All in My Mind

Maxine Brown’s immortal ‘All in My Mind’ was released by Nomar Records in late October of 1960, but this week, fifty years ago, it was first reviewed in Billboard’s This Week’s Singles (7 November 1960), where it received three stars (‘Good Sales Potential’) and the description ‘gets a good feeling and could stir some action’.  It sure did; by 20 February 1961 it had reached number 19 on the Billboard Music Week ‘Hot 100’ Pop chart, and number 2 on the R&B charts, eventually selling some 800,000 copies.  It also ‘could stir some action’ whenever it was played at a record party in someone’s basement, and usually did. Maxine’s voice and performance was grown-up and sexy in an immensely powerful way that even now, half a century later, after all we’ve seen and heard, can still raise goose-bumps. Perhaps not everyone will agree, but if we were to look about for the first song that can be described as ‘Soul’ (the term wouldn’t come into widespread use until 1963), ‘All in My Mind’, written by Maxine, would have to be the one.

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