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Chess Soul: Decade of Chicago's Finest
Various Artists
Chess Soul: Decade of Chicago's Finest
Genres: Dance & Electronic, Blues, Pop, R&B, Gospel
 
  •  Track Listings (23) - Disc #1
  •  Track Listings (22) - Disc #2

Chess Records may not have had the grit of Stax or the impact of Motown when it came to soul, but the label certainly had its share of success. Between 1961 and 1971, chart-toppers like Etta James, Fontella Bass, Little Mi...  more »

      
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CD Details

All Artists: Various Artists
Title: Chess Soul: Decade of Chicago's Finest
Members Wishing: 4
Total Copies: 0
Label: Mca
Original Release Date: 8/26/1997
Release Date: 8/26/1997
Genres: Dance & Electronic, Blues, Pop, R&B, Gospel
Styles: Disco, By Decade, 1970s, Funk, Soul, Urban & Contemporary
Number of Discs: 2
SwapaCD Credits: 2
UPCs: 076732938829, 0076732938829

Synopsis

Amazon.com
Chess Records may not have had the grit of Stax or the impact of Motown when it came to soul, but the label certainly had its share of success. Between 1961 and 1971, chart-toppers like Etta James, Fontella Bass, Little Milton, and the Dells kept enough money rolling in to leverage the stronger, but weaker-selling, blues side of Chess. Crucial cuts by all these acts can be found in this two-CD compilation along with fine work from many lesser-knowns. Chess preferred the softer side of soul with string arrangements (the Gems' "I Can't Help Myself," the Knight Brothers' "Temptation 'Bout to Get Me"), but they managed to balance out their catalog with some sweatier material (Etta James and Sugar Pie DeSanto's "Do I Make Myself Clear," Laura Lee's "Dirty Man"). Highlights include Jan Bradley's sugar-sweet "Mama Didn't Lie," the Kolettes' punchy "Who's That Guy," Maurice & Mac's propulsive "You Left the Water Running," and (of course) the Fontella Bass classic "Rescue Me." This probably should have been expanded into a box set, but there's more than enough first-class music here to make it a must-have for soul fans. --Ken Hohman

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CD Reviews

Essential
gordon@ruraltel.net | 11/03/1999
(5 out of 5 stars)

"Anyone with even a passing interest in '60s Soul should not be without this in their collection. Not a bad apple in the bunch. Absolutely essential."
"Lost Soul"
hausser@burgoyne.com | Salt Lake City | 08/23/1998
(5 out of 5 stars)

"Even though I grew up in the mid-west in the 60's listening to WLS and WLAC, I only remember a few of the songs on this double album. But all of the others seem like "old friends," and match those found in any STAX collection. Chess also has some great Blues collections, but if Soul's your game, this is one of the best!"
Top Notch Chicago Soul from Chess
Andre M. | Mt. Pleasant, SC United States | 06/15/2001
(5 out of 5 stars)

"The Chicago Soul sound was distinguished by it's emphasis on appealing and beautiful harmony and melody, much of it the trademark of Curtis Mayfield and producer Johnny Pate. It is well represented on this CD with beauties as "Voice Your Choice" by the Radiants, "The Entertainer" By Tony Clarke (not to be confused with the Scott Joplin tune, but still an underrated masterpiece), "Selfish One," "mama Didn't Lie," Billy Stewart's "Strange Feeling," Gene Chandler's "To Be A Lover." Even if you did not grow up with this music, it will certainly make you feel good!"