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The Very Best of Bobby Womack

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Album Review

Charly, the inimitable reissue label from the U.K., released a double-disc Bobby Womack best-of, collecting his work with United Artists, Minit, and other UA-associated labels. It contains 38 cuts from the tracks he cut with Chips Moman of hard soul, and moves into the 1970s gracefully, when Womack established himself as a true neo-soul pioneer with his work on the soundtrack for Across 110th Street with trombonist J.J. Johnson, through his own recordings such as Understanding, Facts of Life (which includes a wildly innovative reading of Bob Dylan's "All Along the Watchtower"), Lookin' for a Love Again, and Safety Zone, just to name a few. This is a solid introduction to Womack's work, though there are some seemingly superfluous tracks at the beginning of disc one. Those who are seeking something more focused would be advised to check out Midnight Mover: The Bobby Womack Collection, which was issued domestically by Capitol in 1993.


Born: 04 March 1944 in Cleveland, OH

Genre: R&B/Soul

Years Active: '60s, '70s, '80s, '90s, '00s, '10s

A veteran who paid his dues for over a decade before getting his shot at solo stardom, Bobby Womack persevered through tragedy and addiction to emerge as one of soul music's great survivors. Able to shine in the spotlight as a singer or behind the scenes as an instrumentalist and songwriter, Womack never got his due from pop audiences, but during the late '60s and much of the '70s, he was a consistent hitmaker on the R&B charts, with a high standard of quality control. His records were quintessential...
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