Ladies and Gentleman: Kim Weston

So this halloween I dressed up as Lt. Nyota Uhura…. and you’re wondering where I’m gonna link this to underrated Motown Songbird Agatha Nathalia “Kim” Weston…

Well after the party I had my iTunes on, and Kim Weston’s “A Little More Love” (a fine example of Country Soul Meets Uptown Soul) I noticed, as iTunes shows the album liner cover of the song your listening to, that I had taken a picture earlier in the evening that had an, as a friend pointed out, had an uncanny resemblance to Ms. Weston.

And I thought, since she is hands down my favorite singer (even, yes people more so than Miss Martha Reeves), it was about time to pay some sort of homage to this woman.

Born in Detroit’s “black bottom” December 20th, 1939, she signed to Motown in 1961…. and… well… cut a string of gems that went virtually unnoticed, from Torchy Soul Ballads that burn with a radiant incandescence like “Just Loving You” to pitch perfect pop like “Looking For The Right Guy” to vampy James Bond theme-esque Northern Soul stunners like “Thrill A Moment” before breaking through with two moderate hits: “Take Me In Your Arms (Rock Me a Little While)” & “Helpless”

Most of you know her as the lady outsouling Marvin Gaye on “It Takes Two”

Kim Weston is possibly the best example from the Motown stable of how political the music business can be. Basically her career at Motown was stalled out of fear that, since she married Motown A&R president Mickey Stevenson, she would receive favoritism. So excellent release after excellent release never got the attention they deserved…. (I’m going to put as little blame on The Supremes as possible from my analysis of this, since she remained chartless even as Brenda Holloway had decent chart hits).

Ok, why do I love her so much…. Her voice is literally (especially on her Motown output) the combination of Honey and Butter on your biscuit, with Tabasco on your fried chicken. Otherwise everything you’d want in soul food for your ears. Satisfying, sweet, substantial, spicy, memorable…

In most emotive ways she reminds me alot of Judy Garland, the utilization of a large voice to do more than, just sing loudly. The utilization of a large voice to enhance key words and phrases to make a direct point. To convey a variety of emotions in just one word… or half of a sentence.

… with nary a false moment to detect…

Anyways… I don’t wanna go too deeply because I’d probably find a way to try to make you like every song she ever recorded…. and I won’t. But I’ll (of course) include a YouTube clip of her on Ready, Steady, Go! from 1964 of her singing “A Little More Love”

Enjoy it as the Sunday Soul it was meant to be.



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5 responses to “Ladies and Gentleman: Kim Weston

  1. “A Hundred Years Ago” I used to live in a scary residential hotel in the North Beach district of San Francisco. For a 110.00 a week you got a private room with a sink and a closet, a bed, and a shared bathroom. If you’ve ever wondered where the pandhandlers, people on the run, drug dealers, and hookers actually lived, it was this place.
    I was a hundred pounds thinner. I had a small closet with ten white starched brooks brothers shirts. 3 Ben Shermans. 3 Fred Perry Polos. 3 Fred Perry V-Necks. 2 Brooks Brothers Suits.5 Narrow ties. 5 Pair Argyle Socks. A Fishtail Parka. A White Mac. 2 Levis and vintage Sta Prest. Loafers with a pence and Clarks Sand Colored Desert Boots. A copy of the “Mod Bible” and “The Soul Stylists” were my only books.

    I listened to a bootleg 45 of “Looking For The Right Guy” by Kim Weston so many times, I think I wore the grooves out.

    • There are days still, when I lose optimism with all varieties of life, especially with dating. Somehow fate always brings “Looking For The Right Guy” back into my life to remind me that I should be searching for happiness and fulfillment. It always reinstates my faith in my own pride and desires, always makes me want to sing along, and will forever bring a smile to my face.

  2. It’s my favorite record by her, but I’ve yet to hear a bad one. Ya know, she actually gives Streisand,Gorme, Sarah Vaughn, Keely Smith, and the like a run for the their money on her first album on MGM ( it’s her first album in general, sad that Motown never gave her one) “Kim Weston”.

    But, soon it will be time for you to discuss one of Motown’s most unusual forgotten singers. Barbara McNair was a star on ABC’s “General Hospital” and the first African American Woman to pose for Playboy. She made two albums for Motown and a slew of very ineresting singles. “Everything Is Good About You” is Motown’s greatest ballad and the greatest single they ever released. Are we going to see an article about Babs on That Soulfa Kinda Feeling? It was always an urban myth among mods that it was McNair slated to sing “It Takes Two” with Marvin Gaye but wasn’t available for the session.

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