The Golden Age of southern soul lasted from about 1964 to 1975, when disco ripped the heart out of it. Although it may seem as if the blend of country, gospel and R & B that emerged from the great studios in Memphis and Muscle Shoals in that decade was entirely new, like any other genre, southern soul absorbed influences from a whole variety of sources. Part of the ‘History of Soul’ series, these CDs reveal the musical antecedents that gave southern soul its inspiration. A good few of the artists here, represented in their early attempts at creating an individual style, went on to become some of the biggest stars of the ’60s. Others, perhaps less famously, provided ideas and techniques that became stylistic standards. If you ever wondered what musical forms anticipated the southern soul explosion, the answer is in these tracks. If you thought that secularised gospel started with Sam Cooke and Ray Charles, think again as you listen to vocalists who pioneered this many years before them. And if you imagined that the producers at Royal Studios, or Fame or Cosimo’s in New Orleans invented something completely unprecedented, you were missing something. The accompanying booklet is written by John Ridley. The music here will tell you the real story – and it will knock your socks off too!
‘Listening to the impressive tracks on these 2 CDs, and reading through the full colour 28 page booklet that accompanies it, these influences are mostly easy to identify and associate with. The overall standard of these 54 tracks is amazingly high and there are hours of fun to be had here, in the unlikely event that you ever tire of this collection, there is always the rest of the series to catch up with!’
Red Lick Records
Soul 002 & 017 Where Southern Soul Began 1 & 2
‘These two 2-cd volumes are a fine way to trace the roots of what we now call ‘southern soul’, beginning back in 1954 through to 1962,.I immediately want to deliver a ‘star pick’ rating to the first volume., ultimately, its clear that the two sets are highly complimentary, excellently presented and really should be sitting together on the record shelves.’
STAR PICK***** x2. Bob Cole Basement Group Review