PopEntertainment.com

It's all the entertainment you need!

 

FEATURE STORIES MOVIE REVIEWS MUSIC REVIEWS BOX SET REVIEWS TV SHOWS ON DVD CONTESTS CONCERT PHOTOS

 

  FEATURE STORIES
  INTERVIEWS A TO E
  INTERVIEWS F TO J
  INTERVIEWS K TO O
  INTERVIEWS P TO T
  INTERVIEWS U TO Z
  INTERVIEWS ACTORS
  INTERVIEWS ACTRESSES
  INTERVIEWS BOOKS
  INTERVIEWS DIRECTORS AND SCREENWRITERS
  INTERVIEWS MUSIC
  INTERVIEWS OSCAR NOMINEES
  INTERVIEWS THEATER
  IN MEMORIAM
  REVIEWS
  MOVIE REVIEWS
  MUSIC REVIEWS
  CONCERT REVIEWS
  BOX SET REPORT CARD
  TV SHOWS ON DVD
  MISCELLANEOUS STUFF & NONSENSE
  CONCERT PHOTOGRAPHY
  LETTERS TO THE EDITOR
  CONTESTS
  LINKS
  MASTHEAD
  EMAIL US

"WILD YEARS-THE MUSIC & MYTH OF TOM WAITS" BY JAY S. JACOBS

AVAILABLE IN BOOK STORES EVERYWHERE!

 

www.wbshop.com

PopEntertainment.com > Reviews > Box Set Reviews > Sam Cooke - The Man Who Invented Soul

cooke.gif (15573 bytes)

 

Sam Cooke

The Man Who Invented Soul (RCA 07863 67911-2) 2000

Return to Box Sets Report Card

Copyright 2000   PopEntertainment.com.  All rights reserved. Revised: January 31, 2016.

Description:
Sam Cooke is as responsible as any person in the world for opening the door for African-Americans in popular music.  But beyond that, he was a truly amazing showman and songwriter.  But after a good 10-20 years of respect after his unfortunate (and suspicious) death at 33, people seem to have forgotten about or downplay Cooke's singing and his charisma.   In a recent VH1 TV movie on the life of Little Richard, they had the actor playing Richard making fun of a stupidly smiling sweater-wearing goofball who was supposed to be Cooke.  Well, get this, VH1 people, Sam Cooke was a better singer, better songwriter and even a better performer than Little Richard.  You doubt it, listen to this!
What's Good About It?
Where do you start?  I guess at the very beginning, with Cooke's very first (secular) hit, "You Send Me."  The song is, and deserves to be, simply one of the most influential R&B singles ever.  Many people could hang an entire career on that song, but that was just the beginning of a stream of standards, soul singles that to this day resonate.  The simple but touching lyrics of "Cupid" and "(What A) Wonderful World" are still touching people all over the world.  Even when he was following the current musical trends, like on "Twistin' the Night Away," his songs were more vital and timeless than the fads they followed (listen to "Twistin' the Night Away" together with Chubby Checker's "The Twist" or any of the scores of imitators and see which one has aged better.)  It's time to remind everyone, Sam Cooke had quite simply one of the great singing voices of rhythm and blues music, and it is a joy to be reintroduced to it. 
What's Bad About It?
There is not a single thing on the box set that is bad.  The one bad thing is what is missing...
What's Missing?
It's an absolute crime that any compilation of the songs of Sam Cooke much less a career spanning box set could miss Cooke's most incredible moment, the posthumously released single "A Change Is Gonna Come."  That song was his greatest moment as a singer and more importantly, as a songwriter.  It plumbed emotional depths that Cooke had skirted in some of his more commercial singles.  Also missing, but less noticeably, is another late single called "Shake" which was a fine gospel rave-up, but nothing more.  It would have also made some historical sense to pull out some of his early gospel sides with the Soul Stirrers.
PopEntertainment.com final grade: A- 
This would be a solid A if not for the set dropping the ball with the missing "A Change Is Gonna Come."  It still is an amazing body of work, made even more amazing by Cooke's premature death at age 33.  Sam Cooke is sometimes overlooked for his role in music history.  Listen to The Man Who Invented Soul to be reminded how much the music world owes to him.

Jay S. Jacobs

Copyright 2000   PopEntertainment.com.  All rights reserved. Revised: January 31, 2016.

dmindbanner.gif (10017 bytes)