Jackie Shane "Cruel Cruel World (Numero)"
Jackie Shane was a musician way ahead of the times. In the 1960s, while the cities he was performing his music generally had laws against selling alcohol on the weekend, and even laws about dancing, here came Jackie. A gay black man wearing makeup and sequined dresses and jewelry that was so electric a performer that he tended to make the uptight white communities of the early ‘60s forget any boundaries of race or gender. With only a handful of recordings to his name before he left the music scene after his R&B/Soul sound fell out of fashion (thanks a lot hippies…), each one shows a promise of greatness, with a voice somewhere between Sam Cooke and Little Richard. Thankfully Numero is here to rectify this great music, almost that time forgot. Check out the pain of “Cruel Cruel World.”