Sam Dees

Heritage of a Black Man

  • AllMusic Rating
    6
  • User Ratings (0)
  • Your Rating

AllMusic Review by

This is the second healthy compilation of Sam Dees' recordings compiled and released by Kent Records. The first ran 23 tracks, and this one has 22 killer doses of soul -- look for a third from Kent, since they still haven't captured all of this southern soul icon's recordings on CD. "Fragile, Handle With Care"; "I'm So Glad"; "Lonely for You Baby"; a lilting duet with Bettye Swann, "Just As Sure," which should have blown up; and too many more to list are available on vinyl or tape only. This is a more consistent, albeit less raw, set than Dees' previous Kent compilation; missing are the demo and unreleased tracks that made Second to None attractive to collectors and historians. But absolute grit isn't missing -- Dees delivered that like he had a warehouse full of it. More than just a singer, he either wrote or co-wrote nearly every song. He gets introspective on "Why Must I Be in Love Alone," "I, Me, Myself," and "Why Must I Live in Chains"; pleads shamelessly on "Reconsider Baby" and "Meet Me Half Way"; and delivers the norm on "Mess on Your Hands" and "Lovers or Enemies." If you like soul with an edge, you'll love this razor-sharp collection. Dees penetrates so deep, you feel wounded after listening to these mini-dramas. Not a CD to get lifted by, more of a misery-loves-company enabler.

blue highlight denotes track pick