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4.9 out of 5 stars
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on 15 June 2011
A few years back Honest John's put out a splendid CD featuring some of Candi's Fame material. It was an essential purchase and is much tresured.
Now that superb compilation has been trumped by this wonderful set, featuring all of Candi's standout recordings with Rick Hall in the late 60's/early 70's. Amazingly some of this material hasn't been released before, which you will find hard to comprehend given the quality.
Southern Soul music really doesn't get much better than this and anyone with a love of this style will want to add this to their collection.
The music is a sublime confection of great songs, brilliant musicianship, masterful production and, of course, vocals of the very highest order.
Buy it.
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on 5 September 2011
Having for years listened to James Browns funky divas and fine female singers such Aretha franklin, Etta James, Chaka Khan, Bettye LaVette, Mavis Staples ... (the list goes on) and then one day come across a phenomenal female voice like Candi's is just indescribable. She was certainly outstanding in those days! Notice btw that Elvis wrote her a thank you letter for her fine version of his hit "In the ghetto". This 2cd album makes a natural replacement for Honest John's 27 track compilation: "Candi Staton". So don't be sad if you own that album already, simply give it away to someone who likes soul music. You won't regret this purchase since the majority of new released track are just as GREAT as the ones we knew already.
From a true fan -
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on 14 November 2012
Picture the scene. It's a sultry, emasculating July night, so much so that activity other than sitting and drinking and talking and eating is too much. There's a studio across the road, and despite the weather there's a female singer, some backing singers and some musicians laying down some Southern soul like their lives depended on it, and being generous souls they've got the doors open, so the music sounds out.

I don't know how effective a verbal picture that is, but in an ideal world that music would be what's on these two discs, because it's frightening.....in the best way. There are forty eight tracks across these two discs and the old `all killers, no filler' chestnut applies, for once. The perennially deluded Mick Hucknell covers "That's How Strong my Love Is" on his current album, which only goes to show he should stick to growing grapes. Staton's reading of the song kills his from the moment she sings `If I were....' which as it happens is but a percentage of the first line of the lyric.

The birds must be real wilful for Staton not to sing them out from the trees on "Mr and Mrs Untrue" where she takes hold of the lyric from the first line and the horns and strings carry her all the way. Hell, I'm going to have to start a new paragraph; the goose bumps are getting too much for this one.

One Elvis Presley did a heartfelt reading of "In the Ghetto" but Staton trumps it. Every word is clearly enunciated so the pathos of the lyric -something which the likes of both Hucknell and Joss Stone would either mangle or simply fail to get- sparkles. The resulting verbal picture is far more vivid than anything this writer could convey.

"Are You Just Building Me Up?" wasn't even released until 2011, by this writer's reckoning some 38 years after it was waxed. Why the delay? As with everything here it's a gem, cut in this case in 3:28 and just one of the 48 reasons for buying this set, which I suggest you do even before you've finished reading this sentence. You know it makes sense.
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on 23 November 2014
Just got this superb cd(birthday pressie from the wife). 48 kicking tracks of sweet Southern soul. Really forget about latter day crapola like 'young hearts...' and ' you got the love'. This is the real Candi Staton. I was doing some paperwork sat at the dining room and just had to keep stopping. So many jaw dropping moments.
Great album from the folks at ACE.
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VINE VOICEon 3 August 2011
My star rating is for people who do not already own half of the tracks, having not bought the earlier compilation on Honest John. That compilation is excellent and I have no reason to think this one will not be at least as good as a lot of the tracks are exactly the same. Having bought the earlier compilation myself, a very subjective rating would be no stars at all. It is great that in recent years so much rare, unreleased, and unrecognized material is being released. However at times I feel the true fan is taken for ride with the same material issued time and again with different extras added to persuade them to buy again and again. Perhaps this is a bad example to pick on as Kent have done a marvelous job over the years making soul available in high quality and at a reasonable cost. However, my first reaction on seeing this release was 'not again'. Do I buy the tracks I already own again in the hope that the extras are of a similar quality and justify paying the price again? Will I feel cheated because the best is what I own already? Time will tell. However, if you do not have the earlier compilation, and have any interest at all in soul music, then you should buy this.
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on 19 October 2013
I picked same cd with just 26 tracks in a charity shop , played it and fell in love with it. Then saw this 2 disc version on Amazon with 22 tracks extra.
Had to purchase it straight away, the first disc is being sent to my son who's a dj who might even do a mix of a few songs.
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on 18 March 2014
Completely wonderful. The FAME musicians at their absolute mightiest with a singer who achieved greatness with these recordings. Two CDs worth and barely a dud track. Well done to all concerned.
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on 24 July 2013
I used to think it was a shame that browsing record shops was largely a thing of the past. Amazon has simply changed the experience thanks to the 'other customers purchased...' feature. I cannot remember which other artist or album led me to Candi Staton but I do know that I would probably not have found this fantastic compilation in a conventional shop.

I actually came to this artist via Candi Staton which I heartily recommend as well (perhaps as an intro to this period of her work) but, if you want to save yourself a few pounds later on then buy Evidence as it has the complete set of Fame Records cuts.
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on 8 November 2011
If you never buy another album this is the one to buy. How Candi Staton didn't have more hits I will never know. I bought her more resent album "Who's hurting now" and whilst OK I wasn't to impressed. I then bought this album and it has been in my CD player ever since. If your taste in music is Ottis Redding, Sam and Dave or the like you will love this album. There is so many brillant tracks I wouldn't know where to start telling you about them but just listen to "In the ghetto" and Slipping away" and I will guarentee you will be moved by those 2 tacks which are worth the cost of the album alone.
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on 1 December 2012
It is quite simply compilation of the best soul songs ever recorded with some real pearls like "In the ghetto" or "Joylene" which performed by Candi sound just so much better then Elvis and Dolly Parton. And it is not just my opinion. Just take it, people
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