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Sam Cooke: The Best of Sam Cooke

Sam Cooke: The Best of Sam Cooke

Analogue Productions  CAPP 2625 SA

Stereo Hybrid

Pop/Rock - R&B/Soul


Sam Cooke


A Groundbreaking Soul Pioneer and An Influence On Generations of Singers - Everyone Agrees Sam Cooke Is The MAN!

"...He had an incomparable voice. Sam Cooke could sing anything and make it work. But when you're talking about his strength as a singer, range is not relevant. It was his power to deliver — it was about his phrasing, the totality of his singing," — Van Morrison, for Rolling Stone magazine's 100 Greatest Singers Of All Time, ranking Cooke at No. 4

This Best Of Sam Cooke album was the beacon that kept Cooke's most popular songs in the public eye. Between 1957 and his death seven years later, Cooke recorded an average of one Top Ten single every four months! And now on this hybrid SACD, you can relive the timeless best known and best-loved Sam Cooke classics.

You Send Me, Only Sixteen, Wonderful World, Chain Gang, Cupid, Having a Party, and more!

For a couple of generations this was the first - and often only - Sam Cooke album they owned. Although there are more ambitious collections that show Cooke's remarkable range and diversity, this is still the best starting place. These are Sam Cooke's biggest commercial hits. This is the message in a bottle that brought his gifts to millions of people.

What is it that makes Cooke's music so irresistible? Well, first the voice, of course. So good, in fact, was Cooke as a vocalist that Atlantic Records vice president Jerry Wexler said matter-of-factly, "Sam Cooke was the best singer who ever lived, no contest." But beyond just his voice, it's the phrasing that makes these songs so timeless and memorable. Cooke himself explained it this way: "You just talk the story. That's how you get people to come to you — because it's not like a song, it's like two people rapping, only with a melody attached. But then when you come to the hook ('That's the sound of the men working on the chain gang'), then you're free, everybody's gonna sing that part, you want to get everybody to sing along." And they're still singing along.

So we all know the songs. We all know they're great. But nobody's known — not unless you were there when it was recorded — just how incredible these recordings actually sound. Now with every detail tended to and no expense spared, we've got the best of The Best of Sam Cooke.

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Tracks
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1. You Send Me
2. Only Sixteen
3. Everybody Loves to Cha Cha Cha
4. For Sentimental Reasons
5. Wonderful World
6. Summertime
7. Chain Gang
8. Cupid
9. Twistin' the Night Away
10. Sad Mood
11. Having a Party
12. Bring It on Home to Me
13. Another Saturday Night [Alternate Take]
14. Nothing Can Change This Love [Bonus Track]
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Comment by Brian VanPelt - August 2, 2022 (1 of 1)

This doesn't seem much different than an ordinary CD. Sam's voice doesn't sound any different than listening on the radio. Some songs are very nice, like Another Saturday Night, but even there Sam's voice is slightly muffled. The very last song, Nothing Can Change This Love, is exellent and seems out of place on an otherwise mediocre sounding album.

Granted, all of those complaints are probably because the masters used are simply well-worn, but that last song is so much of an outlier that I wonder what source that came from. Chances are, they had several different masters to cobble together an album, so you expect inconsistency from song to song.

Check out the album Night Beat for the best sounding Sam Cooke.