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Various Artists

Soul Summit

Live at the Berks Jazz Fest

(Shanachie; US: 22 Jan 2008; UK: 4 Feb 2008)

It’s no accident that rock’s first big selling live album, James Brown’s Live at the Apollo, came out of soul music. Soul’s deep, emotive impact benefits from the immediacy of presentation. This recording of a one-night only gathering of players at the 2007 Berks Jazz Festival in Reading, Pennsylvania, features artists from the jazz, blues, rock, and R&B fields getting together to make soul. None of the artists are household names, but they are well-known by fans of the particular genres. They include award-winning blues singer Susan Tedeschi, saxophonist Richard Elliot (Tower of Power), bassist Bob Babbitt (Funk Brothers), guitarist Reggie Young (Elvis Presley, Ray Charles) and many others. The results vary, with some tracks burning hotter than others, but jam music fans should enjoy this soulful stew. All of the tracks are long and allow the various performers to strut their stuff.

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Steven Horowitz has a Ph.D. in American Studies from the University of Iowa, where he continues to teach a three-credit online course on "Rock and Roll in America". He has written for many different popular and academic publications including American Music, Paste and the Icon. Horowitz is a firm believer in Paul Goodman's neofunctional perspective on culture and that Sam Cooke was right, a change is gonna come.


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