Baby Huey- The Living Legend

Baby Huey- The Living Legend

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Label: Curtom

Reissued, Originally released 1971

RECOMMENDED!!! A locally beloved figure on the Chicago soul scene, BABY HUEY never achieved quite the same renown outside of his hometown, despite an exciting live act and a record on CURTIS MAYFIELD's Curtom label. Born James Ramey in Richmond, IN, in 1944, BABY HUEY was literally an enormous stage presence: a glandular problem kept his weight around 350-400 pounds and beyond. He began performing in Chicago clubs in 1963 with his backing band the BABYSITTERS and soon became a popular concert draw. As the '60s wore on, BABY HUEY’s sound moved from energetic R&B into a more psychedelic brand of soul, with a vocal style that drew comparisons to Otis Redding. He signed with Curtom and recorded a debut album, The Baby Huey Story: The Living Legend, that featured several CURTIS MAYFIELD songs (most notably the oft-sampled "Hard Times" and "Mighty Mighty Children"), plus a cover of SAM COOKE's "A Change Is Gonna Come." Sadly, BABY HUEY didn't live to see it released; his weight and substance-abuse problems were exacting a steep toll on his body, and on October 28, 1970, he suffered a drug-related heart attack in a hotel room in Chicago. The album was released early the next year, and the Babysitters attempted to carry on for a while with a new lead singer, the still-teenaged CHAKA KHAN (she would, of course, go on to fame as the frontwoman of funk band RUFUS shortly thereafter). In the years since, BABY HUEY's lone LP has become a sought-after collectible among soul fanatics.

Track listing:

  1. Listen To Me
  2. Mama Get Yourself Together
  3. A Change Is Going To Come
  4. Mighty, Mighty
  5. Hard Times
  6. California Dreaming
  7. Running
  8. One Dragon Two Dragon