Frankie and the Spindles: Count to Ten
From 7″ (Roc-ker, 1968)

I feel like it’s been ages since I’ve written about something other than hip-hop (or someone dying).

Reader Zach Robbins put me up on this Frankie and Spindles 7″ back in April and it’s been one of the few soul 7″s that have stayed in heavy rotation since spring. There’s much to love here in terms of the lowrider vibe, the catchy chorus and all that but here’s something that keeps nagging at me:

So the song is about how Frankie’s girl catches him talking with a female friend…she thinks he’s creeping and he’s saying, “hey baby, chill, count to ten and let me explain.”

1) If your girl is mad at you, telling her to “count to ten” is not going to improve matters. Trust me on this one.

2) I was willing to believe Frankie until the third verse, where he shops this explanation that, “we were actually talking about you!” which just strains the limits of credulity. I mean, maybe when Frankie wrote this, he thought it was totally plausible but at that point, it mostly sounds like “dude, you’re overselling this to the point of actually sounding guilty.”

I’m just saying.




  1. “Count To Ten” by Frankie And The Spindles was issued in September 1968,and
    was an airplay single on WHAT Philadelphia that received heavy rotation. The
    session was produced by George Kerr, who had numerous successes during that era,
    especially with “Look Over Your Shoulder” by the O’Jays and “Hypnotized” by
    Linda Jones. It is disappointing that “Count To Ten” can’t be found in stereo,
    but that doesn’t mean it wasn’t recorded in stereo, only that the mono master
    is used in the compilations I’ve screened. “As Long As You Love Me” is a
    spectacular recording for Soul collectors, issued on the TSOP label in 1974.
    I remember hearing it being played by Nat Washington and Royce Howard on WHAT
    on my many trips “down the Ridge (Ridge Avenue) and across the bridge (Walt
    Whitman), destination WMID Atlantic City. Buster Jones (Mr. Freeze) was the
    jock who I recall debuted “Count To Ten” on WHAT on an afternoon in Sept.’68.

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