Tag: soul

This track reminds me very strongly of Lupe Fiasco’s Daydreamin’ only instead of rap, it’s saturated in the smoothest of smooth soul. Smothered in it, ensconced in it, positively dripping in it. It’s the kind of song that makes you want to move in a most moody and suave manner, so have at it!

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Ah, remixes. Destroyer of many songs! Painful intrusions upon treasured memories! Granted, I can’t really say as such in this case: I heard the remix before I heard the original version. Thankfully, both versions of the song are pretty damn fine. This classic soul tune gets an unobtrusive but completely bad-ass back beat and some record scratching to along with it, creating quite the tune in the process. It drops a fair bit of the arrangement in the process, but the end result is still golden.

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It’s amazing what you can do with two chords. In the hands of most, a two chord song would be the most horrendous thing ever, but it seems that all Aretha has to do is open her mouth and start singing and magic will commence. There’s only one thing you can do when this song starts up and that’s get down and get jiggy.

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One day, I will buy myself a Julie London EP or two. For now, I’ll content myself with my little two-single vinyl containing this song and Cry Me a River. And what a song it is! Never have I heard more sumptuous, sexy vocals than this: it is quite the way to cap off a long day, I can tell you that.

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I was naughty yesterday and neglected to post something, so here’s a backdated post. Furthermore, I’ve also uploaded the MP3 for you to download, making me excessively naughty, but I’m almost certain there’s no decent way to get a hold of this tune.

Anyway, allow me to introduce Michael Franti and Katie Noonan singing the Marvin Gaye classic What’s Going On. Franti is an American hip-hop artist and Noonan is one of Australia’s most talented artists, and boy does it show in this song: her singing is just superb! This performance appeared on the Australian panel TV show called, er, The Panel, which frequently featured wonderful, stripped-down acoustic performances from a huge variety of artists.

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This is a song that not many people heard until the movie Blue Valentine came out. Heck, the song’s from 1970 and the singer said in 2011 that she hadn’t heard it since then. So uhm, yeah. It is an amazing soul tune from the good ‘ol days (which incidentally were before I was born), and if you haven’t heard it before, give it a listen! It would be a great couples song if the movie that made it famous wasn’t so gosh-danged depressing.

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You and Me by Penny & The Quarters on Grooveshark

I’m not usually a fan of soul music as a genre, but there are still some songs out there that whoop some serious tooshy. This is one of them! It sounds like it could have come straight out of the 1970s, but weirdly enough, it came from 2012. What is this world coming to!? I don’t frickin’ know! Regardless, this is an insanely catchy soul song and if I’d heard it earlier, it would have been on that best of list for last year. I guess it’ll be on this years, though. I’m planning for the future!

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Faithful Man by Lee Fields & The Expressions on Grooveshark

From rap born in the 90s yesterday, to soul from the 50s today, I like to think that we’re nice and diverse here on either/or. Others say it’s inconsistent, but nuts to them! Everyone likes smoky soul, right? Particularly when it’s the quintessential example of it, thanks to Julie London here. Amazing what you can do with just a bass, a guitar and one hell of a sultry voice.

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There’s a lot of charm to be found in the R&B tunes of yesteryear: they’re genuinely heartfelt and poetic without today’s apparent necessity to throw notes and key changes all over the place, or need to deal with life on the streets. Having said that, a lot of past R&B is quite soppy in their arrangements and not very empowering to the women that sang them: we get it, you love him even if he is a bit of a jerk!

This song doesn’t quite go the way of total devotion to some dude (it’s actually a rather sweet love song in general). The great thing about it is its haunting quality. The opening chords and choral “Ooo” are wonderful and get me every darn time, before moving into something with quite a bit of variety – it even goes into a shuffle later on!

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If You Love Me, really Love Me by Esther Phillips on Grooveshark

One night, I happened to catch a few seconds of The Voice, the latest in a string of fabricated ‘reality’ shows based around the concept of finding the next new singing talent. As per usual, it results in a commercialised pile of ass. But that’s not the point of this post! One of the so called talents (according to the ads anyway) decided to take a crack at singing the Leonard Cohen classic, Hallelujah, and promptly ruined it by turning it into vocal roller coaster of over-emphasised phrasing and over-wrought emotion. Yawn.

To cleanse the palette after this horrendous experience, I decided to listen to Jeff Buckley’s version, which remains the pinnacle of how to perform this song. Hallelujah isn’t about being dramatic, or trying to see how large of a note range you can squeeze in there: it’s about letting the beauty and soul of the lyrics carry the song with as minimal distraction as possible. Buckley certainly achieved that with his cover, his voice offering the smooth lows and soaring highs without cluttering it unnecessarily with vocal panache. To this day, I’ve not yet heard it done better, and will unfortunately never hear it from the man again. Bravo, Mr. Buckley, bravo.

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Jeff Buckley Hallelujah by Jeff Buckley on Grooveshark