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PopEntertainment.com > Reviews > Record Reviews > Solomon Burke

MUSIC REVIEWS

 Everyday Beautiful

Solomon Burke-Make Do With What You Got (Shout! Factory)

Solomon Burke's 2002 Grammy-winning CD Don't Give Up On Me was one of the more surprising comebacks in recent years.  In it, a classic R&B singer who had been well under the radar (and working as a Reverend in Los Angeles) had some of the most respected names in music donating songs to him — including Bob Dylan, Brian Wilson, Elvis Costello, Tom Waits and Van Morrison. 

It is nice to see that Burke is no longer willing to allow moss to grow beneath his career; his follow-up CD Make Do With What You Got is another impressive set.  Burke has replaced rootsy producer Joe Henry with the more contemporary sounding boardsman Don Was (Bonnie Raitt, The B-52s, The Rolling Stones.)  Because of this, Burke is rocking out more here than on the last CD, coming screeching out of the gates on the superlative rave-up "I Need Your Love In My Life."  He follows this up with heartfelt takes on Dylan's "What Good Am I?" and Robbie Robertson's "It Makes No Difference" and the album is off to the races.

The musicianship here is amazing (particularly surprising is lead guitarist Ray Parker, Jr., who lays down such sultry grooves that I'm even willing to forgive him for "Ghostbusters.")  However, the biggest selling point is the gruff vocals of the big guy behind the mike.

Make Do With What You Got sounds like it was recorded back in Burke's sixties heyday.  It's nice to see that as much as the world changes, some things are comfortingly solid as a rock.  The guy may be sixty-five-years old, but from the evidence of the last two albums he's recorded, he still has years of interesting music to come.  (4/05)

Jay S. Jacobs

Copyright © 2005 PopEntertainment.com. All rights reserved.  Posted: June 13, 2005.

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Copyright © 2005 PopEntertainment.com. All rights reserved.  Posted: June 13, 2005.