Soul/Motown Standards setlist

Discussion in 'The Sound Hound Lounge' started by Seegs, Apr 27, 2015.

  1. Seegs

    Seegs Member

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    My Blues trio is going to do a soul/Motown evening at my wife's tennis club...

    Not to fear we have all played in soul bands for years and love the genre as much as Blues...

    We are...however...not soul singers so I have enlisted the help of a great singer/trombone player friend of mine who is the consummate entertainer to front the band and a female singer who will guest and do 6-8 songs at the end of the 2nd set...

    Our task as a guitar trio with Trombone is to get them up dancing and keep them up for two hours...two one hour sets...

    Some songs with extensive keyboard parts we won't be able to do but I am not against rearranging them...

    We'll do

    Pick up the Pieces
    Mr. Magic and Mercy Mercy to get them going and then

    I wish
    Superstition
    Brick house
    Le Freak
    Good times/rappers delight
    Valerie
    People get ready/6545789 medley
    You can stay but the noise must go
    Car Wash
    A Real Mother for ya
    Mr. Big Stuff
    Celebration
    Play that Funky Music
    Doing it to death
    Funky good times
    Sex Machine
    some more James
    Lady Marmelade/Voulez vou cocher etc.
    Respect
    I want you back
    Back in Love

    Any other ideas that we can pull off as a guitar trio are most welcome?
     
    Last edited: Apr 28, 2015
  2. Pablomago

    Pablomago Member

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    I've done "How Sweet it is to be Loved By You" and "I Second That Emotion" in a trio format. More like the Jerry Garcia Band did them, but they went well with the audience. Maybe some more Stax/Volt material?
     
  3. wstsidela

    wstsidela I'm bonafied Gold Supporting Member

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    Here's the set list I did last week in San Francisco. We have an incredible female lead singer, and everyone in the band - except me - sings lead. I lead the band.

    1. I Gotta Feeling - Black Eyed Peas
    2. No One - Alicia Keys
    3. Happy - Pharrell
    4. Mercy - Duffy
    5. Rock Steady - Aretha
    6. Shook Me All Night Long - AC/DC
    7. Blurred Lines - Robin Thicke
    8. Got To Give It Up - Marvin Gaye
    9. Bring It On Home - Sam Cooke
    10. Umbrella - Rhianna

    11. Uptown Funk - Bruno Mars
    12. Crazy In Love - Beyonce
    13. American Boy - Estelle
    14. Get Lucky - Daft Punk
    15. Hey Ya - Outkast
    16. Love Train - O-Jays
    17. Forget You - Cee Lo
    18. Chain of Fools - Aretha
    19. At Last - Etta James
    20. Happy People - R. Kelly

    21. Let’s Groove Tonight - EW&F
    22. Sex Machine - James Brown
    23. LoveStoned - Justin Timberlake
    24. Good Times - Chic
    25. My Girl - Temps
    26. Cupid - Sam Cooke
    27. September - EW&F
    28. Today Was A Good Day - Ice Cube
    29. Ascension - Maxwell
    30. That’s The Way I Like It - KC & the Sunshine Band
     
  4. GulfportBound

    GulfportBound Member

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  5. HeyMrTeleMan

    HeyMrTeleMan Colonel of Truth Gold Supporting Member

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    Great set list so far! Are you playing the "Valerie" that the Monkees did? If so, who gets to do the Segovia-style solo at the end? You? Freakin' genius!

    Also, you won't get Wilson Pickett right unless "...all you gotta dial now 634-5789" instead. It must be a typo in your text...;)

    Sounds like a fun gig. Lot's of Office Cred for the wifey, too!

    HMTM
     
  6. Frankee

    Frankee Wartime Consigliere

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    I'd play songs that were lesser known to distinguish the band from those that just covered the top-40 hits.
     
  7. loudboy

    loudboy Member

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    "His wife's tennis club"

    "Get them up and dancing for two hours."

    Do you really think that women at a tennis club are going to dig obscure R&B hits?

    Signed. Sealed, Delivered will always work.

    Medley Brick House w/Play That Funky Music - it will be the high point of your set.

    Stay away from too much James Brown - I've found he can be a little "hip for the room," even tho he's about the funkiest thing on two legs.
     
  8. Frankee

    Frankee Wartime Consigliere

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    Not necessarily obscure.....just lesser played tracks by the same artists.
     
  9. GGinMP

    GGinMP Supporting Member

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    While not lesser known, "Gimme Some Lovin'" by the Spencer Davis Group is a crowd pleaser. How about "Big Bird" by Eddie Floyd?
     
  10. loudboy

    loudboy Member

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    Tried it, it doesn't work, IME.

    Especially with a demographic that's primarily not music enthusiasts.

    It's become almost Pavlovian - we had a 40 YO chick come up to us at a gig between songs and demand that we play Mustang Sally, right then.

    She said - "My friends and I want to dance, and we only dance to Mustang Sally, so you need to play it, right now."

    That's the mindset you're up against.
     
  11. weshunter

    weshunter Supporting Member

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    That's a strong list.

     
  12. Seegs

    Seegs Member

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    Amy Winehouse's Valerie :D

    Ooops...wrong phone #...my fat fingers :D thanks!

    With the James Brown stuff we'll do snippets of select songs and paste together a medley so it doesn't get to monotonous...

    Thanks for all the great ideas...keep em coming...
     
