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AIN'T NO STOPPIN' HER! New CANDI STATON album 'UNSTOPPABLE' due next month

Saturday, 14 July 2018 12:07 Charles Waring E-mailPrintPDF

                      altCANDI STATON's been a southern soul siren, a disco queen, a gospel maven, and an electro-funk goddess during a long and storied career that spans six decades and has garnered her a multitude of hit records (including the immortal 'Young Hearts Run Free') and four Grammy nominations. Though she's 78 now, the Alabama-born chanteuse is still in good voice and understandably, perhaps, feels no need to retire or rest on her laurels.

Significantly, 'Unstoppable' - scheduled for release on August 24th - is the thirtieth album of Staton's career and its uncompromising title encapsulates the singer's voracious appetite for life as well as her passion for performing and making new music. The 10-song set reunites her with producer and Lambchop member, Mark Nevers, who helmed her comeback secular albums, 2006's 'His Hands' and 2009's 'Who's Hurting Now.'

Unlike those two acclaimed albums, which largely focused on downtempo material and highlighted Staton's ability to inhabit pain-racked, blues-infused ballads, 'Unstoppable' has more of a glowing, feel-good vibe and features six songs written by the singer. There are plenty of brassy funk grooves and an almost omnipresent dance floor pulse drives an album brimming with positivity. But there's also a deep vein of protest running through the album's themes, exemplified by a great cover of punk poet Patti Smith's 'People Have The Power' - reconfigured as a dance anthem - and  the rousing message song, 'Stand Up,' which includes the great line, "if you don't stand for something you'll fall for anything."

There's also room for some great ballads - the pick of them being the delicate 'Revolution For Change,' which despite its dreamy, laidback groove, is a passionate plea for change.

 'Unstoppable' is available via Beracah/Thirty Tigers on August 24th 2018

Last Updated on Sunday, 15 July 2018 13:52

 

ANITA PORÉE DIES

Thursday, 12 July 2018 13:36 Bill B E-mailPrintPDF

altThere are plenty of soul fans (me included) with a soft spot for the Friends of Distinction and many of 'em will number their 'Going In Circles' as one their very best recordings. Don't forget the great versions by Isaac Hayes and Luther Vandrosss too. Sadly, US news outlets are reporting the death of one of the song's co-writers ANITA PORÉE. She was aged 78 and had been battling cancer.

Born in Chicago on September 14, 1939, her family moved to Los Angeles where Anita had ambitions to become an actress. However after meeting Jerry Peters - a pianist and composer - she began writing music. In '69, the pair wrote 'Going in Circles' and 'Love or Let Me Be Lonely' for the Friends of Distinction and from there she went on to pen songs for (amongst others) The Temptations and Eddie Kendricks. Her other song writing partners included Leonard Caston Jr., Frank Wilson and Skip Scarborough.

For a short time Ms Porée was part of vocal group, Black Magic. Then, disillusioned with the music biz, she turned to art and working for social justice especially for racial minorities, members of the LGBTQ community and others denied equal treatment and opportunity.

Harry Elston, co-founder of The Friends of Distinction, posted today: "Anita Porée was a pioneer during a period when women were less accepted as popular songwriters."

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Last Updated on Thursday, 12 July 2018 13:44

 

JUST ONE LOVE: The Cornell Carter interview.....

Thursday, 12 July 2018 10:59 Bill B E-mailPrintPDF

altFor the past few years San Francisco's CORNELL "CC" CARTER has emerged as a proper modern soul contender. The onetime session and bv singer (he's worked with people like Ray Charles, James Brown, The Whispers, The Temptations, Natalie Cole, Kool and the Gang and most recently Narada Michael Walden) has stepped out on his own and his album 'In The Moment' won him plenty of admirers and a selection of singles and their remixes scaled the all credible European soul charts. Then there was his mighty fine 2017 "covers" album – 'Vindicated Soul' – a tribute to many of his soul heroes.

Right now Cornell is putting the finishing touches to a new album – 'One Love' and with the release almost with us, the time was right for us to find out some more about Cornell Carter or is it 'CC' – as he was billed on some of his early releases. So, when we caught up with him, that was the obvious opener – do you prefer Cornell Carter or 'CC"?

I guess I'm simply Cornell CC Carter......

OK then, tell us about your background and musical heroes....

I was born in Berkeley California and raised in San Francisco, So basically the Bay Area! My first influences were in our home where my Mom played a lot of Blues as well as what we called Honky Tonk music! But my biggest influence was my brother who passed away early in life but was a great Singer! Outside of that it was, James Brown, Marvin Gaye and Stevie Wonder!

Last Updated on Thursday, 12 July 2018 11:13

 

SHAKING AND DANCING....

Wednesday, 11 July 2018 14:53 Bill B E-mailPrintPDF

altJust 12 months ago the soul world was quite taken by a lovely modern soul album from TY CAUSEY.... 'Tyangles'. He was hailed as a great new prospect, but those in the know knew that Mr C had plenty of previous form.

He'd actually started back in the 90s, singing with Najee before winning plenty of friends with his own ''N-tysing' album in 2004.

Right now he's putting the final gloss on another album – 'Mr Mellow', from which the first single is starting to takeoff. And easy to hear why 'Shake and Dance' is winning plenty of plays. It's a solid, modern soul beater with great melody and convincing vocal from the man dubbed "Mr. Consistent"... quite contagious. One US soul site described Ty Causey's music in general and 'Shake And Dance' in particular as "feel good music"..... bob on!

 

GETTIN’ HEAVY

Wednesday, 11 July 2018 14:51 Bill B E-mailPrintPDF

altLast time we heard from Detroit-based indie soul musician, PAUL RANDOLPH he was collaborating with the lovely Kathy Kosins. Before that he enjoyed success with his own long player, 'In the Company of Others' –a complex album that had input from people like Vernon Hill and Zed Bias.

One of the set's best cuts was 'Heavy' – a homage to Gil Scott Heron; the song has just been issued as a single in a tasty, and yes "heavy" mix and we're told that there are several more exciting mixes of 'Heavy' on the way via Ashley Beedle and Ramrock Records.

 

    

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