Tiny Topsy

Active from the mid-40s, when she sang with the Al Smith band in Chicago, Tiny Topsy also made a number of well-received R&B records under her own name during the late 50s and early 60s. Among her recording sessions are some for Federal Records, from one of which came ‘Aw! Shucks, Baby’/‘Miss You So’, billed as by Tiny Topsy And The Five Chances, and which featured tenor saxophonist Ray Felder and vocal group the Charms. Also for Federal she made ‘Come On, Come On, Come On’/‘Ring Around My Finger’, ‘Waterproof Eyes’/‘You Shocked Me’, ‘Western Rock’n Roll’/‘Cha Cha Sue’ and ‘Just A Little Bit’/‘Everybody Needs Some Loving’. Of these, ‘Just A Little Bit’ was later covered very successfully by several artists, including Rosco Gordon and Jerry Lee Lewis. She also released ‘After Marriage Blues’ and ‘Working On Me, Baby’, recorded in 1961 for Argo Records. For some years ‘Tiny Topsy’ was believed to be a pseudonym used by singer-songwriter Bernice Williams (who wrote ‘Western Rock’n Roll’) although this is now largely discounted. Just who Tiny Topsy was remains unknown.

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