Rock Artists Sing Soul

 Rock Artists Sing Soul

I’ve blogged about Soul and there are dozens’ of songs sprinkled throughout my posts, but I want to focus on covers by Rock artists. While R&B was the main inspiration of most Rock musicians, Soul music is not far behind. Most of the biggest names in Rock history covered Soul songs and the influence can often be heard in their original material. Most notably this was a trend in the 1960’s and there are plenty to choose. As with the Blues, bands from the UK were all over the Soul music scene. While I’ve dedicated some writing to Soul icons such as Ray Charles, James Brown and the legendary Aretha Franklin, I wanted to feature other artists today.

Some Other Guy” by Richie Barrett (who discover discovered artists such as Frankie Lymon & the Teenagers, the Chantels, Little Anthony & the Imperials, the Valentines, and the Three Degrees) co-wrote this with the famous duo of Jerry Leiber and Mike Stoller, released in April 1962. Not the typical ‘Blues’ song that was being listened to “across the pond” but more soul oriented and it was not a chart topper in the US. The British band ‘The Big Three‘ (March 1963) took a liking to it and covered it first and had a top 40 hit, in the UK. The Beatles (Live at the BBC June 23, 1963) included it in their early repertoire but their version was not released until 1994. Not quite a “Louie Louie” for unintelligible words but the lyrics are hard to make out hence the difference from record to record.Read More »

Sweet Soul Music

Sweet Soul Music

Sam Cooke

Arthur Conley co-wrote this song with Otis Redding and it’s a tribute to some of the early greats of Soul Music. The song’s melody (and words for that matter) borrowed heavily from the Sam Cooke song “Yeah Man” and a subsequent lawsuit brought by A.W. Alexander who managed Cooke’s songs after his untimely death added his name to the song credits. The resulting song however was a huge hit for Conley and it reached #2 on Billboard’s Hot 100 and R&B Chart in 1967 and #7 in the UK where Soul Music was gaining popularity particularly amongst a subset of British youth. The lyrics reference the co-writer Otis Redding, James Brown and songs by The Miracles, Lou Rawls, Sam & Dave and Wilson Pickett, some of the key figures in early Soul Music. “Sweet Soul Music” covered 30 times, The Jam (1977).Read More »

Aretha Franklin

Aretha Franklin

 Aretha Louise Franklin, March 25, 1942-August 16, 2018 (age 76),  born in Memphis, Tennessee, U.S.
 A sad day for music on the passing of the Legendary Aretha Franklin. There are plenty of tributes to this amazing singer and rightfully so and if you have been reading my blog you will know I’ve mentioned her before. You will be able to read all about her career and life story elsewhere, what you may not get is a bit of the story behind songs she gave new life too and her originals that have been remade.

Read More »