"I have never felt that I had to change or do anything that wasn't natural to me.” said pioneering transgender performer Jackie Shane in 2019, summing up a lifelong philosophy. Born in 1940 in Nashville, she began performing locally in the 50’s clad in long hair and make-up. She escaped the Jim Crow-era South via a traveling carnival, eventually ending up in Toronto, Canada. She managed some radio play in Canada and upstate New York with a series of 7” singles in the early 60’s, but had completely disappeared from the public eye by 1970. This compilation is the first officially sanctioned reissue of these singles. “Any Other Way” is the highlight of the collection, a riveting take on an original by William Bell with an apt wink-nudge in the lyrics. “Cruel Cruel World” is a barnstorming soul screamer, The “Toronto Sound” in full effect - New Orleans-style rat-tat-tat drumming, electric bass, and rambling Hammond organ. This compilation includes the oft-bootlegged 1967 album Jackie Shane Live, and this is where Shane truly shines. “Money (That’s What I Want)” is a nearly 10 minute long version of the iconic Motown standard, decorated with jittery guitar solos and a revealing (and hilarious) spoken-word breakdown. Other highlights are the upbeat, brassy riffs of “Barefootin’” and the soulful ballad “Raindrops”. This double LP compilation includes a 32 page 12x12 booklet with extensive liner notes. Highly recommended.
- black double vinyl pressing
- includes 32 page booklet featuring extensive liner notes
- gatefold sleeve
- music label: Numero Group 2017
reviewed by YONGE BLOOR 05/2019