Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
Sweet Soul Queen of New Orleans: Collection
Genres: Blues, Pop, R&B
Similarly Requested CDs
Jason Kruppa | New Orleans, LA United States | 06/07/2000
(4 out of 5 stars)
"For my money, the two most soulful female voices of the sixties belonged to Irma Thomas and Aretha Franklin, and Thomas (whose voice is so naturally powerful that anyone foolish enough to compare with her would probably go back to whatever it is failed soul singers do) had recorded all her classics before Franklin had hit her stride. Consequently, anyone interested in sixties Soul (as well as New Orleans music), needs to own an Irma Thomas collection. Unfortunately, there is no definitive collection available on Thomas. Her first song, "(You Can Have My Husband But) Don't Mess with My Man," available on a Ron Records various artists CD, is a spunky little masterpiece essential to her story that is routinely left off of her hits packages. Her early sixties songs, produced by Allen Toussaint in New Orleans for Minit Records, are perfect capsules of the sound Toussaint was employing to great effect at the time. In addition to producing, Toussaint wrote many of the songs Thomas recorded during those early years, and the enduring brilliance of these recordings exemplifies what happens when two great talents who are sensitive to each others' gifts get together. (The Minit recordings are documented more extensively on "Ruler of Hearts," an out of print collection on the Charly label). This collection only includes five of those songs, instead focusing more on Thomas' work for Imperial Records in Los Angeles, all of which is equally as strong as her earlier recordings, if a little more streamlined and pop-oriented. No one, though, can argue with "Break-a-way," her original version of "Time Is On My Side," "The Hurt's All Gone," "Take a Look," or "While the City Sleeps". Even without the slightly later hits, this CD is worth owning for those five songs from the Minit sessions and what is arguably her best song, "Wish Somone Would Care," written by Thomas herself and recorded at one of her first sessions in L.A. Great lyrics with genuine emotional resonance and Thomas' knowing, world-weary delivery (while only in her early twenties at the time, she had already accumulated plenty of adversity) put it in the rare company of Sam Cooke's "A Change is Gonna Come." Truly remarkable.Those interested would do well to begin with this CD or EMI's "Time Is On My Side" (which duplicates a lot of what's here) and then make the effort to find the rest of Thomas' early sixties recordings. They'll very likely be on hard to find LPs, but the search is worthwhile."
COMPUTERJAZZMAN | Cliffside Park, New Jersey United States | 11/13/2003
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Irma Thomas, what a voice! I love this CD, it never gets old. Once upon a time, music had melody, and this is one of the best soul CD's I have. Irma is largely overlooked today, but one listen will tell you what she was all about. If you like this music, then pick up anything else you can get by Betty Harris or
Bessie Bankns, two other forgotten soul singers from the 60's. This CD has all of the old stuff produced by Allen Touissant on Minit records, as well as the studio stuff from L.A. One listen to the original "Time Is On My Side" and you will never want to hear the Rolling Stones version ever again ( as well as Bobby Womack's "It's All Over Now" )................"
Great set for collectors, especially
Stephen Espinola | Brooklyn NY | 01/30/2009
(4 out of 5 stars)
"As an intro "best of" I prefer the Kent "Time Is On My Side" CD, but this set has two things going for it:
1) Steve Hoffman mastered it from the vintage stereo mixes. He's a great mastering engineer. So it sounds really good (despite what a couple reviews here say).
2) It presents all of the remaining Imperial/Liberty B-sides not found on any other collection. It contains some mono single mixes that sound amazing. So if you want everything she released through 1966, you will need this.
The collection is sort of in two parts. The first 11 songs are the "hits" section, and most of the following songs (except for the classic "Take a Look") are the (usually wonderful) obscurities. Thank goodness this set exists.
And, yeah, everything the other reviews say about her voice is true. Amazing singer...probably the warmest and most versatile soul singer of the 1960's. Nice sense of humor, too."