If every musical artist of the 20th century were ranked by the size of the gap in how little they recorded to how much I love them, Sam & Dave would almost certainly be #1. The important part of their career really only lasted four years, they released a total of four albums, and probably fewer than 100 songs. But to me, Sam Moore and Dave Prater ARE Soul Music.
Their vocal interplay was incredible, with most songs acting as a sort of call and response, like they were perpetually in the midst of their own party. It's music that always feels like it's in the heat of the moment, only existing at its peak. The mix of guitar and horns is generally perfect, with both making their presence felt but neither pulling too much attention from the vocals.
And at the center of it all is Sam Moore, whose voice is like sizzling butter rocketing out of his larynx. It shoots out with a fiery crackle, but immediately melts on impact, coating you in its tasty juices. And then Dave, usually coming in second, relaxes things a bit with his deeper voice, but growls with a potency all his own. Together, they captured the passionate emotional fluctuations of some of the best soul music ever written.
Sam & Dave-- You didn't have to make it like you did, but you did, but you did.
And I thank you.
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