Behold “Pleadin’” (above) and “Don’t Lie to Me” (below). A singer
& drummer named Mercy Baby aka Julius W. “Jimmy” Mullins recorded these wild
R&B numbers in the late 1950s on the now-defunct New Orleans label Ric
Records. We suggest you medicate yourself appropriately and then consider the
following 10 observations as you listen to these rollicking tracks.
10 Things to Consider
About This Release
1. Mercy Baby is a pretty good stage name.
2. The drumming (by Mercy) and the hollering (by Mercy) are quite propulsive.
3. Notably, the guitar is played by one Frankie Lee Sims, a cousin of Lightnin’ Hopkins.
4. Never underestimate the B-side! Especially for the horns.
5. The topics – pleading and lying – seem to go hand-in-hand.
6. Apparently, pleading and lying can be great reasons to jump around!
7. Neither of these records prospered. Mr. Mullins himself died of a gunshot wound.
8. Once again great American music associates with tragedy and a paucity of commercial success.
9. These tunes appear in the very formidable Shakers Era.
10. Grab yr Sweetie Pie. Turn up the sound. & Shake everything on yr body!
Mercy Baby. “Pleadin’” (A-side) b/w “Don’t Lie to Me” (B-side). Ric Records 955. Recorded in 1957 or 1958 in Jackson, Mississippi or in New Orleans. (Probably released in 1958; potentially released late as 1960). Likely personnel: Mercy Baby aka Julius W. “Jimmy” Mullins (drums and vocals); Jacquette Brooks (saxophone); Jack White (saxophone); Willie Taylor (piano); Frankie Lee Sims (guitar); Ralph Morgan (bass); other musicians, if any, unknown. Songwriting credit: Jimmy Mullins and Joe Ruffino.
Sources of Information
Discogs page for the release on Ric Records
45cat page for the release on Ric Records
Wikipedia page for Ric Records
Wikipedia page for Mercy Baby
Wikipedia page for Frankie Lee Sims
Cosimo Code page for Ric and Ron Records
Jeff Hannusch. I Hear You Knockin’: The Sound of New Orleans Rhythm and Blues. Swallow Publications, 1989
Jeff Hannusch. The Soul of New Orleans: A Legacy of Rhythm and Blues. Swallow Publications, 2001
Stefan Wirz discography page for Frankie Lee Sims