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New Six-CD Set Delves Deep Into the Archives of Stax Records

Artist: Various Artists
Title: Stax Singles, Volume 4: Rarities & The Best of the Rest
Release Date: February 9, 2018
Label: Craft Recordings / Concord Music
  • 6-CDs
  • Digital
Craft Recordings, the Catalog Division of Concord Music, has announced the release of Stax Singles, Vol. 4: Rarities & The Best Of The Rest, a 6-CD box set that delves deep into the Stax Records archives, and explores the label's efforts to diversify their output. This new addition to the critically acclaimed series of Stax singles boxes offers a more profound study of the Memphis label's catalog, including long-forgotten B-sides and rarities, and focusing not just on soul tunes - for which the label was most famous - but also offering a cross-section of rock, pop, blues, gospel and country recordings from 1960-1975. Available February 9th, the collection will also include an 80-page booklet, offering four new in-depth essays by music journalist Lee Hildebrand, writer and producer Alec Palao, box set co-producer Bill Belmont and Rob Bowman, author of Soulsville U.S.A.: The Story Of Stax Records, and producer of Vol. 4's discs 1-3.

Featuring recordings from the catalogs of both Craft and Rhino Entertainment - the Catalog Division of Warner Music - who jointly control Stax's iconic masters, this comprehensive box set is the perfect companion piece to Vols. 1-3; the first of which, The Complete Stax/Volt Singles 1959-1968, was released by Atlantic Records in 1991 and reissued by Rhino in 2016. Volumes 2 and 3, originally released by Stax in 1993 and 1994 respectively, and reissued by Concord in 2015, offered soul singles spanning 1968-1975, collectively.

In his introduction, co-producer Bill Belmont discusses the concept behind Vol. 4: "Over the years, within the collector-fan circuit, and in reissues and collections of vintage Stax material worldwide, some 'B' sides have attained a status comparable to the promoted work." Adds Rob Bowman, in his essay regarding the soul portion of the box, "[Stax's B-sides] are, by and large, better than most companies' A-sides." Continues Belmont, "Stax's 'other side'...has never been presented on its own - thus here, the 'other' [imprints] are all gathered under the Stax umbrella; part of the all-encompassing rubric 'where everything is everything.'"

While Stax is primarily known for its soul music - Vols. 1-3 focused exclusively on that genre - the label also managed a variety of imprints throughout the '60s and '70s, many of which explored new sonic avenues, including rock (from Ardent, Enterprise and Hip), gospel (Chalice, Gospel Truth) and country (Enterprise). Also compiled are several instrumental and blues tracks from the earliest days of the label, when it was known as Satellite Records. The collection includes over 60 wide-ranging artists, including the Staple Singers, Big Star, the Bar-Kays, Jean Knight, Don Nix, the Rance Allen Group and Johnnie Taylor.

Stax Singles, Vol. 4: Rarities & The Best Of The Rest comes at the conclusion of a wide-ranging celebration of Stax Records' 60th Anniversary by both Craft and Rhino. The unique partnership of the labels commemorated the first marketing collaboration of the Stax recordings, which had been divided since Atlantic Record ssplit with Stax Records in early 1968. Throughout 2017, the two labels have collectively released over 15 vinyl reissues, including Rufus Thomas' debut Walking The Dog, Sam & Dave's Soul Men and Carla Thomas' Carla LP (Rhino), as well as titles like Melvin Van Peebles' Sweet Sweetback's Baadasssss Song, the Sons of Truth's Message From The Ghetto and John Gary Williams' self-titled debut (Craft). 

Special attention was also focused on two Stax giants this year: Isaac Hayes and Otis Redding. Craft released a series of remastered, high-resolution digital reissues for Hayes (vinyl reissues will follow in 2018) as well as the critically acclaimed box set, Spirit Of Memphis (1962-1976). Rhino paid tribute to Redding with mono editions of Soul Ballads and The Soul Album, as well as a forthcoming seven-LP vinyl box, The Definitive Studio Albums Collection, while Concord released the double LP Live From The Whisky A Go Go earlier in the year. Looking ahead, Rhino will celebrate the 50th anniversary of Redding's best-selling "(Sittin' On) The Dock Of The Bay" single. 

