And Now! by Booker T & The MGs

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And Now! by Booker T & The MGs
And Now! by Booker T & The MGs

Album Released: 1966

And Now! ::: Artwork

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1.My Sweet Potato2:40
2.Jericho2:30
3.No Matter What Shape2:50
4.One Mint Julep2:45
5.In The Midnight Hour2:50
6.Summertime4:35
7.Working In The Coal Mine2:40
8.Don't Mess Up A Good Thing2:30
9.Think2:53
10.Taboo4:20
11.Soul Jam3:00
12.Sentimental Journey3:30

Reviews

There are certainly not as many cool textures and ideas here as were ever-present staples throughout Soul Dressing and Green Onions - Booker T. & The M.G.s' third album shows that the band had stagnated, which is probably why these guys can never seem to translate the wide respect they get from rock'n'roll musicians into selling a terrible amount of albums.

Do you know anyone who owns everything Booker T. & The M.G.s have ever done? Do you even know anyone who wants to? But at least I can say they're all for sale, which is something. If nothing else buy their first two albums to survey the group, and then start getting the others if you discover they float your boat.

Unlike Soul Dressing, which consisted only of originals, these are predominantly covers - a few of which have a sort of cutesy gleam to them. “Working in the Coal Mine” is an example of that - it's a relatively passive version of a song that surely everybody knows by heart. It features Booker T.'s bubbly and bright organ, with Steve Cropper coming in with a flashy guitar solo. Despite its cutesiness, it's nothing less than a skillful piece that of course benefits from its catchy-as-hell source material.

The bass guitarist for this group was no longer Lewie Steinberg, but Donald 'Duck' Dunn (Dunn also played on some tracks on Soul Dressing, but I wasn't aware of that until now! I'm too lazy to go back to that album review and try to figure out which bassist was which ... bassists all sound alike to me). Dunn is as respected as Steinberg, if not more so, but the bass throughout this album doesn't amaze me nearly as much as it did their previous two.

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by Reviewer: Don Ignacio (blogging at Don Ignacio's Album Reviews)


The house band for Stax/Volt, Booker T. and the MG's are perhaps the greatest backing band of all time - looking at a list of the singles and albums they played on for Aretha Franklin, Sam & Dave, Otis Redding, Wilson Pickett, and many others - one begins to feel a dizzying sense of awe.

The MG's were tighter and looser than any other band of their era, the relaxed funky interplay between players feels not merely telepathic, but organic, as if these musicians literally shared the same lungs and nerves.

Guitarist Steve Cropper plays tastefully minimalist, keeping to the rhythm only to leap out at you all the more with his brief tasty leads. Booker T.'s gritty swirling Hammond keyboards do the same, and drummer Al Jackson Jr. along with bassist Donald 'Duck' Dunn lay down the most rock-solid groove in history.

There is however only so far you can go with an album of Soul instrumentals, and while I'd hardly call this 'soul muzak' (David Wilson's term) the disc does wear thin, depending as it does on reworkings of outside material.

The big hit was "One Mint Julep", which is instantly recognizable after just a couple of bars, and really is the MGs at their funky smokey best. But despite the terrific sound, this mainly just aids appreciation of the classic Stax/Volt records by Otis, Aretha, et al, and will have you running for those instead.

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by Reviewer: Creative Noise