Friday, February 08, 2008

Angie Stone Contest

In December of 2006, after being acquired by the Concord Music Group through its purchase of its parent company Fantasy Records, the legendary southern soul label Stax was re-launched. Soon after it's return, they signed two major artists: Isaac Hayes (yes, that one who was so instrumental in Stax's early success) and Angie Stone, who released a new album in October of last year.

I recently got my hands on that album, The Art Of Love & War, and I'll tell you right off, it just pops right out of the gate. Although I'll admit I am a little prejudice based on my love of the original Stax and its catalog of incredible depth, this album is something completely new, something completely fresh, something that deserves to have the legendary Stax logo on it while still bringing something original to the table.

Angie's story doesn't start with Stax though. She's been performing music since she was 8 way back when performing gospel at First Nazareth Baptist Church in South Carolina. From there she formed a rap trio and eventually started her solo career in the late 90's, delivering music that hearkened back to memories of Aretha Franklin in the classic soul tradition.

Her Stax debut is actually her third solo LP, and it's absolutely incredible. Although the classic soul influences are indelibly clear, Angie mixes in some strong hip-hop beats backing her on some tracks (try Baby below, which features Angie working with another soul legend, Betty Wright), smooth R&B grooves on others, and of course songs that do the classic Stax label proud (My People below - which feels like it could have come from The Staple Singers' catalog).

Now that I've talked enough about how much I love this disc, and hopefully some of that excitement has infected you, I'm going to give you a chance to win a copy for yourself. All you need to do is leave a comment (or e-mail me) with you name, e-mail address, and the name of your favorite performer or band that has produced something under the Stax logo anytime in its long, storied history and you'll be in the running. I'll pick a winner next Fridayish and notify them via e-mail.

While you're waiting to see if you won, check out the following two tracks from the album, and a cover of an Earth, Wind & Fire song that Angie performed for Interpretations: Celebrating the Music of Earth, Wind & Fire, coincidentally, the first album of all new material released by the newly formed Stax label March of last year.

and one contributed to a previous compilation:

Angie Stone - Be Ever Wonderful (Earth, Wind & Fire cover) : Interpretations: Celebrating The Music Of Earth, Wind & Fire

Visit her website, her label Stax Records, and become her friend on MySpace.


Betty Wright - Clean Up Woman : Atlantic Gold-75 Soul Classics From The Atlantic Vaults (Disc 3)

Isaac Hayes - Ain't No Sunshine (live) : Wattstax: The Living Word (Album 2)

1 comment:

festus said...

Otis Redding. Sam and Dave come close, but with no american garrisons in this part of germany i had to wait for the blues brothers film to really introduce me to their music and show.
and now there are always two white guys hanging around in my mind when sam and dave are played...

Dirk "festus" Festerling

festusdirk at web point de