I'm the one who likes the female soulstresses. Marva, Lyn, Mary Jane, but I forgot to mention Marlena. Add this compilation to the list of essential female soul. The monster track here is "California Soul" with one of the most badical intros around, thick string arrangement that busts into a crispy break. Sampled to fame by Premier for Gangstarr's "Check The Technique." The whole song has got that uplifting vibe to it, definitely more than just a sample song. File it under summer listening for winter soul repair. "Woman of the Ghetto" and "Liberation Conversation" are strong, politically driven tracks with hard funk backing and showcase Marlena's attitude-driven vocals. Shaw's career extended well beyond the 60s material that most of the diggers know her for, though. She dropped smoother cuts like "Feel Like Making Love," "Loving You Is Like A Party," and "Rhythm of Love" in the 70s. No track represents that time in her career better than the epic "Yu Ma/Go Away Little Boy." And "Without You In My Life," an early 80s cut written by Gary Talyor, should have all the modern funk heads salivating. A well-rounded listen of quality soul.
- 180 gram pressing
- music label: Soul Brother 2000 / 2015
reviewed by Hank Ohs 07/2015