Posts Tagged: soul

Song of the Day: “Gin House Blues”

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Nina Simone’s troubles were highlighted in the recent gripping documentary by Liz Garbus, What Happened, Miss Simone? Though Simone had her fair share of challenges, it was her incredibly resonant voice and musical genius that contributed to the gradual accumulation of legends surrounding her.

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Album of the Week: Sampha’s Process

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After collaborating with the likes of Beyoncè, SBTRKT, Jessie Ware, Drake, Kanye West, Frank Ocean, and Solange, 28-year-old British singer, songwriter and producer Sampha has finally released his first solo album, Process, via Young Turks.

A significant and evocative title, anticipating the changes happening as listeners work through the LP’s forty minutes: the personal growth Sampha undergoes in taking his meditations on life and loss out of his bedroom and into the studio, crafting a moving and heartfelt urban soul album.

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Song of the Day: “Back Door Santa”

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Soul—that mysterious orientation towards the world that seems to be frequently accompanied by a larger-than-life personality—is probably the first word that comes to mind when one thinks of Clarence Carter, that bombastic and passionate artist whose timeless music still echoes across the airwaves and our collective memory.

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Song of the Day: “I’m Glad You’re Mine”

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The Reverend Al Green’s fifth album, I’m Still In Love With You, appears at the top of many critics’ rankings, including that of the Village Voice‘s longtime writer, Robert Christgau. And for good reason. The second track of this mesmerizing record is the silky smooth, organ-punctuated “I’m Glad You’re Mine.” Green’s drummer, Al Jackson, Jr.—who built his reputation for rhythm as a session musician at Stax Records—holds down a beautifully laconic, almost lazy backbeat, and a rolling Hammond organ helps to show why the song deserves to be known as a staple in the soul canon.

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Song of the Day: “One Mo’ Gin”

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In the pocket. It’s the only way to describe the slithery pulse of the bass and rhythm section in D’Angelo’s slow ballad “One Mo’ Gin,” off his explosive soul album from 2000, Voodoo. D’Angelo—otherwise known as the mild-mannered Michael Eugene Archer—keens with loneliness and nostalgia on “One Mo’ Gin,” layering his buttery falsetto over the heavy groove laid down by Welsh bassist Pino Palladino and drummer extraordinaire, Ahmir “?uestlove” Thompson.

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Song of the Day: “Sweet Virginia”

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“Tryin’ to stop the waves behind your eyeballs,” Mick Jagger sings on “Sweet Virginia,” a determined country shuffle off their seminal 1972 record, Exile On Main Street, an album frequently mentioned on Best Of lists and widely hailed as one of the most influential of the century.

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Official Marvin Gaye Documentary Announced

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An official documentary about Marvin Gaye is finally in the works, and has been approved by the late singer’s family. The film will be titled What’s Going On, Marvin? and will center around the making of the seminal album. The artist’s children released a joint statement about their excitement for the film, saying:

Our father was complex, but we are confident that with Noah Media Group’s attention to detail and their dedication to the truth, the positive, inspirational and aspirational aspects of his life will be handled and shared with the world in a way never seen before.

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Song of the Day: “Matchbox Blues”

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Perhaps no other blues artist in history, along with contemporaries like Leadbelly, Robert Johnson, and Lightnin’ Hopkins, had such an influence on later generations of musicians as Blind Lemon Jefferson. After growing up in Texas and reputedly playing on the streets from eight at night until four in the morning, Jefferson was one of the first to record solo blues performances in the early 1920s.

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Charles Bradley’s “Change for the World”

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The Screaming Eagle of Soul has released a psychedelic video to accompany the single “Change for the World” that dropped last month. The song’s video matches its political message with imagery from protests of the Civil Rights Era alongside the artist as he challenges us to “change the false pretense,” “change the hate,” and “change our love” to ensure we will never return to a segregated world.

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Song of the Day: “Come On Back”

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From 1962 to 1987, producer Bobby Robinson headed the independent record publisher Enjoy Music. Robinson nurtured and and supported heavy-hitting early R&B, blues, and soul artists of the latter half of the 20th century, including Gladys Knight and the Pips, Elmore James, and Grandmaster Flash.

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Song of the Day: “Don’t Mention My Name”

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The Shepherd Sisters were a “rock n’ roll” group that reached prominence during the late 50s and early 60s. The Sheps, as they were sometimes called, typified the bright and squeaky-clean persona of many vocal groups of the time. One could easily mention the Shepherd Sisters—who were, in fact, siblings who had all grown up in Middletown, Ohio—in the same breath as other all-female acts like The Marvelettes, Martha and the Vandellas, and The Supremes.

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Song of the Day: “What’s That You Got?”

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Call it arrogance, hubris, or a holier-than-thou attitude—there are some traits that just don’t make a great impression. Antoine “Fats” Domino was well aware of that when he released “What’s That You Got?” in 1965. The hefty New Orleans native is known for his funkiness as much as for his physical stature.

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This Week in Posivibes: Gloria Ann Taylor

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Ubiquity’s Love Is a Hurtin’ Thing reissue collects some incredible soulful, experimental R&B from Gloria Ann Taylor’s early years, rare tracks that were released during her time with the small label Selector Sound. Taylor owned the label with her brother Leonard and her husband and producer Walter Wisenhunt, who was a “promoter of sorts” with close ties to James Brown. 

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Song of the Day: “Olivia”

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To mark the anniversary of a late, great hip hop icon whose very name inspires controversy, XXL Magazine asked former members of the legendary rap group Wu-Tang to remember their friend, Russell Tyrone Jones, known otherwise as Ol’ Dirty Bastard. Lyricist Raekwon recalled the following anecdote:

My memories go back to us being in his house in Harlem.

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Sound Takes: Live at the London Palladium | Rumpus Music

Sound Takes: Live at the London Palladium

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Love it or hate it, if you listen to Live at the London Palladium, you’re going to get intimate with Marvin Gaye. ...more

Song of the Day: “Jackie Wilson Said”

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Van Morrison—aka George Ivan Morrison of Belfast, Northern Ireland—has had a long and varied career that began in the mid 60s. After recording a string of massive hit singles like “Brown Eyed Girl,” “Moondance,” and “Caravan,” he released “Jackie Wilson Said (I’m In Heaven When You Smile),” a veiled tribute to the influential soul artist of that name.

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Song of the Day: “Living For The City”

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Stevland Hardaway Morris, aka Stevie Wonder, got his start playing for Motown Records in 1961. Today, he boasts a back catalog of some of the most iconic and original soul music in the world. Though Stevie Wonder started singing more than 50 years ago, the lyrics of “Living For The City” are just as relevant today.

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What Happened, Miss Simone?

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The much-anticipated documentary of soul genius Nina Simone is available from Netflix starting today, with its rare archival footage and new interviews with family and colleagues, including the artist’s daughter, Lisa Simone Kelly, and music director, Al Schackman. As the date has approached, tracks have been popping up from RCA Record’s upcoming album Nina Revisited: A Tribute to Nina Simone, such as covers by Ms.

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Song of the Day: “Try Me”

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The resilient R&B singer Esther Mae Jones adopted the stage name of Little Esther Philips at the age of 14, allegedly taking it from a gas station sign in Los Angeles. She had a rough-and-tumble career, a tumultuous relationship with the billboard charts, and ongoing addiction problems that endowed her voice with a worldly authenticity reminiscent of Nina Simone.

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