  13. wstsidela

    wstsidela I'm bonafied Gold Supporting Member

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  14. zenmindbeginner

    zenmindbeginner Member

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    Pick up the Pieces
    Mr. Magic and Mercy Mercy to get them going and then

    - Pick up the pieces will be difficult to get the parts right and it's just not worth it. As far as Marvi Gaye goes, replace Mercy Mercy with "Let's Get it On" or maybe even "Sexual Healing". You could do an instrumental version of "I Want You" or "After The Dance" that would be just as effective as Mr. Magic.

    I wish
    Superstition (think about doing "Reggae Woman" too)
    Brick house - obligatory must play
    Le Freak
    Good times/rappers delight
    Valerie (???why???)
    People get ready/6545789 medley - Cut this
    You can stay but the noise must go - Cut this
    Car Wash - Cut this
    A Real Mother for ya - NOBODY knows who Johnny Guitar Watson is
    Mr. Big Stuff - Cut this
    Celebration - obligatory must play
    Play that Funky Music - obligatory must play
    Doing it to death
    Funky good times
    Sex Machine
    some more James - James Brown is ALL good
    Lady Marmelade/Voulez vou cocher etc. - obligatory must play
    Respect - obligatory must play
    I want you back - Cut this
    Back in Love - LTD is under-appreciated... think about adding "Love Ballad" for some slow dancing

    add "My Girl" and "Get Ready" by the Temptations
    add "Can't Help Myself"
    add "(Your Love Keeps Lifting Me) Higher and Higher"
    maybe some Sam Cooke "Having a Party"?
    think about some great girl tunes like Kim Weston's "Take Me in Your Arms (Rock Me a Little While)" or Heatwave
    Maybe something silly like "Do You Love Me" or "Shout"
    Definitely think about "Land of a 1000 Dances"

    Could the 2 singers pull off some Marvin Gaye Tammi Terrell? Duets like "Ain't No Mountain High Enough"

    MJ songs like "Wanna Be Startin' Something" or "PYT" are great because people don't hear those as often as Thriller, Beat It and Billie Jean.

    I should prolly stop here.
     
  15. fish78

    fish78 Member

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    Maybe, I define soul/motown differently...but most of those songs are 10 years after the soul/motown heyday....stick with the 60s songs...
     
  16. GulfportBound

    GulfportBound Member

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    Throw down the right groove and they'll dig it.

    Boooooooooooooooor-ing! Those two songs are practically the "Hoochie Coochie Man" and "Rock Me Baby" of the soul set by now---beaten to death and back a bazillion times, and I've seen venues empty when the band starts playing either or both.

    Depends on the song, I suppose. Just don't make it "Sex Machine." That, too, has been somewhat beaten to death.

    But what do I know? I was out one night, and the crowd wasn't exactly an R and B crowd, but the band kicked into this one . . .



    . . . and they had the dance floor packed and were asked to play it twice more.

    Same when another place, another band, kicked into this:

     
  17. emdub123

    emdub123 Supporting Member

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    Here's a couple of good ones:





    And here's my favorite Amy Winehouse recording, for those who thought that "Valerie" was a Monkees song:

     
  18. zenmindbeginner

    zenmindbeginner Member

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    The problem with Amy Winehouse is that she's a white alternative artist who had R&B stylings much like Mayer Hawthorne, James Morrison, Jamie Lidell etc.

    Definitely not Motown and definitely not soul even though it's great music (I LOVE "Valerie" personally and think it's a really good song).
     
  19. emdub123

    emdub123 Supporting Member

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    Labels are just labels... "alternative" "RnB" "Soul" who gets to say what's what?

    Anyway, the OP wanted good songs to add to his setlist.

    Reasonable people may disagree, but I say this song (as well as Valerie), backed by the Daptones no less, certainly meets the definition for the purposes of a cover band AND should kill it if you place it in the set properly:

     
  20. Seegs

    Seegs Member

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    I agree to an extent but the crowds here are different...they want to hear what they know and are familiar with...

    Sex Machine...Brick house and Play that Funky Music..Superstition just work...you may be bored of hearing/playing them as much I am bored of playing them...but then again this is about the audience and what they want not about me and what I like...I'm there to entertain them and so I have to wear a different hat for this gig...

    I have my blues band to play music I dig at the 6 or so gigs a year that we do:p

    Valerie is another song that just works...we have a female guest vocalist who kills it and each and every time we have done this it draws a great response...

    We do Cissy strut and I hadn't really thought about this as a dance song but it could be an encore I suppose...thanks!

    Back story...my drummer is from NO and grew up and I believe went to High School with Zig from the Meters and they remain friends to this day...

    Come and get your love has been on our list of songs to do again thanks for reminding me...



    Thanks for articulating what I didn't...I shouldn't have limited myself to Soul and Motown so that we didn't end up talking about what is considered Soul...Motown...RnB or Funk

    It's about putting together a great setlist to entertain tennis players who are mostly over 40 and want to dance at their summer party...

    This is about the audience and what works and not about me having a musically challenging experience....we're there to entertain the audience!!

    Also my original setlist is composed of songs that I have done over the years for many different types of audiences ranging in age from college students at pub crawls on up...they are tried and tested and work each and every time...as much as I hate doing Mustang Sally sometimes you have to give the crowd what they want...what I am looking at doing is supplementing that list...hence this thread which has given me so many cool ideas...

    Thanks and keep em coming...
     
    Last edited: Apr 29, 2015

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