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Qobuz’s experts gather all the essentials of each genre. These albums have marked music history and become major landmarks.

With the Ideal Discography you (re)discover legendary recordings, all whilst building on your musical knowledge.

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Soul - Released February 22, 2019 | Rhino

Hi-Res Distinctions The Qobuz Ideal Discography
A guitarist worshipped by Jimi Hendrix, an insanely good falsetto singer that even Prince looked up to, an author heavily involved in the American civil rights movement and a top-tier songwriter: Curtis Mayfield was a man of many talents. His groovy symphonies helped form solid links between funk, jazz, blues, soul and traditional gospel. After making his name with The Impressions in the 60s, he embarked on a solo career in 1970. This box set named Keep On Keeping On contains the singer’s first four studio albums, each remastered in Hi-Res 24-Bit quality: Curtis (1970), Roots (1971), Back to the World (1973) and Sweet Exorcist (1974). Here, the rhythm'n'blues enjoy a second life, supported by a wah-wah guitar, careful percussion and an always airy string section. Every topic concerned is a mini-tragedy, socially engaged, anchored in traditional gospel music. The masterful arranging of these albums (especially his masterpiece Curtis, and Roots) can be considered rivals to Marvin Gaye’s What’s Going On. It is worth mentioning that this 1970-1974 box set does not include the soundtrack to Superfly, Gordon Parks Jr.’s 1972 film which contains the singles Pusherman and Freddie’s Dead. © Marc Zisman/Qobuz
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Soul - Released March 21, 2018 | Epic - Legacy

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions The Qobuz Ideal Discography
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Soul - Released November 18, 2016 | Stax

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions The Qobuz Ideal Discography
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Soul/Funk/R&B - Released August 21, 2015 | Epic - Legacy

Hi-Res Distinctions 4F de Télérama - The Qobuz Ideal Discography - Pitchfork: Best New Reissue
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Soul - Released June 1, 2015 | Rhino Atlantic

Hi-Res Distinctions The Qobuz Ideal Discography
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R&B - Released January 1, 2015 | Stax

Distinctions The Qobuz Ideal Discography
Faith & Grace: A Family Journey 1953-1976 isn't career-spanning, as stated by the Concord label. The proof is right there, in the title. Throughout the latter part of the '70s and during the mid-'80s, the Staple Singers recorded strong material for the Warner Bros. and Private I labels. Nonetheless, as of 2015, this box set was easily the most comprehensive Staples anthology. Physical copies consist of four discs, as well as a re-pressing of an early-'50s single, "Faith and Grace" b/w "These Are They," which was produced in a one-time limited edition of 500 copies, sold at Staples performances. That alone is enough to stir the interest of longtime fans. Even without those two songs, Faith & Grace would be almost as close to essential as it gets for a box set. It covers the group's stints with Vee-Jay, United, Riverside, Epic, and Stax, a rich period during which they evolved from an acoustic gospel-folk group that performed in small churches into a genre-crossing main attraction for 110,000 people at the Los Angeles Coliseum (as documented on Wattstax). The selection of highlights is thoughtful, if imperfect. There are '50s A-sides like "It Rained Children" and "I Had a Dream," and the charting '60s cuts "Why? (Am I Treated So Bad)" and "For What It's Worth," the latter of which they made their own as much as anything written by Pops Staples. While the Stax-era material includes the major classics "Respect Yourself," "I'll Take You There," and "If You're Ready (Come Go with Me)," there are some peculiar omissions. Neither "This World" nor the Wattstax version of "Oh La De Da" made the cut, even though both were Top Ten R&B hits. The previously unreleased material isn't revelatory, though it's fascinating to hear a demo of Mack Rice and Luther Ingram's "Respect Yourself" fronted aggressively by Rice. Packaged folio style with an abundance of photographs and liner notes, it's a generous overview -- track-selection flaws notwithstanding -- of a crucial 20th century musical institution. © Andy Kellman /TiVo
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Funk - Released June 10, 2014 | Rhino - Warner Records

Hi-Res Distinctions The Qobuz Ideal Discography
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Funk - Released June 2, 2014 | Rhino Atlantic

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Soul/Funk/R&B - Released April 29, 2014 | Epic

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions The Qobuz Ideal Discography
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Soul - Released January 1, 2014 | Motown

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Soul - Released January 1, 2014 | Motown

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Soul - Released January 1, 2014 | Motown

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Soul - Released January 1, 2014 | Motown

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Soul - Released January 1, 2014 | Motown

Hi-Res Distinctions The Qobuz Ideal Discography
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Soul - Released January 1, 2014 | Motown

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Disco - Released September 30, 2013 | Rhino Atlantic

