Waiting for Miss Millie

Dennis Coffey, the great Detroit soul and funk guitarist, will be out with a new record next month. I’m looking forward to hearing it, especially after listening to “Constellations: The A To Z of Dennis Coffey.”

This mix, assembled by Detroit DJ House Shoes, is a nice overview of Coffey’s work from his Funk Brothers session work to his ’70s solo prime to today, including some tunes that have sampled his riffs. I was pleasantly surprised to find I already have most of the songs in the mix, but some may be new to you.

(Tunes from Dennis Coffey’s upcoming record are in italics)

1. “Scorpio” intro – (featuring Dennis Coffey, Jazzy Jeff, Jake One and Q-Tip)
2. LL Cool J – “Jinglin’ Baby”
3. Dennis Coffey – “Main Theme from ‘Black Belt Jones'”
4. Dennis Coffey – “7th Galaxy”
5. Dennis Coffey – “Ride Sally Ride”
6. The Temptations – “Cloud Nine”
7. Rodriguez – “Sugar Man”
8. Marvin Gaye – “I Want You”
9. Dennis Coffey – “Garden Of The Moon”
10. The Spinners – “It’s A Shame”
11. Dennis Coffey – “Never Can Say Goodbye”
12. Dennis Coffey – “Whole Lotta Love”
13. Diamond D – “No Wonduh”
14. The Isley Brothers, Dennis Coffey and Lyman Woodward – “It’s Your Thing”
15. The Floaters – “Float On”
16. The Dramatics – “In The Rain”
17. The Dramatics – “Whatcha See Is Whatcha Get”
18. Dennis Coffey featuring Mick Collins (Dirtbombs) and Rachel Nagy (Detroit Cobras) – “I Bet You”
19. Edwin Starr – “Easin’ In (Hell Up In Harlem)” / Digable Planets – “Nickel Bags”
20. The Temptations – “I Can’t Get Next To You”
21. The Undisputed Truth – “Smiling Faces Sometimes”
22. Dennis Coffey featuring Mayer Hawthorne – “All Your Goodies Are Gone”
23. Outro

As noted, House Shoes’ mix also includes bits of three cuts from the new record, “Dennis Coffey,” which comes out April 26 on Strut Records.

I’m especially looking forward to hearing “Miss Millie,” the cut on which Coffey is backed by Kings Go Forth, the great 10-piece soul group out of Milwaukee. Some Midwest heat, anyone?

Until then, enjoy some classic Dennis Coffey cuts not on this mix.

“Getting It On,” Dennis Coffey and the Detroit Guitar Band, from “Evolution,” 1971. This funky cut led off the record everyone bought because the smash single “Scorpio” was on it.

“Taurus,” Dennis Coffey, from “Goin’ For Myself,” 1972. This was Coffey’s third single, and it did almost as well as “Scorpio.” Dig the drums and the horns.

“Theme From ‘Enter The Dragon’,” Dennis Coffey, from “Instant Coffey,” 1974. A high school friend said he played this constantly back then. It’s clear why.

All three LPs are out of print, but all three songs are available on “Absolutely The Best of Dennis Coffey,” a CD released last month.


Filed under March 2011

3 responses to “Waiting for Miss Millie

  1. Scott Thomson

    I’ve been listening to pop/rock for going on 50 years — starting with WLS out of Chicago in 1961, I think — but I;ve never heard of Dennis Coffey. Probably my bad — too much of a Chicago-area influence — but possibly a bit esoteric, too.

  2. He should be a legend for the guitar on ‘It’s a Shame’ alone.

  3. J.A. Bartlett

    “Taurus” is a blazer. Not much on AM radio in the early 70s kicked more ass than that.

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