The Essential Soul thread

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marios

Postby marios » 04 Oct 2005, 23:23

goldwax wrote:
The Right Scarfie Profile wrote:In short: can you have too much Aretha?


in short: No, you can't.


If you say that set cheap, I'd grab it. It hits all the points, including the best of her spottier albums--plus it has some great rarities, like one of my all-time favorite B-sides, My Song.

You might want to go back and pick up a few of the proper albums later, but this ought to be a great crash course.


I have it too and i love it! Go for it Matt!

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Postby The Write Profile » 03 Mar 2006, 01:42

I've been listening to the 3-CD Motown Anthology for the last week, and it's come to my attention that I don't own any decent compilations of the Miracles, the Temptations, Four Tops and 60s Stevie Wonder. This has to be remedied, but the problem is far too many ones I've seen feature a lot of ropey 70s material (I'm not talking about Stevie Wonder's 70s stuff here in case you're asking), so any advice would be greatly appreciated. And did Martha Reeves and the Vandellas have anything worth pursuing beyond the hits (Heat Wave, Jimmy Mack, Dancing in the Streets, Nowhere to Run), which are already included here?
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Postby Leg of lamb » 03 Mar 2006, 02:17

Matt, get this one for the Miracles:

Image

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Postby Butch Manly » 03 Mar 2006, 18:27

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Postby Owen » 04 Mar 2006, 20:08

The Right Summery Profile wrote:I've been listening to the 3-CD Motown Anthology for the last week, and it's come to my attention that I don't own any decent compilations of the Miracles, the Temptations, Four Tops and 60s Stevie Wonder. This has to be remedied, but the problem is far too many ones I've seen feature a lot of ropey 70s material (I'm not talking about Stevie Wonder's 70s stuff here in case you're asking), so any advice would be greatly appreciated. And did Martha Reeves and the Vandellas have anything worth pursuing beyond the hits (Heat Wave, Jimmy Mack, Dancing in the Streets, Nowhere to Run), which are already included here?


The Temptations did more than enough really top drawer sixties stuff for you not to have to worry about any filler however many discs worth you get and they did a lot of really long late 60s stuff that doesn't really get covered properly on motown round ups. The Four tops very best stuff does tend to turn up on the various artists discs and they dont, for me, have quite the same volume of great stuff but they definitely deserve having a best of.

I very rarely play my actual martha reeves discs but you need to hear Come and Get these memories.

Oh and on the general essential soul side of things everyone needs to own more don covay than they currently do

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Postby 50 Shades Of Blue » 04 Mar 2006, 20:22

Well done TRSP for resurrecting this wonderful thread
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Postby Bungo the Mungo » 04 Mar 2006, 20:26

like garage punk, it was the 7" single which defined the genre.

whilst most of the essential albums have been listed here, this thread does highlight why very few soul albums make top ten lists. imo.

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Postby The Write Profile » 04 Mar 2006, 23:30

solarskope wrote:like garage punk, it was the 7" single which defined the genre.

whilst most of the essential albums have been listed here, this thread does highlight why very few soul albums make top ten lists. imo.


Absolutely, I see where you're coming from here. In fact mainly I bumped this thread more to get the compilation/various artist recomendations. Much like another of its derivatives (reggae), often compilations are the very best way to hear this stuff.

Playing the Motown anthology over the last few days has really made that clear for me, if only because the set is chronologically arranged- so you can hear the factory's development over the course of each single.

I have to say though, the Supremes (and I have the 2-Disc Anthology which unfortunately has about 6 or 7 post-Diana Ross tracks) are pretty much your bullseye argument for everything for and against Motown. HDH seemingly provided them with their best and worst material
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Postby Wildwood » 05 Mar 2006, 01:19

Owen wrote:
The Right Summery Profile wrote:I've been listening to the 3-CD Motown Anthology for the last week, and it's come to my attention that I don't own any decent compilations of the Miracles, the Temptations, Four Tops and 60s Stevie Wonder. This has to be remedied, but the problem is far too many ones I've seen feature a lot of ropey 70s material (I'm not talking about Stevie Wonder's 70s stuff here in case you're asking), so any advice would be greatly appreciated. And did Martha Reeves and the Vandellas have anything worth pursuing beyond the hits (Heat Wave, Jimmy Mack, Dancing in the Streets, Nowhere to Run), which are already included here?


The Temptations did more than enough really top drawer sixties stuff for you not to have to worry about any filler however many discs worth you get and they did a lot of really long late 60s stuff that doesn't really get covered properly on motown round ups. The Four tops very best stuff does tend to turn up on the various artists discs and they dont, for me, have quite the same volume of great stuff but they definitely deserve having a best of.

