Milwaukee, WI artist Aalon Butler is not a name that will be familiar to most readers of this page. Funk fans know him for his two part Brother James pastiche “Getting’ Soul” which isn’t half bad as these things go. But far better was his first 45. The frantic uptempo “It’s Got To Be Something” might suit a Northern enthusiast, so for me it must be the other side.
Please Give Me A Chance is as strong a piece of deep soul as anybody could wish. Butler has more than a touch of the James Brown in his approach, but the way he contrasts the near whisper on the verses and the hoarse gritty tone on the chorus is lovely. Clock the wonderful falsetto phrase towards the end too. The backing track has all sorts of goodies as well, the fine guitar/organ combo and the subtle horns for example. This track has the sort of feel that Carl Henderson achieved in his Los Angeles recordings. Sadly Aalon never went anywhere near this sort of music again.
His “Cream City” LP garnered very favourable reviews when it was issued but sank without trace in a very crowded market. Since then it has become something of a cult item with modern soul fans hailing it as a precursor to the sort of music that Rick James and Prince produced in the 80s. Stylistically it is not my cup of tea at all.
It's got to be something / Please give me a chance ~ PKC 1016
Gettin' soul / Pt 2 ~ PKC 1018
Cream city / Midnight man ~ ARISTA 0249 (1977)
Rock and roll gangster / ???? ~ ARISTA 0297 (1977)
Cream city ~ ARISTA AL 4127 (1977)