Respect Yourself: Stax Records and the Soul Explosion

Robert Gordon

Rock & Roll Books

Respect Yourself: Stax Records and the Soul Explosion

by Robert Gordon
Bloomsbury, 480 pp., $30

The triumphant and tragic story of Memphis' Stax Records, where black and white musicians created a massive body of brilliant soul music in the heart of the segregated South at the height of the Sixties' Civil Rights movement, receives definitive telling in Respect Yourself. Colorblind outpost from the conflicts raging in its hometown, the label's early success took a dark turn with flagship star Otis Redding's fatal plane crash and Martin Luther King Jr.'s assassination. That sets the stage for the worsening vibes and sordid business dealings leading to the company's downfall. While much of this history arrives well-documented, veteran Memphis chronicler Robert Gordon imbues it all with a wealth of fresh insight and perspective, offering revealing interviews with virtually all of the principal and peripheral participants. He's also an astute enough musicologist to convey the power of Stax's output, and how its enduring appeal transcends the forces shaping the music's creation.

READ MORE
More Stax
Music DVDs
Respect Yourself: The Stax Records Story
Respect Yourself: The Stax Records Story, Stax/Volt Revue Live in Norway 1967, Dreams to Remember: The Legacy of Otis Redding (Record Review)

Greg Beets, Dec. 21, 2007

More Music Reviews
My Little Red Book
Kill 'Em and Leave: Searching for James Brown and the American Soul
"A man who carries the troubled history of an entire people on his back and a 24-piece band and three radio stations to boot cannot find peace"

Thomas Fawcett, June 17, 2016

My Little Red Book
Under the Big Black Sun: A Personal History of L.A. Punk
Punk rock as L.A. lit no less than Charles Bukowski and Raymond Chandler

Tim Stegall, June 17, 2016

More by Scott Schinder
Music DVDs
The Byrd Who Flew Alone: The Triumphs and Tragedy of Gene Clark

Dec. 19, 2014

Box Sets
Bob Dylan & The Band
The Basement Tapes Complete: The Bootleg Series Vol. 11 (Record Review)

Dec. 12, 2014

KEYWORDS FOR THIS STORY

Stax, gift guide 2013, Otis Redding, Martin Luther King Jr.

MORE IN THE ARCHIVES
NEWSLETTERS
AC Daily, Events and Promotions, Luvdoc Answers

Breaking news, recommended events, and more

Official Chronicle events, promotions, and giveaways

All questions answered (satisfaction not guaranteed)