Thursday, July 31, 2014

Sound & Groove, Episode 48: "Bobby Womack: A Tribute to a King" Part 2

The duo Womack and Womack, a husband-and-wife team that wrote, sang and recorded together for a good 35 years plus before Cecil, Bobby's younger brother by 3 years, passed away in 2011. Linda Womack (nee Cooke) was the former stepdaughter of Bobby and daughter of soul legend Sam Cooke. With such great bloodlines it's no wonder their music was at the forefront of smooth, gut-wrenching soul in the 80s, an otherwise limp decade for true soul music. They stuck together even after relocating to Africa where they connected to their cultural and racial heritage, changed their names and raised a family of children known collectively as a singing group called the House of Zekkariyas.

Bobby Womack was a true soul pioneer that kept the flame burning until the end, trying to keep a link back to his era of soul where its realness, its honesty and passion was the most essential thing of all. It wasn't so much about the execution but the feel that mattered in a music style that generated from gospel and church roots. He passed away at age 70 on June 30th yet survived to tell a story of trials and tribulations that most legends never got to live to tell. 

He did it all with a force of personality and worldly wisdom, performing with a variety of contemporaries as distant in time and style as Sam Cooke, Ron Wood, Jim Ford, Wilton Felder, Patti Labelle, Mos-Def and Gorillaz. This will be the 2nd of 3 episodes where I review his career by acknowledging his heroes as well as tracks he played on, wrote or put out under his own name during his nearly 6 decades in the business, starting as a gospel kid with his brothers (later to be called the Valentinos) and ending as a living legend. 

Hear another  musical journey through yet another themed podcast here in 2014. And if you're new to this podcast: Every month there will be a theme that the selection of music is centered around. It will be jam packed with my analysis, synopses, breakdowns, anecdotes and other witticisms you might enjoy. And not to worry, each month will contain a different theme than the last. All killer, no filler... other than when I talk and introduce the tunes and recap the ones before it. But aside from that? 100% juicy meat! 100% juicy tofu if you happen to be a vegetarian.

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Track Listing:
1. If You Don't Want My Love, Give it Back- Ron Wood (1975)
2. Breezin'- George Benson (1976) 
3. You're Welcome, Stop on By (Live)- Rufus (1978)
4. Inherit the Wind- Wilton Felder (1980)
5. So Many Sides of You- Bobby Womack (1981)
6. Express Myself- Womack & Womack (1983)
7. Love Has Finally Come at Last- Bobby Womack feat. Patti Labelle (1984)

Info of note:
Intro- "Days" by Television (1978)
All comments, questions and feedback are greatly welcomed and appreciated! I encourage participation. Even though I drain an hour off your life by listening to the podcast then checking through the links, at least you don't have to fork over your money to me... though if you feel like, you know... But in all seriousness, let me now what you'd like to hear or see and I'll consider it. Popular approval doesn't always sway me but having fans or listeners get their input would be just grand!

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