Τributes

Solomon Burke


Solomon Burke, the legendary king of Rock and Soul, passed away in Schiphol, Amsterdam airport in the morning of  Sunday October 10th 2010  while he was on his way to the concert that he had programmed with the Dutch De Dijk in Paradiso, the tickets of which had been sold out. As we read in the text published by his family in his site, he was on his way to transmit the message of love, which constituted his basic objective throughout his personal route.

Born in Philadelphia and having been raised in a religious family, he started going to church since he was a child, when his parents realised his vocal talent and prompted him to join the chorus of the church.   Nine years old he became the leading singer of chorus, while three years later he was established as ‘‘the preacher child-miracle’’.

He soon had his own religious program in a local radio station, during which he sang gospel, which helped him to make his first recording in collaboration with a small music recording company.

In 1961 the song ‘‘Just out of reach (Of my two open arms)’’ was found in the Top Ten R&B list and the record was a commercial success in the same year. The ‘‘Just out of reach (Of my two open arms)’’ was followed by big successes such as ‘‘Cry Cry Cry Cry Cry Cry to me’’, ‘‘Everybody needs somebody to love’’, ‘‘Got to get you off my mind’’ and many others.

His concert in Irodeio in 2006 remains unforgettable, where singing from the throne with which he was transported during the last few years, he gave flowers to the girls that went up in the scene, while he carried away the Greek audience in a spectacular musical and dancing evening.

Five decades of constant music recording presence and appearances in the most famous concert halls, render the composer and singer Solomon Burke undeniably one of the most important artists of soul. He loved gospel, the blues, jazz, rock, country, soul, and in spite of the fact that his songs did not always become successes, his influence in the musical era is decisive.

Member of Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, rewarded with Grammy, as long as he breathed he was singing and asking from all of us to find the way to offer to the people around us.

Renata Dikeopoulou 11 October 2010