http://assets-s3.rollingstone.com/assets/images/album_review/b9d7f1cdf241542d70a4d82c01360919dd6faff4.jpg Nashville

Solomon Burke


Rolling Stone: star rating
Community: star rating
5 3.5 0
November 27, 2006

Compared to some of his fellow R&B giants, Solomon Burke doesn't bring depth of feeling to his music so much as an extraordinary ability to sell a song — remember, this is the same guy who used to sell bologna sandwiches to his bandmates on long bus rides. Wherever it comes from, his music is electrifying, one part testament, one part lament. Since his 2001 induction into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, he's released three albums that stand among his best, even though his voice isn't as supple as it once was. On Nashville, Burke returns to his early musical days: His first pop hit, back in 1961, was a country ballad, "Just Out of Reach (Of My Two Open Arms)." Burke is joined here by a top-notch band; the highlight is "Ain't Got You," an extra-boastful Bruce Springsteen cover featuring E Street bassist Garry Tallent (who didn't even play on the original!). Luminaries such as Emmylou Harris, Gillian Welch and Dolly Parton also make appearances — but it's always clear who's sitting on the throne.

Album Review Main Next


Community Guidelines »
loading comments

loading comments...


Sort by:
    Read More
    Daily Newsletter

    Get the latest RS news in your inbox.

    Sign up to receive the Rolling Stone newsletter and special offers from RS and its
    marketing partners.


    We may use your e-mail address to send you the newsletter and offers that may interest you, on behalf of Rolling Stone and its partners. For more information please read our Privacy Policy.

    Song Stories

    “American Girl”

    Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers | 1976

    It turns out that a single with "American" in its title--recorded on the Fourth of July during the nation's Bicentennial, no less--can actually sell better in Britain. Coupled with the Heartbreakers' flair for Byrds jangle and Animals hooks, though, is Tom Petty's native-Florida drawl that keeps this classic grounded at home. Petty dispelled rumors that the song was about a suicidal student, explaining that the inspiration came from when he was 25 and used to salute the highway traffic outside his apartment window. "It sounded like the ocean to me," he recalled. "That was my ocean. My Malibu. Where I heard the waves crash, but it was just the cars going by."

    More Song Stories entries »