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Something Special

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Album Review

Mighty Joe Hicks and Jimmy Hughes took different approachs to the Stax formula of secular gospel; Hicks was a blues-oriented performer whose songs mixed Delta strains with more contemporary sounds, while Hughes was a straight soul artist merging spiritual devices and earthly concerns. Hughes is featured on 13 of the 22 tracks and hits his stride on such songs as "Chains of Love" and "Lay It On the Line." Hicks covers Jimmy Reed nicely on "Rock Me Baby" and sparkles on "Train of Thought" and "Water Water."


Born: 1938 in Florence, AL

Genre: R&B/Soul

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

Jimmy Hughes established producer Rick Hall's fledgling FAME studio as an R&B mecca with his 1964 blues ballad "Steal Away." The ex-gospel singer hooked up with Hall in 1962, but it wasn't until the explosive "Steal Away" was issued on the FAME label that his career took off. With an intense, crying vocal style that was perfect for deep soul ballads, Hughes scored with the pleading "Why Not Tonight" in 1967, although the atypically uptempo "Neighbor, Neighbor"...
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Something Special, Jimmy Hughes
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