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Various Artists - The Soulful Side Of GME & Musette Records
Vinyl LP

Various Artists

The Soulful Side Of GME & Musette Records

Tramp Records

Released: 3rd March 2017 | 12 track soul album

Much interest domestically and abroad has been generated over the years about an indie soul label in San Diego, CA called Musette Records, whose short life span (1965-1968) only produced less than 20 singles, and no full albums. More than 40 years later, Musette would achieve the collectible status among record buyers of northern soul, who recognize and appreciate the R&B grooves that pulsated on these now extremely rare singles.

Musette Records was not started as a true record label, but as a sideline project and reported tax write-off for then prominent Black doctors in San Diego. After jointly putting up the start-cost, each doctor would additionally put up the money to sponsor a Musette artist. In turn, the doctor would be given the production credit, even though he had absolutely nothing to do with the resulting sessions.

One of the earliest singles on Musette was by Lani Groves, which later achieved fame as part of Stevie Wonder's background singing group, Wonderlove in the 70s. Ervin Rucker, whose actual name was Ervin Groves, was the Hawaiian father of Lani Groves. He started out as a pianist and composer in the 1950s. After he released his sole single on Musette he changed his name to Big Daddy Rucker in the late 60s. At the same time he founded his own GME label on which Little Mary Staten and Dede Copeland released those songs which you find here.

With literally no sales, airplay or distribution, the doctors collectively tossed in the towel and closed the label in the late 1960s. Despite its short existence, Musette Records in San Diego was one of the most important soul labels of the day. The label's artists all had promise and a vision but they could not fulfill their dream. This collection helps to preserve the history of the San Diego soul sound.