George Soule
* * *
Take A Ride ZANE

Long - awaited inaugural
outing from Southern soul songwriter.

Between recording singles for La Louisianne in 1965 and his first long player 41 years later, Soule's been a busy man. A chief architect of the Southern soul sound, he honed his songwriting skills for Tommy Couch at Malaco Studios before settling at Muscle Shoals writing for Jerry Wexler's stable. Teaming with Don Covay, he co-authored Shoes for Brook Benton in 1970. As George Glenn he released his own version two years later and revisits it here again. It's a great version with Soules voice smooth and warm yet capable of a husky rasp when necessary. His take on I'll Be Your Everything, a US R&B Top 20 hit he scribed for Percy Sledge in 1974, is equally fab, while the George Jackson composition Get Involved, a passionate slice of funk, resonates as fiercely today as it did when Soule's original take was adopted as a civil rights rallying cry in the early '70s.

Lois Wilson

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George Soule * star pick
Take A Ride ZANE ZNCD 1024

You've seen the man's name in the songwriting credits on many a southern soul hit and you’re doubtless familiar with his 1973 Fame outing, 'Get Involved' - revived here - but now, fresh from the plaudits gathered from the 'Country Soul Revue' project, George Soule steps into the spotlight in his own right at long last. 'Take A Ride' was produced by Mark Nevers at the Beech House Studio in Nashville and if you think Nevers and Beech House look familiar, they are the producer and studio that brought you Candi Staton's 'star-picked' masterpiece, 'His Hands'. It's an award winning combination and it's just hit the bullseye again. Not every song carries the Soule name in the writing credits: pals such as Larry Henley and Eddie Struzick penning the strolling horn supported opener, 'Something Went Right' - a perfect item to smack you right between the eyes from the off - and Dan Penn and Spooner Oldham were responsible for the party-heavy rocker 'Come On Over'. Other outside material includes the moody ‘Find The Time' (JL Nichols/W Nunes) and the country-slanted plodder 'Wait and See (Greg Cartwright). 'Shoes' was a top r&b hit for Brook Benton on Cotillion just as 1971 kicked in but liner writer, Nial Briggs, tells us that George recorded his own version of the song (he had written with Don Covay) a year later under the name of George Glenn. It gets a remake here, while our man adds his own special magic to 'I'll Be Your Everything' and 'My World Tumbles Down', vehicles for Percy Sledge (the former) and Reuben Howell, Jimmy Jules and the Patterson Singers (the latter).Elsewhere, the driving 'Take A Ride' defies you to keep your feet from tapping; the horn filled 'Bend Over Backwards', with vocal support from multi-tracked Ann McCrary and a credential of being cut by Ernie Shelby for Polydor in 1972 and the 'bonus track' A Man Can't Be A Man' maintain the high quality. Just one track left to mention and, if there was any doubt the 'Star Pick' rating, here's the clincher..'Trust'. Written by Soule with Deborah Ball-Lau, it's an intense ballad that features just George Supported by Tony Crow on Wurlitzer and both it and the man Himself simply ooze S-0-U-L .

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