The big question that greets listeners encountering Al Green's third Blue Note album, Lay It Down, is: what happens when you put that amazing soul-drenched voice in the hands of hip-hop producers Ahmir "?uestlove" Thompson of the Roots and James Poyser, and add a slew of superstar guests? Answer: a killer Al Green soul album.Killer fo sho. It's interesting how the new producers were able to create a more classic Al Green sound than was present on the previous album, Everything's OK. This isn't neo-soul because there's nothing neo about it. This is like taking a trip on a time machine back to the '70s. And this is one trip you don't want to miss. Not a bad way to spend a Sunday morning (or a Saturday night, if you know what I mean).
When I've played Al Green music at any occasion, I've never ever been asked to turn it off or put something else on. 'Nuff said.
Peak on the US Billboard Top 200 chart: #9 (June 14, 2008)
Tracks: I don't skip any and the top tracks are hard to pick. During today's listen, I'll pick the title track, Just For Me, Take Your Time (featuring Corinne Bailey Rae), Stay With Me (featuring John Legend), and Standing In The Rain. Any of the 11 tracks would make you feel better.
Personal Memory Associated with this CD: I had the pleasure of hearing Al Green in concert last year, where he turned the title track from this CD into a lengthy slow burn that brought the house down. Fantastic performance. Between the ticket, travel, hotel, and meals, the whole thing probably ended up costing me over $400 and I'd do it again tomorrow. When the concert ended, my face hurt which made me realize I had a goofy grin on my face during the whole show.
Previously revisited for the blog:
Everything's OK (2005)
I Can't Stop (2003)
Greatest Gospel Hits (2000)
Greatest Hits (1975)