on 11 November 2009
Daptone delivers again, this time with Naomi Shelton & The Gospel Queens.
For me, there are 5 tracks that stand out; "What have you done", a song
that would have been a massive hit in a better world than this, I'll even
heard my 2 year old son groove along to it, trying to get the words right!
You get "A change is gonna come" and "I need you to hold my hand", two
sweet gospel numbers, a bit more traditional, but with the Daptone soul
sound for added spice, and on "What more can I do" and "Am I asking too
much?" they hit a groove that's pretty close to Sharon Jones.
Naomi Shelton has also recorded under the name Naomi Davis & The Knights
Of Forty First Street. Desco Records released an amazing 45 called
"Forty First Street Breakdown", a heavy funk number.
on 13 April 2011
Naomi Shelton And The Gospel Queens - What Have You Done, My Brother? (Daptone)
It's strange how gospel music raises the spirits, yet Christian rock is so relentlessly depressing. The ideology is the same, so it must be down to the presentation and the tunes. When it comes to the latter, covering Sam Cooke's proto-soul classic "A Change Is Gonna Come" isn't a bad idea, that and tapping into the legacy of Stax, Southern soul and Northern blues.
As you've probably guessed, Naomi Shelton isn't a conventional gospel singer. She was raised singing in an Alabama church, but has spent just as much time in New York soul clubs. On her first official album release she's ably supported by musical director, pianist Cliff Driver, her wonderfully tight / loose band, and The Gospel Queens: Bobby Gant, Cynthia Langston and Edna Johnson. Sharon Jones contributes additional vocals. 8/10.