The mighty Manfred Mann has appeared in this space before, on the blog and in the podcast, because, well, they were the shit.
One of the greatest of the UK R&Beat bands, with solid R&B and jazz chops, who’s memory is damned somewhat by the poppy nature of some of their bigger US chart hits, the Manfreds are a big fave of mine.
Their US albums (with the exception of the US version of ‘Mann Made’ which is scarce) are not terribly hard to find or expensive, and are all solid from start to finish.
Aside from their instrumental skill, they had one of the finest singers of the era in Paul Jones.
Today’s selection comes from their 1965 LP ‘The Five Faces of Manfred Mann’, which included their hit covers of the Shirelles (Sha-La-La) and Marie Knight (Come Tomorrow) as well as a grip of blazing blues and R&B.
Though I was knee deep in the garage/mod thing in the 80s, it wasn’t until I was gifted a copy of a UK greatest hits CD in the early 90s that I was exposed to songs like ‘Hubble Bubble’.
Manic R&B with a Pretty Things-like intensity, ‘Hubble Bubble’ (and my other fave from the album, ‘’I’m Your Kingpin’) reveal the band to be exceptionally tight, imaginative and full of fire.
‘Hubble Bubble’ moves along at 100mph, like their epic ‘5-4-3-2-1’ with similarly hot harp playing by Jones.
It’s a killer, and if you haven’t investigated the band more deeply, get out there and start digging.
You will not be sorry.
I hope you dig the tune, and I’ll see you all next week.