Jennifer Holliday, Feel My Soul, Geffen GHS-4014, 1983
Just because a record is in a $1 clearance bin, it doesn’t always mean it’s worthless. It could just be that the people who shop in this store have no interest in it. Broadway Diva Jennifer Holliday, fresh off her Tony winning role as Effie White in the original Broadway cast of Dreamgirls, recorded this album for the Geffen label in 1983. It did moderately well, hitting #6 on the R&B chart and #31 on the Pop chart. Maurice White produced and wrote some of the songs, helped by a-list talent like Ashford & Simpson, Gino Vanelli, and gospel legend Edwin Hawkins. It’s a perfect example of early 80s R&B music.
Except that where I was shopping for records in Bend, Oregon, this near mint example was in the $1 section along with a few warped Andre Kostelanetz records. To the uber-cool clientele of this particular shop, this record was garbage. If this was Houston or Atlanta, it might be behind the counter in a protective plastic sleeve and a $25 price tag on it, but in Oregon it was close to the trash heap.
Where you are geographically can greatly affect what records you’ll find at discount prices. I’ll be highlighting records from my travels throughout this project, but for now, know that some charting records only did well in certain regions of the country, meaning you’re likely only going to find them where they sold well, or vary rarely where they didn’t like today’s discovery.
It even came with a great custom inner sleeve! Holliday’s voice is sharp throughout, with notes that sound like a young Patti Labelle. I’ll actually bring this record out to enjoy from time to time, and I’m really glad I picked it up how I did.
Cost: $1, $967 Remaining