How many Toni Williams’ were there? Or did she travel around the US in her recording career? I’m sure the final excellent two 45s on Jetstream and De Luxe are the same artist – but the Tuff/Chess could be her as well. In any case this release is a bit too poppy for my taste even if the vocal on the ballad “Dear Momma” is strong and direct.
The Jetstream is a very fine double sider. Cast The First Stone is a bluesy deep ballad with some fine organ support, on which Toni sings powerfully and with a good rhythmic sense. Love it when she really hollers! “I Came A Long Way In A Short Time” is really a version of Sam Cooke’s “A Change Is Gonna Come”, with a slightly different set of chord changes and some altered lyrics – but it’s non the worse for that. In fact it is very good indeed. Nice of the odious Huey Meaux to take the composer credit. Interestingly this was one of two 45s he issued with the same Jetstream number, the other one being Jackie Paine’s fine deep soul “At Your Wedding”.
But I think her final 45 for De Luxe – cut in Nashville – is even better. “Tearing Down My Mind” has a good slightly funky feel to it but the deep soul of Precious Minutes is the side that really hits the spot. A fine melody is given even more emphasis by Toni’s impassioned delivery. Tasty horn support too courtesy of producer Bill Doggett. A big track that deserves to better appreciated.