Posts Tagged ‘William Bell’

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Although he never retired, soulman supreme William Bell’s first album on a major label in decades should be on anyone’s shortlist for comeback of the year. Not only did producer/multi-instrumentalist John Leventhal frame the 77-year-old Bell’s still vibrant voice in stylish, beautifully arranged instrumentation, but the songs — all but two co-penned by the singer — feel both old school and contemporary, a tricky balance that Bell sinks into naturally. The album also returned him to the road, headlining large clubs with an expansive band delivering searing, emotional and classy performances, arguably the equal of any in his 50-plus year career.

Some people write their memoirs; a good songwriter can sing his life in song. The title track from Bell’s impossibly wonderful new album recounts his days as a teenage songwriter in the Stax stable, when he penned both “Born Under a Bad Sign” for Albert King and “You Don’t Miss Your Water” for everybody in the world. He puts an eloquent twist on that title phrase: Bell lives in the song, and it’s a privilege to be invited into his home.

The new studio album from William Bell, This Is Where I Live, is available now