Linda Jones was born in Newark, New Jersey in 1944 and as was the norm for many black singers, she started gospel singing in the church – in this case it was with her family singing group The Jones Singers.
Her career began when she was discovered singing in a club and Linda Jones was introduced to famed record producer George Kerr. After a few unsuccessful singles at Atco, Kerr took her to Loma records – a subsidiary of the huge Warner Brothers empire. This was in 1967 and her very first release “Hypnotized” proved to be the biggest hit of her career. A ballad so soulful it is impossible to imagine any other soul singer singing it…..if you haven’t heard this track then you must do.
Loma closed a year later and Jones joined the Neptune label and had moderate success under those legends of Philly soul Kenny Gamble and Leon Huff. A move to the All Platinum label in 1971 saw her score a big hit with her version of the Jerry Butler classic “For your prescious love” and her career looked set to take off again.
Linda Jones was diabetic for most of her life and in 1972 after a matinee show at the famous Apollo Theatre in Harlem – Linda Jones slipped into a diabetic coma at her mothers house and passed away….she was only 27 years old.
The featured track is considered a Northern Soul classic and certainly it is one of my own favourite tracks and will always be played when I get in the northern soul mood.
Another Linda Jones record that never bores me is “I can’t stand it” and one day i will feature that record.
Soul music lost one of the great singers far too early – Linda Jones had an unfulfilled career, she could have become one of the legends like Aretha Franklin, Gladys Knight or Mavis Staples, but there is no doubting the quality of her voice and we have a short but brilliant career to remember her by.
Linda Jones – The complete Atco-Loma-Warner Bros recordings – is now available at Amazon