“The Highway 90 Sound” is how many Texans (and for that matter, non-Texans) refer to the R&B and soul music that poured out of numerous small studios within driving distance of Houston during the 1960s, frequently released on labels that didn’t last much longer than the time it took to make the records. Like those artists here who worked the dancehalls, clubs and juke joints in towns and cities that straddle Highway 90 as it winds through South Texas and Louisiana on its way to Florida, it all simmers down to one multiracial and highly soulful stew.

Contained in this second various artists collection drawn from labels owned by producer Huey P Meaux are local hits, obscure releases that later became favourites an ocean away, artists whose careers spanned several decades without a national chart record and others whose time began and ended the day they cut their session for Meaux. Familiar names such as Jackie Paine and Warren Storm – both still working – feature alongside Tejano soul king Rocky Gil and veteran bluesman Joe “Papoose” Fritz. When they stood before the mic at the various studios Meaux used between New Orleans and Jackson, Mississippi they were all looking for a hit or, at least, a record that would help to keep them travelling up and down Highway 90.

Few independent record producers have ever been as prolific as Meaux was in his pomp. He had a real eye for talent and a rich body of work he produced over a period of 25 years. Placed end to end, the number of yet-to-be-reissued master tapes in his vault is almost as long as Highway 90 itself. The vast majority of the recordings here have never been reissued. Several of the original 45rpm issues command high prices among collectors, and there are previously unissued titles that will thrill all fans of South Texas soul.

1 –The Traits Too Good To Be True 2:42
2 –Chet McDowell I’m Losing You 2:17
3 –Charles Berry Half A Man 2:19
4 –Warren Storm The Bad Times Make The Good Times 2:13
5 –Margo White I’ve Got A Right To Lose My Mind 2:26
6 –David King Thomas You Better Investigate 2:17
7 –Jean Knight T’aint It The Truth 2:01
8 –Eugene Gamble Strange Love 2:17
9 –Jo Jo Benson You’re Losing Me 2:14
10 –Jackie Paine At Your Wedding 2:37
11 –Ronnie Milsap Wish You Were Here 2:03
12 –Margo White Neighbour, Neighbor 2:33
13 –Lee Maye* Total Disaster 2:24
14 –Henry Moore (7) I’m Losing You 2:50
15 –Big Sam* All About Love 2:20
16 –Rocky Gil And The Bishops The Pleasures Of My Woman 2:51
17 –Dean Scott (3) Please Pass The Soul 2:02
18 –Jackie Paine Skid Row Blues 3:37
19 –Prince Charles (5) Sick 2:50
20 –Joe Fritz Good Doctor Sweet Soul 2:31
21 –Luvenia Lewis Tender Loving Pain 2:33
22 –Joe Medwick After Hour Man 1:53
23 –Joe Hughes* The Rains Came 2:45
24 –Johnny Adams Spunky Onions 3:01

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