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Tuesday, 14 February 2012

33. Bobby Womack - What is this?

Some singers have a strange power to transport you to another place and time. This happens very rarely and only when the singer possesses a talent above and beyond ordinary mortals. Beverley Knight for example, has the ability to go into overdrive and produce this sense of mild euphoria every now and then. No other singer does this as often for me as Bobby Womack.

Womack is a soul legend, but a second division soul legend next to Marvin, Stevie and Aretha. Personally, I'd put him at the top of the league table. He is without doubt a legend, just look at his fashion sense if you have any doubts. Bobby usually combines a certain pimpish 70's look with futuristic glasses and then the next thing you know he's wearing a cowboy hat, sitting on a horse and smoking a pipe.

'What is this?' is difficult to track down on Youtube, but it's well worth the effort. The bit where he produces the 'euphoria effect' for me is where he sings the line 'Oh what a feeling, this thing keeps me rocking and a-reeling'. Give it a go, it's pure magic. Also worth a mention are 'Across 110th Street' and 'Fly me to the Moon'.

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