February 24, 2009

Mod-A-Day: Sam & Dave

Every mod knows that nothing beats good soul music. When Sam & Dave signed with Altantic Record's Stax label in 1966 it marked the end of their hitless obscurity and delivered an explosion of raw, powerful, gospel tinged, blues laden, good soul music. Singing songs written by Isaac Hayes, the duo had a string of hits, and dozens of other great soul songs. Growing animosity between the two, drug problems, and a break with Stax basically did them in by the end of the decade. They reunited on and off over the next couple of decades, and for a while in the 80s some fans were duped by Dave's touring with a completely different Sam.

But for a few shining years there was beautiful soul music. Of course there were the dancing hits, "I Thank You," "You Don't' Know Like I Know," "Soul Man," and "Hold On, I'm Coming." But there were also gospel ballads like "Just Me," and blues styled soul like "If You Got The Loving" and "You Got It Made." My favorite has always been "It's a Wonder" from their first Stax release, 1966's Hold On, I'm Coming.

Sam & Dave -- It's A Wonder