WELCOME TO SIR SHAMBLING'S DEEP SOUL HEAVEN
Here you’ll find articles – some brief, some less so – on soul music and the artists who made it. Mostly concentrating on deep soul and southern soul recordings from below the Mason - Dixon line in the Golden Age between about 1960 and 1980 when the dreaded synthesisers began to take over. But like all the “rules” of the site, this one was made to be broken, and a lot of other sorts of black music have found their way here as well.
To help you find your way around the site:
Artists - an ever growing index that will lead you to biographies, discographies, label shots and, of course, the music from deep and southern soul artists - famous and not so famous. Sound files you can listen to or download are highlighted by this symbol
Articles - Index of some reviews, articles and ramblings from Sir Shambling and various guest writers. These include small features on what this site is all about, a definition of the music highlighted here, who Sir Shambling is and a "thank you" list of friends without whom this site would not have been possible.
Links - Sir Shambling's favourite websites, record dealers, magazines and other friends of this site.
Contact Sir Shambling - leave your comments positive or not right here.
NEW!! Search - Search for artists, labels or anything or anybody else covered in this website.
NEW!! CD Reviews - a section highlighting CDs both old and new of interest to southern and deep soul fans.
ANNOUNCEMENT ON SOUNDCLIPS.
This website has been open for well over 10 years now and during that time many tracks which can only be found here have been included on commercial CDs, both legitimate and bootleg. As have numerous images and information. Sometimes this website has been acknowledged as the source, sometimes compilers have asked my permission to use my material but mostly music and other stuff has simply been taken.
I have tended to view this thievery as the price that has to be paid for making this rare music freely available to everybody who wants to hear it, and to increase awareness of deep and southern soul.
But recently matters have taken a substantial turn for the worse. Two individuals – one in the US and one in the UK – have issued CDs that don’t just include the odd track from here but are actually entirely based on this website. Pretty much all the tracks, images and whole paragraphs of text have been lifted wholesale. These cynical and blatant attempts to make easy money from my work are completely unacceptable. And since taking pictures and text are dependent on the taking of the music I have had to act to prevent the music being such an easy target.
Accordingly all the tracks on this website have now been “seeded” with a series of “bleeps” through the course of the song which will make it much harder technically and music more expensive to use them for any sort of commercial CD. Sadly this also means that listening to them for pleasure has been seriously compromised. I must apologise to all who come here for the music and not to make money out of the site – but since the only alternative was to close the site completely I hope you will understand. The cause and responsibility for this action rests with the greedy bad guys not me.
I will of course be pleased to send music to anybody who is interested in any of the songs here and who wants a track purely for their own enjoyment rather personal gain. Just use the contact form here to send me an email and I will respond. Again I am sorry for this inconvenience but the blame for it lies elsewhere.
2 September - For over 20 years now I've been banging on about how superb Reuben James' "Hold On Your Heart" is - the very essence of deep soul which you can listen to here. In the last week or two the writer / producer of that track, my friend Dave Williams, has released the wildly overdue CD from James which contains an updated mix of the cut. The set is called "About Time" on Dave's Jigsaw imprint and it's a real beauty. The best traditional southern soul recordings this year. Don't miss it whatever you do - but bear in mind James is now calling himself Reuben James Richards.
My great friend Greg Burgess has kindly written an excellentdetailed review not just of this new CD but also James' entire career. You can find it here.
You can find all the CD reviews on this site here.
21 August - My friend Tom de Jong has written an article on the famous ICA label, run by Al Bell after Stax folded. He describes each of the 45 releases, with label shots and sound clips, and adds a very useful label listing. There are a few releases missing from the discography and both Tom and I would love to hear from anybody who could help fill in the gaps.
You can find this excellent piece of research here. I'm very grateful to Tom for all his efforts.
8 June - My good friend Matt Futerman will shortly be undergoing radical colon surgery to remove cancerous cells. Thanks to problems with his US health insurance he will not be able to afford to live during the recovery period from his surgery while he is not earning. His friend Becky Perkins has set up a Fundraiser to enable friends to donate to help him out. The Fundraiser can be found here
Please give generously if you can. Thank you.
1 June 2015 -
The long awaited CD from legendary Atlanta musician Richard Marks has just been released by NowAgain Records.
The multi talented (guitarist, singer, writer, producer) Marks worked with artists of the calibre of Barbara Hall and Bill Wright through his long career - as well as making some superb records under his own name. The tracks on this CD come from fabled labels like Tuska and Note, and one or two even more rare sources. I'll put my emphasis on the several wonderful deep soul songs, but Marks was equally at home in the funk genre and some extremely expensive examples of that genre are included.
The CD is complemented by a sumptuous, lavishly illustrated booklet written by Georgia soul expert Brian Poust detailing Marks' life and times.
All in all this is southern soul from the classic era - long overlooked but now resurrected.
NowAgain's announcement can be found here
and the CD can be bought here
There is a link to an interesting video to be found here
and finally David Cole's excellent review can be found here