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In previous posts, I’ve alluded to my affinity for compilation CDs. I think they are another great way to discover new artists. I was recently listening to a couple of compilation albums I’ve had for a years and realized I had been enjoying the sounds of Jazmine Sullivan and Ra-Re Valverde long before I ever got my hands on Fearless or A Beautiful Mess.
They are also a good way to hear songs from your favorite artists that may not appear on any of their albums. Sometimes it’s impossible to stay on top of everything that an artist you love puts out. Most times it is! Especially if he or she is as prolific as say, Eric Roberson.
So I thought I’d share a few of the compilations I own or am planning to own, that you may want to put on your wish list for that fine day when this recession is over and we can get back to spending the grocery money on music!
This fifth volume of this UK-produced series was released in September 2008. I have been enjoying volumes 1-4 of these three disc sets for several months now. Great for long drives. This one looks to be just as promising with tracks by Hil St. Soul, Don E, Omar, Joy Denalane, Carleen Anderson, Conya Doss, Adriana Evans, Rahsaan Patterson, Incognito, Maysa, Anthony David, and Reel People.
It also includes my favorite Angela Johnson andErro song. Can’t go wrong with that.
Lots of “new” names that I need to investigate like Richard Anthony Davis, Karen Bernod, Richard Darbyshire, Tony Remy and Bluey, and Mikelyn Roderick.
This is the second volume of a series of three. Here, discovered Maiysha long before she dropped This Much is True and earned a Grammy nod. This is where I first heard Lisala before I first heard her perform with Angela Johnson last Fall at Can A Sista Rock a Mic? At the time I purchased this album, Lizz Fields, Temika Moore, and LaSonya Gunter were all names I had on my radar but never got around to listening to their music. These volumes were a chance to get a taste. I truly took a leap of faith on this purchase because most of the artists I hadn’t heard of like Michael Bohannon, Theresa Morton, Harmon’e, Abenaa, and Latanya Lockett. I wasn’t disappointed and it still makes it’s way into the rotation every now and again when I want to mix it up.
I was reminded that I had this compilation in my collection after Soul UK mentioned one of the standout tracks, Michael Hammond’s sexy, sultry “The Morning After” over on his new blog. Head over there for a listen. In addition to this gem, with tracks from Ra-Re Valverde, Heavy, Russell Taylor, Peter Hadar, and two DJ Spinna mixes, I’m sure you will agree that this is a must add.
This compilation is eight years old and some of these artists now have albums worth of material for us to listen to. But this is still one that I throw on from time to time. It stayed on rotation when I first got it. Absolutely no skips on this one for me. There are tracks from our favorite soul artists like Jill Scott, India. Arie, Amel Larrieux, Erykah Badu, Anthony Hamilton, Glenn Lewis, and Jon B. The lesser known artists like Jack Herrera, Lathun, and Eddie Jenkins shined just as bright.
I recently acquired the second volume, which has more of a hip hop slant. I have yet to listen to it but the first volume will always be the standout for me
I don’t have any of these compilations but they come highly recommended.
Hed Kandi– very eclectic array of CDs; highly recommended by The Connoisseur. read more here.
Nude Dimensions – deep and soulful house; albums you can put on at an intimate party or just lounging with your boo.
I haven’t even scratched the surface of great soul compilations out there. Please share some of your favorites in the comments. Or let me know what you think of some of the ones I’ve mentioned here. If none of them peek your fancy, check out Dusty Grooves for a very large selection that spans genres.