James Carr – 1968 – A Man Needs A Woman

Sublime southern soul from one of the greats! James Carr is right up there with the best of the 60s,  Otis Redding, Arthur Conley, Joe Tex, and others but he never made it as big as them because of personal troubles and bad planning on the part of his label and management. Fortunately, his genius has been kept alive by record collectors everywhere  for whom this rare gem is a holy grail! The album features tunes that sum up the best of the south in the 60s  all sung by James with his unbelievably heartbreaking voice.

This is a @320 vinyl rip of the 2003 Kent reissue including covers (original Goldwax LP cost more than 100 $)

A1  A Man Needs A Woman 2:38
A2  Stronger Than Love 2:26
A3  More Love 2:38
A4  You Didn’t Know It But You Had Me 1:55
A5  A Woman Is A Man’s Best Friend 3:14
A6  I’m A Fool For You 1:58
A7 A Loosing Game 2.00
A8  A Message To Young Lovers 2.40
B1  Life Turned Her That Way 2:21
B2 Gonna Send You Back To Georgia 2:13
B3  The Dark End of the Street 2.28
B4  I Sowed Love And Reaped A Heatache 2:25
B5  Let It Happen 2.34
B6  You Gotta Have Soul 1.46
B7  You Hurt So Good 1.57
B8  You’ve Got My Mind Messed Up 2.23

Much more obscure than his first album, ‘A Man Needs a Woman’, for my money, is every bit the equal of its predecessor. Not least, naturally, since it includes “The Dark End of the Street” and “You Got My Mind Messed Up” once more, two all-time legendary waxings that I’ll never tire off. But the LP’s original material isn’t far behind at all. “A Man Needs a Woman”, a sweet, country-soul tune written by O.B. McClinton, is another emotional tour de force that just spells out ‘DEEPER Soul’. “Stronger Than Love” picks up the pace considerably, a fine stomping groove featuring some nice high-pitched backing vocals, whereas the plaintive, minor keyed “More Love” is a thinly disguised ‘payback’ song aimed at Carr’s onetime girl. James is now expressing the virtues of his new lover, who’s got ‘more love in her little finger than [she] got in all of [her] heart.’ Ouch… The sentiment is continued on the more upbeat “You Didn’t Know It But You Had Me”, a fine beater, while Carr gets back in a lowdown pleading bag on the tender, slow “A Woman Is a Man’s Best Friend”, featuring that typical highly trebled Goldwax guitar and weeping horns.

The first side is completed with the frantic, sizzling “I’m a Fool for You”. A well-oiled, crunchy R&B-romp featuring soulful second vocals by Betty Harris – the track surely comes across as a full-fledged duet. The interaction between the two is electrifying, especially on the chorus. The flips opens on a decidedly moodier note, as Carr puts his spin on country singer Howard Harlan’s “Life Turned Her That Way”. Carr’s tormented soul is laid bare on top of an incessant, punishing groove, one smothered in purring Hammond organs and fits of brass, as he laments on the disposition of his woman. James’ rendition of Timmy Willis’ 1963 hit “Gonna Send You Back to Georgia” takes us right back to a run-down juke joint shakin’ it up somewhere down a dusty Mississippi road, and the very country-esque “I Sowed Love and Reaped a Heartache” could’ve stirred up just as much noise ‘at the other side of town’. A great, lazily rocking tune souled up by those fabulous pipes.

With the inclusion of “You Got My Mind Messed Up” and, especially, “The Dark End of the Street”, what you have is a perfect platter of brilliant Southern Soul.


Buy the cd with extra tracks from Amazon or CD Universe. It would be a perfect Christmas present.

Download link


Finally do not miss his other masterpiece “You’ve got my mind messed up” in our backs pages here.

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  1. rich says:

    cant wait to hear this thanx nikos

  2. Mona Street says:

    Thank you. In my mind one of the greatest soul albums of all time.

  3. Arwin says:

    Thanks again Nicos. Snowing outside and James Carr on the stereo. Great!

  4. d says:

    thanks james carr is massive

  5. Lancelot says:

    Thanks again too. The best gift to X-Mas!

