David & The Giants (Laurel, MS)
David & The Giants are one of my favorite groups and the band could be the most accomplished Mississippi group with deep roots as a Southern Rock, Northern Soul and Christian Contemporary Rock band. With David on the vocal helm and also an awesome talent on lead guitar, the group produced super hits like "Super Love" and "Ten Miles High" on the Capitol label. Their history as pioneers in Christian contemporary Rock is legendary with soul moving hits like "Here's My Heart," "No One But You," "Stumbling Block To A Stepping Stone," and "Always On My Mind." During his time with "David & the Giants," they released 17 projects, 4 videos, and received Dove Award nominations. I caught David in concert in April 2010 and I can say that the magic is still there in his performance. His guitar abilities are awesome. The Giants still come together on occasions for a special event or reunion concert and I can truly say I am proud to call David, Rayborn and Clayborn my friends. Their music still touches the lives of thousands around the world and their tours have taken them from Mississippi to Greenwich Village, New York, To LA to London, England. These Mississippi music artists are truly among the best of Mississippi's own sons and should be recognized for their accomplishments and contribution to music in Mississippi.
David and the Giants began as a rock band in Laurel, Mississippi; with the Huff brothers: David, Clayborn and Rayborn—with Jerry Parker on drums, touring the Southeast during the 1960s. In 1977 they music changed to Christian rock format. They continued to sing and record together through 1999. Recording and performing together for almost 40 years, the band released 17 albums. Though the band's style has been compared to that of Mylon LeFevre and Broken Heart, their most commercially successful work came in the 1960s with a sound, augmented by The Muscle Shoals Horns, that closely resembled that of Jay & the Techniques.
The band released its first single, a cover version of "Rockin' Robin" around 1964, under the name of Little David & the Giants. In 1969, Keith Thibodeaux (best known as "Little Ricky" from the I Love Lucy TV series joined the band. His arrival marked the beginning of the band's most commercially successful era. Although band members often described their sound as having its roots in Southern rock, the band's most successful recordings became popular in England in the 1970s and 80s as Northern soul - songs that featured a mixture of a Top 40 sound with horns and strings. In 1969 they achieved regional success in the southeastern US with singles of that genre entitled Super Love and Ten Miles High. Their work of that era was distributed in both the United States and in Great Britain. Super Love, Ten Miles High and some of the band's other late sixties singles have appeared on various genre compilations. In the early 1970s, the band performed in concert with such notable acts as Styxx, Black Oak Arkansas, Cheech and Chong, and Chuck Berry. David Huff was in the studio with The Rolling Stones when they recorded the song, "Brown Sugar", and also spent some time in the studio with artists such as Stevie Wonder and Rod Stewart.
In 1977, the band members converted to Christianity. That same year they released their first Christian album, Song of Songs. Released without label support, it contained ballads and a mixture of pop rock. Their second album, This One's For You had a similar sound. Two years later, the band recorded Step in My Shoes. Devoid of up-tempo songs, the album was not commercially successful. For their fourth album, the band returned to a sound much closer to their musical roots. Almost Midnight, a rock album, was more successful than the first three. They continued with that sound for their fifth attempt, entitled Heaven or Hell.
In the 1980s, the band signed with Priority Records. The first release, entitled simply David and The Giants was widely distributed and sold well. The band's next album, Riders in the Sky, contained concert staples like "Step by Step", "King of the Jews", and "Look at the People." The band released another album, called Inhabitants of the Rock, which though not commercially successful, contained the radio releases "I Can Depend on You" and "I Am Persuaded." It went out-of-print in the early 1990s. Two more albums followed, Under Control and Magnificat. Both were well-accepted by fans. The band concluded the 1980s with Strangers to the Night and R U Gonna Stand Up.
In the 1990s, the band was not commercially successful. Though they had three hits from their albums, "Stumbling Block To A Stepping Stone", "I'm Still Rocking", and "Always On My Mind," their most successful album had been Angels Unaware. By 1997 the band had been on the road for almost 30 years and decided it was time to do something else. At the end of the year, the band ceased to record and perform together.
David Huff continues to perform as a solo act and operates a recording studio near Atlanta, Georgia. He has released a series of solo albums, Really in 2000 and Proclaim in 2003, which was re-released by Christian Records in 2004, then Let My Guitar Talk, an instrumental album in 2008, and Do You Know What I Mean in August 2008. The Huff brothers occasionally perform together as David and The Giants. On December 9, 2007 they joined former drummer Keith Thibodeaux for a reunion concert at Emmanuel Praise Church in Monroe, Georgia.
