Bettye Swann’s Soul Retrospective Deserves the Hype

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Bettye Swann
The Complete Atlantic Recordings
Real Gone Music

Bettye Swann scored just two minor pop hits during her prime—1967’s “Make Me Yours” and 1969’s “Don’t Touch Me”—but this magnificent singer has inspired cult devotion for good reason. Blessed with a striking, husky voice tinged by elegant melancholy, the Louisiana-born Swann epitomized deep soul, planting herself at the intersection of R&B and country, where unadorned emotion took precedence over flashy display. The Complete Atlantic Recordings picks up her story in 1972, compiling the 23 tracks she cut for the label through 1976, after which she disappeared from the music scene.

Swann is at her compelling best on slow-burning gems like “I’d Rather Go Blind” and the Nashville standard “Today I Started Loving You Again,” but produces the same intimate intensity in songs that rely on dance beats (“I Feel the Feeling”). While some long-lost artists merit just a passing glance today, Bettye Swann deserves the hype.

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SIX TRUTHS

Reclaiming power from those who abuse it often starts with telling the truth. And in "This Is How Authoritarians Get Defeated," MoJo's Monika Bauerlein unpacks six truths to remember during the homestretch of an election where democracy, truth, and decency are on the line.

Truth #1: The chaos is the point.

Truth #2: Team Reality is bigger than it seems.

Truth #3: Facebook owns this.

Truth #4: When we go to work, we're in the fight.

Truth #5: It's about minority rule.

Truth #6: The only thing that can save us is…us.

Please take a moment to see how all these truths add up, because what happens in the weeks and months ahead will reverberate for at least a generation and we better be prepared.

And if you think journalism like Mother Jones'—that calls it like it is, that will never acquiesce to power, that looks where others don't—can help guide us through this historic, high-stakes moment, and you're able to right now, please help us reach our $350,000 goal by October 31 with a donation today. It's all hands on deck for democracy.

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