The Birmingham Sound
The Birmingham Sound: The Soul of Neal Hemphill, Vol. 1/Vol. 2 are a pair of compilation albums featuring tracks recorded by Neal Hemphill at his Sound of Birmingham studio. Chicago deejay and music historian John Ciba produced the compilations, the first of which was his Rabbit Factory label's debut release on August 19, 2006. That release was accompanied by live performances by some of the album's artists at Bottletree and at The Hideout in Chicago.
Ciba became interested in Hemphill after finding a 45 at a Chicago record store with the Birmingham Rhythm Section covering Frederick Knight's "I've Been Lonely For So Long". He was intrigued because both Knight's clean original and the rough-edged cover were produced by Hemphill. As he researched the plumber-turned-music producer he came to admire his role in encouraging musicians with generosity and creativity. The project evolved into a tribute to Hemphill's studio with many unreleased tracks dug out of old boxes.
- Little Lois Barber, "Specify"
- David Sea, "Believe in Me"
- Blue Notes, "Even If You Got Love"
- Frederick Knight, "Here After I'm Hereafter"
- Cold Grits, "Funky Soul"
- Eddie Steele, "Groove Me Mamma"
- Pat Peterman, "I Love the Way You Do Your Thing"
- Chuck Strong, "I Got Married Too Soon"
- Ralph "Soul" Jackson, "Set Me Free"
- Roscoe Robinson, "Let Me Be Myself"
- Bill "Butterbean" Flippo, "Love Keeps Hanging On"
- Broadneck, "Psychedelic Excursion"
- Little Lois Barber, "Thank You Baby"
- Blue Notes, "High Time"
- Chuck Strong, "I Thought It Over"
- Frederick Knight, "You've Never Really Lived"
- Pat Peterman, "You Gonna Reap It"
- Sam Dees, "Train to Tampa"
- Roscoe Robinson, "Two Heart Accident"
- David Sea, "Let's Just Get Together"
- Ralph "Soul" Jackson, "Take Me Back"
- Broadneck, "California Cool Ride"
- Eddie Steele, "Self"
- unknown, "Get up and Get at it"
- Cortez Greer, "Testify"
- Ralph "Soul" Jackson, "Matchbox"
- Chuck Mitchell, "Let Me Be Myself"
- Wes Lewis, "I'm a Telling You"
- David Sea, "Work Hard"
- Frederick Knight, "Take My Hand"
- S.O.B., "Instrumental"
- Bobby Dobyne & the Bare Facts, "Soulful Sound of Music"
- Cortez Greer, "Da Da Dee Dee Da"
- Hope Parker, "Everybody's Doin' the Worm"
- Frederick Knight, "It Slipped Right By You"
- Sam Frazier, Jr, "Set Me Free"
- Frederick Knight, "How When or Where"
- Chuck Mitchell, "Stop By"
- Frankie, "Let's Go to the End Together"
- Sam Frazier, Jr, "Take Me Back"
- Wes Lewis, "Best of My Years"
- Ralph "Soul" Jackson, "Let Your Sweet Love Surround Me"
- Lee Wilson, "Knock In for a Second Chance"
- Frederick Knight, "I've Been Lonely for So Long" (demo version)
- Ralph "Soul" Jackson, "Set Me Free" (alternate version)
- Mehr, Bob (August 10, 2006) "The Soul Plumber: Local DJ John Ciba introduces the world to Neal Hemphill, an Alabama recording hobbyist who gave a host of southern R & B musicians their first chance" Chicago Reader
- The Birmingham Sound on MySpace