Solomon Burke * 1940 - † 2010
Sometimes music has the power to become bigger than the men who wrote it or even performed it and it has the magic ingredient to become an essential part of an era, or an entire community history and tradition.
That’s why today, receiving the news that Solomon Burke has passed away just a few hours before a concert in Amsterdam, you can’t help thinking about how original and unique he and his music were, or better said, are.
“Everybody Needs Somebody (To Love)” is probably one of the most famous, inspired and groovy R&B / rock songs of all time. The whole world recognises it after a few seconds, thanks to the versions made by The Rolling Stones, Stevie Wonder, Stevie Winwood or, most likely, The Blues Brothers. Possibly, not everybody knows that the song was just one of the many “ever-green” originally recorded and made famous by Solomon Burke, the artist that together with Ray Charles, Aretha Franklin made the small indie Atlantic records one of the biggest and most prestigious record labels of the entire history of the music industry.
Adored by the Beatles, Dylan, Springsteen and all the rock giants, Solomon Burke was "larger than life“. His physical presence on stage certainly was, but even more than that, it was his sense of entertainment and dedication to music, lived as a religion (Burke had no problem in calling himself the ”Bishop of Rock and Soul“). He was one of the last icons of a golden era of music that we were lucky to see performing and lucky to hear on record.
For Edel’s earMUSIC it was an extreme honour to release the latest studio album by Burke. "Nothing´s Impossible”, as the title suggests, is an album that achieves the results that even charts records nowadays very often fail to reach: it combines sincere, deep lyrics to soulful and warm R&B music, in a moment were everything has to be fast, easy to consume, sold and forgotten to leave the slot free to something else. A piece of art which was written, produced and sung without charts and marketing plans in mind. Burke didnot need it anymore, he ruled the charts for so many years that it would not make any difference.
He was bringing music “to the people” live, nearly every day. All over the world. His shows were a real party, to the point you could forget you were witnessing the show of a piece of music history.
He said he would have liked to sing until the last day of his life. He did, so we can salute a ?lucky man“. All fans of real music and real entertainment can feel lucky as well today, if they find the time to play and enjoy his music once more.