Odell Brown RIP

By , June 14, 2011 11:06 am


Odell Brown and the Organizers (above)
A recent shot of Odell Brown (below)


The Sounds of Odell Brown

Odell Brown and the Organizers – No More Water In the Well (Cadet) from Ducky
Odell Brown and the Organizers – Baby You Just Don’t Know (Cadet) from Mellow Yellow
Odell Brown and the Organizers – Think About It (Cadet) Cadet 45 5624B
Odell Brown and the Organizers – Mas Que Nada (Cadet) from Mellow Yellow
Odell Brown and the Organizers – Ducky (Cadet) from Ducky
Odell Brown and the Organizers – Raising the Roof (Cadet) from Raising the Roof
Odell Brown and the Organizers – Day Tripper (Cadet) from Raising the Roof
Odell Brown and the Organizers – The Thing (Cadet) from Raising the Roof
Odell Brown and the Organizers – The Weight (Cadet) Cadet 45 5624A
Odell Brown – Hard To Handle (Cadet) from Odell Brown Plays Otis Redding
Odell Brown – Respect (Cadet) from Odell Brown Plays Otis Redding
Odell Brown – Nitty Gritty (Cadet) from Free Delivery
Odell Brown – Free Delivery (Cadet) from Free Delivery


Listen/Download – Odell Brown Tribute Mix 97MB/256K Mixed MP3


Greetings all.

As I mentioned on Monday, this week will be devoted entirely to obits/remembrances of musicians who either passed on during the pledge drive, or who’s passing I became aware of during that time.

Monday saw a tribute (starting with an incorrect picture) to the mighty Benny Spellman, and today I bring you something a little bit special to give you an idea of how much I dig the music of the great Odell Brown.

I first became aware of Odell Brown and the Organizers back in the day when my man Haim hepped me to their single ‘No More Water In the Well’. I grabbed a copy and promptly fell in love with the group’s sound.

You all know I’m an incurable Hammond nut, but I’m also a huge jazz fan, and the music of Odell Brown (with and without his band) satisfied both needs quite nicely.

I’ve gone on in this space many times about soul jazz, and how rare it is to find an artist who really brought that particular fusion to purity. Odell Brown was one of those cats.

Born in Louisville, KY, Brown went to Tennessee State A&M before being drafted in 1960. Following his stint in the Army, he moved to Chicago and formed Odell Brown and the Organizers with musicians he’d first connected with in college, Artee ‘Duke’ Payne and Tommy Purvis (tenor sax), Curtis Prince (drums) and Master Henry Gibson (congas).


Indeed he was…

Between 1966 and 1970 Brown recorded three albums with the Organizers (Raising the Roof, Mellow Yellow and Ducky), as well as two solo albums (Odell Brown Plays Otis Redding and Free Delivery). He recorded one more solo album for the Paula label in 1971.

Brown spent the 70s working as a studio musician and musical director for artists like Minnie Riperton, Curtis Mayfield and Marvin Gaye, with whom he eventually co-wrote the mega-hit ‘Sexual Healing’.

He spent much of the 80s battling severe depression, but settled in Minnesota and returned to playing and recording in the 90s.

The albums he recorded with the Organizers, all produced by the legendary Richard Evans are some of the finest material released on the Cadet label in the 60s, and while hard to find (the 45s not so much) are all worth picking up.

His solo albums, minus the twin sax attack of the Organizers, operate at a slightly more soulful frequency, and while also hard to find, are definitely worth whatever it takes to acquire them.

The fact that most of the Cadet catalog remains out of print (particularly Richard Evans projects like the Soulful Strings) is nothing less than a crime.

What I’ve included in this tribute mix (available only as a mixed MP3, no zip file) are my favorite tracks from the Organizers albums and both of Brown’s Cadet solo LPs (I have yet to find a copy of the Paula album).

Hopefully this will serve as an introduction for those unfamiliar with Odell Brown, and maybe pack a few surprises for those in the know.

I hope you dig the sounds, and I’ll be back on Friday.









Also, make sure that you check out the POAC link below (click on the logo). It’s a fantastic organization that provides services to our local autism community, with education and recr events, and any contribution you could make would be greatly appreciated.



If you want one of the new Funky16Corners stickers (free, of course) click here for info.

Check out the Funky16Corners Store at Cafe Press

PS Head over to Iron Leg too.


4 Responses to “Odell Brown RIP”

  1. Drlaim says:

    Like you I started of with a 7″ [Quiet Village] and was hooked. So underrated.

    “Free Delivery” / “Think About It” / “Nitty Gritty” / “The Thing” / “No More Water In The Well” just burn a dance floor.

    RIP Odell

  2. wow, thx for the Odell Brown mix, I didn’t know he had passed away, sad news.
    Benjamin Herman

  3. Stu says:

    Nice mix. I was completely ignorant of this Mr Brown before today! (Despite since discovering a couple of tracks from past F16C shows in my collection)

    This mix includes a version of ‘Come Together’ after ‘Nitty Gritty’, that isn’t on the track list: Bonus! 🙂

    Stu, Glasgow, Scotland

  4. Victor says:

    Well, I first heard the Organizers aged 14 when we broke into an abandoned local Scout hut, which doubled as a ‘social club’ in the 1960’s. We found a white lable promo copy of one of their hits (Not sure which?) which became a firm favourite with three white chaps from South london (us). If i look very hard it may still be in the loft!
    Vic, London

Leave a Reply

New Comment Capcha System = Simple Math! * Time limit is exhausted. Please reload CAPTCHA.

Panorama Theme by Themocracy