What exactly is Soul music? Cazzette says that you should have understood the concept if you came here. Your biggest question is Best Soul Music. Cazzette believes you are nostalgic for a happy childhood.
First, Cazzette will arrange the list according to their order of priority. We also provide information on different types of Soul music. Let’s find out more.
Top 45 Best Soul Music Review Of This Year
1. Donny Hathaway – Live (1972)
Despite his 1969 soul song “The Ghetto”, Donny Hathaway never had the chance to grow. At 33 years old, he committed suicide leaving behind an excellent catalog.
Fans should listen to his 1970 self-titled debut album and 1973’s Extension of a Man’. In between, he released his finest work, the 1972 concert album Live’, which was recorded on both sides of the Atlantic.
He covers soul (“You’ve Got a Friend”) as well as pop (“You’ve Got a Friend”) songs. He also performs a 12-minute rendition of “The Ghetto”, which baptizes the audience with sweat and tears.
2. You Make Me Feel Like A Natural Woman – Aretha Franklin
Although this song has been covered many times over the years, it is still a classic. However, Aretha Franklin was the first to sing Carole King’s powerful declaration that she is loved up big.
The 1967 song, with its iconic lyric “You’re my key to my peace” (with the legendary lyrics), is a perfect blend of gospel and soul music. It’s hard not to feel all the feelings.
3. Al Green – The Belle Album (1977)
Al Green changed some things for his 12th album, which produced the album himself without any help from Willie Mitchell. He had different session musicians. He had also recently converted to Christianity which led his music in a new direction within just a few years.
It’s no surprise that ‘The Belle Album” sounds so different from any other Green album. It’s still a beautiful record, highlighted by Green’s laid-back new style and quiet, warm intimacy.
4. Let’s Stay Together – Al Green
Some songs are so beautiful, passionate, and so soulful that even the first line can send shivers down your vertebrae. Just listen to Obama singing this song mid-press conference, and you’ll see what I mean.
This 1972 song was released by Al Green and is a masterpiece in setting a sexy groove that will make people move.
It wouldn’t be complete without the sensual vocals. The whole thing sounds as if it were just you and Al sitting in a small room looking into the eyes of each other and discussing the rest of your lives. I’m not crying. I just have something in my eye.
5. Millie Jackson – Caught Up (1974)
Millie Jackson’s fourth album, “Caught Up,” was a great idea. Side One tells the story from the perspective of a woman who has an affair with a married husband; Side 2 is the view of the jilted wife.
The Muscle Shoals Rhythm Section backs Jackson, and he blazes with passion when Jackson sings songs like “If Loving You Is Wrong), I Don’t Want To Be Right,” or “I’m Through Trying Prove My Love for You.” Jackson was sometimes hindered by explicitness and spoken-word passages that distracted them from her voice. It all comes together here.
6. I Want You – Marvin Gaye
Damn. This soul song is like being propositioned by a piece of vinyl. It’s all you need to do to get there. It is also the most powerful declaration of consent. Marv, the feminist dreamboat that it is, only wants you to feel the same. This is enough to make anyone blush.
7. Gil Scott-Heron – Pieces of a Man (1971)
In 1970, Poet Gil Scott Heron released his first album. It was a live set that featured his spoken-word performances. He released a studio album in 1971 with guitar, drums, bass, piano, and saxophone backing. This record was more familiar than the one he had previously recorded. It is a record that has had a huge influence on hip-hop in the following decades.
The centerpiece, “The Revolution Will Not Be Televised”, became an anthem for an increasingly disillusioned generation. There’s much more to this video that explores the blurred boundaries that link funk, soul, and jazz with electronic music.
8. I Heard it Through the Grapevine – Marvin Gaye
This must surely have been one of the most bittersweet moments ever recorded in the history and sound recording industry. I didn’t pay much attention to the lyrics until I was older.
Marvin’s tone and expressiveness were always overwhelming to me. The track’s feel made me want to move, but then the raw emotion of the lyrics struck me like a celestial train. This was Dave Okumu of The Invisible.
