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"You don't believe in God? Really?" Then I took out my pistol, and shot him.
October 10, 2010 6:01 AM   Subscribe

The trick is to give without looking to receive - to give of yourself to your family, your friends, your community, and the world community with love. The King of Rock and Soul Solomon Burke, Archbishop of the House of God For All People and member of the Hall of Fame died on a plane (2) after arriving in Amsterdam.

Solomon's most beloved song was arguably Everybody needs somebody to love, which was covered by the Rolling Stones, Wilson Pickett and, of course, The Blues Brothers. He had another brush with the filming industry when his song Cry to me was used in the film Dirty Dancing.

Solomon received a Grammy for 2002's Don't give up on me, which included compositions by the likes of Van Morrison, Tom Waits, Brian Wilson, Elvis Costello and Bob Dylan. Solomon collaborated recently in the studio with Emmylou Harris and Dolly Parton for his 2006 album Nashville.

Burke leaves behind 21 children (14 daughters and 7 sons), 90 grandchildren and a wealth of singles with Atlantic records, like Got to get you off my mind and Just out of reach (of my two open arms).
posted by ersatz (47 comments total) 10 users marked this as a favorite

 
There is something that each of us can do, and it's just a matter of searching your own soul to find the way that you can give to others. [...] The trick is to give without looking to receive - to give of yourself to your family, your friends, your community, and the world community with love.

Also, The Guardian's obituary.
posted by ersatz at 6:05 AM on October 10, 2010



posted by Civil_Disobedient at 6:08 AM on October 10, 2010 [3 favorites]


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posted by cgc373 at 6:08 AM on October 10, 2010


I went to see Solomon in Durham, North Carolina a few years ago. He was enormous, and he rarely stood during the (excellent) show, choosing instead to sit on a throne of roses. At the end of the show, he urged men in the audience to come get a rose for a lady, so I went up to get one for my wife. There were two women on our row who seemed disappointed not to have roses, so I went back to get two more; Solomon noticed me as I was plucking the roses from the throne, shook his head in amusement, and said "so many women".

He was a magnificent singer. He'll be missed.
posted by steambadger at 6:17 AM on October 10, 2010 [27 favorites]


Was going to make this post as well, but was unable to post to the blue at this time. I did make one over at Music Talk, though, which I'll link to here.

Nice post, ersatz.

Rest in peace, Solomon Burke.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 6:18 AM on October 10, 2010 [1 favorite]


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posted by nushustu at 6:28 AM on October 10, 2010


None of us are free.

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posted by ChuraChura at 6:37 AM on October 10, 2010


Been on a fast train. One of the Wire's finest moments.

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posted by afx237vi at 7:00 AM on October 10, 2010 [2 favorites]


Check out "Stupidity" for a nice R&B scorcher that gets the job done in under 2 minutes. I love his growling laugh on this one.
posted by Slack-a-gogo at 7:02 AM on October 10, 2010 [1 favorite]


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posted by jgaiser at 7:03 AM on October 10, 2010


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posted by oneironaut at 7:04 AM on October 10, 2010


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posted by Unioncat at 7:20 AM on October 10, 2010


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posted by DaddyNewt at 7:31 AM on October 10, 2010


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posted by isnotchicago at 7:37 AM on October 10, 2010


Everybody needs somebody to love.

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posted by rdone at 8:00 AM on October 10, 2010


A few years ago, no Depression did a lovely profile, which included this gem of an anecdote:
In the end, Burke would have the last laugh: When he appeared at a gala in the ’90s honoring Wexler’s career, the King called his alleged co-writers up onstage to help him sing “Everybody Needs Somebody”. He claims Wexler pleaded, “Don’t do this to us, man,” as he watched Jerry and Ahmet squirm uncomfortably while he and the band carried them through “their” song.
posted by julen at 8:01 AM on October 10, 2010 [4 favorites]


steambadger, I'm glad you went back to get two more roses!
posted by theredpen at 8:15 AM on October 10, 2010 [2 favorites]


Apparently he was scheduled to perform together with the Dutch band De Dijk. His album with English versions of their songs had just been released.
The site of the collaboration starts playing automatically the Burke rendition of Wat een vrouw.
What a woman.