David & The Giants News (April 2011)
David Huff was recently contacted by Alec Palao of ACE Records ( UK) regarding a new record project slated to be released in the UK soon. A 3-CD set entitled "The Fame Records Story," which covers the history of the studio, record label and publishing company during the 1960s in great detail. It is equally balanced between the big hits that emanated from Muscle Shoals, and the lesser known yet, no less worthy, records and sessions that were recorded by Rick Hall in that era. Based on research of the music vaults at Fame, ACE Records discovered some forgotten sound tracks by David Huff and his brothers. The new discoveries confirmed that David & The Giants had made a significant contribution to music during the studio's golden era. David Huff was contacted by ACE to discuss details of the new album set and liner notes. Featured on the box is one track by David & The Giants - "Love Them Or Leave Them", There is also some great unreleased material by David & The Giants in the vault at Fame, such as "It's Gotta Be Love," "Someday You're Gonna be Sorry" among the forgotten and unreleased work by this prominent group from Mississippi. The new box set is scheduled for release in October.
FAME Music was established in 1959 in Florence, Alabama and has gone on to be the heartbeat of the Muscle Shoals Sound with entities including FAME Publishing, FAME Recording Studios, FAME Records and Muscle Shoals Records. FAME moved to Muscle Shoals in 1961. FAME has worked in the studio with some of the Greatest artists in Rock music history. Artists such as Aretha Franklin, Little Richard, Wilson Pickett, Etta James, Otis Redding, the Osmonds, Jerry Reed, Alabama, Mac Davis, the Gatlin Brothers, Bobbie Gentry and many others. More recently FAME has recorded projects for Jason Isbell and the 400 Unit, Band of Horses, Drive by Truckers, Bettye Lavette, and Heartland to name a few.
In the last 50 years, FAME has been involved in recording or publishing records that have sold over 350 million copies world wide. FAME Publishing has had songs cut byTina Turner, Gary Allan, the Beatles, Jet, Elton John, Sara Evans, Ronnie Milsap, BB King, Tim McGraw, the Dixie Chicks, All 4 One, Earl Thomas Conley, Leann Rimes, Huey Lewis and Travis Tritt. FAME's current songwriter roster includes multi-award winning writers Brad Crisler and James LeBlanc. Along with Gary Nichols, Jason Isbell, Dylan LeBlanc, Angela Hacker, and the Ugli Stick
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The Band's Links
David & The Giants
Huff Recording Studio
David and the Giants discography
- 1963-4: “Rockin' Robin”
- 1967: “On Bended Knee” (Amy)
- 1968: “Ten Miles High” (Capitol)
- 1968: “Super Love” (Crazy Horse)
- 1968: “Love 'em and Leave 'Em” (Capitol)
- 1970: "Super Good Feeling" / "Letter To Josephine" (Fame Records)
- 1977: Song of Songs (Song of Songs)
- 1978: ‘’This Ones for You (Song of Songs)
- 1979: Step In My Shoes (Song of Songs)
- 1980: Almost Midnight (Song of Songs)
- 1981: Heaven or Hell (Song of Songs)
- 1982: David and the Giants (Priority)
- 1983: Rides In The Sky (Priority)
- 1984: Inhabitants of the Rock (Myrrh)
- 1985: Under Control (Myrrh)
- 1987: Magnificat (Myrrh)
- 1988: Strangers to the Night (Giant)
- 1989: R U Gonna Stand Up (Giant)
- 1990: Distant Journey (Giant)
- 1992: Long Time Coming (Giant)
- 1993: Giant Hits (Giant)
- 1995: Angels Unaware (Giant/Benson)
- 1996: Dream (Giant)
David Huff solo albums
- 2000 - Really (Giant)
- 2004 - Proclaim (Giant)
- 2008 - Let My Guitar Talk (Giant)
- 2008 - Do You Know What I Mean (Giant)
- 1963–1999 David W. Huff – guitar, vocals
- 1963–1999 Clayborn Huff – bass guitar
- 1963–199– Rayborn Huff – keyboards
- 1969 Greg Crowe – drums
- 1973–1974 Ray Hair – drums
- 1977–1979 Gerald Hagan – piano
- 1977–1979 Owen Hale – drums
- 1977–’76, 1979–’89 Keith Thibodeaux – drums
- 1989–1999 Lance Huff – drums
- 1994–1999 Dennon Dearman – bass guitar