I'll Take You There: Mavis Staples, the Staple Singers, and the March Up Freedom's Highway

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Simon and Schuster, Jan 21, 2014 - Biography & Autobiography - 308 pages
2 Reviews
The untold story of living legend Mavis Staples—lead singer of The Staple Singers and a major figure in the music that shaped the Civil Rights era—researched and written by acclaimed music journalist and author Greg Kot.

This is the untold story of living legend Mavis Staples—lead singer of the Staple Singers and a major figure in the music that shaped the civil rights era. Now in her seventies, Mavis has been a fixture in the music world for decades. One of the most enduring artists of popular music, she and her family fused gospel, soul, folk, and rock to transcend racism and oppression through song. Honing her prodigious talent on the Southern gospel circuit of the 1950s, Mavis and the Staple Singers went on to sell more than 30 million records, with message-oriented soul music that became a sound track to the civil rights movement—inspiring Martin Luther King Jr. himself.

Critically acclaimed biographer and Chicago Tribune music critic Greg Kot cuts to the heart of Mavis Staples’s music, revealing the intimate stories of her sixty-year career. From her love affair with Bob Dylan, to her creative collaborations with Prince, to her recent revival alongside Wilco’s Jeff Tweedy, this definitive account shows Mavis as you’ve never seen her before. I’ll Take You There was written with the complete cooperation of Mavis and her family. Readers will also hear from Prince, Bonnie Raitt, David Byrne, Marty Stuart, Ry Cooder, Steve Cropper, and many other individuals whose lives have been influenced by Mavis’s talent.

Filled with never-before-told stories, this fascinating biography illuminates a legendary singer and group during a historic period of change in America.
 

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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - seeword - LibraryThing

I received this book as a Goodreads First Read giveaway. As we follow the Staples family from their debut in 1948 at the Holy Trinity Baptist Church to 2011 when Mavis won her first Grammy, we also ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - StephenBarkley - LibraryThing

Full disclosure: I didn't buy this book for Mavis' sake. Other than the Jeff Tweedy penned, "You're Not Alone," I knew nothing of the Staples cannon. I bought this book because of the biographer. Greg ... Read full review

Contents

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Freedom Highway in sequined flats 1 Voices in the Mississippi night Hard time killing floor If I Could Hear My Mother Pray Again This May Be the ...
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Respect Yourself
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Wattstax
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Acknowledgments
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About the author (2014)

Greg Kot has been the music critic at the Chicago Tribune since 1990. Kot is co-host of the nationally syndicated public radio program Sound Opinions, and the author of several books, including Wilco: Learning How to Die; and Ripped: How the Wired Generation Revolutionized Music. He lives in Chicago.

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