Sunday, December 29, 2019


Artist: Archie Bell and the Drells
Title: Tighten Up
Label: Atlantic
Catalog: SC 8181
Year: 1968
Genre: soul
Cover Design: Loring Eutemey
Cover photo:  Loring Eutemey
Grade: **** stars

'Tighten Up' is one of my first musical memories ...  I was nine and most certainly heard it on AFN Europe, as my family was living in what was West Germany and the time.  I'm now in my early 60s and to this day the song remains one of the funkiest tunes I've ever heard.

Ironically I did not see a copy of the parent album until I was in college - I spotted it at a used record store in Blacksburg, Virginia and instantly grabbed it.  As much as I love the song, the late Loring Eutemey's stylized '60s cover was just as cool.  How can you not love a cover that shows a guy wearing a Nehru jacket?

Someday I'll have to do a little more research on the late Eutemey (he died in September, 2013 at the age of 88).  He started out as a freelance illustrator and graphic designer, originally known for the dozens of jazz covers he designed in partnership with Atlantic Records.  By the early-'60s he'd expanded his horizons to include soul and pop covers.

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