9. James Brown – The Payback (1973)
James Brown was hired to score the music for a blaxploitation film called “Hell Up In Harlem” 1973. The music was rejected by the producers for a variety of reasons.
So Brown released the work as his 37th album. He was immediately rewarded with his only studio gold LP. The funk-infused title track climbed to No. The funk-infused title track climbed to No. 1 on the R& B charts and has been a favorite of hip-hop producers for years. Brown is one the greatest singles artists of all time, but “The Payback” remains a landmark album in his long career.
10. The Tracks of My Tears – Smokey Robinson
This song is pure mastery. Everybody can relate to the line, “My smile is my make-up, since my breakup with you.” The arrangement is tight down to Pete Moore’s bass vocals and tambourine shake.
As if that wasn’t enough, this soul song was inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame. The United States Library of Congress also preserves it because of its cultural significance.
11. Stevie Wonder – Music of My Mind (1972)
Stevie Wonder took complete creative control over his work after more than 12 albums. “Music of My Mind” was the start of a great run in pop music that lasted for the remainder of the decade.
Songs like “Superwoman (Where Was You When I Needed You)” can be traced back to later triumphs such as ‘Innervisions, and ‘Songs in the Key of Life. Wonder co-produced and co-wrote the album. He also played many instruments, which helped launch a new era in Motown and soul music.
12. Get Ready – The Temptations
This classic soul song boasts the most memorable intro of any song. It also features the sweet falsetto tones and soaring vocals of Eddie Kendricks. The song is accompanied by a great shuffling beat, the most use of the ‘fiddly doe, fiddly dum’ phrase to date. Halfway through, you realize that this song is pure filth. Amy Smith
13. The O’Jays – Back Stabbers (1972)
Although the O’Jays hail from Canton in Ohio, they are perhaps the most iconic example of the Philly sound. The O’Jays had been making records for over ten years when Leon Huff and Kenneth Gamble, cofounders of Philadelphia International Records, provided them with some of their most memorable songs, including “Love Train” and the title track.
The resulting album is still a highlight of the label’s past and a major ingredient in 1970s soul. All of them returned one year later to record the equally great “Ship Ahoy.”
14. Soul Man – Sam & Dave
It is hard not to imagine Sam Moore and Dave Prater dancing at the time they recorded this. “Soul Man” was created in 1967 to respond to a phenomenon in which civil rights protesters wrote “soul” on black-owned businesses to stop them from being looted during riots.
15. Isaac Hayes – Shaft (1971)
Isaac Hayes’ No. 1 hit, “Theme From ‘Shaft'”, is a wah-wah-powered number one. The soundtrack album, released in 1971, is the first to be officially recognized as blaxploitation. The double LP is not just about that. Hayes was a producer, songwriter, and session player at Stax Records in the 1960s, helping to shape the genre’s transition from R& B to soul.
Although the ‘Shaft album is cinematic as one would expect, it is also a landmark soul, funk, and disco record that Hayes has guided with his savvy and experience.
16. Try A Little Tenderness – Otis Redding
You would be surprised to learn that Bing Crosby, the twinkling crooner, recorded this song in 1933. Redding’s version is now the most popular. His soulful arrangement is led to Booker T Jones’s deeply sorrowful licks on the organ. It builds gradually until Redding, who is almost impatient, is screaming and frantically trying to remember words – all for the sake of being tender.
17. The Isley Brothers – 3+3 (1973)
For their 11th album, The Isley Brothers grew to six members. This included Ernie, the younger brother who had lived with Jimi Hendrix for some time. The influence of the late guitarist hero is evident in ‘3+3,” especially “Lady”, and a stunning take on Seals & Crofts’s “Summer Breeze.”
James Taylor and the Doobie Brothers are also featured here. However, everything is covered in the Isleys’ shimmery sheen. They were a great singles group, but on “3+3,” they made an album.
18. Living for the City – Stevie Wonder
Stevie delivers soul-piercing sermons like no one else. He focuses on the struggles of growing up black and poor while playing every freakin’ instrument.
Wonder sings again after a brief interlude. It’s amazing how he abandons prettiness, even though Wonder is being arrested for racially profiling. Every word is both fought for and battle-worny.
