June 3, 2009

Naomi Shelton and the Gospel Queens//What Have You Done?

The legendary Daptone has done it again with the release of debut album, What Have You Done, My Brother? from not-even-close-to-newcomer Naomi Shelton and her Gospel Queens.

From the Dap site:

“Naomi Shelton is no ordinary gospel singer. Though she, like many others, grew up singing with her sisters in their Alabama church, she has also spent much of her life in the soul clubs around New York, and her 45s, “41st St. Breakdown” and “Wind Your Clock” b/w “Talking ‘Bout a Good Thing,” have long been revered and prized by funk DJs around the globe. Now, with her first official full-length release coming this May, it’s clear that her singing is equally influenced by both facets of her life. This is soul music – informed by the church, perhaps, but soul music nonetheless, relatable to all. Which means that LWhat Have You Done, My Brother?, an uplifting record that conveys Naomi’s energy, her excitement, her love of music, her compassion, is no ordinary album.”

Guys, this woman has been hitting the New York clubs at night and working random jobs during the day since the ‘60s. She rocked gospel in her Alabama church when she was six. She is over 60. She is OLD. She should be TIRED. She doesn’t sound OLD or TIRED at all. AU CONTRARIES! She sounds like the most badass lady this side of the Mississippi. I would not fuck around with her.

Do you hear that sweet organ walkdown in the chorus? Do you hear the warning words?!? I love how gospel-based music is all about the stark contrast when it comes to the classic good vs. evil dichotomy. It's really NOT how I view the world, but it's comforting to put everything through that extreme lens once in a while.

Anyway, my real question is, how is it that Daptone keeps finding these totally tough awesome broads and pairing them up with totally tough analog recording equipment to make the most totally tough retro sounding soul THIS SIDE OF THE MISSISSIPPI??! How is it!? Bless you, DT, Bless you.

AND ALSO, do we think maybe this song could serve as a warning to whoever broke into their Bushwick-based studios a few months back? Indeed, a big old FUCK YOU to those guys. Anybody messing with DT is truly a menace, to society, and also to TOUGH SOUL MUSIC. What have you done, my brothers?

I drank an energy drink AND coffee this morning. Can you tell? SORRY!!!

What Have You Done?.mp3

Boy, you got nowhere to run.
You’re surely gonna pay
For what you’ve done.
You better ask yourself, what have you done?
What have you done?

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