Personnel includes: Sam Cooke (vocals); Rene Hall, Joseph Hooven (arranger, conductor); The Soul Stirrers.
Recorded at RCA Studio, Hollywood, California in 1964-65.
Personnel: Sam Cooke (vocals); Howard Roberts , Norman Bartold, John Pisano, Leroy Crume, Allan Reuss, Barney Kessel, Clifton White (guitar); Joseph R. Gibbons (banjo); John DeVoogdt, Darrel Terwilliger, Robert Barene, Irving Lipschultz, Tibor Zelig, Jack Pepper, Leonard Malarsky, Sidney Sharp, Israel Baker, Arnold Belnick, Ralph Schaeffer, William Kurash (violin); Alexander Neiman, Harry Hyams (viola); Emmet Sargeant , Jesse Ehrlich (cello); Jewell L. Grant, Edgar Redmond, Plas Johnson , Red Tyler, William Green (saxophone); John Anderson , Melvin Lastie (trumpet); William Hinshaw (French horn); Milt Bernhart, Johnny Halliburton, Harry Betts, Louise Blackburn, John Ewing , Dave Wells , Ernie Tack (trombone); Lincoln Mayorga (piano, celesta); Harold Battiste, Jr., Raymond Johnson (piano); Emil Radocchia (marimba, timpani, percussion); Earl Palmer , Eddie Hall, Hal Blaine, John Boudreaux (drums); Linwood Mitchell (percussion); George Tipton, The Carole Lombard Quartet, Gwen Johnson, Jimmie Outler, Robert Tebow, Jackie Ward, James Bryant, J.J. Farley, Paul Foster, Richard Gibbs, S.R. Crain (background vocals).
Recording information: RCA Studio, Hollywood, CA (02/28/1963-01/30/1964).
Arrangers: Joe Hooven; Rene Hall.
This album, which was sadly to be Sam Cooke's last, found him exercising a hard-won creative freedom to fine effect. You can hear it most clearly in the moving, socially relevant ballad "A Change Is Gonna Come." But it doesn't stop there. Cooke dips into the well of country music for a version of the classic "Tennessee Waltz" that is startling in its transformative ability, as he accomplishes a feat that no one but Ray Charles himself was capable of at the time--turning country seamlessly into soul. The lighthearted "Another Saturday Night" paints a detailed portrait of loneliness that's fully charged with humor rather than desperation, showing how Cooke could straddle several emotions at once within the same song. AIN'T THAT GOOD NEWS is the sound of a man at the peak of his powers, flexing all of his musical muscles. It's just a shame that this was to be the soul legend's swan song.