From over-easy grooves to gritty, energised instrumental funk, ‘Soul Limbo’ found Booker T And The MGs working at their peak.
Evoking long summer days in the UK, Booker T And The MGs’ track “Soul Limbo” has long since been known as the theme for the BBC’s cricket coverage, a status it attained during the 70s when the West Indies epitomized a swashbuckling style of play. But the track – and accompanying Soul Limbo album – represent something far different in the long career of Booker T And The MGs.
This is the pinnacle of their period as the hippest instrumental act in 60s America – as cool as they come. Even the sleeve, with its super-retro (and rather cheesy) George Whiteman photo of a girl in a white bikini posing flirtatiously in front of the band under a boardwalk, suggests something out of a groovy beach movie more than the nitty gritty of Stax R&B in September ’68. Hey, look at these hipsters, it suggested. The album’s original title was intended to be Over Easy, hinting at just how relaxed Booker T and co were (early US copies even bore this title on their label, which was changed when “Soul Limbo” became an unexpected pop smash). But the music? It remains high-class soul, even if the group, as they had on their previous album, Doin’ Our Thing, cast their net quite wide when it came to choosing Soul Limbo’s material.
Artist: Booker T & The MG's
Format: Vinyl, LP, Album, Reissue