for their musical value as well as their historical, especially the likes of “Swim”.

In some ways the band were quite ahead of their time, and if someone had told me this had been recorded five or even six years later I wouldn’t have been surprised as they were bringing in influences from all over, so there is some surf here, pop, doo wop, soul and others all asking for attention. It is an enjoyable trip back in time, and I can only hope the booklet does this release justice with a full biography and details of all the recordings and where they came from. This is also available in limited edition vinyl.

Rating: 6/10


Track list:
A1. Honest
A2. In the Still of the Night
A3. Searchin’
A4. Don’t Say I Didn’t Warn You
A5. Ain’t That Lovin’ You Babe
A6. Swim
A7. Every Dog Has His Day
A8. Suki Suki Part One
A9. Suki Suki Part Two
B1. Seventh Sun
B2. Nerves
B3. I Can’t Turn You Loose
B4. Take My Advice
B5. Watermelon Man
B6. I Ain’t Got Nobody
B7. If You Were Blue
B8. Rock Dirge
B9. Hi Love
B10. Life of Fortune and Fame

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