Sam Cooke had a great string of hit records, "You Send Me," "Chain Gang," "Cupid," etc...but the 'B' side of his hit Shake" may be his most memorable moment. On tour in the South, Sam and his band were denied rooms at a Louisiana Motel, just one instance on that tour when the famous singer was denied rooms, meals, and even "Whites Only" men's rooms.
He was incredibly frustrated by the segregation, and was unable to express his feelings to the local officials, because he knew he'd be jailed. So he sat down and wrote the iconic, "A Change Is Gonna Come," which was not a hit at the time, but went on to become a major anthem of the Civil Rights Movement. It's been covered by many black singers including my former artist, Al Green, but the raw emotion in Sam's voice at that time can't be duplicated. I'll be bringing some of Sam's many hits to www.thedonrocks.com in the coming days, and at some point write about his tragic death; shot through the heart in an L.A. Motel.
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