19. Stevie Wonder – Fulfillingness First Finale (1974)
This companion piece to the previous year’s ‘Innervisions’, ‘Fulfillingness’ First Finale’ reduces Stevie Wonder’s worldview to a more isolated perspective.
It’s more intimate music, and Wonder once again handles much of the instrumentation. “You Haven’t Done Nothin'” is a little more expansive, involving the Jackson 5 to perform a Richard Nixon slapdown. However, most songs move at a slower pace. He returned two years later with his masterpiece.
20. Move On Up – Curtis Mayfield
Although you’ve heard it many times, King Curtis’s greatest song is still a favorite. “Move On Up” is a soul song that can change everything for a few seconds: A tribute to progress, positivity, and musicality, as well as a sunburst of brass and strings and percussion. For nine minutes of pure, beautiful soul music immersion, stick with the album version.
21. Aretha Franklin – Amazing Grace (1972)
After a string of hits in the late 1960s, Aretha Franklin went back to her roots. She returned to the church, specifically. Recorded live in Los Angeles by a gospel choir, “Amazing Grace” saw Aretha Franklin tearing through a series of standards such as “Mary, Don’t You weep” and spiritual-leaning contemporary tunes like Marvin Gaye’s “Wholy Holy.”
It was a huge success, earning Franklin a Grammy. It also became the best-selling album in her career. These performances inspired a documentary that was left unfinished for over 45 years.
22. I Second that Emotion – Smokey Robinson and the Miracles
“I Second That Emotion” captures the queasy-elated feeling that comes with a new relationship. He has met someone and is now doolally for them. If they don’t want anything more, he would rather let them go.
The lyrics are a direct challenge to stereotypical male sexuality. It’s a beautiful, vulnerable song that makes your stomach churn every time it plays.
Smokey’s high-pitched voice is so well-tuned that it doesn’t even need the band. However, a little brass can be a great remedy for heartbreak.
23. Marvin Gaye – Here, My Dear (1978)
Marvin Gaye, who was divorcing Anna Berry Gordy, his sister from Motown boss Berry Gordy’s Motown, reached a settlement agreement that included the transfer of royalties for his next album.
He set out to create an uncommercial double album that documented their broken relationship. His ploy was successful on the one hand: “Here, My Dear” wasn’t a success.
It has been a huge success in the decades since its release. It is now Gaye’s greatest work and the best soul album of the last half of the 1970s. While the backstory is impressive, the album is just as great.
24. All I Do – Stevie Wonder
Wonder wrote this original for Tammi Terrell when she was just 16. Sixteen. Sixteen. You can hear Michael Jackson backing vocals if you listen carefully.
25. Sly and the Family Stone – Fresh (1973)
Sly and the Family Stone have reissued the song with a wider range of lyrics two years after the dramatic landscape-shifting “There’s A Riot Going On”. This is a big difference: Sly Stone invited his fellow bandmates to join him, which made ‘Riot’s dark claustrophobia sunnier.
Sly Stone made a significant turn in 1971, and there was no turning back. The group’s last hit album, ‘Fresh,’ would be their last. After one more record, the original lineup would fall apart. This is their last chance.
26. A Change Is Gonna Come – Sam Cooke
Soul music is about deep expressions of human emotion about yearning for hope and transformation. It captures the human experience. This song is a heavy hitter on all counts.
In just three minutes, we are transported through this rich journey by Sam Cooke’s powerful voice and the sensitivity and beauty of the musical arrangement. This is perfection at its finest. The Invisible’s Dave Okumu selected this winner.
27. Al Green – I’m Still in Love with You (1972)
Al Green’s middle album, which was released over 15 months in 1972-73, is in some ways the most familiar. It’s the binding that holds them together. It is the most comfortable of all the groups and sounds the easiest today.
Another huge hit was the title track, and “Love and Happiness”, his most popular song, is still a favorite. Although the Roy Orbison cover may seem pointless, the Kris Kristofferson version is six and a half minutes long. Few could match Green’s talent with a song in those days: “I’m Still In Love With You” is a perfect example.
