Musician Spotlight

Musician Spotlight

Solomon Burke

Solomon Burke is finally getting his due as one of America’s greatest soul and blues singers. Burke’s career peaked in the 1960s when he was recording for Atlantic Records, and even though he never had a Top 20 pop hit, he was widely respected for his gospel, blues and country flavored recordings. As with contemporaries Otis Redding and Wilson Pickett, Burke had a strong influence on the Rolling Stones, who covered his songs "Cry to Me" and "Everybody Needs Somebody to Love" on their early albums. After leaving Atlantic in the late 60s Burke recorded a relatively successful cover of Creedence Clearwater Revival’s "Proud Mary" in 1969, but wasn’t able to regain his early form on a string of poorly produced albums.

That all changed in 2002 when Burke’s album Don’t Give Up On Me was released to unanimous praise, earning a Grammy for Best Contemporary Blues Album and putting Burke back in the spotlight. Since Burke has inspired so many contemporary rock and blues artists Elvis Costello, Tom Waits, Nick Lowe, Brian Wilson, Van Morrison, Bob Dylan and others returned the favor by contributing songs for Burke's album.


Burke is joined by the Blind Boys of Alabama on the haunting gospel-tinged track "None Of Us Are Free," which was featured on our 2003 American Blues album. 

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