‘The big education for me is that civilisation is fragile and can be destroyed in a heartbeat' - Jeremy Brade, former peacekeeper in Sarajevo.

Friday, September 03, 2021

FRIDAY MUSIC: The Staple Singers, by JD

More 'Americana', this time from The Staple Singers featuring Mavis Staples, the best soul/gospel singer since Mahalia Jackson.

"The Staple Singers’ place in music history was set in stone more than 40 years ago with two of soul’s greatest singles, “Respect Yourself” and the even more powerful, “I’ll Take You There.”But the family group – patriarch Roebuck “Pops” Staples, lead singer Mavis and siblings Pervis, Cleotha and Yvonne - had been, by then, a major force in American music, culture and politics for more than a decade. Their downhome Mississippi-rooted gospel helped put the cross in “crossover,” taking the group from success in the sacred field to headlining status at the Newport Folk Festival and a frontline position in the battle for civil rights alongside the Rev. Martin Luther King. Their rural roots even caught the ear of Roebuck’s fellow Mississippian, the self-styled King of Hillbilly Rock, Marty Stuart, who performed and recorded with the Staples and who, along with GRAMMY-winning producer/guitarists T-Bone Burnett and Buddy Miller, helps keep the Pops Staples guitar sound alive today as one of the keystones of Americana."










Here is a bonus track from the Staple Singers plus a comment attributed to Bob Dylan who later proposed to Mavis Staples and pursued her for seven years. https://www.theguardian.com/music/2016/feb/12/mavis-staples-i-often-think-what-would-have-happened-if-id-married-bob-dylan 

'Uncloudy Day' from 1956, their first record:


"Uncloudy Day" was an early influence on Bob Dylan, who said of it in 2015, "It was the most mysterious thing I'd ever heard... I'd think about them even at my school desk...Mavis looked to be about the same age as me in her picture (on the cover of "Uncloudy Day")...Her singing just knocked me out...And Mavis was a great singer—deep and mysterious. And even at the young age, I felt that life itself was a mystery."

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