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James Carr: At the Dark End of the Soul

Robert Gordon, LA Weekly, May 1993

THE WORLD LOST one of its most magnificent voices last Sunday, January 7, when James Edward Carr died of lung cancer at Court Manor Nursing Home in Memphis, Tennessee. For connoisseurs of deep southern soul, Carr was unrivalled as a male exponent of the gospel-drenched R&B ballad, greater even than the great Otis Redding. Sadly, though, Carr never attained the heights the Big O reached, partly because he wasn’t lucky enough to be on Stax, partly because he was a fragile and unworldly man whose brief brush with fame in 1967 was itself more than he could handle.

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