Soul Music Today
Yes, it is true that soul music has nurtured the growth of many gospel-trained singers. However, it is also the case that many young pop singers have a soulful element in their work. It may have been, at one time, that soul music was rooted in the experiences of certain cultures or age groups. However, it is now true that musicians of all ages, backgrounds, and experiences come together to create unforgettable sounds.
Eli Reed and Sharon Jones are two very different examples of more traditional soul vocalists. At the same time, knowledgeable musicians have described Jill Scott, Keshia Cole, and Amy Winehouse as “soulful” singers. Even names like Usher, Alicia Keys, and Macy Gray have been associated with soul’s unique style.
It comes down to passion, intensity, and a connection with the emotional moment. What distinguishes soul music is a full-out commitment to a song, and the willingness to express that song’s emotion without reserve. Pop music and other forms of music seem to have a kind of ironic stand-back attitude that soul music simply will not allow.