This second release for McClain on the Telarc label restarts McClain at the beginning of his success with his 1966 hit, Patsy Cline's "Sweet Dreams." The warbling soulman exited and reentered the music business since that time, but the revival of his gospel-tinged soul material has brought him a newly acclaimed success throughout the 90s, followed by award after award. On this release he was able to bring his road band, a full horn section, and producer extraordinaire Joe Harley into the studio with him. The result is this platter avec soul; a meal of music fit for any king or queen!
Sam's deep baritone is backed by Kevin Betz on guitar, Bruce Katz on the piano, and Barry Seelen on the Hammond B-3 organ. The bottom is provided by Tim Ingles on the bass, and Jim Arnold working the drum kit. The full horn complement is The Mighty Horns: Joe Casano on the trumpet, Chuck Langford on tenor sax, Roger Cagnon on the trombone, and Walter Platt on trumpet and putting together the arrangements.
Sam has written or co-penned ten of thirteen tunes here including one composition with his wife Sandra McClain, one with tenor sax man Chuck Langford, and three with Walter Platt (trumpeter and horn arranger). Filling out the set are Sir Mack Rice's "Respect Yourself," Glen Kaiser's "Where Would I Be," and the title tune written by Don Gibson. This opens from the gate with a shufflin' opener, the five-minute "Here I Come Again" and sweeps into the tender "Sweet Dreams." McClain's reverent vocal character and Katz' intricate keyboard action shine through on both.
Loaded with explosive cuts and packed with barrelhouse funk and sweet soul, McClain puts out a beautiful set of wildly powerful and integral tunes like the respectful "Standing In The Wings," the neo-funked "Fool For The Blues," the drivin' beat of his "Living In My Dreams," or the slow groove of "Nothin' But A Feeling." Blues and soul has never had a voice with such an exclusive right to sing it; Mighty Sam McClain has that right!
Telarc International Corp.; 23307 Commerce Park Drive; Cleveland, Ohio 44122:
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