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Soulbook Import

4.2 out of 5 stars 198 customer reviews

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Audio CD, Import, October 26, 2009
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Editorial Reviews

2009 album from the Grammy Award winning Rock 'n' Roll Hall of Famer. SoulBook is a collection of classic '60's and '70's era Soul favorites sung by one of the most interpretive voices in music. Stewart is personally passionate about this project, which is a return to his beginnings when he fronted the Jeff Beck Band and the critically-revered band the Faces, iconic in the history books for fusing American roots music - Rock, Soul and Blues. Soul book reunites Stewart with his longtime collaborators, producers Steve Tyrell and Steve Jordan, of Rolling Stones/Xpensive Winos fame, who also brought in top musicians Ray Parker Jr.., Waddy Watchel, Darrell Jones, Dean Parks and David Paich to join Rod in the studio for the album.
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Digital Booklet: Soulbook
Digital Booklet: Soulbook
Album Only

Product Details

  • Audio CD (October 26, 2009)
  • Original Release Date: October 26, 2009
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Import
  • Label: Sony Legacy
  • Run Time: 47 minutes
  • ASIN: B002OHOEFO
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (198 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #44,075 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Amazon's Rod Stewart Store

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Matthew G. Sherwin HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on October 26, 2009
Format: Audio CD
(3.5 stars)

Rod Stewart's latest CD, "Soulbook," has him singing fairly well but it's not exactly the best album he has ever released. For Rod's fans when he was doing a much, much different style of music, this may not be for them unless they also like this genre of music, too. Rod's voice may not be quite as strong as it was twenty or more years ago; but that's the aging process. I will say that Rod still delivers his songs from the heart and that's admirable. The track set lets the songs flow rather well into each other and that enhances the album but then again there are a few missteps along the way. Some numbers are stronger than others for sure!

"It's The Same Old Song" is very well done; and this starts the album off in a good direction. The drums and percussion add a lot to the arrangement. The music fits in very well with Rod's vocals and he never misses a beat, either! "My Cherie Amour" features Stevie Wonder singing with Rod; I like it but this is truly Stevie's song. Moreover, at this stage in his life Rod's voice just can't measure up to the Stevie's original performance back in the day. Sorry, Rod! On the other hand, however, "You Make Me Feel Brand New" charms me with its beauty; Mary J. Blige does a great job with Rod and that's grand. They should do more duets together! I also really like "(Your Love Keeps Lifting Me) Higher and Higher;" the arrangement works wonders for this classic tune.

"Let It Be Me" is a stunner that has Rod Stewart singing wonderfully with Jennifer Hudson. Hudson was the perfect choice for this duet--heck, she could sing out the phonebook and I'd be standing there applauding! Rod's vocals are also easy on the ear. In addition, "Rainy Night in Georgia" is a big highlight of this album.
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Format: Audio CD
While the general consensus by Rod Stewart fans may be that they'd much rather hear a new album of Rod Stewart original as opposed to countless volumes of covers, on Soulbook, Rod Stewart sounds much more natural than he did on any of 'The Great American Songbook' series. Maybe it is because Stewart reigned in a time where music was more universal (the 1970s) - where soul was met with wide reception by rock stars/rock fans and rock was met with wide reception by soul stars/soul fans. Trivializations aside, SOULBOOK has greater vitality than his past series, even if ultimately the rock star brings nothing 'new' to these great, vintage classics.

The album opens up convincingly with "Same Old Song", which suits Stewart's smokey vocals well. On the Stevie Wonder featuring "My Cherie Amour", Stewart also sounds convincing, never overshadowing the original, of course. His duet with Mary J. Blige on "You Make Me Feel Brand New" is the first true showstopper of the album, finding Stewart achieving some 'grit' within his vocals. Cynics might say that singing with a powerhouse such as Blige, he 'had to sang!'

On "Your Love (Keeps Lifting Me Higher)", cynics must quiet down as it easily ranks as one of the best solo performances of the album. "Tracks of My Tears" doesn't fall flat at all as Stewart gives the easily recognizable Smokey Robinson classic just treatment. Even better is his fine duet with Grammy-/Oscar-winner Jennifer Hudson on "Let It Be Me".

"Rainy Night In Georgia" isn't too shabby, though it isn't nearly as great as the very best in my opinion ("You Make Me Feel Brand New", "Your Love (Keeps Lifting Me Higher)", and "Let I Be Me").
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Format: Audio CD
Rod Stewart's 'Soulbook' is very similar to his Great American Songbook collection; rather than singing classic Rat Pack era songs, or 'rock' standards as with another recent release, this time he's taking on 'soul' hits; classic R&B hits. Sigh. Don't get me wrong, Stewart's voice and style is definitely present but an issue I have with 'Soulbook' is that similar to the American Songbook series, the song line-up really don't do anything for him. They sound like cover songs (which they are), as if he's just singing them without much thought or true feeling. After 13 tracks, my main complaint is that this doesn't feel anything like Rod Stewart. It feels like Rod Stewart's leaving behind the style, attitude and personality that made him so popular and the musical icon that he is and is settling for covering other artists' songs and standards. What 'Soulbook' lacks is the soul of Stewart. Yes, he sings each song decently well but there's always a feeling that there's something missing in each track and on the album on a whole.

The Good: His voice is probably the best part of the album. It's his signature, it's raspy and it fits this genre a bit better than it did the American Songbook collection of tracks. There's a big 1970s vibe to the album and the arrangements of many of the songs, from the instruments to the production, makes 'Soulbook' sound as if it fits into his early releases. Unlike with the past songbook collections, Stewart comes off a bit more comfortable in this genre and back in his element. I felt he was best on "Tracks of My Tears" which is a very laid back and stripped-down affair where his voice and sensuality and sensibility are on display, and "If You Don't Know Me By Now" that is purely a cover song but his voice and vocals just makes it stand out.
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