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Chapter 65: Respect

Soul, R&B

“Dance To The Music” is a fine example of one of my favorite pop microgenres; the narrated groove where the singer calls out each member of the ensemble to kick the beat up another notch, while exhorting their listeners to dance, dammit. It’s an explicit exercise in audience manipulation, but all these R&B classics work because of their skillful command of dynamics, whether it’s Eddie Floyd knocking you sideways just before the main melody hits, or Aretha’s circuitous prayer that zigs when you expect it to zag.
1. Aretha Franklin

I Say a Little Prayer

2. Jackie Wilson

(Your Love Keeps Lifting Me) Higher & Higher

3. Otis Redding

(Sittin' On) The Dock of the Bay

4. Wilson Pickett

In the Midnight Hour

5. Aaron Neville

Tell It Like It Is

6. Eddie Floyd

Knock On Wood

7. Aretha Franklin


8. Sly & The Family Stone

Dance to the Music

9. Otis Redding & Carla Thomas


10. The Impressions

People Get Ready