Published on Mar 17, 2012
Artist: The Cake
Song Title: Ooh Poo Pah Doo
Composer: Jessie Hill
Album: The Cake (LP)
Label: Decca (DL 74927)
The origins of "Ooh Poo Pah Doo" were apparently created from a tune played by a local pianist, who was known only as Big Four. Jessie Hill wrote the lyrics and melody, later expanding the work with an intro taken from Dave Bartholomew. It was further honed on stage, before Hill recorded a demo that he shopped to local record labels, finally recording a session at Cosimo Matassa's studio produced by Allen Toussaint. Upon its early 1960 release, it emerged as a favourite at Mardi Gras, selling 800,000 copies and reaching the Top 5 in the US Billboard R&B chart and a Top 30 slot in the Billboard Hot 100 pop chart.
Many different Artists have recorded the song such as: Paul Revere and the Raiders and Tina Turner.
The Cake Bio:
The Cake formed in New York in 1966, starting out as an a cappella vocal group singing at Steve Paul's The Scene. Barooshian and Morillo both appeared in You Are What You Eat, a 1967 documentary film produced by Peter Yarrow. In the film, Barooshian performed the Sonny & Cher hit "I Got You Babe" with Tiny Tim. She sang the male part, while Tiny Tim sang the female.
What set The Cake apart from other girl groups of the time is that they recorded their own material, as well as a number of R&B standards. Their own songs were in the vein of 1960s baroque pop with intricate madrigal-style vocal harmonies. They released two albums on Decca Records, The Cake (1967) and A Slice Of Cake (1968). Both were recorded at the Gold Star Recording Studios in Los Angeles.
Their debut single was the Jack Nitzsche and Jackie De Shannon penned song, "Baby, That's Me". The production of the song, which was arranged by Harold Battiste, aped the Wall of Sound technique created by Nitzsche and Phil Spector. The Cake also contributed back-up vocals to "Why Are We Sleeping?", the closing track on The Soft Machine, the 1968 debut album by the British psychedelic rock band of the same name.
Following the break-up of The Cake in 1968, Jacobs and Barooshian toured with Dr John, who was one of the session musicians on their albums, and subsequently moved to the UK, where they became part of Ginger Baker's Air Force. Barooshian also recorded an album in Japan with Tetsu Yamauchi.
Jacobs married Chris Wood of the English group Traffic in 1969. Jeanette Jacobs-Wood died on January 1, 1982, aged 32.
In 2006, after a thirty seven year year hiatus, Barooshian and Morillo reformed The Cake, to perform at a one-off Jimi Hendrix tribute concert in New York, organized by Hendrix archivist and documentary film-maker, David J. Kramer. The show also featured Buddy Miles, Johnny Winter, Jose Feliciano and Leon Hendrix. Their two Decca albums have been re-released on CD by Rev-Ola Records.
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