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Solomon Burke's years at Atlantic just kept getting better and better! He started out very strong at the beginning of the 60s and by the time of a record like this, he was in strong command of his vocal talents and emotion, such that he could do a fantastic job with just about any song. Proof is in the set here as Solomon works with a host of New York and southern soul arrangements, on tracks that include versions of "Detroit City", "Presents For Christmas", "Party People", "Woman, How Do You Make Me Love You Like I Do", "It's Just A Matter Of Time", "Time Is A Thief", and "It's Been A Change". Great stuff all around!
With his big, powerful voice and fervent but controlled emotionality, Solomon Burke was one of the early pioneers of soul music, though his contributions were not fully recognized until the new millennium, when he belatedly won his first Grammy. By the age of nine, Solomon Burke (b. March 21, 1940, Philadelphia, PA) was a preacher and choir soloist at his family's Philadelphia church, the House of God for All People. At twelve he began hosting his own gospel radio show, "Solomon's Temple, " and touring the gospel circuits billed as the "Wonder Boy Preacher."
In 1955 he began recording both religious and secular music for Apollo and Singular before signing with Atlantic Records in 1960. At Atlantic Burke made some of the first soul records by setting his gospel "preaching" style in song forms borrowed from R&B, rock & roll and other secular music styles. He was a major influence on Mick Jagger, who covered Burke-related songs "You Can Make It If You Try, " "Everybody Needs Somebody to Love, " "If You Need Me" and "Cry to Me" on early Rolling Stones albums. Otis Redding also covered Burke's R&B variation on the traditional folk ballad "Down in the Valley."