Tuesday, August 19, 2008
Hailing from the Hampton area, The Royale VII released two 45's in the early 70's, both on the Windmill Label. "It's An Explosion" is now a high dollar record on the Northern Soul scene, and rightfully so. But here we turn our attention to the uptempo stormer "Hand Out Love". Call it what you want: White Boy Soul, Horn Rock, it doesn't matter. This track kills.
No surprise, the Royale VII had years of experience under their belts. These guys cut their teeth as the Sheepherders, playing tons of frat parties and club dates across the region. The band also released a great single, "If Ever You Need Me", on the Sounds International label out of Norfolk. Featuring vocalist Bubba Bailey, the Sheepherders were yet another interesting example of a white band fronted by a black singer touring and recording in the Commonwealth during the turbulent 60's.
As they entered the 70's, the band changed singers and became the Royale VII. The horn section was the focal point, as evidenced on both their singles. The horns are absolutely huge on "Hand Out Love", but the rest of the band is just as tight. The rhythm section sets a torrid pace, with the bass in particular pushing things along. Add some fuzz guitar to the mix along with some urgent vocals, and you've got a power packed two and a half minutes!
Royale VII "Hand Out Love"