28. Your Love Keeps Lifting Me Higher – Jackie Wilson
This heart-thumping, soul-shaking song by Mr. Jackie Wilson is a must for any classy wedding. Technically, it’s perfect at just two minutes and 59 seconds. It features verse-chorus bridge pop music magic.
It also has more pure joy than any other singer can condense. It can be turned up and then up again. You can go higher. James Manning
29. Curtis Mayfield – Curtis (1970)
After 12 years with the Impressions, Curtis Mayfield began a solo career. His record helped to define the future of soul music. Curtis was socially conscious, documenting the Black and Vietnam experiences and musically adventurous, venturing into psychedelia, funk, and other genres.
Songs such as “Don’t Worry,” If There’s A Hell Below, We’re All Going to Go”, “We the People Who Are Darker Than Blue,” or “Move On Up” were influenced by generations of artists. However, Mayfield’s peers felt the impact almost immediately.
30. Sitting on the Dock of the Bay – Otis Redding
This song is an emotional bomb. Redding wrote this song on scraps of paper and napkins on the road. He sings about complete loneliness against a gentle, slipping instrument. Redding’s quavering vocals reach their peak in the middle eight. It is even more poignant than it was released after Redding’s death in a plane accident.
31. James Brown – Sex Machine (1970)
James Brown was instrumental in shaping many soul offshoots during the 1960s. He started the 1970s with one of his greatest albums. “Sex Machine” claims to be a concert recording. This is even though it is largely a studio recording overdubbed with audience applause.
It’s a great album that features Brown and his band at their best, particularly on the almost 11-minute “Get Up I Feel Like Being a Sex Machine”, which marked a new direction in soul music for the next decade.
32. Twenty-Five Miles – Edwin Starr
Although he comes in just short of a marathon, this Motown 45 is still a PB to belt out soul giant Edwin War!’ Starr. It’s a solid floor filler thanks to the bouncing bassline, impeccable vocal performance, and plenty of call-and-response.
33. Al Green – Call Me (1973)
Al Green recorded three soul classics over 15 months in 1972-73.
This run was capped by ‘Call Me’, Green’s greatest achievement. The Top 10 reached for the title track, “Here I Am” and “You Ought To Be With Me”. Green covered Hank Williams’s song “Here I Am (Come and Take Me)” and also included Willie Nelson’s covers. This helped to bridge R& B and country music. He sang like never before.
34. When Somebody Loves You Back – Teddy Pendergrass
“I have been spinning this timeless summer tune again while on tour in Australia and New Zealand (where there have been heatwaves), and it’s been a hit with outdoor party goers.
It’s a lovely, lilting love song at a mid-tempo that Teddy P can sing. It’s one of my favorite Valentine’s Day songs too.’ This track was chosen by Norman Jay MBE, a rare groove titan and Good Times icon.
35. Marvin Gaye – Let’s Get It On (1973)
Marvin Gaye took a different direction to follow up 1971’s sociopolitical “What’s Happening properly.” The 1972 soundtrack of the blaxploitation film ‘Trouble Man’ was mostly instrumental.
After trying to make the world a better place, the soul legend was ready to let go. The No. 1 hit, the title track, is all bedroom talk. The No. 1 hit is the title track. But he didn’t stop there.
Gaye’s 1973 state of mind can be viewed in “Keep Gettin’ it On”, “You Sure Love to Ball,” or “Just to Keep You Satisfied”. This is a classic in baby-making.
36. Be Thankful for What You Got – William DeVaughn
This early 1970s soul hit was a true curiosity in the music world. It became a classic on gospel radio stations and later was riffed by NWA for its rants about the gangster life. It’s impossible to resist the temptation of this groove, regardless of your morals.
37. Stevie Wonder – Talking Book (1972)
Stevie Wonder made no mistake in doubling down on his promise to ‘Music of My Mind’ earlier that year. The 22-year old artist could only access ‘Music of My Mind’ via ‘Talking Book’.
Songs such as “You Are the Sunshine of My Life” and “Superstition” ranged from beautiful ballads and grimy funk to songs like “You Are the Sunshine of My Life”, all guided by Wonder’s creative visions and synths.
