About this playlist

What could be better than a playlist of the best soul tracks ever? Join us here on a journey through some of the most stunning music made…

Soul music has always been about the most heartfelt, powerful art sung by immensely talented vocalists who have an ability to cut right through any moment. Somehow so many of these songs can not only bring up strong, specific memories, but they also have an ability to suddenly pause time. Our lives have literally been lived along to so much here.

Starting with the classic ‘Hold On, I’m Coming’ from Sam and Dave, our playlist showcases some of the most enduring and loved soul music right from the 1950s to today. We continue with some barnstorming tracks from The Ronettes, Ray Charles, and contemporary delights Sharon Jones & The Dap Kings.

The enormous, timeless vocal prowess of James Brown, Sam Cooke and the recently departed Billy Paul to Whitney Houston, Aretha Franklin and Toni Braxon are simply unforgettable. As are the effortless rich sounds of Marvin Gaye, Luther Vandross and Maxwell right through to Angie Stone, Lauryn Hill and Dionne Warwick. Who hasn’t spent entire afternoons listening to groups like The Temptations, The Four Tops and The Supremes?

Numerous singers have also written the soundtrack to our generation, so no playlist would be complete without the majestic compositions of Babyface, Blackstreet’s Teddy Riley, Stevie Wonder, Michael Jackson and R. Kelly. On the arrangement front, Motown’s stunning Holland-Dozier-Holland producers and The Wall of Sound’s music maestro Phil Spector have of course made enough great music to cover entire decades and go right into history.

A playlist comprising a song from every great soul artist would easily range into the thousands of tracks, so our journey here takes an extensive but careful pick of tracks right from the days of Nat King Cole, through the 60s masterpieces, 70s and 80s musical transformations, and 90s and noughties R&B-infusion, to today’s much loved Tank, Charles Bradley and B.J. The Chicago Kid.

Soul music has changed lives, accompanied so many great memories, and equally brought people through tragedies. The expressions and sentiments throughout are raw and honest, with no holds barred. But a sense of hope and joy, and even outright ecstasy, pervade so much of this movement. Soul music is exactly that, a movement, a way of being, so much more than a collection of songs. It is a life.

It’s our hope that this playlist takes you on a voyage through great memories and many, many adventures to come…

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