Awards and Recognition:
Awarded Best History by the Association for Recorded Sound Collections (ARSC) for Best Research in Recorded Blues, Hip-Hop, Rhythm & Blues (2014). Awarded Blues Book of the Year in the 2014 Critics' Poll of Living Blues magazine.
Earthy and exuberant music with deep Southern roots
Attracting passionate fans primarily among African American listeners in the South, southern soul draws on such diverse influences as the blues, 1960s-era deep soul, contemporary R & B, neosoul, rap, hip-hop, and gospel. Aggressively danceable, lyrically evocative, and fervidly emotional, southern soul songs often portray unabashedly carnal themes, and audiences delight in the performer-audience interaction and communal solidarity at live performances.
Examining the history and development of southern soul from its modern roots in the 1960s and 1970s, David Whiteis highlights some of southern soul's most popular and important entertainers and provides first-hand accounts from the clubs, show lounges, festivals, and other local venues where these performers work. Profiles of veteran artists such as Denise LaSalle, the late J. Blackfoot, Latimore, and Bobby Rush--as well as contemporary artists T. K. Soul, Ms. Jody, Sweet Angel, Willie Clayton, and Sir Charles Jones--touch on issues of faith and sensuality, artistic identity and stereotyping, trickster antics, and future directions of the genre. These revealing discussions, drawing on extensive new interviews, also acknowledge the challenges of striving for mainstream popularity while still retaining the cultural and regional identity of the music and maintaining artistic ownership and control in the age of digital dissemination.
"In this enlightening account of a neglected musical genre, Whiteis profiles some of the genre's leading artists, explores the evolution of modern soul-blues, and insists that soul-blues represents a 'further continuum' of the blues tradition."--Booklist
"Soul-blues fans will savor this love letter."--Kirkus Reviews
"Essential reading."--Library Journal
"Southern Soul-Blues proves that African-Americans have not deserted the blues, but rather redefined it for newer eras."--Downbeat
"David Whiteis writes with a fan's insistent devotion and a scholar's dedication."--Shepherd Express
"Written in an engaging style. . . . Whiteis gives readers a deep cross-cut of this distinctive vernacular musical culture."--Journal of Folklore Research
"This is the most serious writing yet on southern soul. Let's hope good critical attention continues as southern soul evolves."--American Blues Scene
"Deserves a place on the shelf of every serious student of the blues, Southern cultures, and African American culture. Southern Soul-Blues is an excellent introduction to a field in which much work, a good deal of it catch-up, remains to be done."--The Southern Register
"Southern Soul-Blues takes on a woefully unexamined topic to make a significant contribution to studies in African American popular music. David Whiteis is a conscientious researcher, an astute observer, and a superlative writer."--Robert Pruter, author of Chicago Soul and Doowop: The Chicago Scene
To order online:
To order by phone:
(800) 621-2736 (USA/Canada)
(773) 702-7000 (International)
Portraits and Stories
Edited by Eve Harwood
Essential Interviews from the Original Blues Magazine
Edited by Bill Greensmith, Mike Rowe, and Mark Camarigg
The Story of King Records
Jon Hartley Fox
Edited by Gillian B. Anderson & Ronald H. Sadoff
Edited by Neil Lerner
Adventures in American New Music
Gordon Mumma Edited with Commentary by Michelle Fillion
The wrong place for the Right people
Barney Josephson with Terry Trilling-Josephson
Field Recordings and the American Experience
Edited by Horace Maxile, Jr.