My biggest fantasy, and it feels inexplicably embarrassing to be admitting to, is to be able to growl and sing like the incredible Etta James. Of course, without going through the hell and pain she went through to get such grit, sorrow and anger in her voice. Seriously, the woman lived enough for three Keith Richards.
At Last!, her first album, is so chock full of amazing songs, it plays like a greatest hits album. Certainly the titular song will be familiar to you, but the less played ones, like Sunday Kind Love, I Just Wanna Make Love to You, All I Could Do Was Cry, and the added track If I Can't Have You, featuring vocals by Harvey Fuqua are the stuff that make you want to breakdown and breakout.
While James is far from an unknown, she doesn't quite get the attention of an Aretha Franklin or Gladys Knight, but that's okay with me because I can cherish her albums without being tired and bored by the same songs that have been on the radio for a million years. A must for any lover of vocal jazz and real, dirty, nasty, heartfelt singing. I love Etta!