The Coasters on Broadway on King Records (1973) A Leiber-Stoller Production Re-recordings of classic Coasters’ cuts like “On Broadway,” “D.W. Washburn,” plus others like “Mohair Sam,” “Mustang Sally”and “Cool Jerk”. But the funky stand-out is perhaps “Down Home Girl” which has been sampled many times. This is what Funky 16 Corners says:
First waxed in 1964 by the mighty Alvin Robinson for the Red Bird label (one of my all time fave records), â€˜Down Home Girlâ€™ was written by Jerry Lieber and Art Butler. In itâ€™s original form (produced by Lieber and Mike Stoller and arranged by Joe Jones) it is one of the grittiest pieces of New Orleans-associated soul ever to hit wax. The following year, the Rolling Stones, knowing a good thing when it crawled into their ears, recorded a version of their own. The version I bring you today seeâ€™s Lieber and Stoller taking the song out for a stroll once again, with one of their favorite groups, the legendary Coasters. By 1966, when the group went into the studio with L&S (Stoller producing) they were a few years past their last big hit (â€˜Little Egyptâ€™ hit the Top 40 in 1961).
The Coasters version of â€˜Down Home Girlâ€™ â€“ taken at a slightly more deliberate pace than Robinson â€“ opens with a horn/drums/vibes riff that is verily begging to be looped by some enterprising producer, and features some classic group harmony. Much of the humor associated with the Coasters is there, though it gets delivered not via the performance itself, but rather through Lieberâ€™s hyperbolic lyrics. Where Robinsonâ€™s reading of the song is dripping with unbridled lust (thanks in large part to his awesome, soulful growl) the Coasters vocal arrangement, with tenor and bass trading lines allows them to highlight the absurdity of some of the lines. It really is a lost classic, and one of the finer versions of a truly great song.