January 14th – Mitty Collier – Drown In My Own Tears

Gospel trained, Mitty Collier recorded for Chess for most of the 60s, releasing 15 singles (Ace Records have a great compilation).  Only one, I Had A Talk With My Man, was a significant hit.  Dusty Springfield covered it and the greatest complement one can pay Collier is to note that Springfield failed to improve on her original.  An exceptional singer, she was unable to build on her initial success and, at the end of the decade, returned to the church.

Her only Chess album, Shades of a Genius – so titled because it comprised songs associated with Ray Charles – features this superior version of Drown In My Own Tears, a hit for Charles in 1956. The song was written by Henry Glover, one of the first successful black record company executives and producers at King and, later, Roulette. The song has been much recorded but you’ll struggle to find a more soulful interpretation than Mitty Collier’s.