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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A real SOUL album, 2 Dec 2006
By 
Andy Edwards "staxasoul" (Essex UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Be What You Are (Audio CD)
The Staple Singers enjoyed a brief spell when their popularity reached beyond the Soul fraternity and into the Pop charts and thus they are well known for a few classic singles. One of those appears here, "If You're Ready(Come and Go with Me)" and it gives you an idea of the quality contained in this album.

With a resolutely Southern Soul feel, this represents the best album the Staples ever recorded. While it seemed the rest of the Stax roster were busy extending the boundaries of Black music, the Staples kept faith with the elements of the music which had elevated the label to pre-eminance in the 60's. So you won't find overblown orchestration, or proto-disco here. What you will find are magnificent lead vocals (Mavis Staples has few equals), superb harmonies, and production which lets those voices take centre stage.

The Staples also kept faith with their Gospel roots, and there are a couple of tracks here that fit that profile - "If you're Ready" is essentially Gospel and "Heaven" has an ambiguous lyric which could be secular, but which in Mavis' hands must be a hymn to her God.

Stand out tracks are many, their version of Grandma's Hands for example is excellent and "the aformentioned "Heaven" is exactly that. But I would recommend this in it's entirety as an example of Soul at it's 70's best and as a musical counterpoint to the way some of their contemporaries were developing Black music.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great sounds, 24 April 2012
By 
T. W. Winterbotham "thom w" (sheffield) - See all my reviews
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Original music, from the heart of southern soul - Stax records.

Remastered versions sound great with loads of bass.

Every tune is as good as the lead songs on the album.

Highly recommended!
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Be What You Are
Be What You Are by The Staple Singers (Vinyl)
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