Giving Thanks for Great Soul Singers | Bleader

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Giving Thanks for Great Soul Singers

Posted By on 11.24.10 at 02:48 PM

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Mavis Staples
  • Mavis Staples
On Saturday night fans of classic soul music are faced with a pleasant dilemma: Should they go see Syl Johnson at the Old Town School of Folk Music, playing vintage material from the superb new box set Complete Mythology (Numero Group) with a band of fellow veterans, including drummer Morris Jennings and bassist Bernard Reed? Or should they go see Mavis Staples at Park West, playing music from the excellent new You Are Not Alone (Anti-), a record of classic gospel and restrained, soul-kissed rock, including two tunes written by the album's producer, Jeff Tweedy of Wilco?

The choice was tough, but I've decided to go see Johnson on Saturday. I've spent a lot of time listening to Complete Mythology and got to hang with the singer a couple of times while working on this cover story, which is coming out in this week's Reader. To help you decide I've posted a song by each artist below: "Same Kind of Thing," a classic Johnson tune that's on the set list for Saturday's concert, and the title track of the Staples album, which is one of the Tweedy songs.

Syl Johnson, "Same Kind of Thing":

Mavis Staples, "You Are Not Alone":

Today's playlist:

Lingling Yu, Xu Lai (Felmay)
Salim Halali, Jewish-Arab Song Treasures (Buda)
Eliane Radigue, Naldjorlak Pour Charles Curtis (Shiiin)
Keith Jarrett and Charlie Haden, Jasmine (ECM)
Brian Eno, More Music for Films (Virgin/Astralwerks)

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