Sam Cooke Live at the Harlem Square Club, 1963

sam-cookeKDUR Radio in Durango Colorado featured this release this morning. I've owned this CD for about a decade, having purchased it after my friend Ted sold me on its brilliance about a decade ago. Many of you may have been turned onto Sam Cooke when his song "What a Wonderful World" was featured in the cafeteria scene in the film "Animal House." You remember, John Belushi as John "Bluto" Blutarsky was walking through the line of food stacking his tray to the gills while also helping himself to sandwiches and jello as if he hadn't eaten in at least an hour. He was eating like a drunken idiot at a Denny's at 3 a.m.
To me this remains in the top 5 of live releases ever. Its missing from Rolling Stones list of top live albums of all time, which in my opinion discredits RS even more now as a music magazine than it already is.
This release showcases Cooke as more than a pop crooner. He's a showman; a confident frontman and band leader, leaving just about everything he has where it belongs. On stage.
For those of you not in the know you'll give this a listen and realize you know more of Cookes music than you thought. For my money this ranks right up there with "Live at Leeds" and "The Last Waltz" as a must own live release.

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About bryantliggett

Dad, writer, critic, fan, hobo.
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One Response to Sam Cooke Live at the Harlem Square Club, 1963

  1. Good write up. I’ll certainly give this a try as I like Live at Leeds and The Last Waltz. I’m curious as to whether or not you’ve heard Ike and Tina Turner Live at Carnegie Hall?

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