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Sweet Soul Queen of New Orleans: Collection

Irma ThomasAudio CD
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (15 customer reviews)

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Audio CD, 1996 --  

Amazon's Irma Thomas Store


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It is difficult to believe that 2009 marks the 50th anniversary of Irma Thomas’s first recording session. She remains one of America’s most distinctive and classic singers, a treasure from the golden age of soul music who remains as compelling and powerful as ever. As Don McLeese wrote in his review of her Grammy®-winning 2006 album, After the Rain, “Most singers who have ... Read more in Amazon's Irma Thomas Store

Visit Amazon's Irma Thomas Store
for 22 albums, 3 photos, discussions, and more.

Frequently Bought Together

Sweet Soul Queen of New Orleans: Collection + Time is on My Side + 50th Anniversary Celebration
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (February 20, 1996)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Razor & Tie
  • ASIN: B000002ZA3
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (15 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #178,783 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

1. Cry On
2. I Done Got Over It
3. It's Raining
4. Hittin' On Nothing
5. Ruler Of My Heart
6. Wish Someone Would Care
7. Break-A-Way
8. I Need Your Love So Bad
9. While The City Sleeps
10. Time Is On My Side
11. Anyone Who Knows What Love Is (Will Understand)
12. Moments To Remember
13. Straight From The Heart
14. Take A Look
15. It's A Man's Woman's World (Pt. 1)
16. Long After The Night Is All Over
17. Times Have Changed
18. He's My Guy
19. What Are You Trying To Do
20. Nobody Wants To Hear Nobody's Troubles
See all 23 tracks on this disc

Editorial Reviews


Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
84 of 84 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The Voice June 7, 2000
Format:Audio CD
For my money, the two most soulful female voices of the sixties belonged to Irma Thomas and Aretha Franklin, and Thomas (whose voice is so naturally powerful that anyone foolish enough to compare with her would probably go back to whatever it is failed soul singers do) had recorded all her classics before Franklin had hit her stride. Consequently, anyone interested in sixties Soul (as well as New Orleans music), needs to own an Irma Thomas collection.
Unfortunately, there is no definitive collection available on Thomas. Her first song, "(You Can Have My Husband But) Don't Mess with My Man," available on a Ron Records various artists CD, is a spunky little masterpiece essential to her story that is routinely left off of her hits packages. Her early sixties songs, produced by Allen Toussaint in New Orleans for Minit Records, are perfect capsules of the sound Toussaint was employing to great effect at the time. In addition to producing, Toussaint wrote many of the songs Thomas recorded during those early years, and the enduring brilliance of these recordings exemplifies what happens when two great talents who are sensitive to each others' gifts get together. (The Minit recordings are documented more extensively on "Ruler of Hearts," an out of print collection on the Charly label). This collection only includes five of those songs, instead focusing more on Thomas' work for Imperial Records in Los Angeles, all of which is equally as strong as her earlier recordings, if a little more streamlined and pop-oriented. No one, though, can argue with "Break-a-way," her original version of "Time Is On My Side," "The Hurt's All Gone," "Take a Look," or "While the City Sleeps".
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15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars just fabulous November 12, 2003
Format:Audio CD
Irma Thomas, what a voice! I love this CD, it never gets old. Once upon a time, music had melody, and this is one of the best soul CD's I have. Irma is largely overlooked today, but one listen will tell you what she was all about. If you like this music, then pick up anything else you can get by Betty Harris or
Bessie Bankns, two other forgotten soul singers from the 60's. This CD has all of the old stuff produced by Allen Touissant on Minit records, as well as the studio stuff from L.A. One listen to the original "Time Is On My Side" and you will never want to hear the Rolling Stones version ever again ( as well as Bobby Womack's "It's All Over Now" )................
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great set for collectors, especially January 30, 2009
Format:Audio CD
As an intro "best of" I prefer the Kent "Time Is On My Side" CD, but this set has two things going for it:

1) Steve Hoffman mastered it from the vintage stereo mixes. He's a great mastering engineer. So it sounds really good (despite what a couple reviews here say).

