I Learned the Hard Way

( 7 )

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Stephen Thomas Erlewine
Since so few acts in the new millennium attempt the old-school soul that's the specialty of Sharon Jones & the Dap Kings, it may be easy to assume that they're heralded simply because of their rarity: although they certainly sound like plenty of acts from back then, they're praised because nobody else sounds like them now, something that's all well and good but doesn't quite suggest how good the group really is. I Learned the Hard Way, their fourth album, goes a long way in illustrating that they're very, very good, holding their own with all the '60s Southern and Northern soul they hold so dear. In fact, the striking thing about the album is that contrary ...
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Note:  Hear: "She Ain't a Child No More"

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Stephen Thomas Erlewine
Since so few acts in the new millennium attempt the old-school soul that's the specialty of Sharon Jones & the Dap Kings, it may be easy to assume that they're heralded simply because of their rarity: although they certainly sound like plenty of acts from back then, they're praised because nobody else sounds like them now, something that's all well and good but doesn't quite suggest how good the group really is. I Learned the Hard Way, their fourth album, goes a long way in illustrating that they're very, very good, holding their own with all the '60s Southern and Northern soul they hold so dear. In fact, the striking thing about the album is that contrary to their deep soul rep, Jones & the Dap Kings spend just as much time riding smooth easy grooves as they do pouring out some sweat: despite its tough title, "I Learned the Hard Way" breezes with the cool assurance of Curtis Mayfield's Windy City and the instrumental "The Reason" shimmers like the sound of Philadelphia circa 1969. A large part of Sharon Jones & the Dap Kings charm is that they mix up these regional styles, blending them into a '60s soul fantasia, but they also favor recordings that sound like the '60s: there's air and grit within the grooves of I Learned the Hard Way that gives it an authentic kick. Of course, all this would be surface charm if the group didn't deliver songs, and they do -- songs that swagger and stir the soul, fitting within tradition without being beholden to it, songs that prove that Sharon Jones & the Dap Kings are the real deal.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 4/6/2010
  • Label: Daptone
  • UPC: 823134001923
  • Catalog Number: 19
  • Sales rank: 11,694

Album Credits

Performance Credits
Sharon Jones & the Dap-Kings Primary Artist
Sharon Jones Indexed Contributor
Saundra Williams Background Vocals
Antoine Silverman Violin
Michael Leonhart Trumpet
Victor Axelrod Organ, Piano
Cochemea Gastelum Alto Saxophone, Tenor Saxophone
Angee Blake Background Vocals
Bosco Mann Bass, Group Member
Neal Sugarman Tenor Saxophone, Group Member
Fernando Velez Bongos, Conga, Tambourine
Jimmy Hill Organ
Ian Hendrickson-Smith Flute, Baritone Saxophone, Group Member
Anja Wood Celli
Matthew Lehmann Violin
Alex Kadvan Celli
Entcho Todorov Violin
Binky Griptite Acoustic Guitar, Bass, Guitar, Group Member
Homer Steinweiss Drums, Group Member
Leon Michels Tenor Saxophone
Aaron Johnson Trombone
Thomas Brenneck Guitar, Piano, Electric Guitar, Group Member
Toby Pazner Glockenspiel, Vibes
Daisy Sugarman Flute
Brian Floody Timpani
Dave Guy Trumpet, Group Member
Boogaloo Velez Group Member
Chris Cardona Violin
El Duevo Cabasa
Cosmo Bann Guitar
Boom Boom Romero Drums
Nydia Davila Hand Clapping
Mikey Post Hand Clapping
Kevin C. Keys Background Vocals
Wayne Gordon Hand Clapping
The Bushwich Callers Background Vocals
Sam Boncon Piano, Clavinet
Eric Davis French Horn
Technical Credits
Antoine Silverman String Arrangements
Bosco Mann Arranger
L. Gordon Composer
Neal Sugarman Composer, Executive Producer
Gabriel Roth Engineer, Executive Producer
Steve Berson Mastering
David Serre Sleeve Design
The Dap-Kings Arranger
Ann Coombs Sleeve Design
Amos B. Conn String Arrangements
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 7 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(3)

4 Star

(2)

3 Star

(2)

2 Star

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1 Star

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Sort by: Showing all of 7 Customer Reviews
  • Posted October 1, 2010

    Continued Soul

    SJDP are still one of the best bands of today. If you liked their past albums you will keep appreciating the new sound on this album. More soul-ful and mellow, SJDP continue to produce solid music. I can not wait to see them in person. If you have not seen SJDP, you must make it your mission to see them soon. You will not be disappointed and every penny of ticket money will be well spent. There are not many acts these days that I can say that about!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 15, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted September 6, 2010

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    Posted January 6, 2011

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    Posted April 12, 2010

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    Posted April 18, 2010

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    Posted December 24, 2010

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Sort by: Showing all of 7 Customer Reviews