Personnel includes: Sam Cooke (vocals); Horace Ott, Sammy Lowe (conductors); Rene Hall (conductor, guitar); Clifton "Clif" White, Barney Kessel (guitar); Raymond Johnson (piano); Billy Preston (organ); Clifford Hils (bass); Edward
"Sharky" Hall, Hal Blaine (drums).
Compilation producer: Paul Williams.
Recorded between May 19, 1961 and February 25, 1963. Includes liner notes by Cliff White.
All tracks have been digitally remastered.
It has been said that Sam Cooke never sang a false note. Though the statement is probably only popular myth, there is no evidence of misstep on any recording he left behind. THE RHYTHM AND THE BLUES collects many of the singer's lesser known forays in the smooth, dark hues of R&B. Fans of Cooke's gospel beginnings or his pop breakthroughs will undoubtedly treasure this collection of late night crooners. Whatever he sang, Cooke's execution was one of smooth control, masterful diction and immaculate phrasing.
The seductive "Fool's Paradise," "Please Don't Drive Me Away," and "Baby Won't You Please Come Home" illuminate the fact that Cooke's skills as an interpreter were equal to his own songwriting prowess. Culling tracks from various blues albums Cooke recorded in the early '60s, this collection benefits greatly from careful mastering. By muting the whitewashed string sections that often marred his albums, Cooke's mellifluous voice is allowed the slip through without competition.