DIAMONDS IN THE SHADE (Latimore Up)

“There’s a Red-Neck in a Soul Band”
Latimore (1975)
Billboard R&B: #36
Recommended source: Straighten It Out: The Best of Latimore

Benny Latimore was a modest fixture on the soul charts in the 70s, with three top tens (two of which crossed over to the pop Top 40) and a string of mid-charters.

This was one of the latter. It deserved better. It deserved so much better that Wild Cherry copped the concept (the exact concept) a year later and rode it to #1 Pop and R&B. There’s no use hating on Wild Cherry–I’ve seen “Play That Funky Music” bring the races together on dance floors in some very odd places and as recently as five years ago. But it’s too bad this isn’t better known. Plenty of less witty (not to mention less soulful) novelties became bigger hits and even heavy rotation oldies. I’d like to hear this on the radio just once.

Sometimes life just ain’t fair. But, hey, that’s what YouTube and the Diamonds in the Shade category are for…