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Funk - Released August 23, 2013 | Epic - Legacy

Hi-Res Distinctions The Qobuz Ideal Discography - Pitchfork: Best New Reissue
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Soul - Released June 25, 2013 | Anti - Epitaph

Hi-Res Distinctions The Qobuz Ideal Discography
Since Rick Rubin quietly reinvented Johnny Cash as a contemporary artist by having him sing works by alternative rock acts over an acoustic guitar on 1994's American Recordings, this has become a standard practice by pairing veterans with hotshot young producers to spark creativity. Listening to One True Vine, Mavis Staples' 2013 solo disc for ANTI- Records (the edgy heritage artists-oriented subsidiary of punk label Epitaph), it sounds more like Staples schooled this project's producer, Wilco's Jeff Tweedy The focal point of gospel/soul greats The Staple Singers (patriarch/band leader Roebuck "Pops" Staples' ultra-expressive guitar playing aside), Mavis has become the standard-bearer of their sound and legacy, one of the richest in American history. It's no wonder this sounds so perfectly of a piece with anything her family released, especially their more gospel-oriented albums, albeit with some musical settings closer to the secular material that made them Seventies hitmakers. The solidity of her belief is audible, as she somehow manages to find the sanctified message within the most earthly of material. Across One True Vine's length and breadth, Staples applies her idiosyncratic touch to copyrights from Low ("Holy Ghost"), Nick Lowe ("Far Celestial Shore"), Funkadelic ("Can You Get To That"), Pops Staples himself ("I Like The Things About Me"), and three of Tweedy's ("Every Step," "Jesus Wept," and the title track), plus three gospel standards. But the tone's set from the get-go, when Staples tacitly reassembles the Low tune in her own image, with a spare, plucked acoustic guitar and a modest choir backing her husky alto. Her intent with Alan Sparhawk's meditation is unambiguous, despite the refrain. Mavis Staples is not singing about "some holy ghost," she's singing about The Holy Ghost. It's both a gift, and an indicator of the depths of her spirituality. © Tim Stegall/Qobuz
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Soul - Released April 29, 2013 | Ace Records

Hi-Res Distinctions The Qobuz Ideal Discography
When Lonnie Liston Smith left the Miles Davis band in 1974 for a solo career, he was, like so many of his fellow alumni, embarking on a musical odyssey. For a committed fusioneer, he had no idea at the time that he was about to enter an abyss that it would take him the better part of two decades to return from. Looking back upon his catalog from the period, this is the only record that stands out -- not only from his own work, but also from every sense of the word: It is fully a jazz album, and a completely funky soul-jazz disc as well. Of the seven compositions here, six are by Smith, and the lone cover is of the Horace Silver classic, "Peace." The lineup includes bassist Cecil McBee, soprano saxophonist David Hubbard, tenor saxophonist Donald Smith (who doubles on flute), drummer Art Gore, and percussionists Lawrence Killian, Michael Carvin, and Leopoldo. Smith plays both piano and electric keyboards and keeps his compositions on the jazzy side -- breezy, open, and full of groove playing that occasionally falls over to the funk side of the fence. It's obvious, on this album at least, that Smith was not completely comfortable with Miles' reliance on hard rock in his own mix. Summery and loose in feel, airy and free with its in-the-cut beats and stellar piano fills, Expansions prefigures a number of the "smooth jazz" greats here, without the studio slickness and turgid lack of imagination. The disc opens with the title track, with one of two vocals on the LP by Donald Smith (the other is the Silver tune). It's typical "peace and love and we've got to work together" stuff from the mid-'70s, but it's rendered soulfully and deeply without artifice. "Desert Nights" takes a loose Detroit jazz piano groove and layers flute and percussion over the top, making it irresistibly sensual and silky. It's fleshed out to the bursting point with Smith's piano; he plays a lush solo for the bridge and fills it to the brim with luxuriant tones from the middle register. "Summer Days" and "Voodoo Woman" are where the electric keyboards make their first appearance, but only as instruments capable of carrying the groove to the melody quickly, unobtrusively, and with a slinky grace that is infectious. The mixed bag/light-handed approach suits Smith so well here that it's a wonder he tried to hammer home the funk and disco on later releases so relentlessly. The music on Expansions is timeless soul-jazz, perfect in every era. Of all the fusion records of this type released in the mid-'70s, Expansions provided smoother jazzers and electronica's sampling wizards with more material that Smith could ever have anticipated. © Thom Jurek /TiVo
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Soul - Released April 12, 2013 | Epic - Legacy

Distinctions The Qobuz Ideal Discography - Indispensable JAZZ NEWS - Pitchfork: Best New Reissue