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The Very Best of Sam Cooke

Sam Cooke

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Album Review

This concise 14-track playlist does a great job of tracing the arc of Sam Cooke’s late-'50s and early-'60s secular pop recordings, from “You Send Me” through “(What A) Wonderful World” to the late-era “Bring It on Home to Me,” which was a perfect blend of the blues and gospel traditions Cooke had been mining all along. Soul, they called it, and Cooke had it from the start, wowing the gospel world with the Soul Stirrers before he stepped over the line into the Saturday night world of pop. This intelligently conceived little set tells the back half of that story very well.

Biography

Born: 22 January 1931 in Clarksdale, MS

Genre: R&B/Soul

Years Active: '50s, '60s

Sam Cooke was the most important soul singer in history — he was also the inventor of soul music, and its most popular and beloved performer in both the black and white communities. Equally important, he was among the first modern black performers and composers to attend to the business side of the music business, and founded both a record label and a publishing company as an extension of his careers as a singer and composer. Yet, those business interests didn't prevent him from being engaged...
Full Bio