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Brown Sugar Featuring Clydie King ‎– 1973 – Brown Sugar

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Brown Sugar Featuring Clydie King ‎– Brown Sugar

Clydie Crittendon (born Clydie May King, August 21, 1943, Atlanta, Georgia) is an American singer, best known for her session work as a backing vocalist. Discovered by songwriter Richard Berry, King began her recording career in 1956 with Little Clydie and the Teens; before she was a member of Ray Charles’ Raeletts for three years and contributed to early 1960s recordings by producer Phil Spector. She recorded solo singles for Specialty Records, Kent Records and others.

Along with Venetta Fields and Shirley Matthews, by the early 1970s Clydie King was attracting considerable attention as a member of The Blackberries. The group’s successes included an interesting series of collaborations with Steve Marriott and Humble Pie (also recorded with The Rolling Stones, Steely Dan, Bob Dylan, Linda Ronstadt, Dickey Betts and many others). The Blackberries appeared on a couple of Humble Pie albums and even toured with the band. Marriott was so impressed that he even began recording an album featuring the group (Humble Pie providing backup).  Unfortunately by early 1973 the collaboration have begun to run out of steam and King packed up, returning to the States.

Back in the States, under the moiniker Brown Sugar, King’s next release an obscure single on the small Bullet label:

– 1973’s ‘Don’t Hold Back‘ b/w ‘Loneliness (Will Bring Us Together Again‘ (Bullet catalog number 711)

Brown Sugar Featuring Clydie King back

The single did nothing commercially but attracted the attention of the large Chelsea label which reissued the track nationally:

– 1973’s ‘Don’t Hold Back‘ b/w ‘Loneliness (Will Bring Us Together Again‘ (Chelsea catalog number 78-0125)

Brown Sugar Featuring Clydie King Label B

Once again the single vanished without much success, but Chelsea decided to finance a Brown Sugar album.  Curiously-titled “Brown Sugar Featuring Clydie King“, the title gave you the impression this was a group effort and it probably was (featuring the talents of King along with singers Karen Dempsey, Allison Hobbs and Phyllis Nelson). 

Of course that left you wondering why only King was featured on the cover and why there were no performance credits.  Why not just bill it as a Clydie King effort?