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Naomi Shelton: Straight From Funk

Soul queen Naomi Davis Shelton got her start at age six, belting out joyful harmonies in her Alabama church choir. She would soon sing her way to the New York funk scene, filling night clubs with her soulful, jazzy style.

Now, forty years later, Shelton has released a studio album, What Have You Done, My Brother? This full-length release has been a decade in the making. It all started at a club set with legendary James Brown bassist Fred Thomas where Shelton and her producer Cliff Driver were performing. A recording exec approached the two after hearing Shelton's "Mavis Staples-esque" vocals, and they cut "41st Street Breakdown" in 1999.

Backed by a trio of harmonizers appropriately dubbed The Gospel Queens, Shelton lets loose her vintage vocals in an album that could be pulled straight from the funk era.

Copyright 2009 XPN