Sunday, March 24, 2013

Big Tree: She Didn't Do Magic

I took a few days off from the blog due to a trip on Thursday that nearly wiped me out; however, we are back to begin the Fourth Week Label Special. This week, we pay tribute to Big Tree Records and its short ten-year life as a label.

In 1970, music executive Doug Morris created Big Tree as an independent record label. During its first two years of existence, Ampex Records distributed the label until it folded in 1972. With Ampex out of the picture, Big Tree switched its distribution to Bell Records. Morris sold the label to Atlantic Records in 1974. Atlantic discontinued the brand in 1980.

One of the more prolific artists with the label was Kent Lavoie – who was better known by the stage persona of “Lobo.” For Big Tree, he had three Top 10 hits and four additional Top 40 releases on Big Tree and one on MCA. Lobo’s prominence as a star was on Adult Contemporary radio where he had four number one records – three of which were released on Big Tree.

“She didn’t do Magic” was his second single for Big Tree. It always a favorite of mine and it nearly made it to the Top 40 – charting at #46 in 1971. It was the follow-up single to “Me and You and a Dog Named Boo” that charted at #5. Both songs appeared on the “Introducing Lobo” album. Unlike some of his other records that missed the Top 40, “She Didn’t Do Magic” didn’t crossover to AC radio. Rather, its flip side, “I’m the Only One” charted at #14 on Billboard’s Adult Contemporary chart.

Incidentally, Lavoie’s first band, The Rumors, also included Gram Parsons (The Byrds and The Flying Burrito Brothers) and Jim Stafford who also had a successful solo career.

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