The Complete Specialty Recordings of Sam Cooke

The Complete Specialty Recordings of Sam Cooke

by Sam CookeSam Cooke


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They were known as the Soul Stirrers when they did the 1951-1957 recordings on this three-CD, 84-song collection. It's billed to Sam Cooke with the Soul Stirrers, though, as it's the ultimate collection of sides he recorded as a member of the group for Specialty Records, along with seven tentative secular pop
ock sides he did for the label as a solo singer in 1956. Cooke doesn't sing lead on all of the Soul Stirrers' tracks, though there are plenty of his leads to hear throughout the set; he shares lead duties with Paul Foster, although by the end of his time in the outfit, Cooke was taking most of the solo leads. There's also one cut, "All Right Now," on which Cooke shares lead with Rev. Julius Cheeks (two alternate versions of the song are also on the set). Even if Cooke isn't always the solo lead, however, he's a big presence on all of these sides, which represent both an important summary of his career prior to achieving pop stardom and a major body of gospel music. While much of the material is traditional (with Cooke contributing some originals), the arrangements do evolve, including some drums, organ, piano, bass, and electric guitar at various points. The link between gospel, R&B, and rock & roll becomes evident to more secular-minded listeners, sometimes strikingly so in Cooke's phrasing, which, even on songs as far back as 1953 ("I'd Give up All My Sins and Serve the Lord"), contained clear antecedents to his vocals on his first breakthrough pop hit, "You Send Me." Naturally those antecedents are heard strongest on the seven 1956 solo cuts that represented his first pop ventures, and although these are on the innocuous side, they're enjoyable foreshadowings of his rock & roll years. Numerous alternate takes and three 1955 live songs (with good sound) complete the most comprehensive portrait of Cooke's gospel years. Note, though, that the version of "I'll Come Running Back to You" -- a Top 20 entry in the wake of "You Send Me" -- lacks the overdub on the hit single.

Product Details

Release Date: 10/22/2002
Label: Specialty
UPC: 0022211443728
catalogNumber: 4437


Disc 1

  1. Come, Let Us Go Back to God
  2. Peace in the Valley
  3. I'm Gonna Build on That Shore
  4. I'm Gonna Build on That Shore
  5. I'm on the Firing Line
  6. I'm on the Firing Line
  7. Joy, Joy to My Soul
  8. Until Jesus Calls Me Home
  9. Jesus Done Just What He Said
  10. Jesus Gave Me Water
  11. He's My Rock (Wait on Jesus)
  12. How Far Am I from Canaan?
  13. Christ Is All
  14. It Won't Be Very Long
  15. It Won't Be Very Long
  16. It Won't Be Very Long
  17. Jesus Will Lead Me to That Promised Land
  18. Jesus Will Lead Me to That Promised Land [Alternate Ta
  19. Jesus Will Lead Me to That Promised Land
  20. Just Another Day
  21. Let Me Go Home
  22. Let Me Go Home
  23. Jesus Paid the Debt
  24. Jesus Paid the Debt
  25. How Far Am I from Canaan?
  26. How Far Am I from Canaan?
  27. How Far Am I from Canaan?
  28. Someday Somewhere
  29. Someday Somewhere

Disc 2

  1. End of My Journey
  2. He'll Welcome Me
  3. He's My Friend Until the End
  4. He's My Friend Until the End
  5. I Have a Friend Above All Others
  6. Come and Go to That Land
  7. Come and Go to That Land
  8. Come and Go to That Land
  9. I'd Give Up All My Sins and Serve the Lord
  10. I'm So Happy in the Service of the Lord
  11. All Right Now
  12. All Right Now
  13. All Right Now
  14. He'll Make a Way
  15. He'll Make a Way
  16. Jesus, I'll Never Forget
  17. Jesus, I'll Never Forget
  18. Any Day Now
  19. Any Day Now
  20. One More River
  21. Nearer to Thee
  22. I'm So Glad (Trouble Don't Last Always)
  23. Be With Me Jesus
  24. He's My Guide
  25. He's My Guide
  26. He's My Guide
  27. Pilgrim of Sorrow
  28. Pray
  29. The Last Mile of the Way
  30. The Last Mile of the Way

Disc 3

  1. The Last Mile of the Way
  2. He's So Wonderful
  3. Touch the Hem of His Garment
  4. Jesus, Wash Away My Troubles
  5. Farther Along
  6. Must Jesus Bear This Cross Alone?
  7. Pilgrim of Sorrow
  8. Happy in Love
  9. I Need You Now
  10. I'll Come Running Back to You
  11. Lovable
  12. I Don't Want to Cry
  13. That's All I Need to Know
  14. Forever
  15. Lord Remember Me
  16. That's Heaven to Me
  17. That's Heaven to Me
  18. Were You There?
  19. Were You There?
  20. Were You There?
  21. Mean Old World
  22. Mean Old World
  23. I Have a Friend Above All Others
  24. Be With Me Jesus
  25. Nearer to Thee

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Sam Cooke   Primary Artist,Vocals,Lead
Edgar Blanchard   Guitar
Thomas L. Bruster   Baritone (Vocal)
Rev. Julius Cheeks   Lead
L.C. Cook   Drums
Roy Crain   Tenor (Vocal)
Leroy Crume   Guitar,Baritone (Vocal)
Frank Fields   Bass
Paul Foster   Lead
Evelyn Gay   Piano
Abe Mills   Drums
Earl Palmer   Drums,Leader
Edward David Robinson   Piano
R.B. Robinson   Baritone (Vocal)
Faidest Wagoner   Piano
Willie Webb   Organ
Bob King   Guitar,Baritone (Vocal)
Jesse J. Farley   Bass (Vocal),Lead
Warren Myles   Piano

Technical Credits

Sam Cooke   Arranger,Composer
Burt Bacharach   Composer
Karen Bernód   Composer
Rev. Julius Cheeks   Arranger
L.C. Cook   Composer
Roy Crain   Arranger
Tommy Dorsey   Composer
Bob Hilliard   Composer
Crain   Composer
Daniel Wolff   Liner Notes
Rev. William Herbert Brewster   Composer
L.C. Cooke   Composer
Public Domain   Composer
Traditional   Composer
Unknown   Composer
S.R. Crain   Composer
William Cook   Composer
Musgrove   Composer
Fantasy Staff   Producer
Anderson   Composer

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