On the expansive closer, “I Believe” (When I fall in love, it will be forever), he is completely solo. The best part? He was just getting off to a good start.
38. Inner City Blues by Marvin Gaye
“It’s a song that’s as powerful today as it was 45 years ago. The lyrics are as powerful and simple as the drum beat and bass line. One of the greatest singers ever to have performed this song is a brilliant reminder of our struggles in surviving today’s economic and socially divided world.
39. Sly and the Family Stone – There’s a Riot Goin’ On (1971)
Sly and the Family Stone had an amazing 1969 with the release of the legendary ‘Stand! LP, followed by a great appearance at Woodstock a few months later and the closing track with the No. 1 “Thank you (Falettinme be Mice Elf Agin).
After almost two years of silence, they returned with the deliberately slow ‘There’s A Riot Goin’ On’, a compilation of Vietnam anxiety, Black experience, and counterculture unrest. “Riot” is a solo Sly Stone LP. It was recorded in his bedroom using a drum machine and many drugs. This was a turning point.
40. Everyday People – Sly and the Family Stone
Rarely was Sly Stone’s great psychedelic album anything you could classify as straight. “Everyday People” is a timeless, classic soul song.
The band’s unique diversity perfectly matched its pleas for harmony, integration, and unity.
41. Stevie Wonder – Innervisions (1973)
Stevie Wonder reached maturity after 15 albums. Since the beginning of the decade, he was steadily getting closer to this point. With ‘Innervisions,’ he established his status as one of the greatest artists of all time.
It’s more than the songs – “Living for the City”, “Higher Ground,” and “Don’t You Worry ‘Bout a Thing” are all included – but also the fact the 23-year-old genius wrote, produced, and performed the entire album. This is a landmark album in the history of popular music.
42. People Make The World Go Round – The Stylistics
A brilliant piece of Philly soul music that is socially conscious and highlights industrial action. The track is kept light by a trilling xylophone and a trumpet, while Russell Thompkins Jr.’s melancholy falsetto conveys the message.
43. Stevie Wonder – Songs in the Key of Life (1976)
There are two full-length albums, four songs EP, and enough timeless music to fill a greatest hits set. Is there any better album than “Songs in the Key of Life”? Stevie Wonder had four great records in the past four years, but he left his masterpiece for the final quarter of 1976.
He did everything – songs about his childhood, love songs, political songs, and tribute songs. The album had five singles that reached the Top 40, but those were only the beginning of its riches.
44. Tainted Love – Gloria Jones
This cover by Soft Cell is a great original. Jones’s scathing vocal is dismissive and dismissive. The unremitting clapping beat is relentless, and she doesn’t stop clapping – if there was any doubt, she’s definitely over him.
45. Maria – Michael Jackson
It’s the B side to MJ’s 1972 hit Got To Be There. Michael Jackson is my favorite artist, but this song was new to me. One of the records that my boyfriend gave me was this track on a 7 inch. It’s amazing how MJ’s voice sounds young and yet so emotionally charged.
Who is the best soul singer of all time?
Rolling Stone Readers Choose the Top 10 R& B/Soul Singers of All Otis Redding. Otis Redding, like many soul legends on this list, died tragically young. Marvin Gaye. Sam Cooke. Aretha Franklin Ray Charles. Al Green. Stevie Wonder. James Brown.
What are some good soul songs?
10-1 is the best music for the soul: Heard Through the Grapevine by Marvin Gaye 5. Smokey Robinson – The Tracks of My Tears 6. Get ready for the temptations 7. Soul Man – Sam & Dave.8. Otis Redding: Try A Little Tenderness. 9. Stevie Wonder – Living for the City 10. Curtis Mayfield: Move on up
Why soul music is the best?
Soul music is a unique genre that has many features that aren’t found in other music styles. It is designed to express strong emotions.
It often has powerful, meaningful lyrics that are specifically written for this purpose. It is rooted in old gospel music that was played in Southern churches in the United States.
Who is the Queen of R&B soul?
Singer Ruth Brown. Ruth Brown, an American singer, has been called the “Queen of R& B”.
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