I very rarely play my actual martha reeves discs but you need to hear Come and Get these memories.

Oh and on the general essential soul side of things everyone needs to own more don covay than they currently do


My favorite Martha is either "My Baby Loves Me" or "(Girl) You've Been In Love Too Long" or however the parentheses in the last one fall. In the former she seems to be trying to convince herself; the latter somewhat turns the girl-group genre on its head, as the advice sounds pragmatic and level-headed. I've read that Martha ranks "My Baby Loves Me" as her favorite performance and I can see why; it must be her most nuanced singing.

"Wild One" has a great vibe to it.

All of these are on hits collections, but none of them--if I recall--was written or produced by H-D-H, and maybe for that reason they tend to get overlooked. I've tired of the H-D-H formula over the years, possibly because their most famous songs have been played into the ground, but just as possibly because the formula becomes painfully apparent if you come to know the ever-so-slightly modified follow-up hits. I still rank a few of their things--"Nowhere To Run" comes to mind--but from the creative side of Motown I rank the works of Smokey Robinson and Norman Whitfield and even Mickey Stevenson higher.

Laura Nyro and Labelle do a few fine covers of Martha songs on Gonna Take A Miracle, which is an excellent album overall.

--Mike

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Postby The Write Profile » 05 Mar 2006, 06:35

goldwax wrote:
Listen again. Post-Diana Supremes did some great stuff. Stoned Love springs to mind.


Well, yeah. It's been a while since I played Disc Two, so I'll do so again. I trust your judgement on these sorts of things, you were right about the Aretha boxset.

Let me say I'm open to any suggestions, I know I started out with "albums", but compilations (even VA ones) are eagerly welcome. And thanks for the kind words.

On another note, does anyone else agree with Dave Marsh's assesment in the Heart of Rock and Soul that "It's the Same Old Song" is better than "I Can't Help Myself". I think I do. Sure, both are pretty impeacable, but the latter, despite being almost a complete repeat when it comes to the melody and chorus line, has a tougher vocal from Stubbs, better lyrics and a greater sense of force.

Wouldn't live without either, mind.
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Postby Butch Manly » 05 Mar 2006, 22:14

Wildwood wrote:My favorite Martha is either "My Baby Loves Me" or "(Girl) You've Been In Love Too Long" or however the parentheses in the last one fall.


i do adore "my baby loves me". it's the lead-off track on the greatest hits album i've owned for over twenty years now and it always puts a smile on my face. "heatwave" and "jimmy mack" (which isn't on the greatest hits i have - maybe it was released too late) have to be up there too, surely?
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Postby Leg of lamb » 05 Mar 2006, 22:20

la giraffe wrote:
Wildwood wrote:My favorite Martha is either "My Baby Loves Me" or "(Girl) You've Been In Love Too Long" or however the parentheses in the last one fall.


i do adore "my baby loves me". it's the lead-off track on the greatest hits album i've owned for over twenty years now and it always puts a smile on my face. "heatwave" and "jimmy mack" (which isn't on the greatest hits i have - maybe it was released too late) have to be up there too, surely?


'Heatwave' was in my BCB cup line-up so I'd have to agree.

(how the hell didn't I go through on the strength of that alone?!)
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Postby Wildwood » 06 Mar 2006, 03:04

Leg of lamb wrote:
la giraffe wrote:
Wildwood wrote:My favorite Martha is either "My Baby Loves Me" or "(Girl) You've Been In Love Too Long" or however the parentheses in the last one fall.


i do adore "my baby loves me". it's the lead-off track on the greatest hits album i've owned for over twenty years now and it always puts a smile on my face. "heatwave" and "jimmy mack" (which isn't on the greatest hits i have - maybe it was released too late) have to be up there too, surely?


'Heatwave' was in my BCB cup line-up so I'd have to agree.

(how the hell didn't I go through on the strength of that alone?!)


One of my wife's favorites is "Heatwave." I annoy her by singing the Irving Berlin song of the same title, which tromps so thoroughly over the H-D-H song that she's always hard-pressed to think of the latter's melody. Martha's "Heatwave" is fine, but I'm a bit tired of it. It doesn't help that you more-or-less hear it three times on some of their hits collections: first as "Heatwave", then as "Quicksand", and finally as "Live Wire."

