Tag Archives: Deva Mahal

Album of the Day: Deva Mahal, “Run Deep”

Deva Mahal’s latest album ends with a song called “Take a Giant Step,” which was written by Carole King and Gerry Goffin and covered by a host of artists over the years—including her father, blues giant Taj Mahal. But rather than sticking faithfully to any previous iterations of the song, Mahal takes the title as an instruction, using the track to demonstrate her formidable pop skills. It opens with a jazzy guitar progression before Mahal locks into a tight duet with a subtle organ line. Her vocals on the song are breathtaking, and her take on “Giant Step” is inspirational without ever becoming saccharine, with an invigorating guitar solo that kicks open the door into a final, triumphant chorus. That ease and skill shows up throughout Run Deep: instrumental interludes become vibrant plays on old spirituals; jazz chords get tangled up in funk grooves and soaring vocal melodies, and downcast ballads become anthems of power thanks to Mahal’s commanding vocals.

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The Best Soul Albums of 2017

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The year 2017 was a glorious cornucopia for soul music. From songs of empowerment and revival to songs that spoke directly to the social and political struggles of modern-day America, it was a year of thought-provoking, stand-out, new, and new-to-you music. If nothing else, these albums prove that great soul never goes out of style, and it’s never too late to make an impact on the world through song.

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The Best New Soul on Bandcamp: November 2017

Jackie Shane

Jackie Shane. Illustration by Gabriel Alcala.

Each month, Bandcamp brings you the best soul music the site has to offer. Whether it’s poignant social commentary from Aaron Abernathy, or an unearthed gem from Jackie Shane, these selections set a reflective tone for November’s cold nights. Warm blanket and comfort food optional.

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