Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Album Review: Pops Staples - "Don't Lose This"

If you are familiar with Mavis Staples, then you need to educate yourself on her talented father: Roebuck "Pops" StaplesWilco's Jeff Tweedy is making that effort easier by producing Pops Staples' posthumous final album, Don't Lose This - available February 17th. The sessions were initially recorded in 1990, and at his passing in 2000, the tapes fell to daughter Mavis, who handed them off to Tweedy. And why not, with Tweedy's impressive collaborations with Mavis Staples in You Are Not Alone and One True Vine. The album is mostly Pops Staples gravelly vocals and electric guitar while Tweedy provides some bass and guitar and his son Spencer drums. Sisters Mavis, Yvonne and the late Cleotha Staples enrich the recordings with lead and harmony vocals as displayed in "Sweet Home", "Better Home",  and "Love on My Side". Blues enthusiasts will love "No News is Good News" and "Nobody's Fault But Mine". There are also excellent versions of the traditional gospel "Gotta Serve Somebody" and "Will The Circle Be Unbroken". NPR is currently streaming the album so check it out and then add to your blues and gospel collection on the 17th. Cheers.

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