--Mike

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Postby The Write Profile » 16 Mar 2006, 06:13

THE IMPRESSIONS- Ultimate Collection

I really like the early stuff on this compilation, particularly the "gospel"-inflected songs such as "Amen," "You Must Belive Me" and "People Get Ready"...but really, it's a lovely listen and I was wondering whether this was the best Impressions compilation avaliable, and where I should go next. Any suggestions?
Image


That's from a NP thread, and I've already got some advice from Yves, but if anyone else has some extra pointers, that would be great. Essentially, I'm gravitating towards the "deeper," more harmony-based side of their work- the stuff which, to these unaccustomed ears seems to be more rooted in gospel. It's a cliche, perhaps, but what I'm enjoying right now is the richness of their sound, it's very comforting, if that makes sense.
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Postby bhoywonder » 21 Mar 2006, 09:58

As the search is defunct I can't check if there's been a thread about this, but I picked it up on Saturday and it knocked me out.

Image

What a wonderful record. It's incredible the number of singers and records that I've never even heard of, let alone heard, that have the capacity to make me rave and rant. I was chatting with Owen recently about how I'd come up against a bit of a brick wall with buying soul records and that I'd begun to get a bit frustrated with having bought a few things of late that I'd seen raved about that I found a little average, so it's superb to find that there's still loads and loads yet to find.

If you don't know this record, I urge you to pick it up at your earliest convenience.

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Postby Kenji » 21 Mar 2006, 14:37

bhoywonder wrote:What a wonderful record. It's incredible the number of singers and records that I've never even heard of, let alone heard, that have the capacity to make me rave and rant. I was chatting with Owen recently about how I'd come up against a bit of a brick wall with buying soul records and that I'd begun to get a bit frustrated with having bought a few things of late that I'd seen raved about that I found a little average, so it's superb to find that there's still loads and loads yet to find.

If you don't know this record, I urge you to pick it up at your earliest convenience.


I prefer Honest Jons Candi and Bettye compilations, but I like this one a lot too.

Which albums did you buy you "seen raved about" but are "a little average" ?

(It's interesting, I think because sometimes I agree with this too...)

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Postby bhoywonder » 21 Mar 2006, 14:43

Kenji wrote:
bhoywonder wrote:What a wonderful record. It's incredible the number of singers and records that I've never even heard of, let alone heard, that have the capacity to make me rave and rant. I was chatting with Owen recently about how I'd come up against a bit of a brick wall with buying soul records and that I'd begun to get a bit frustrated with having bought a few things of late that I'd seen raved about that I found a little average, so it's superb to find that there's still loads and loads yet to find.

If you don't know this record, I urge you to pick it up at your earliest convenience.


I prefer Honest Jons Candi and Bettye compilations, but I like this one a lot too.

Which albums did you buy you "seen raved about" but are "a little average" ?

(It's interesting, I think because sometimes I agree with this too...)


I've not yet got the Bettye Swann one, but I think I prefer this to the Candi Staton.

As for the albums you ask about, I can't actually think of any of the top of my head... give me a moment to think about it.

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Postby Guy E » 21 Mar 2006, 14:50

ImageImage
I just got a CDR copy of the O.V. Wright Back Beat Box, released in Japan in 1990. It's amazing. It contains his four albums from the label and a 17-track disc of singles and rarities:

8 Men and 4 Women
Nucleus of Soul
A Nickel and a Nail
Memphis Unlimited
Treasured Moments


Five CD's, although it easily fits on three. I had about 2/3's of this stuff on LP, 45 and various CD comp's of his output, but it's great having the real deal. Incredible soul music.

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Postby Count Machuki » 21 Mar 2006, 14:54

The Right Summery Profile wrote:
THE IMPRESSIONS- Ultimate Collection

I really like the early stuff on this compilation, particularly the "gospel"-inflected songs such as "Amen," "You Must Belive Me" and "People Get Ready"...but really, it's a lovely listen and I was wondering whether this was the best Impressions compilation avaliable, and where I should go next. Any suggestions?
Image


That's from a NP thread, and I've already got some advice from Yves, but if anyone else has some extra pointers, that would be great. Essentially, I'm gravitating towards the "deeper," more harmony-based side of their work- the stuff which, to these unaccustomed ears seems to be more rooted in gospel. It's a cliche, perhaps, but what I'm enjoying right now is the richness of their sound, it's very comforting, if that makes sense.


i hear you, TRSP, but don't forget the throwaway numbers, great in their own right as stabs at the charts. curtis could churn them out with the best of them...makes the fact that he decided to write real lyrics all the more powerful...

NP -
I love you (yeah) - the impressions
to be followed by...
I love you (yeah) - the action

really a fun track.
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Postby Kenji » 21 Mar 2006, 15:02

bhoywonder wrote:As for the albums you ask about, I can't actually think of any of the top of my head... give me a moment to think about it.


2 artists I can think of:

Sam Dees
Alice Clark

Some of their songs are amazing, but they have a lot of bad ones (usually because of production...)