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The Soul Queen Of New Orleans

Irma Thomas

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Album Review

Irma Thomas has been the undisputed Soul Queen of New Orleans for some five decades now, and the quality and consistency of the work this extraordinary singer has done makes one wonder why she isn’t more of a household name. This set, recorded at Deep South Studios in Baton Rouge and Swallow Studios in Ville Platte, Louisiana, and featuring Freddy Wall and Joey Mucia on guitar, Pete Verbois on saxophone, and Stan Kemper on drums, and with Cora Jefferson and Alice Jackson handling background vocals, was originally released in 1978 and remains one of her finest LPs. Highlights include fine Crescent City versions of Kris Kristofferson's “For the Good Times,” Jackie DeShannon's “Breakway,” and Dan Penn's “Friendly,” among others.

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Biography

Born: February 18, 1941 in Ponchatoula, LA

Genre: R&B/Soul

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

The unrivaled Soul Queen of New Orleans — a title officially bestowed by local officials, no less — Irma Thomas ranks among Crescent City R&B's greatest and most enduring musical ambassadors, never enjoying the coast-to-coast commercial success of contemporaries like Aretha Franklin and Etta James but nevertheless breathing the same rarified air in the minds of many soul music aficionados. Born Irma Lee in Ponchatoula, LA, on February 18, 1941, as a teen she sang with a Baptist church...
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