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'Say it Loud, I'm Black and I'm Proud': Soul music

‘Say it Loud, I’m Black and I’m Proud’: Soul music


Is there anything distinctive about ‘soul’ music, and what were its musical roots?

What role did Sam Cooke play in the move from gospel to soul?

What role did Stax and Atlantic Records play in the emergence soul?

Why does James Brown Matter?

What was the significance of Otis Redding’s appearance at the Monterey Pop festival in 1967?


Core texts


Jonathan Lethem, ‘Being James Brown’, Rolling Stone, 29 June 2006

Jennifer R. Billinson, “Dance ’til You Feel Better”: How the ‘Godfather of Soul’ Saved Boston’, Journal of Popular Music Studies, 25, 1 (2013), pp.77-90.

Sarah Hill, ‘When soul met the love crowd: Otis Redding: Monterey Pop Festival June 17, 1967’, in Inglis, Scott and Hawkins (eds), Ashgate Popular and Folk Music Series : Performance and Popular Music : History, Place and Time (Ashgate, 2013), pp.77-90.


Further Reading

Stuart Cosgrove, Detroit 67: The Year that Changed Soul (Polygon, 2016)

Ann Danielson, Presence and Pleasure: The Funk Grooves of James Brown and Parliament (Wesleyan UP, 2006) eook

Cogdell DjeDje and Eddie S. Meadows, California soul: music of African Americans in the West (Calif., 1998) ebook

Nelson George and Alan Leeds, The James Brown Reader (2008)

Robert Gordon, Express Yourself: Stax Records and the Soul Explosion (Bloomsbury, 2015)

Peter Guralnick, Dream boogie: The triumph of Sam Cooke (Abacus, 2006)

Peter Guralnick, Sweet soul music : Rhythm and Blues and the Southern dream of Freedom (2002)

Jerma A Jackson, Singing in My Soul : Black Gospel Music in a Secular Age. Chapel Hill, US (The University of North Carolina Press, 2004). ebook

John A Jackson, House on Fire : The Rise and Fall of Philadelphia Soul. (Oxford University Press, 2004) ebook

James McBride, Kill ‘Em and Leave: Searching for the Real James Brown (2016)

Richard Ripani, New Blue Music: Changes in Rhythm and Blues, 1950-99 (Mississippi, 2016) ebook

Arnold Shaw, Black Popular Music in America (Macmillan, 1986)

Stephanie Shonekan, Soul, country, and the USA [electronic resource] : race and identity in American music culture (2015) ebook

R.J. Smith, The One: The Life and Music of James Brown (2012)

Rickey Vincent, Party Music : The Inside Story of the Black Panthers' Band and How Black Power Transformed Soul Music. (Chicago, 2013) ebook

Craig Werner, A Change is Gonna Come: MUsic, Race and Soul in America (Uni of Michigan Press, 2006)

David Whiteis, Southern soul-blues (U Illinois Press, 2013)