Tuesday, December 8, 2009

We Are Family: The Staple Singers

The Staples Singers: Respect Yourself


The Staple Singers, (family name Staples, go figure), were a father and his three daughters. There was also a son, Purvis, but I think he must have dropped out early. Pictures of him with the group are hard to find. Pops Staples died in 2000, and since then only Mavis has been heard from, as far as I know. But in their day, what a joyful sound they made. The Staple Singers originally worked in an acoustic folk-gospel style. But, in the early 70s, they signed with Memphis R&B label Stax. It was there, working in a soul-gospel style, that they achieved their greatest success. Respect Yourself comes from that period, and resonated with the Civil Rights Movement at the time of its release.

Curiously, there was a connection between the Staple Singers and Talking Heads late in the Staple’s career. Their last hit was a cover of the Talking Heads song Slippery People, and Pops Staples appeared in the movie True Stories.

blog comments powered by Disqus