ALBUM REVIEW: “I Learned the Hard Way” Sharon Jones & the Dap-Kings
Sharon Jones & the Dap-Kings
I Learned the Hard Way
With eight Dap-Kings, the one and only Sharon Jones, and a whole lotta smokin’ Memphis soul in between, I learned the Hard Way is a retro ’60s R&B classic.
From back-up ’70s funk/soul singer to Rykers Island Corrections Officer to New York City’s present day “Queen of Funk,” Sharon Jones’ story defines power, grit and grace. Fueling her powerful delivery is an unlimited amount of inspiration and motivation. Songs like “The Reason” or “She Ain’t a Child No More” highlight the Dap-Kings’ ability at blending a furious rotation of horns, guitar and rhythm while directing Jones’ sultry southern tone. But credit is also due to the Dap-Kings as they are a brilliant reminder of Motown’s explosive, yet efficient, house band the Funk Brothers, which steadily elevated Motown’s groove nation above the rest.
Sharon Jones may not be a household name. Yet. But, by molding her raw, natural talent singing in the church choir as a younger woman, it’s crystal clear that she and her group preach the R&B gospel better than anyone in America.