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Questlove’s ‘Summer Of Soul (…Or, When The Revolution Could Not Be Televised)’ Soundtrack Set for Release

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Summer Of Soul (…Or, When The Revolution Could Not Be Televised) Original Motion Picture Soundtrack is set to be released on Jan. 28, via Legacy Recordings. The LP includes live unprecedented recordings from the 1969 Harlem Culture Festival by Nina Simone, B.B. King, Sly & The Family Stone, Gladys Knight, The Pips and more. 

The film was the directorial debut of Ahmir “Questlove” Thompson, who commented, “It goes beyond saying that you can’t have a monster music journey on film without an equally awesome soundtrack. The people demanded ‘more!’.  So for the people, we bring you musical manna that hopefully won’t be the last serving. These performances are lightning in a bottle. Pure artistry! Enjoy.”

Similar to the documentary, the audio recordings taped at the 1969 Harlem Cultural Festival have not been heard in over 50 years, that is until now. Questlove carefully selected 17 live renditions of jazz, blues, R&B, and soul classics, performed at the festival, and chronicled them into a heralding new soundtrack. 

Additionally, the LP features a powerful guitar-driven B.B. King’s “Why I Sing The Blues,” a simmering rendition of “I Heard It Through The Grapevine” by Gladys Knight & The Pips, as well as Nina Simone’s hot take on “Backlash Blues.”

Questlove spoke about the film in a recent Relix cover story. The documentary is now out on Hulu. Sly & The Family Stone’s “Sing A Simple Song” performance debuted today; listen here.

Summer of Soul (…Or, When The Revolution Could Not Be Televised) Original Motion Picture Soundtrack


  1. The Chambers Brothers – “Uptown”
  2. B.B. King – “Why I Sing The Blues”
  3. The 5th Dimension – “Don’t Cha Hear Me Callin’ To Ya”
  4. The 5th Dimension – “Aquarius/Let The Sunshine In (The Flesh Failures)”
  5. David Ruffin – “My Girl”
  6. The Edwin Hawkins Singers – “Oh Happy Day”
  7. The Staple Singers – “It’s Been A Change”
  8. The Operation Breadbasket Orchestra & Choir Featuring Mahalia Jackson and Mavis Staples – “Precious Lord Take My Hand”
  9. Gladys Knight & The Pips – “I Heard It Through The Grapevine”
  10. Mongo Santamaria – “Watermelon Man”
  11. Ray Barretto – “Together”
  12. Herbie Mann- “Hold On, I’m Comin’”
  13. Sly & The Family Stone – “Sing A Simple Song”
  14. Sly & The Family Stone – “Everyday People”
  15. Abbey Lincoln and Max Roach – “Africa” (digital only) 
  16. Nina Simone – “Backlash Blues”
  17. Nina Simone – “Are You Ready”

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