Burke & De Dijk live.
posted by joost de vries at 8:17 AM on October 10, 2010


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posted by dirtdirt at 8:27 AM on October 10, 2010


He said earlier this year that he was clocking up a steady 130,000 annual frequent flyer air miles, performing across the States and in Europe – and in an interview with the Telegraph last month, he said: "As long as I have breath to do it, I'll sing."

He died in the midst of doing what he loved.

If you can find it, this Atlantic compliation is a great album and also probably the perfect encyclopedia of 50s/60s Southern soul.
posted by blucevalo at 8:44 AM on October 10, 2010 [1 favorite]


What a bummer. My fave tune: Solomon Burke, folk singer.
posted by FelliniBlank at 8:57 AM on October 10, 2010


"Nothing could be sadder
Than a glass of wine...alone."
posted by Mental Wimp at 9:01 AM on October 10, 2010 [1 favorite]


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posted by Mental Wimp at 9:02 AM on October 10, 2010


Sometimes I feel, I feel a little sad inside.

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posted by Halloween Jack at 9:25 AM on October 10, 2010


I was on a flight with him once. He was a very large person and not easy to accommodate on a commercial airliner. (He and his daughters were very polite throughout.) That he did this for 130,000 miles a year is quite amazing. That he did it to get out there and sing is even more so.
posted by grounded at 9:45 AM on October 10, 2010



posted by Smart Dalek at 10:07 AM on October 10, 2010


Irreplaceable.

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posted by scody at 10:36 AM on October 10, 2010


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posted by cali at 10:43 AM on October 10, 2010


RIP, Brother Solomon.
posted by rocket88 at 10:50 AM on October 10, 2010


Thanks, Mister Burke.
posted by Capt. Renault at 11:23 AM on October 10, 2010


R.I.P., King of Rock and Soul.
posted by pised at 11:35 AM on October 10, 2010


Great man, great music. Thank you.
posted by Abiezer at 11:39 AM on October 10, 2010


Thanks, Solomon. RIP

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posted by trip and a half at 11:55 AM on October 10, 2010


The 2002 album which won the Grammy was produced by Joe Henry, who is a great musician in his own right. Henry was talking about the sessions a year or so ago and said a few things that where interesting including:
1- Burke spent the minimal amount of time actually involved in the album and left nearly everything up to Henry, songs, arrangements etc, Burke essentially came to the studio and belted out the songs and left.
2- When the album was finished Burke listened to it, turned to Henry and said "this is going to win the Grammy".


the album is quite good and one I still listen to from time to time.

Sad to see him go.
posted by edgeways at 12:44 PM on October 10, 2010


If I fall short, and don't make the grade,
Remember - there's always tomorrow...

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posted by Rumple at 12:49 PM on October 10, 2010 [1 favorite]


ChuraChura, thanks for the "None of Us Are Free" link. I think that's my favorite Solomon Burke song.

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posted by steambadger at 1:36 PM on October 10, 2010


Oh man, this sucks. A powerful voice.

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posted by waraw at 1:38 PM on October 10, 2010


He needed and got our love.

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posted by drogien at 2:13 PM on October 10, 2010


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posted by ob at 2:29 PM on October 10, 2010


“What’s fun is that the audiences in both Europe and America range in age from five years old to my age and older, and the kids know these songs,” [Burke] adds. “They think I’m a big black Santa Claus, and I love them and always make sure to play what they want to hear.

Godspeed, sweet soul singer.
posted by Mike Mongo at 2:41 PM on October 10, 2010


Really glad I had the privilege of seeing him perform a few years ago.

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posted by louche mustachio at 2:45 PM on October 10, 2010


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posted by Wolof at 2:56 PM on October 10, 2010


Solomon was my girlfriend's godfather. She told me that he was the only person in her family to come to her high school graduation. He arrived in a massive limousine wearing an equally massive Rolex and after the ceremony he took her and all her friends out to a big dinner. He talked about wanting to set up a Blue's Kitchen.
posted by Vaska at 3:23 PM on October 10, 2010 [4 favorites]


Would someone please explain the post title reference?
posted by hwestiii at 6:29 PM on October 10, 2010


Would someone please explain the post title reference?

It's a quote: here.
posted by juv3nal at 12:01 AM on October 11, 2010


Thanks for the great post and comments. Has anyone come across video of performances by a young Solomon Burke?
posted by Xalf at 6:17 AM on October 11, 2010


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posted by Scoop at 10:58 AM on October 12, 2010


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