“Things happen for a reason, man.” – Leo Nocentelli
At just fourteen, Leo Nocentelli was backing up Otis Redding. Soon after, he was playing on hits for Lee Dorsey, The Supremes, and The Temptations. As an original member of The Meters, Leo wrote instant classics “Cissy Strut” and “Hey Pocky A–Way,” but his greatest moment on record may be totally unknown, until now…
Recorded at Cosimo Matassa’s Jazz City Studio in New Orleans in the early ‘70s and then lost to the ages, Another Side is one of Leo Nocentelli’s most personal and definitive moments ever cut to tape. A mixture of funky folk and rootsy, raw emotion (think Bill Withers and James Taylor meeting Allen Toussaint at Link Wray’s Three Track Shack), this previously unheard album shines like the sun on a spring day on the New Orleans fairgrounds. Backing Nocentelli is an all-star line-up of New Orleans royalty, including Allen Toussaint (piano), James Black (drums), and both George Porter Jr. (bass) and Zigaboo Modeliste (drums) of The Meters. Deeply introspective, the album features nine original songs by Nocentelli, plus a soulful rendition of Elton John’s “Your Song.” Half a century later, these recordings sound just as fresh and engaging as the day they were recorded.
+ Indie LPs are pressed on bright yellow vinyl
+ LP includes 20-page booklet.
+ CD includes a 28-page booklet.
What makes Another Side even more extraordinary, however, is the fact that the album—which could have easily become a classic in the ‘70s singer-songwriter canon—sat untouched for decades; miraculously surviving the devastating blow of Hurricane Katrina, only to be found 2,000 miles away at a Southern California swap meet in 2018 by record collector Mike Nishita.
Nishita, a DJ and brother to “Money Mark” Nishita (of Beastie Boys fame), recognised the Sea-Saint label on the boxes and purchased all 673 master tapes at the swap meet. He inspected the contents with his friend Mario Caldato Jr., the longtime audio engineer for the Beastie Boys. In addition to masters from Irma Thomas, Dr. John, Lee Dorsey, and Toussaint, there was a quarter-inch reel with Nocentelli’s name on it. As Caldato and Nishita played it back, they knew they had something special.
“There was nothing else like it,” writes Sweet. “An acoustic album by the greatest funk guitarist who ever lived. It was the tape Mike would play for people to show them how special the collection was. The best album in the vault was something nobody knew existed.”
Eventually, Nishita and Nocentelli connected, “He was so grateful, so sincere,” recalls Nishita. “I just kept thinking about how this music needs to be heard…Especially when you look at all the things that had to fall into place for these tapes to survive and be discovered this way.” As Nocentelli simply puts it, “Things happen for a reason, man.”
1. Thinking Of The Day, Riverfront
2. I Want To Cry
3. Pretty Mittie
4. Give Me Back My Loving
5. Getting Nowhere
6.Till I Get There
7. You’ve Become A Habit
8. Tell Me Why
9. Your Song
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Nominated 'Best Independent Retailer' at the Music Week Awards in 2013, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019 and 2020.
Nominated "Indie Champions" at the 2015 AIM Awards.