Toronto Mike

Of Curried Soul and Edwin Starr

I was just watching the Raptors lose to the Bulls, and caught a Gatorade ad featuring Usain Bolt, Dwayne Wade and others called "Moving the Game Forward". As ads go, it was pretty cool, but it was the distinctive music that captured my attention. I was hearing "Curried Soul" by Moe Koffman, a song I know best as the theme for CBC Radio's As It Happens. It's also the spiritual inspiration for the only theme song my podcast has ever had. Here's the Gatorade ad.

I was sure that was "Curried Soul", but I was wrong. It's actually Edwin Starr's "25 Miles", a hit in 1968. Here's that song.

I always assumed Moe Koffman's "Curried Soul" was an original composition in 1970, but it sounds eerily similar to "25 Miles". Here's "Curried Soul" so you can judge for yourself.

To make things even more interesting, it seems Edwin Starr had to share credit with Bert Berns and Jerry Ragovoy who wrote "32 Miles out of Waycross" by Hoagy Lands. This song was also recorded as "Mojo Mama" by Wilson Picket in 1967, which you can hear here.

To summarize:

  • Bert Berns and Jerry Ragovoy write "32 Miles out of Waycross", recorded by Hoagy Lands in 1967. It's also known as "Mojo Mama", recorded by Wilson Picket that same year.
  • A year later, Edwin Starr has a hit with "25 Miles" but the similarities were so significant, he had to give Berns and Ragovoy writing credit.
  • In 1970, Moe Koffman releases "Curried Soul", a song best known as the As It Happens theme. Koffman is listed as the song's only writer.

And I disappeared down this rabbit hole because I caught an ad for a sports drink.

Author image
About Toronto Mike
I own TMDS and host Toronto MIke'd. Become a Patron.