Monday, July 2, 2012
40 Year Itch: Dum-Dum-Dum-Dum Sock It, Sock It
"It pleased God to put a guitar in my hands and a song on the lips of my children and we aim to please God through our music"
-Roebuck "Pops" Staples
The Staple Singers began as a family gospel act and never completely left the church and its teachings behind ...even when they found success on the pop and R and B charts. From Bealtitude: Respect Yourself ,The Staple Singers has two big hits : the #12 pop/#2 R and B "Respect Yourself" and the #1 pop and R and B hit "I'll Take You There", which may be the best song to ever emerge from Muscle Shoals Studio.
The introduction was lifted by these good God fearing folks from the reggae artists Harry J All Stars UK hit "The Liquidator". But it was all in the name of getting us to heaven via the breathy, moaning vocals of Mavis Staples and that Eddie Hinton guitar solo has a grace all of its own...so what the hell.
That was kind of the point of what The Staple Singers did: spreading the good word about love. As "Pops" told Essence Magazine's Vernon Gibbs :
"We always tried to do material that was inspirational and uplifting in addition to whatever else it was, and I guess the deejays picked up on that...we've always tried to make music that is affirmative, happy music that makes a positive point. Our aim is to get across a message while we're entertaining people. We want people to enjoy the music, but we also want them to hear the lyrics and hear one message--love."
Bealtitide is a great album full of sanctifying soul. Our deep cut is "This Old Town" which basically says we're all the same and if you can't figure that our now, you will when you get to "the community just up the hill." And if that's not inspiring, maybe this woman's interpretive dance will do the trick.