What makes a rock song soulful?
Some may consider it improper, even rude to answer a question with a question, but an honest, appropriate response is this: What does your heart tell? Listen with your mind, body and spirit; does it move you, giving the chills? Does it touch those sensitive areas in your being that drives tears from eyes or causes one to sway their body repeatedly from left to right? And who are those most soulful Rock artists?
In Art of Rock & Soul Part I we revealed 10 of the most soulful rock artists ever. That wasn’t it. In Part II we listed 12 more. Here in Part III of this LiquidAE.com Art 101 series we name the Top 3 most soulful rock artists of all time!
Janis Joplin During our discussions of all-time best soulful rock artists, Joplin’s name was among the first to be mentioned. It was known from the early stages she was Top 3. Joplin holds a number of beloved songs to her credit, one of the most popular being the stinging “Piece of My Heart”. Whether solo or with the bands she led, the late singer attacked all notes with pain, anguish, conviction, and an unbridled soulfulness refusing to be ignored. RIP
Steve Perry When asked if Steve Perry was soulful enough to claim the top spot it was challenging finding reasons why he didn’t. The former frontman for iconic rock group Journey is the voice behind a coveted catalog of some of the most endearing, adored tunes in music history, most of which are found on Journey’s hugely popular greatest hits package.
This collection includes the stirringly soulful “Faithfully”. Perry gives every bit of passion on each song he touches, leaving listeners spent with emotion – be it fast cut or slow ballad. Journey’s well-known favorites have been passed down from generation to generation. With Perry at the helm they could easily be transformed into R&B versions. And it’s surprising no one has done it yet!
However, to truly witness the full extent of Perry’s soulfulness, look to his solo debut Street Talk, lending your ears to his mega hit “Foolish Heart”. It’s not a question of is he soulful, it’s more when is he not.
Tina Turner Who is the single most soulful rock artist of all time? Tina Turner!
“We Don’t Need Another Hero”, “Better Be Good to Me”, “Simply The Best”, “Show Some Respect” and just about any other song of hers stand as proof.
The leggy legend born Anna Mae Bullock knows her way around rock music. When it comes to adding soulfulness to the genre, “The Queen of Rock” basically rewrote the map! There’s a reason “Proud Mary” has some of, if not the most cross-cultural appeal of any song ever recorded that’s not a Christmas song or nursery rhyme; it rocks – hard, it also exudes the traditional essence of the type of soul music that rock was born from. And remake after remake no one sings “Proud Mary” better than Tina. No one.
Her work with Ike Turner is iconic, yet her solo endeavors led to a degree of pioneering success sure to be studied for eternity. Better still, the intense, unmatchable rock she created in a studio comes second to how much she rocks live. Thanks to her record holding global tours, Tina Turner has been heralded the greatest concert draw of all time. |
CREDITS: Written by Mr. Joe Walker | Additional insight provided by Bowlegged Lou of Full Force, Stokley Williams of Mint Condition, Malina Moye, Leigh Kakaty of Pop Evil, CJ Haynes, Nik West, and DJ Plastic Vibez | Photos –Search Engine Exploration | Producer – Liquid Arts & Entertainment | Creative Director – The Liquidation Committee | Editor – Mr. Joe Walker | Copy Editor – Mr. Joe Walker | Site Editor – Doug Sims | Webmaster – Doug Sims | Twitter – @LiquidAEMag | Instagram – @liquidmagazine
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