Solomon Burke – Nothing’s Impossible (E1 Entertainment) – CD review
This record finds Solomon Burke teamed with legendary Memphis producer Willie Mitchell, whose signature staccato horns, loud kick drum, and sweet strings adorned the great Al Green singles of the early 70’s. Flash forward forty years, and everything is still intact. No attempt has been made to update the sound; this is classic soul, through and through
They just don’t make albums like this anymore. Real drums, real instruments, and Burke still growling away, like he has for the last 50 years. But, there’s something here, not present in his previous releases: an underlying hint of regret in his voice. Whether Burke is feeling his mortality or had somehow foreseen the tragedy that would fall his producer (Mitchell passed away just ten days after completing these sessions of cardiac arrest), the truth is, it’s there. It’s also what elevates these tracks to another level. Take for example the odd cover of Anne Murray’s “You Needed Me.” Her original is schmaltzy and vanilla, while Burke imparts so much emotion, cutting to the true essence of the song.
One of the best songs is “Dreams” where Burke sings “don’t wake me from this dream / or I’ll scream scream scream”. These are lyrics that will send chills down your spine. Even Burke’s daughter, Candy, wrote one of the better ones, “The Error of My Ways.” Burke won a Grammy for Best Contemporary Blues Album for 2002’s Don’t Give Up On Me, With this new disc, Burke should find himself once again accepting award for a great collection of songs. — Tony Peters