For Record Store Day's Black Friday event, Rhino commemorated the 50th anniversary of Redding's Live In Europe Album with a limited-edition red vinyl pressing, while Concord saluted '70s rockers Big Star with a live tribute to their Third album, Stroke It, Noel: Big Star's THIRD In Concert, as well as Hayes, with a vinyl edition of Spirit of Memphis, offering highlights from the box set. 

Additionally, during the Stax 60th celebration, both labels collaborated on the Stax Classics series of CDs, highlighting Stax's biggest stars, while the 3-CD collection Soulsville U.S.A. culled material from both Concord's and Rhino's masters, much like Stax Singles, Vol. 4.

Track List:

Disc 1
  • Carla & Rufus - Deep Down Inside
  • Rufus And Friend - Yeah, Yea-Ah
  • Prince Conley - All The Way
  • The Canes - I'll Never Give Her Up
  • The Astors - Just Enough To Hurt Me
  • Eddie Kirk - I Found A Brand New Love
  • Rufus Thomas - Fine And Mellow
  • Booker T. & The Mg's - Fannie Mae
  • Floyd Newman - Sassy
  • Rufus Thomas - I Want To Get Married
  • Bobby Marchan - That's The Way That It Goes
  • The Cobras - Shake Up
  • Barbara And The Browns - You Belong To Her
  • Dorothy Williams - Watchdog
  • Baracudas - Free For All
  • Barbara And The Browns - I Don't Want Trouble
  • Gorgeous George - Sweet Thing
  • The Astors - I Found Out
  • Rufus & Carla Thomas - We're Tight
  • Rufus Thomas - Chicken Scratch
  • Ruby Johnson - Weak Spot
  • Rufus Thomas - Talkin' Bout True Love
  • Mable John - If You Give Up What You Got (You'll See What You Lost)
  • Sam And Dave - A Small Portion Of Your Love
  • Ruby Johnson - Keep On Keeping On
  • Rufus Thomas - Greasy Spoon
  • Mable John - Left Over Love
  • Ollie & The Nightingales - Girl, You Have My Heart Singing
  • Mable John - Don't Get Caught
Disc 2
  • Shirley Walton - I'm So Glad You're Back
  • Delaney & Bonnie - We've Just Been Feeling Bad
  • Linda Lyndell -  I Don't Know
  • Judy Clay & William Bell - Love-Eye-Tis
  • Judy Clay - Remove These Clouds
  • The Staple Singers - Stay With Us
  • Rufus Thomas - So Hard To Get Along With
  • Jeanne & The Darlings - I Like What You're Doing To Me
  • Booker T. & The Mg's - Over Easy
  • Mable John - Shouldn't I Love Him
  • William Bell & Judy Clay - Left Over Love
  • Jimmy Hughes - Sweet Things You Do
  • Art Jerry Miller - Grab A Handful
  • Eddie Floyd - Consider Me
  • Booker T. & The Mg's - Soul Clap '69
  • Jeanne & The Darlings - Standing In The Need Of Your Love
  • The Bar-Kays - I Thank You
  • The Soul Children - Make It Good
  • Ollie & The Nightingales - I'll Be Your Everything
  • William Bell - Let Me Ride
  • Booker T. & The Mg's - Sunday Sermon
  • Carla Thomas - Hi De Ho (That Old Sweet Roll)
  • Shack - A Love Affair That Bears No Pain
  • The Nightingales - Just A Little Overcome
  • The Newcomers - Mannish Boy
Disc 3
  • Ilana - Let Love Fill Your Heart
  • The Soul Children - Ridin' On Love's Merry-Go-Round
  • Hot Sauce - I Can't Win For Losing
  • Lee Sain - Ain't Nobody Like My Baby
  • Hot Sauce - Echoes From The Past
  • The Mad Lads - Did My Baby Call
  • Isaac Hayes & David Porter - Baby I'm-A Want You
  • Jean Knight - Pick Up The Pieces
  • Johnnie Taylor - Stop Teasing Me
  • Isaac Hayes - Type Thang
  • John Gary Williams - In Love With You
  • Major Lance - Since I Lost My Baby's Love
  • Hot Sauce - Mama's Baby (Daddy's Maybe)
  • The Soul Children - Poem On The School House Door
