The Inclines were a self-contained group from Chattanooga, TN who no doubt took their name from Lookout Mountain’s most famous attraction which you can read about here. They are perhaps best known these days for their funky instrumentals like “The Atlanta Boogaloo” which is quite highly prized by the funk crowd. Their best non vocal track though is the two part “Pressure Cooker” whose writer credits give a good clue as to the identities of the ban members – Mssers Burke, Coleman, Trollinger, Coleman, Young, McCollum and Espy. “Pressure Cooker” was recorded at Fame under the production of Mickey Buckins and arrangement of Jimmy Johnson and the Inclines were augmented by some of the regular session players, notably some extra horns and Roger Hawkins whose drum patterns are quite unmistakeable.
At the same sessions Tyrone McCollum’s only name tracks were also cut – although interestingly the Inclines were added to his credit when the 45 appeared on Atco. Both sides of this single are absolutely wonderful – the classic Fame sound no doubt featuring rather more of the great studio players than Incline members. The version of Chuck Jackson’s old warhorse I Don’t Want To Cry is simply irresistible uptempo southern soul. I defy anybody not to love it. The plug side is a cut of Smokey Robinson’s delicate ballad Who’s Lovin’ You which is also given a terriffic southern treatment. Jimmy Johnson’s arrangement is very well handled and ban member Joe Burke’s production is pretty sure footed too. But the chief glory is McCollum’s vocals, gentle yet so well modulated. Lovely falsetto too. McCollum wasn’t the vocalist on other Incline tracks like “The Hippie”.
Who’s lovin’ you / I don’t want to cry ~ HAWK 101 / ATCO 6699 (1969)
Pressure cooker / Pt 2 ~ HAWK 102 / ATCO 6674 (1969)
The Atlanta Boogaloo / Pt 2 ~ GIL 101-1025 (late 1960s)
The hippie / The hustle ~ GIL 102-0615 (late 1960s)
1. Thanks to Allen Blasco.
2. "I don't want to cry" can be found on the Black Cats CD "It's A Southern Soul Thing Vol 2".