2) It presents all of the remaining Imperial/Liberty B-sides not found on any other collection. It contains some mono single mixes that sound amazing. So if you want everything she released through 1966, you will need this.

The collection is sort of in two parts. The first 11 songs are the "hits" section, and most of the following songs (except for the classic "Take a Look") are the (usually wonderful) obscurities. Thank goodness this set exists.

And, yeah, everything the other reviews say about her voice is true. Amazing singer...probably the warmest and most versatile soul singer of the 1960's. Nice sense of humor, too.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Amazing soul CD by a largely unknown soul star April 13, 2006
Format:Audio CD
I guess that if I had to style myself a soul connoisseur I would have to say that I'm a lateral connoisseur, rather than a deep one. I know a lot of music by a lot of different artists, but I don't know most artists' rare songs, nor do I carry along a lot of information about the artists. I simply enjoy the music and I'm always on the lookout to expand my soul library.

I'm happy to report that I'm absolutely thrilled to have found this Irma Thomas CD and that it is no slouch at all in terms of quality. The first 10 songs or so on this collection can easily be inserted in any great soul music collection, which is really pretty amazing give the relative obscurity of Mrs. Thomas (though not so obscure as to be covered by the Rolling Stones - see "Time Is On My Side").

I noticed someone above said the quality of the recording is scratchy but I have had no such experience and I've listened to it through a really nice pair of etymotic headphones and super crappy work computer speakers. It sounds absolutely luscious with the nice headphones.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Total Perfection!!!! May 30, 2007
Format:Audio CD
I recently got this CD and fell in love with the voice of Irma Thomas all over again! This Cd is pure in it's true form. I did notice a bit of a scatchy record sound in a couple of places but for me that just added to the joy of it all. I am thrilled this CD was not digitally remastered. Pure won't regret it.
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5.0 out of 5 stars From "Slow Burn", thanks Ray Liotta August 4, 2008
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
Found this now favorite CD while watching an interesting Ray Liotta film called "Slow Burn". A character in that film is a fan of the one he calls "Sister Irma Thomas". Being from Wisconsin, I have to admit I searched under Sister Thomas....then wised up and found this incredible CD. It just resonates with maybe not heart-ache but feelings of the heart. She feels. And all the musicians on this are great. Ordering another copy now for a friend who heard mine and loved it.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars I loved her when I was a student nurse nearly fifty years ago in New...
Irma Thomas was just getting started when I went to nursing school in 1962. Amazingly, I just saw her several years ago in San Francisco...I was about 65 and so was she!!! Read more
Published 3 months ago by Carmen M. Henesy
5.0 out of 5 stars Prime Time Irma Thomas
This is a short but stellar set of classic 1960's New Orleans Soul by one of the most underated yet greatest singers of her generation. The Sweet Soul Queen shines. Read more
Published 9 months ago by Lee U Roy
5.0 out of 5 stars Voice with character
Irma Thomas deserves far more recognition than she has received. The New Orleans native has an incredible voice that represents one of the many faces of the cities' music. Read more
Published 16 months ago by aleester
5.0 out of 5 stars Yummy
Having seen her in person, we really wanted to find an disc that showcased the songs we so liked - WOW
Published 20 months ago by Lauren C Mache
Published on October 9, 2008 by B. DEAN
2.0 out of 5 stars Soul of New Orleans
The songs included in this 1996 compilation were recorded in 1963 and 1964, according to the essay included. Read more
Published on December 27, 2006 by Truth
3.0 out of 5 stars Sweet Soul Queen of New Orleans - Irma Thomas
Some nice songs, but the quality of the recordings leaves much to be desired. Scratchy sound - Doesn't seem to be digitally remastered.
Published on March 20, 2006 by AnnaLee
5.0 out of 5 stars Movie with "Ruler of My Heart"
The movie you're referring to with the song "Ruler of My Heart" is probably "That Night" with Juliette Lewis, C. Read more
Published on February 28, 2006 by P. Houser
5.0 out of 5 stars You Rule My Heart, Irma
I was watching some non-hit movie on TV when at the end they had a woman singing "Ruler of My Heart" and it was done well, very well. Read more
Published on December 15, 2004 by Eclectic Revisited
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