  6. Alex says:

    Both albums are really brilliant. One of the greatest pure vocalists of deep Southern soul ever. Many thanks.

  7. Bill says:

    Thanks for the Great James Carr posts

  8. Bob says:

    Great!!! THX

  9. Harry says:

    Thanks for this gift Nicos and happy holidays.

  10. Valerie says:

    I can remember my parents playing James Carr’s music when I was a child, his voice always seemed so powerful. A true soul mam.

  11. John says:

    Amazing albums.

  12. Fulvio says:

    thank you for the James Carr albums.
    great music on your blog!

  13. Lafayette says:

    Perfect music for the holiday season…ideal Christmas music, even though not really Christmas music! Thanks Nikos & Crew! 😉


  14. nikos says:

    Indeed an excellent piece of soul music, my friend. I wish to you and the stuff of 4BB, happy holidays. Keep it funky for the next year.

  15. Soul is the Music says:

    So sad he faced so many problems in his career and although Carr signed with Atlantic, he released only one single in 1971. Such a great voice!

  16. jean paris says:

    paris is under the snow…the perfect lp to keep me hot….thanks nikos…tu es comme un pere noel pour moi….jean paris

  17. Gary says:

    Superb choice for cold nights and the holidays. The best blog around.

  18. Zion says:

    Fantastic post! It is such a beautiful gem.

  19. brotherpete says:

    Thanks Nicos, lovely !!! :)

  20. Frank says:

    Absolutely great. Thank you.

  21. Robin says:

    I am a big fan of James Carr. I owned the original lp but lost is some 15 years ago. So I feel so happy for this Christmas gift. Merry Christmas yall.

  22. looks like another killer. We also got 2 feet of snow over the weekend. I’ll crank this baby up real loud and maybe that will help melt some of it away 😀

    Happy holidays one and all. have fun(k) and as always, please be safe.

    Peace and blessings.

  23. Soulsista says:

    Fantastic share! I’ve heard a few songs before and it´s great to finally be able to hear the whole album. Thanks again!

  24. Lazaros says:

    One of the greatest southern soul albums ever. It makes me feel so good. Holiday greetings everybody.

  25. Garth says:

    Nikos thank you for sharing your passion the whole year with us. A year full of gems that made our everyday life much much pleasant. Keep it soulful and funky. Merry Christmas.

  26. Kirk says:

    Much much love and respect. Your work is fantastic man. I needed this.

  27. Ralph says:

    AWESOME LP! Thanks my friend!!

  28. Eugene says:

    Thank you as always for another musical feast.

  29. Syd says:

    Thanks for the lovely album. Always a pleasant to visit you. Peace.

  30. ManD says:

    Thanks so much for this!! It means a great deal to me!

  31. Frosty says:

    I’m so grateful for this joint. Happy New Year everybody.

  32. Ramos says:

    The best LP I heard recently. Thank u.

  33. Rob says:

    James Carr deserves the same respect as Otis Redding. Respect!

  34. catacaldos says:

    Thanks for the gem.

  35. jos says:

    Thanks again Nicos!!!!

  36. Len says:

    A remarkable record to be sure ,for those who have never heard this set of wonderful music .Right up there with the wonderful and out of print (again,I think)Howard Tate “Get It While You Can” album from 1966.Thank you so much for all of your efforts in schooling your web crowd on these performers whose music should still be in print and available at the retail level!!! Brilliant work being done here.

  37. cleffdeadly says:

    straight out the top drawer, class!

  38. Trakbuv says:

    Keeping me on my toes again Nikos. You know I’m a seventies soulbro through and through so you are giving me a real education bashing right now. I certainly should be more familiar with James Carr than the handful of Northern Soul numbers, and here you are right on point. I will also be sure to dig out his other LP hidden amongst the dusty back pages. Your knowledge and taste to keep real soul alive is extraordinary. Thank you again my dear friend.

  39. Nikos says:

    Trak, so true both albums are really classic! Everyone should buy them.

  40. Eddie says:

    Sounds great! Thanks!

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