(an occasional series)
Few performances, in any genre, pack this much punch.
Brother Joe May & Jackie [AKA Jacqui] Verdell, “You’re Gonna Need Him After A While,” live (TV broadcast)
[Brother Joe May was] the most powerful male soloist in a day when gospel singers had the greatest voices in America.
. . . Aretha Franklin’s delivery has Jacqui [Verdell] stamped all over it . . .
—Anthony Heilbut, The Gospel Sound: Good News and Bad Times (1975 ed.)
I considered . . . Jackie Verdell . . . one of the best and most underrrated soul singers of all time. It was through Jackie that I learned the expression, ‘Girl, you peed tonight,’ meaning you were dynamite. Several nights Jackie sang so hard she literally had a spot or two on her robe from peeing. Singing far too hard, I also peed here and there in the early days; I quickly realized no one should sing that hard.
—Aretha Franklin (in Aretha Franklin & David Ritz, Aretha: From These Roots )
This clip, I just learned, is included in a recent Sam & Dave DVD, The Original Soul Men, in a part called “The Roots of Sam & Dave.” (As one review notes: “Sam Moore was supposed to be Sam Cooke’s replacement in the Soul Stirrers, after Cooke made his historic decision to pursue pop music. But then Moore saw Jackie Wilson, and everything changed.”)
(Originally posted 11/29/09.)
taking a break
I’m going to take a little break—back in a bit.