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Pour une ame souveraine (For a sovereign soul) - A dedication to Nina Simone

4.6 out of 5 stars 44 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

After the release of 'Weather', Meshell Ndegeocello releases her 10th album, 'Pour une ame souveraine' (For a sovereign soul). After a career of more than 20 years, Meshell Ndegeocello, the American singer-songwriter, rapper, bassist and vocalist and her musicians Chris Bruce (guitar), Jebin Bruni (keys), and Deantoni Parks (drums) recorded a tribute to Nina Simone and play some of the tracks made famous by the icon of black music. Meshell also invited a few guests to take part of this dedication to Nina Simone, such as Sinead O'Conner, Lizz Wright, Valerie June, Toshi Reagon and Cody ChesnuTT.

Track Listings

Disc: 1

  1. Please Don't Let Me Be Misunderstood
  2. Suzanne
  3. Real Real (feat. Toshi Reagon)
  4. House Of The Rising Sun (feat. Toshi Reagon)
  5. Turn Me On
  6. Feelin' Good
  7. Don't Take All Night (feat.Sinead O'Connor)
  8. Nobody's Fault But Mine (feat. Lizz Wright)
  9. Be My Husband (feat. Valerie June)
  10. Black Is The Color Of My True Love's Hair (feat. V
  11. See Line Woman (feat. Tracy Wannomae)
  12. Either Way I Lose
  13. To Be Young, Gifted and Black (feat. Cody Chesnutt
  14. Four Women


Product Details

  • Audio CD (October 9, 2012)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Naive Pop
  • ASIN: B0097DPTOS
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (44 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #81,260 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: MP3 Music Verified Purchase
I'm a huge Me'Shell NdgeOcello fan and, after all these years, she has yet to put out an album that doesn't completely surprised me. I may not like the album, but I respect her for trying something new. However, for Pour une ame souveraine I absolutely love it AND her for tackling an artist like Nina Simone and doing it in a way that is original -- but not disrespectful.

I highly recommend getting this album -- you'll find these covers to be unique, yet....very Nina.
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Format: Audio CD
After exploring Funk, Alternative Rock, and Hip Hop on previous albums, Meshell Ndegeocello grabs a bunch of friends (Sinead O'Connor and Liz Wright among them) to pay tribute to kindred spirit, the high priestess of soul Nina Simone on album number 10. She more often reinterprets, rather than remakes these classics, which is fine by me as much like Simone, she treads her own path.

The album is a laid-back Soul/Blues/Folk affair with Meshell giving a soft vocal delivery on the songs which she leads on. "Please Don't Let Me Be Misunderstood" is guitar-driven Soul with a haunting mellotron snaking in the background like gently waving drapes. "House Of The Rising Sun" features Toshi Reagon and is a spirited affair. "Feelin' Good" is given a quivery contemplative treatment.

"Nobody's Fault But Mine" is a lovely acoustic ballad with Liz Wright on vocals. Highlight has got the be the quivery Blues treatment of "Black Is The Color Of My True Love's Hair" with Valerie June. Enchanting! "See Line Woman" is given an almost Afrobeat reinvention and features Tracy Wannomae. "Either Way I Lose" is trippy Blues, "To Be Young, Gifted And Black" features Cody ChesnuTT giving a stirring soulful performance to the stripped soundscape. Closing is the ominous and groovy "Four Women" which sounds like what I imagine a mashup of Radiohead and Sade would. Another masterpiece!
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Format: MP3 Music
Words fail to describe how stunning an achievement Meshell Ndegeocello’s tribute album to Nina Simone really is, but I’ll give it my best shot. Easily the most accessible project of Ndegeocello’s since the days of Bitter and Cookie: The Anthropological Mixtape, on Pour une âme souveraine - A Dedication to Nina Simone, Ndegeocello modernizes what heretofore has been thought to be impossible to modernize, at least not without a house beat or much purist derision. Here Nina Simone is paid homage in ways that refresh her for a generation that will never hear Simone’s original classics as much more than their grandmother’s music; depressing and angry songs at that. Ndegeocello reminds listeners old and new of the jazz of Simone’s material, how open it is to interpretation, how flexible and improvisational it is without losing the essence of what made Simone’s material great. By honoring Simone, as a producer and arranger Ndegeocello unintentionally also pays homage to her own skills as a great interpreter of American song.

There seems to be something of a Nina Simone revival in the air. In addition to an already controversial bio pic featuring the hotly contested Zoe Saldana in the title role, Simone’s material has frequently found its way into commercials and remix dance projects over the last several years. While it probably won’t culminate in a Cirque de Soleil show, it is inspiring to see the Civil Rights activist/advocate and singer/songwriter finally getting her due on this side of the Atlantic, instead of just in Europe, where Simone is considered something near a deity.
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Format: Vinyl Verified Purchase
I am an obsessed fan of Mizz Ndegechello. So my review should be considered pure praise. In late June of 2012, I saw her perform a few of these tracks live in an intimate setting at a NYC lounge. As I put the needle to the vinyl, I was put back in that dark club, surrounded by strangers, floating on the sound of her sultry voice. Me'Shell channels Nina with what seems to be an effort to raise the Jazz icon from the grave. It doesn't sound mimicked or rehearsed, which tends to happens with many remakes. It sounds like natural homage. Me'Shell puts her own melancholy touch on the works. The work is perfect. And every featured artist was matched perfectly to each song. Just perfect.
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Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
I am not sure what I expected, I guess more Nina Simone. Most of these songs are reinterpretations, and I get that... but mostly unrecognizable versions of her work. The variety of artists I did appreciate and will keep listening.
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Format: MP3 Music Verified Purchase
love Nina Simone and love Meshell Ndegeocello
wonderful tribute album and great renditions of some of Nina Simone's finest.
saw Meshell Ndegeocello concert tour for this album as well in SF
both Amazing!
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This whole cd, the concept, the recording, the performances.....all get an A+. Read the review on NPR Music to get a full background on why Meshell chose to do an album of Nina Simone and it makes the listen even better.
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If you are a fan of Meshell and Nina, you are in for a treat. Meshell still has her subtle funky soul going on but she is definitely channeling Nina's earthiness. "For A Sovereign Soul" is the perfect title for this cd and the featured artist only add to the richness. However, the cd doesn't match the live performance. So, if you get a chance, check out Meshell on tour. Her musicians performing with her during her tour of this cd are pretty darn awesome.
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