Friday, August 19, 2011

The Soul Corner - The Four Tops - "7 Rooms of Gloom"

Back to Motown, a battered but still determined city, and by the way, today the home of the great Justin Verlander, the best pitcher in baseball.

No voice ever captured the soul and grit of Detroit better than that of the late Levi Stubbs. A voice as strong, defiant and fierce as the streets of Detroit.

I could play you the Four Tops catalogue but the one song that does it for me every single time is "7 Rooms of Gloom".

Motown was beginning to rock things up a bit, borrowing from the garage rock sound of the times. The harder style fit Levi Stubbs's voice perfectly. The Funk Brothers really kick out the jams here, led by the amazing James Jamerson's bass lines.

And Stubbs got one of the finest musical tributes ever when Billy Bragg honored him with his classic "Levi Stubbbs' Tears":

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