Luther’s Cotillion albums

28 Feb

I bought a book back in 1991 titled Rocks Movers & Shakers and it had a section on Luther Vandross which explained the history of Luther forming a vocal group in 1975 called LUTHER and were signed to Cotillion Records a subsidiary of Atlantic Records.  There were two albums from the group 1976 LUTHER and 1977 THIS CLOSE TO YOU which both albums flopped due to lack of promotion and as a result both albums did not sell well at all.  Luther bought back the rights to both albums and retained the master tapes which was why they were rare.  I knew I had to have both albums but I didn’t know where to look.  Where I live they didn’t have any record stores that had those albums so I kind of gave up.  My sister who was dating her soon to be husband lived in Ardmore PA and she was going up there on summer and winter breaks to work and spend time with him.  My sister had to drive there and wanted to know did I want to come up there to visit and see Philadelphia.  I said sure and we left after Christmas 1992.  I remember the last day New Years Eve I had to catch a 4 o’clock train back home so we decided to go to this record store in Ardmore my sister said had everything called Plastic Fantastic.  We go there and there were literally records all over the place all categorized.  I go to the Luther section and try on a hunch to see if the Cotillion album would be there.  To my disapointment there wasn’t any of his Cotillion albums there.  I picked a record and proceeded to go to the counter.  I noticed there were a lot of albums on the wall behind the clerk so I started scanning and noticed they were high dollar/rare records.  Then to the right of the clerk I saw a record that caught my eye the album cover had in big metalic letters LUTHER in a style lettering you might see on a heavy metal album.  I asked the clerk could I see that album and he said, “Do know who it is?” I said, “Luther Vandross I hope” and he said, “You’re right.”  As I was staring at the back of the album which showed a five member group and Luther in a blue suit wearing a gold chain was too much for me.  I said to the clerk “I don’t care how much this album is I AM BUYING IT” He laughed when I told him I was a fan and he told me a little bit about how when the album first came out potential buyers thought it was a heavy metal group because of the lettering and confused them seeing the back cover.  The cost of the album was 25.00 dollars which I knew was worth it after reading the history about the album.  I was so excited to get home and put the album on the turntable.  I remember my sister saying it was too high to pay for an album and I told her don’t worry about what I buy.  I remember the train ride back holding on to that album like I had a bag full of money.  I remember the lady I was siting next to to thought I was odd holding on that bag the way I did.  I just didn’t want a chance on it getting broke.  My dad picked me up at the train station and the anticipation was just too much.  I ran to my turntable and started listening to all the songs and that is how I spent my New Years Eve of 1992 listening to LUTHER on Cotillion when the ball dropped.

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3 Responses to “Luther’s Cotillion albums”

  1. Rob January 15, 2013 at 12:59 pm #

    Exciting record of year’s end ’92. The fact that you maintained the receipt is touching and it’s evident “how very dear” finding a copy was to you at that particular time. Really good description by the way! Right now I have on the “This Close To You” LP (ipod version). I haven’t listened to “LUTHER” but after all this, I will be tracking it, undoubtedly a lot more easily than you had to do so.

    Cotillion seemingly used very high quality wax. I had an ELP record some years ago and it was absolutely heavy.

    Additional laughs at the note about a front cover akin to Heavy Metal artwork (I’ve seen the outer-sleeve and thought exactly that). I feel privileged to find your blog Sir.

    • sarolevon January 15, 2013 at 1:02 pm #

      Thank you Rob I have facebook tribute pages as well for Luther so check them out Luther Vandross The Early Years 1969-1980 and Luther Vandross 1981-2005

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