I can’t help but love you” \ “If only (we had met sooner)”
Label: Creative Soul
Release Date: End of July 2022
Format: 7’ Vinyl
George Kerr and Ruby Winters were riding high in the US R&B charts in 1967. George had hits that year with The O’Jays and Linda Jones; Ruby had scored a hit for Diamond Records with ‘I Want Action’. George’s production talent brought him to the attention of Diamond Records, and was introduced to the label owner, Phil Kahl by his friend Teddy Van, who was a staff producer for the label. So the scene was set for a pairing of these two immense talents, and recording sessions were scheduled to include another of Diamond’s artists, Johnny Thunder, who had previously recorded duets with Ruby.
Recording studio time was expensive, so rehearsals were arranged at Harlequin Studios, West 46th Street, New York, which George fondly remembered as being his ‘go to’ studio for pre-recording rehearsals. The recording session followed at Allegro Sound Studio, 1650 Broadway, New York.
The musicians involved in the session reads like a who’s who of black music talent, and included Eric Gale (guitar), Bernard ‘Pretty’ Purdie (drums), Cornell Dupree (guitar), Richard Tee (piano), and Margaret Ross (harp). Background vocals were provided by Richard Poindexter, Robert Poindexter, and George Kerr. The magic of George Kerr’s production and Richard Tee’s arrangement resulted in just one 45 release, ‘We Have Only One Life’. George recalled that he had Ruby listen to some of his work on Linda Jones to demonstrate the sound he was looking for, and several of these songs were recorded in the session, ‘Last Minute Miracle’, ‘I Can’t Help But Love You’ and ‘If Only (We Had Met Sooner)’.
Here for the first time on vinyl with kind permission of George Kerr are two of those tracks.