Today is [lastfm]Mavis Staples[/lastfm] day. I have officially decreed it to be so. Mavis’ new album, You Are Not Alone comes out today.
[photogallerylink id=31493 align=left]Mavis’ solo career has been steadily building up to this day. Early in this decade she began making a few more local appearances in the Chicago area as a solo artist. FitzGerald’s, Ravinia, The Wine Crush on Wells Street were a few of those. In 2004 Have a Little Faith, a beautiful album released on Chicago blues label Alligator Records marked a new beginning for Mavis. