Record Label: Secret Stash Records
Just in time for Black Friday, Secret Stash Records is releasing “Just How Much Can One Man Stand” by The Valdons. This marks the second new release from these historic Twin Cities soul singers in the last year and the sixth in a continuing series of new 45s from Secret Stash.
For years, Secret Stash has reissued and compiled seldom heard sixties and seventies soul, African, and Latin music. Recently they have started channeling those aesthetics and sounds into new recordings. The pair of sides on this new release are a perfect representation of the label's two focuses. The A-side is a new recording by The Valdons, while the flip side unearths a long forgotten 1971 demo of the same song.
In Spring 2013, The Valdons hit the studio for the first time in over forty years. Each of the three tracks laid to tape that day had been written and demoed out by the group in the early 1970s, but never finished. The first two tracks were released that winter as their debut Secret Stash 45, “Stop, Wait A Minute Girl” b/w “Whatcha Gonna Do.” Record collectors the world over took note, blowing through its first pressing in a few short weeks. The third gorgeous track from that session, “Just How Much Can One Man Stand,” remained on the shelf.
Close to a full year after that session, Valdons singer Monroe Wright III played another cassette for Secret Stash's Eric Foss. It contained an alternate early 1970s workup of “Just How Much Can One Man Stand.” While what the group recorded in 2013 mirrored practically note-for- note their first cassette demo, this version was more laid back; the silky smooth lead from Napoleon Crayton effortlessly floating on top of the band, with guitarist Donald Breedlove dishing out Wes Montgomery- esque octave licks. The cassette had been played many times over the years, and that left the recording sounding rough around the edges. Still, this long forgotten demo, propelled by a tremendous singer and band at their prime, is one of only a handful of existing recordings by these Twin Cities legends. Despite its sonic shortcomings, Secret Stash's Will Gilbert recalled, “There was no way we could let this remain unheard!”