The 1966 soul classic “Hold On, I’m Coming” was penned by the duo of Isaac Hayes and David Porter and recorded by iconic duo Sam & Dave, but for this explosive update 50 years later, rock superstar Melissa Etheridge’s only partner is her 12-string acoustic guitar. The instrument serves as the perfect complement to Etheridge’s fierce, smoky vocal with both conveying the same exciting urgency of the original.
“Hold On, I’m Coming” is one of the songs on Etheridge’s MEmphis Rock and Soul LP, due October 7th on Stax Records. Backed by a full band on the album version of that tune, Etheridge dusts off other genre-defining Stax Records classics, delivering soul-baring renditions of Otis Redding’s “I’ve Been Loving You Too Long (to Stop Now),” Johnnie Taylor’s “Who’s Making Love,” and a reworked version of the Staple Singers’ “Respect Yourself” for which she penned new lyrics with songwriter Priscilla Renea. The updated version serves to reflect current issues but to also convey the song’s original context relevant to its 1971 release. Etheridge also unearthed a few more obscure Stax tracks including “Memphis Train,” cut in 1968 by Rufus Thomas, and the danceable “Wait a Minute,” recorded in 1962 by Barbara Stephens.
MEmphis Rock and Soul was recorded at Royal Studios, a Memphis landmark now run by the family of famed musician and studio founder, Willie Mitchell, and features some of the most seasoned session players in the illustrious history of the Bluff City, including members of the Hi Rhythm Section, who backed Al Green and others. John Mayer also joins Etheridge on guitar for two of the LP’s tracks, “Rock Me Baby” and “Born Under a Bad Sign.”
This “unplugged” version of “Hold On, I’m Coming” was filmed for Inside Track, a special preview of Etheridge’s Audience Network special set to air on the LP’s release day at 9:00 p.m. ET/PT on DIRECTV Ch 239/U-verse Ch 1114. Filmed at Red Studios in Los Angeles, the episode will feature a full concert and in-depth interview.
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Pre-orders of Etheridge’s new album are available now at PledgeMusic.