Throughout her career, Marlena Shaw has traversed the worlds of jazz, R&B, soul, pop, funk, and dance with equal aplomb. Following stints at Chess Records offshoot Cadet and the venerable Blue Note label, Shaw made her boldest bid for the mainstream at Columbia Records. Her time at the label has recently been rediscovered by Cherry Red's SoulMusic Records imprint on the 2-CD set Go Away Little Boy: The Columbia Anthology. Shaw joined Columbia in 1977, remaining on the label for three
For two of its most recent releases, Cherry Red’s SoulMusic Records imprint has turned its attention to two soulful divas who have already called the label home. SoulMusic’s reissue series for Marlena Shaw and Angela Bofill have continued with Just a Matter of Time and Intuition, respectively. Whether singing jazz, funk, blues, pop, or some combination thereof, Marlena Shaw has always sounded right at home. Signed to Chess Records in 1967 on the strength of a successful stint performing at
In her 1989 autobiography And a Voice to Sing With, Joan Baez recalled once asking Bob Dylan what was the difference between them. It was simple, he replied: she thought she could change things, and he knew that no one could. But one could argue that music did indeed, change things. Youth were politically engaged as never before, and awareness was raised of many crucial issues still debated today. Author Pat Thomas recalls “those turbulent years (approximately 1967 to 1974) when revolutionaries
Whether recording jazz, pop or funk, the soulful Marlena Shaw has made her mark. The first female vocalist signed to Blue Note Records, Shaw has had an impressive career with tenures not only at the venerable jazz imprint but also Chess' Cadet subsidiary, Columbia, Verve and Concord. Included in her outstanding discography are searing takes on Goffin and King's "Go Away, Little Girl" (as "Go Away, Little Boy"), Ashford and Simpson's "California Soul" and a discofied "Touch Me in the Morning."