Various Artists

Back to Stax: Memphis Soul

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Stax Records issued countless classic soul and R&B hits from a variety of artists during the '60s -- all of which were backed in the studio by the label's famous house band, Booker T. & the MG's. In January of 1990 (at the Palais De Festivale in Cannes, France), the surviving members of Booker T. & the MG's (keyboardist Booker T. Jones, guitarist Steve Cropper, and bassist Donald "Duck" Dunn) and fill-in drummer Danny Gottlieb were joined by a variety of Stax hitmakers on-stage, documented on the 2002 home video/DVD Back to Stax: Memphis Soul. While the members of Booker T. & the MG's remain on the stage for the show's duration, such artists as Sam Moore (of Sam & Dave), the Memphis Horns, Carla Thomas, Eddie Floyd, and Phil Upchurch join the backing band for mini-sets of their hits. Booker T. & the MG's prove to still be a viable and sturdy R&B instrumental outfit all these years later, as proven by a fine version of their biggest hit, "Green Onions," which opens the video. Other highlights include Sam Moore's "Hold on I'm Coming," the Memphis Horns' "Last Night," Carla Thomas' "Lovey Dovey," Eddie Floyd's "Knock on Wood," and Phil Upchurch's "Love and Peace," among others. Back to Stax: Memphis Soul proves to be a fun and surprisingly effective overview of Stax's most renowned artists, who remain in fine voice all these years later.