  • Rufus Thomas - That Makes Christmas Day
  • The Staple Singers - What's Your Thing
  • Shirley Brown - Yes Sir Brother
  • Hot Sauce - Funny
  • Frederick Knight - Let's Make A Deal
  • The Green Brothers - Can't Give You Up (I Love You Too Much)
  • John Gary Williams - Just Ain't No Love (Without You Here)
Disc 4
  • Sid Selvidge - The Ballad Of Otis B. Watson
  • The Caboose - Black Hands White Cotton
  • Dallas County - Love's Not Hard To Find
  • Casper Peters - April
  • Clark Sullivan - Reaching For A Rainbow
  • Billy Eckstine - I Wanna Be Your Baby
  • Chuck Boris - Why Did It Take So Long
  • Barbara Lewis - Why Did It Take So Long
  • Finley Brown - Gypsy
  • O.B. Mcclinton - Slip Away
  • Billy Eckstine - When Something Is Wrong
  • Ben Atkins - Good Times Are Coming
  • River City Street Band - Some Other Man
  • O.B. Mcclinton - Don't Let The Green Grass Fool You
  • Big Ben - Would I Be Better Gone?
  • Don Nix - Black Cat Moan
  • Don Nix - She's A Friend Of Mine
  • Larry Raspberry And The Highsteppers - Rock 'N Roll Warning
  • Chico Hamilton - Conquistadores '74
  • Cliff Cochran - The Way I'm Needing You
  • Connie Eaton - Let's Get Together
  • Karen Casey - The Way I'm Needing You
Disc 5
  • Poor Little Rich Kids - Stop - Quit It
  • Lonnie Duvall - Cigarettes
  • Poor Little Rich Kids - It's Mighty Clear
  • The Honey Jug - Warm City Baby
  • The Goodees -  For A Little While
  • The Honey Jug - For Your Love
  • Kangaroo's - Groovy Day
  • Bobby Whitlock - And I Love You
  • Southwest F.O.B. - Smell Of Incense
  • The Goodees - Condition Red
  • Billy Lee Riley - Family Portrait
  • This Generation - The Children Have Your Tongue
  • Billy Lee Riley - Show Me Your Soul
  • The Waters - Day In And Out
  • The Village Sound - Hey Jack (Don't Hijack My Plane)
  • The Cheques - Cool My Desire
  • The Goodees - Goodies
  • Paris Pilot - Miss Rita Famous
  • The Knowbody Else - Someone Something
  • Cargoe - Feel Alright
  • Big Star - In The Street
  • Cargoe - I Love You Anyway
  • The Hot Dogs - Say What You Mean
  • Big Star - O My Soul
  • The Hot Dogs - I Walk The Line
  • Big Star - September Gurls
Disc 6
  • The Dixie Nightingales - The Assassination
  • The Dixie Nightingales - Hush Hush
  • The Dixie Nightingales - I Don't Know
  • The Stars Of Virginia - Wade In The Water
  • The Dixie Nightingales - Forgive These Fools
  • The Jubilee Hummingbirds - Our Freedom Song (Free At Last)
  • The Jubilee Hummingbirds - Press My Dying Pillow
  • The Pattersonaires - God's Promise
  • Rev. Maceo Woods And The Christian Tabernacle Baptist Church Choir - Hello Sunshine
  • Roebuck "Pop" Staples - Tryin' Time
  • Terry Lynn Community Choir - His Love Will Always Be
  • Reverend W. Bernard Avant Jr. & The St. James Gospel Choir - Don't Let The Green Grass Fool You (Don't Let The Devil Fool You)
  • The Rance Allen Group - There's Gonna Be A Showdown
  • The Rance Allen Group - That Will Be Good Enough For Me
  • Reverend Maceo Woods & The Christian Tabernacle Concert Choir - The Magnificent Sanctuary Band (Marching For The Man)
  • Louise Mccord - Better Get A Move On
  • Charles May & Annette May Thomas - Satisfied
  • The Rance Allen Group - I Got To Be Myself
  • The People's Choir Of Operation Push Under The Direction Of Reverend Marvin Yancy - He Included Me
  • The Rance Allen Group - We're The Salt Of The Earth
  • Louise Mccord - Reflections
  • The Rance Allen Group - Ain't No Need Of Crying