This documentary gives Elvis fans unprecedented access into the years when the singer worked and lived in Las Vegas. Packed with intimate home movie footage, the documentary aims to shed some light on a period in Elvis's career more often mocked than seriously examined.PAL region 0 DVD.
Willie Johnson's life in itself reads like an early blues, blinded at age seven by his own mother in a fight with his errantfather, living as an itinerant preacher and singer, having to live in the burnt out ruin of his ramshackle house after a fire,on a wet mattress, which eventually helped kill him, pneumonia, malarial fever and syphilis being a powerful combo.This upbringing clearly fueled his career and supplied him with one of the best eerie blues howls in the business and led to him writing some of the best religious based blues of the era. This twenty three track compilation brings together magical sounds Blind Willie recorded between 1927 and 1930, including: "Jesus Make Up My Dying Bed", "Can't Nobody Hide Form God", "I'm Gonna Run To The City For Refuge." and "Trouble Will Soon Be Over."
Whereas, it was then common practice for white artists to cover black R&B hits for mainstream chart consumption at the sstart of the 50's, Dinah Washington regularly reversed the situation. Long before Ray Charles got on the case, Dinah was covering C&W hits by the likes of Hank Williams (Cold Cold Heart). Elsewhere, it could be Top 10 mindworms by KayStarr (Wheel Of Fortune) and Guy Mitchell (My Heart Cries For You). Twenty six tracks, remastered.
Paul Robeson - The Man They Couldn't Silence: The Peerless Voice Of…. CD. (Label: , Cat.No: CRREV 208)
Twenty eight track celebration of the gift given to the man from New Jersey. Actor, singer, communist? Pushed out of America from an early age due to his strong anti racist stance, Robeson set himself up in England and became a star before the US government confiscated his passport, believing the multi talented bass-baritone to be a dangerous subversive force. Included here are a number of his best vocal performances: "Go Down Moses", "The Cobbler's Song", "The Song Of Freedom" and "Ol' Man River."
On CD for the first time, this is twenty one tracks from the golden age of Gospel. The boys from Mississippi formed in 1945 and were led by the influential hard tenor vocals of Archie Brownlee. These tracks are from their '50's contract with Peacock Records, two highly collectable LPs called "Precious Memories" and "Father I Stretch My Hands To Thee." The opening eleven tracks feature Brownlee's replacement Henry Johnson who took over lead vocals after the original singer suddenly died.
Ray Charles - Blues Before Sunrise. CD. (Label: Snapper / Complete Blues, Cat.No: SBLUECD038)
Twety one track compilation highlighting the first blues / R&B recordings he made in the late 1940s and early 1950s. A true genius who produced classy records for decades, this is the sound of the young Ray, bursting with passion and soul. Includes: "You'll Always Miss The Water", "I've Had My Fun (Going Down Slow)", "The Snow Is Falling" and "Baby Won't You Please Come Home." Digi pack version.
Twenty two track compilation bringing together the best blues and jazz performances from Dinah's career. A beloved character in modern American music, these sassy recordings are all from the '50's. includes: "Go Pretty Daddy", "Darn That Dream", "Am I Blue" and "Our Love Is Here To Stay."
Paul Robeson - A Celebration. CD. (Label: EMI, Cat.No: 4991572)
A celebration it is with this twenty five track compilation bringing together some of the best vocal performances the civil rights activist / singer and actor ever mustered in his whole career. Marvel at the genius of "Carry Me Back To Green Pastures", "My Heart Is Where The Mohawk Flows Tonight", "Song Of Freedom" and "All Through The Night."
Pops Staples - Peace To The Neighbourhood / Father, Father. Dble CD. (Label: Evangeline, Cat.No: ACAD8123)
Father to the Staple Sisters, "Pops" was a session blues man who played with everyone from Curtis Mayfield to Robert Johnson. Not starting his own solo career until he was in his seventies, these are his first two albums, released in the '90's. Combining soulful blues and gospel as well as religious and social commentary finds him in rude health and putting a number of his much younger contemporaries to shame.
Marva Wright - Do Right Woman. CD. (Label: Shout!, Cat.No: SHOUT 31)
Unavailable for over ten years, this Remastered 1993 album gets it's first proper release outside the US. Marva is one of those lucky with a strong stage persona, a larger than life character and a soul shaking voice. The thirteen tracks mix up gospel, soul, blues and R&B and feature some of the most respected New Orleans sessioners. A great set of covers ("Do Right Woman" and "Can't Nobody Love You" and Hound Dog") that pay homage to the illustrious soul past. A cracking album that has bee nignored for too long.
Ray Charles - Genius Loves Company. CD. (Label: Liberty, Cat.No: 8665402)
Final studio album by the Rhythm and Blues legend, released in 2004. Featuring a stellar cast to support the ailing singer: Norah Jones, Van Morrison, Diana Krall, Elton John, Willie Nelson, BB King and Gladys Knight to name a few, this is a collection of retro produced, popular covers and a few originals. A highly respectful album that is deliberately barel in it's arrangements to allow the voices to take centre stage, its one of those efforts that leaves a tear in the eye as it is impossible to not to hear a man at the very end of his life.
Ray Charles - Genius Loves Company. CD + DVD. (Label: EMI, Cat.No: 8758710)
Final studio album by the Rhythm and Blues legend. Released in 2004, this version includes a bonus DVD. Featuring a stellar cast to support the ailing singer: Norah Jones, Van Morrison, Diana Krall, Elton John, Willie Nelson, BB King and Gladys Knight to name a few, this is a collection of retro produced, popular covers and a few originals. A highly respectful album that is deliberately barel in it's arrangements to allow the voices to take centre stage, its one of those efforts that leaves a tear in the eye as it is impossible to not to hear a man at the very end of his life. DVD includes footage of the recording of each track, interviews with Ray and all of the guests, plus an advert for the motion picture "Ray" and a bonus song from the sessions: "Mary Ann."
Staple Singers - Come Up In Glory. CD. (Label: Snapper, Cat.No: SNAP282CD)
A colletion of the best tracks the group recorded on the Vee Jay label ('66-'61.) This digi pack, twenty eight track set highlights their influence on the both the pop and gospel genres. These recordings are very much in the form of the Deep Southern spiritual style (incorporating elements of blues, folk and soul) and represent a high water mark for recorded gospel music. Includes "Born In Bethlehem", "This May Be The Last Time" (where did the stones get their inspiration from?) and "I'm Coming Home."
2000 album from this Gospel/Soul crossover star. Having switched between soul and gospel throughout his popular '60's and '70's career, this is a return to what he calls "Proper Soul", playing with a select group of musicians in Atlanta, Georgia. With only a limited release at the start of the century, this is he first time it will a receive world wide audience. Includes: "The Other Woman", "California Girl" and "Back In our Arms."