Playing tracks by
Irma Thomas, Lisa Richards, Etta James, Toussaint McCall, Arthur Conley and more.
As someone who generally has less of a discernible spiritual side than most serial killers, the aptly titled genre of soul music does more than any biblical text to make me believe in a higher power. Where I can even rationalize the existence of love and friendship as part of an evolutionary imperative instilled to promote protection and procreation, I can’t explain what drives a shiver up my spine when I hear a classic soul song.
While soul music has itself has been constantly involving, the 1970s unarguably represents the genre’s heyday. The church was still a dominant influence for the first generation of black artists who were for the first time allowed to ignore the perceived preferences of white audiences, and the production techniques of the era were apt at reflecting the sonic warmth that suited this sound so well. This selection takes some lesser known stunners from this seminal decade, surreptitiously suggesting some more lofty spiritual ideals.