The Soul Truth

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Steve Leggett
Shemekia Copeland can sing the heck out of the blues, but she isn't necessarily a blues singer, and on The Soul Truth she makes what would seem like a sure-fire move into Memphis soul territory, even working with Stax great Steve Cropper, who produced the album and adds his trademark guitar economics to most of the tracks. Copeland is a strong, forceful singer, and with support from the Muscle Shoals horn section and guest spots from Felix Cavaliere, who plays organ on three songs, and Dobie Gray, who duets with Copeland on Bekka Bramlett's "Used," this set ought to be a barnburner. So why isn't it a better album? The problem really is a lack of distinctive songs, with ...
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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Steve Leggett
Shemekia Copeland can sing the heck out of the blues, but she isn't necessarily a blues singer, and on The Soul Truth she makes what would seem like a sure-fire move into Memphis soul territory, even working with Stax great Steve Cropper, who produced the album and adds his trademark guitar economics to most of the tracks. Copeland is a strong, forceful singer, and with support from the Muscle Shoals horn section and guest spots from Felix Cavaliere, who plays organ on three songs, and Dobie Gray, who duets with Copeland on Bekka Bramlett's "Used," this set ought to be a barnburner. So why isn't it a better album? The problem really is a lack of distinctive songs, with too much of the set suffering from generic lyrics and melodies. Most of the material was written or co-written by Copeland's longtime mentor John Hahn, who has contributed heavily to all of her albums even producing the first one, and his songs this time out seem tired and clich├ęd, and while Copeland tries to inject them with some fire and spunk, they seem to mostly just sputter loudly, and worse, end up just exposing Copeland's bag of vocal tricks, as she tries everything to get them to lift off of the ground. It is telling that the best tracks here are built around outside material, with Copeland turning in her most emotionally nuanced vocals on the duet with Gray on "Used" originally a country hit for Lorrie Morgan and a cover of Eddie Hinton's "Something Heavy," while her take on Cropper's swampy "Honey Do That Voo-Doo" gives the song a wonderfully sassy veneer. Copeland has the talent and tools to be a major star, and the instinct to move in a soul direction is a good one, but she needs songs with real emotional substance, and there just aren't enough of those here. The Soul Truth isn't a bad album, but it certainly is a disappointing one, given the talent involved.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 8/16/2005
  • Label: Alligator Records
  • UPC: 014551490524
  • Catalog Number: 514905
  • Sales rank: 170,238

Tracks

Disc 1
  1. 1 Breakin' Out (3:32)
  2. 2 Who Stole My Radio? (3:57)
  3. 3 Poor, Poor Excuse (3:01)
  4. 4 All About You (4:14)
  5. 5 Better Not Touch (3:24)
  6. 6 Strong Enough (5:58)
  7. 7 You Can't Have That (3:48)
  8. 8 Uptown Line (5:54)
  9. 9 Givin' Up You (3:26)
  10. 10 Used (3:53)
  11. 11 Honey Do That Voo-Doo (3:11)
  12. 12 Something Heavy (3:16)
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Album Credits

Performance Credits
Shemekia Copeland Primary Artist, Vocals, Background Vocals
Steve Cropper Guitar, Background Vocals, Electric Sitar, Soloist
Dobie Gray Vocals
Chester Thompson Drums
Muscle Shoals Horns Horn
Bob Britt Guitar, Slide Guitar, Soloist
Felix Cavaliere Organ, Keyboards
Jim Horn Alto Saxophone, Baritone Saxophone, Bass Saxophone, Tenor Saxophone, Soloist
Chuck Leavell Keyboards
Carl Marsh Organ, Synthesizer
Steve Patrick Trumpet
Tom Roady Percussion, Shaker
Charles Rose Trombone
Harvey Thompson Tenor Saxophone
David Santo Bass, Bass Guitar
Tom Hambridge Background Vocals
Sam "Shake" Anderson Bass, Bass Guitar
Lisa Cochran Background Vocals
Mark Williams Background Vocals
Regi Wooten Guitar
John Billings Bass, Bass Guitar
Reggie Wooten Guitar
Eddie Gore Piano
Steve Potts Drums
Technical Credits
Steve Cropper Producer, Audio Production
Jim Horn Horn Arrangements
Joe Hudson Horn Arrangements
V. Jeffrey Smith Composer
Tom Hambridge Composer
Michael Trossman Logo
Eric Conn Mastering
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