One of my favorite singers, Don Covay, has passed away at the age of 76. I expect many or most of you never heard of him, so I want to share a couple of his songs with you and I think you’ll love him too. He was a great solo artist, but was more successful as a songwriter for other people. His best known composition was probly “Chain of Fools,” performed by Aretha Franklin. Have Mercy! the Songs of Don Covayis a whole compilation of songs he wrote, as performed by Wilson Pickett, Solomon Burke, Little Richard, Wanda Jackson, Ben E. King… I mean, he got around.
I buy alot of random funk and soul compilation CDs to try to discover things I wouldn’t know about otherwise, and it was on one called Breaks Sessions that I first learned about Don Covay. It’s a nice 2-disc collection of songs that were sampled in hip hop, such as “Nautilus” by Bob James (sampled by Ghostface in “Daytona 500,” among many others) or “Tribute to Obabi” by The Last Poets (which you’d know as “Excursions” by A Tribe Called Quest). Some of the songs you find on these things are by more obscure artists than those guys, though, ones I never heard of, often without any other recordings to their name. Still, if I like the one song I look them up and in the case of Don Covay it turned out there was a motherlode of other great stuff. (read the rest of this shit…)