Johnny Bristol – 1975 – Feeling the Magic

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Johnny Bristol Feeling The Magic front

Johnny Bristol possesed one of the most sexy voices in sould music of the 1970s. His understated delivery and smooth intonation puts him on a different level than his peers Isaac Hayes, Barry White or Marvin Gaye for that matter. This was his second album for MGM, after the smashing success of “Hang On In There Baby” the year before. While the cover might insinuate this is a “make out” album (which largely it is) it is also an album with autobiographical touches such as “Morgantown, North Carolina“. The title track “Feeling the Magic” might be a soundtrack for a quiet evening in bed while “I’m Just a Loser” goes down smooth with a shot of rum. Johnny’s impassioned vocals run the gamut here, which makes this an album a winner on many levels. If unfamiliar with Johnny Bristol, this would be an excellent place to start. 

Tracks
A1 Leave My World 3:25
A2 Morganton, North Carolina 3:17
A3 Go On and Dream 3:52
A4 Love Take Tears 3:19
A5 Feeling the Magic 2:50
B1 Lusty Lady 3:04
B2 I’m Just a Loser 3:48
B3 Girl, You Got Your Act Together 2:55
B4 All Goodbyes Aren’t Gone 2:47
B5 I Wouldn’t Change a Thing 3:08

Johnny Bristol ‎Feeling The Magic back

After establishing himself as a considerable multi-talented figure at Motown during the label’s Detroit heyday, Johnny Bristol went solo, cutting several long-players beginning in the mid-’70s. His second,Feeling the Magic (1975), is much in keeping with his debut, Hang On In There Baby (1974), if not in some ways arguably stronger. Veteran Motown arranger Paul Riser sets a perfect balance of solid, swinging uptempo grooves and sultry intimate ballads. The opener, “Leave My World,” rocks steadily behind an airy Memphis-style soul shuffle. He also utilizes one of his trademark vocal overdubs, giving the listener the impression of two vocalists as his double-tracked voice sounds as if there are alternating performers, especially when singing harmonies. “Morganton, North Carolina” is an edgy reminiscence of the hard times and experiences that shaped Bristol during the days in his hometown.

Johnny Bristol ‎Feeling The Magic label 1

The horn and string sections lay down tasty Philly soul fills over the top of the otherwise driving backbeat. Pulling off a great Barry White-inspired vibe, “Love Takes Tears” weaves a soaring hypnotic melody not unlike the one incorporated into the title track from Hang On In There Baby, which was itself a huge crossover hit — although when “Love Takes Tears” was issued on a 45 b/w “Go On and Dream,” it failed to enter the pop charts and stalled at 72 on the R&B countdown. “Feeling the Magic” is a full-bodied knockout that could have doubled for Al Green under the spell of Thom Bell. Showing his lascivious side, Bristol seethes through “Lusty Lady” with an unapologetic and irresistibly honest portrayal of a well-known and recently departed prostitute. The pace slows for the tender and heartfelt longing of “I’m Just a Loser” and the romantic and introspective “All Goodbyes Aren’t Gone.” “I Wouldn’t Change a Thing” concludes Feeling the Magic on a positive note and hitting on all cylinders. Particularly notable is guitarist Melvin “Wah Wah” Ragin‘s emphatic fretwork, which adds an effervescent luster to the already vivacious score  (Review by Lindsay Planer AMG).

You can also enjoy his masterpiece “Hang On It There Baby” in our back pages here

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Conversation for album: Johnny Bristol – 1975 – Feeling the Magic

22 Comments
  • Lima
    Posted at 10:47h, 31 May 2015 Reply

    Again, thanx this album is great.

  • Julie
    Posted at 10:49h, 31 May 2015 Reply

    Always been one of me favs.

  • Milton
    Posted at 20:53h, 31 May 2015 Reply

    Love this voice. Old school forever.

  • GeriMot
    Posted at 21:05h, 31 May 2015 Reply

    I am a 70’s baby. I grew up a soul child .

  • Johan
    Posted at 22:10h, 31 May 2015 Reply

    Always loved this lp, not new but nice to here a fresh rip, many thanks
    J

  • Allison
    Posted at 10:31h, 01 June 2015 Reply

    Still have the album.

  • Marc
    Posted at 10:32h, 01 June 2015 Reply

    This stuff never gets old!!!!!

  • Rea
    Posted at 11:28h, 01 June 2015 Reply

    Still one of my favorites from way back.

  • Francisco
    Posted at 18:35h, 01 June 2015 Reply

    espetacular

  • Debra
    Posted at 09:25h, 02 June 2015 Reply

    Old school…. Keep it that way… : )

  • GB
    Posted at 11:27h, 02 June 2015 Reply

    j’adore…….

  • Scott
    Posted at 12:22h, 02 June 2015 Reply

    Good times and memories

  • Roland
    Posted at 19:06h, 02 June 2015 Reply

    Hey! Please keep the good work on. Thanks for your updates…This is a great resource. I have subscribed to this blog a long time.

  • Marina
    Posted at 19:20h, 02 June 2015 Reply

    These were the good old days back in the day when music was great.

  • Kati
    Posted at 08:48h, 03 June 2015 Reply

  • Frank
    Posted at 08:50h, 03 June 2015 Reply

    unforgettable music of 70’s

  • Laura
    Posted at 08:59h, 05 June 2015 Reply

    That was a time! Thanks for posting!

  • Brett
    Posted at 11:05h, 05 June 2015 Reply

    brillant Peace brett

  • Trainer
    Posted at 19:39h, 06 June 2015 Reply

    Right were the feelings are stored

  • Lucero
    Posted at 09:35h, 09 June 2015 Reply

    Old shit here

  • acuarelamusical
    Posted at 12:16h, 24 June 2015 Reply

    gracias

  • jk
    Posted at 01:36h, 14 October 2017 Reply

    Muchas Gracias

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