Rolling Stone - p.1243.5 stars out of 5
-- "[H]is music is electrifying, one part testament, one part lament."
Entertainment Weekly - p.80
"[A] country soul tour de force. Burke can rumble through bluesy barn burners, but he thrives on the slow and stately stuff..." -- Grade: A-
Q - p.1334 stars out of 5
-- "Spare instrumentation and warm intimacy give Burke's burnt mahogany voice space to breathe..."
Q - p.118Ranked #65
in Q Magazine's "100 Greatest Albums of 2006."
Down Beat - p.863.5 stars out of 5
-- "When the big man finishes with them, the songs belong to him and are beyond categorizing."
Vibe - p.165
"It's all tasteful retro treatment for a '60s soul icon, but Burke approaches it with brio -- playing along but not tamed."
Living Blues - p.40
"[With] a warm, vintage soundscape in which Burke clearly feels at home, and even with all the guests Burke's miraculously expressive voice remains at the center in all its glory."
Mojo (Publisher) - p.1024 stars out of 5
-- "Burke's new record is entirely devoted to exploring the country idiom, ranging from galloping, fiddle-driven hoe-downs to honky tonk ballads and dustbowl dirges."
Personnel: Solomon Burke (vocals); Buddy Miller (vocals, guitar, acoustic guitar, electric guitar, baritone guitar, banjo); David Rawlings, Gillian Welch (vocals, guitar); Ann McCrary, Regina McCrary (vocals, background vocals); Paul Kennerley (acoustic guitar, electric guitar); Jim Lauderdale, Kevin Welch, Shawn Amos (acoustic guitar); Kenny Vaughn (electric guitar); Al Perkins (lap steel guitar, dobro); Sam Bush (mandolin, fiddle); Carl Gorodetzky, Pamela Sixfin (violin); Larry Campbell (fiddle); Jim Grojean (viola); Carole Rabinowitz-Neuen (cello); Mickey Raphael (harmonica); Phil Madeira (accordion, piano, Wurlitzer organ); Garry Tallent, Byron House (upright bass); Rev. Brady Blade, Bryan Owings (drums, percussion); Dolly Parton, Emmylou Harris, Patty Griffin, Patty Loveless (vocals).
Audio Mixer: Buddy Miller.
Recording information: Buddy Miller's Home, Nashville, TN (03/28/2006-04/06/2006).
Photographers: Buddy Miller; Gina R. Binkley; Jake Butler; Shawn Amos.
Soul legend Solomon Burke harbored a desire to sing country tunes ever since his early days at Atlantic, but the powers-that-be wouldn't let their golden goose take the gamble. Four decades down the line, he finally got the opportunity, and he embraced it with open arms. Produced by twang titan Buddy Miller, NASHVILLE is the third album of Burke's "comeback" period that began with 2002's DON'T GIVE UP ON ME. NASHVILLE's two predecessors found Burke tackling often ill-fitting tunes by a bevy of rockers, but taking a country turn sounds completely natural for the 66-year-old soul man.
Crucial to this aesthetic success is the fact that Burke and Miller avoided the obvious dusty honky-tonk warhorses. Instead, Burke invests Tom T. Hall's "That's How I Got to Memphis" with stirring pathos, plays the scorned lover on Miller's "Does My Ring Burn Your Finger," and fills Kevin Welch's "Millionaire" with warmth and grit. New tunes written to order by Gillian Welch and Patty Griffin keep things fresh, and guest vocals from Emmylou Harris and Dolly Parton keep King Solomon squarely rooted in the NASHVILLE of his dreams.