Spice of Life

The Spice of Life

by Marlena Shaw
     
 

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Marlena Shaw's penchant for stylistic variety is certainly evident on this, her sophomore release. Cut for the Cadet label in 1969, Spice of Life ranges from soul and proto-funk to jazz and MOR-hued material. Shaw shines throughout, showing her power on politically charged, Aretha-styled cuts like "Woman of the Ghetto" and "Liberation Conversation," while also

Overview

Marlena Shaw's penchant for stylistic variety is certainly evident on this, her sophomore release. Cut for the Cadet label in 1969, Spice of Life ranges from soul and proto-funk to jazz and MOR-hued material. Shaw shines throughout, showing her power on politically charged, Aretha-styled cuts like "Woman of the Ghetto" and "Liberation Conversation," while also delivering supple interpretations of such traditional jazz fare as "Go Away Little Boy" (shades of Nancy Wilson). And with a gutsy take on "Stormy Monday," it's clear Shaw doesn't shrink from the blues either. Across this sound spectrum, arrangers Richard Evans and Charles Stepney envelope Shaw in unobtrusive yet exciting pop-soul environs, throwing kalimba runs (a few years before Earth, Wind & Fire picked up on the instrument), psych guitar accents, and bongo-fueled organ riffs into the mix. Their widescreen touch is particularly well essayed on strings-and-brass standouts like the Bacharach-inspired Barry Mann & Cynthia Weil composition "Looking Through the Eyes of Love" and Ashford & Simpson's "California Soul" (a classic reading heavily favored by the crate-digging set). A perfect way to get familiar with Shaw's impressive early work.

Product Details

Release Date:
07/26/2005
Label:
Verve
UPC:
0602498818695
catalogNumber:
000467802

Related Subjects

Tracks

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Marlena Shaw   Primary Artist,Vocals
Richard Evans   Conductor
Charles Stepney   Conductor

Technical Credits

Marlena Shaw   Composer
Richard Evans   Arranger,Composer,Producer,Audio Production
Loonis McGlohon   Liner Notes
T-Bone Walker   Composer
Stu Black   Engineer
Johnny Marks   Composer
Dave Purple   Engineer
Charles Stephens   Arranger
Charles Stepney   Arranger,Producer
Bobby Miller   Composer
Bryan Koniarz   Reissue Producer
Ken Druker   Executive Producer
Bob Crawford   Cover Photo

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