Lee Fields Talks Soul Music, Making EDM With Martin Solveig, and His 43-Year Career
|Lee Fields: Soul Man|
Even the name of his backing band - the Expressions - is loaded with burning sentiment.
On Saturday, December 1, Sweat Records will bring Mr. Fields to The Stage in Miami for some good ol'-fashioned live music.
So we here at Crossfade got in touch with him to learn a lil' bit about the spirit of soul, making EDM with Martin Solveig, and his 43-year career.
Crossfade: How is soul music in 2012 different from soul music in 1968?
Absolutely nothing. Soul comes from the spirit. I hear a lot of singers describe soul as their trials and tribulations. But soul is dealing with the spirit. And the spirit is of God. When I sing soul, I let the spirit dictate how I should say whatever I'm saying. Because the spirit knows how to connect people with people.
Is your lyrical content spiritual?
I'm a secular singer. I sing about here and now. I'm a realist. But I keep my faith and I pray.
Were you in a choir as a child? What was your experience with music growing up?
My mother had us sing on Sundays. You know, your mother has you get up early on Sunday, and makes you shine your shoes, and go to church.
In North Carolina, when I was 5 or 6 years old, my father did farm work. A decent job was very hard for a black man to find back in those days. So on the weekends, my father and mother would turn their house into a little speakeasy. In other words, they gave a lot of parties. And that's how they saved enough money to buy their first house. Back in the '60s, that was amazing.
I remember the parties and I remember the music - Muddy Waters, John Lee Hooker, Sam Cooke, Buddy Holly. I was watchin' the women on Fridays and Saturdays, man. And the women would be dancing like crazy, doing all of these crazy dances. And everybody's drinkin', havin' a good time. We were supposed to be asleep. But every child that closes his eyes is not asleep.
What really baffled me was we would go to church on Sunday. And now the women are dancing, but they're falling on the floor. The preacher's preachin' and they're reachin' up to the sky and falling on the floor. I became very interested in music because of that. On Friday and Saturday, they sound like they're having a party. And on Sunday, they're falling out. I knew there were two different kinds of music.