Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Garnet Mimms - As Long As I Have You

'As Long As I Have You' is a rarity among '60's soul; typically, a cut this powerful ended up as a 45 (especially when it was the title track of an LP).  For whatever reason, this majestic track never ended up on a 45! Although apparently there is an ultra rare French issued 45, apparently.

The collaborations between Garnet Mimms and (producer) Jerry Ragovoy are one of those magical meetings; Garnet's vocals were some of the most soulful ever cut to wax (just listen to how the man phrases his performance here as he slides into the notes and conveys the purest feelings of the lyric) , and Jerry Ragovoy was a master of the studio, a man who crafted a spellbinding swirl of sound full of emotion and musical drama. By the time Garnet (and his newly formed group The Enchanters) had moved from Philadelphia to New York City in 1961, he was already a veteran of many years singing gospel music professionally.

Of course 'Cry Baby' was the big hit collaboration between these two, and while there's no denying that 'Cry Baby' is a stellar record, in my opinion 'As Long As I Have You' is the pinnacle, and one of the greatest soul records of all time.

I first heard 'As Long As I Have You' not by Garnet Mimms but by Led Zeppelin. Zep played this song live during their early concerts in the US in 1969, and the first Zeppelin bootleg tape I ever heard was in the late '80's when I was a young teenager. This recording from the Fillmore West blew my young mind, especially this incredible song that I'd never heard before! Of course, this was pre-internet so the information wasn't available at the click of a mouse. It took several years to find out where this song came from, and even then it took the arrival of ebay for me to find a copy of this record (which was one of the first things I purchased from ebay back in the '90's).


  1. This is a great song! I have it as part of a comp titled "Talcum Soul." Interestingly a live version was released in the UK in 1967. Info here :

  2. One of the most underrated 60's soul singers on the books! "Cry Baby" was a high water mark of the summer of 1963!