Gil Bernal, The Dogs  
Gil Bernal
The Dogs
GBR 7inch 
Label: Jukebox Jam
Release Year: 2012
Style: Funk & Soul
  The Dogs  
  Born and bred in the LA melting pot of Watts, Gil Bernal was a highly decorated and hugely prolific saxophonist who performed and recorded throughout the ?50s with the cr?me de la cr?me of the cities R&B talent. Signed up with Leiber & Stoller?s Spark records, Gil also featured on some of that writing team?s biggest and most influential hits - playing the riffs and solo?s on songs such as the Coasters ?Youngblood? and ?Down In Mexico? amongst many others. Through the ?60s, Gil figured with the Lionel Hampton orchestra and continued to undertake notable session work and gig locally throughout his life.

As a solo artist, Gil?s catalogue is much slimmer than his featured credits, but is marked by some pretty unique and impressive offerings. None less than this super rare record originally recorded for Bumps Blackwell?s own label and released locally in LA. A beat-heavy, jazzy number, with socially conscious lyrics delivered in a swinging style, this is ripe for the dance floor, making it no surprise that the record has steadily grown in notoriety to become one of the most in demand R&B spins on the scene, indeed now crossing over to the Northern Soul circuit too.

Shortly after agreeing terms with Gil Bernal himself for this reissue, he very sadly passed away from congestive heart failure. This came as a terrible shock to us who had discovered a dynamic and exuberant gentleman in our dealings with Gil. We know that Gil was excited at the prospect of having ?The Dogs? and ?James? available again, and perhaps for a wider audience than was originally mustered. We had always intended to have Gil name the label but sadly ran out of time before he passed, so his family volunteered ?James Meridith?, the full name of the friend who had inspired Gil to write the song ?James?. This reissue is hence released in tribute to the memory of a true legend on American R&B and Jazz, Gil Bernal.
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