Bobby Womack – RIP

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La parola giusta è “leggenda”. Quella sbagliata è “morte”. Bobby Womack scompare a 70 anni. A darne notizia è stata Sonya Kolowrat della XL Recordings. Un triste venerdì di giugno. Le cause del decesso non sono ancora note, ma l’artista di Cleveland era da tempo malato di cancro al colon, oltre ad avere una lieve forma di Alzheimer. “The Preacher” non c’è più. Lui che faceva parte del gotha dei soul singer (ovviamente assieme a Wilson Pickett, Otis Redding, Marvin Gaye e Al Green), aveva iniziato negli anni ’50 con il fratello Curtis come Womack Brothers, poi grazie a Sam Cooke i due diventano The Valentinos (il celebre pezzo ‘It’s All Over Now’ viene rifatto dai Rolling Stones e portato al numero 1 in UK. Womack tempo dopo confesserà: “I was very upset about it. It was like they stole my song”). Alla morte di Cooke (1964) Bobby Womack inizia la sua strada solista (il primo disco è del 1968) ma anche e soprattutto come autore e collaboratore (Janis Joplin, Sly Stone, Aretha Franklin giusto qualche esempio). Gli anni ’80 sono contraddistinti dalla dipendenza alle droghe – tunnel dal quale uscirà nella decade successiva – ma anche da alcuni dei suoi momenti migliori (spicca il duetto con Mick Jagger in ‘Harlem Shuffle’ dal disco del 1986 dei Rolling Stones ‘Dirty Work’ e la coppia degli album ‘The Poet’). Dapprima è Quentin Tarantino a donargli nuova luce, (ri)utilizzando il classico ‘Across 110th Street’ (in una versione differente rispetto al film omonimo del 1972) per il meraviglioso omaggio alla blaxploitation ovverosia “Jackie Brown” (siamo nel 1997), quindi più recentemente è Damon Albarn a volerlo come ospite negli album ‘Plastic Beach’ e ‘The Fall’ dei Gorillaz, vetrina che lo condurrà al contratto con la XL Recordings. Il risultato è il commovente ‘The Bravest Man in The Universe’ (2012). Womack stava lavorando al seguito intitolato ‘The Best Is Yet To Come’ (capitolo numero 28), nel quale figurano Gerald Levert, Teena Marie, Rod Stewart, Damon Albarn, Stevie Wonder, Ronald Isley e Snoop Dogg. “I told Damon and Richard that whenever they’re available to record I will make myself available. But I was already working on a new album, I have Stevie Wonder on it, I have Rod Stewart, Levert, Snoop Dogg is on it, this lady from Motown – now what was her name?”. Nel 2009 era entrato nella Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

“Me being from the old school, I would not say ‘bitch’ on a record. I couldn’t face my mother if I did”

Ron Wood: I’m so sad to hear about my friend Bobby Womack ~ the man who could make you cry when he sang has brought tears to my eyes with his passing. My heart goes out to his family & friends and everyone who loved his music. Bobby you will be greatly missed xx

Greg Dulli: Loved him the first time I heard him. Will love him til the day I die. See you on the other side, Bobby

Dev Hynes: <3 <3 <3

Michael Des Barres: Bobby Womack will live in my soul for ever. I am deeply affected by his passing

Gilles Peterson: RIP Bobby Womack… A True Champion

Andrew Loog Oldham: Legendary soul singer Bobby Womack dies age 70

Stephen Street: Just heard the sad news that #BobbyWomack has died. RIP my great soul man. Your voice & music will live forever!

QTip: RIP Bobby Womack!

Tim Burgess: Sadly it is true. The world has lost a great talent in Bobby Womack

Chuck D: RIP Bobby Womack

Rose McGowan: Oh no! Bobby Womack died. He was a fierce artist. Listened to Across 110th Street last night. Really bummed. No voices like his anymore.

Big Boi: RIP Bobby Womack

CeeLo Green: RIP Bobby Womack

George Clinton: Fly On Bobby Womack

Public Enemy: R.I.P. to the late, great Bobby Womack 

MC Hammer: RIP to the “Soul Legend” who sang from his Soul !!! #BobbyWomack “A Woman’s Gotta have it ” !!! #RIPBobbyWomack 

Anton Newcombe: RIP Bobby Womack – thanks for the memories

Damon Albarn: I will see my brother in church

De La Soul: Had the pleasure touring with this kind man for over a year… Just got news that he passed away

el-p: rest in peace, Bobby Womack. thanks for the tunes <3

Flea: Oh man the great Bobby Womack is gone. What a beautiful dude. Bobby forever

Okkervil River: RIP to the great, great, great, great, very very great Bobby Womack

The Mountain Goats: “You don’t know what you’ll do ‘til you’re put under pressure” –Bobby Womack, a favorite of mine, gone on to Elysium

Surfer Blood: RIP Bobby Womack <3

Steve Lillywhite: you youngsters don’t know who Bobby Womack was , but i had some amazing times with him and The @RollingStones in the 80’s…RIP

The Rolling Stones: Bobby Womack was a huge influence on us. He was a true pioneer of soul and R&B, whose voice and songwriting touched millions. On stage, his presence was formidable. His talents put him up there with the greats. We will remember him, first and foremost, as a friend.

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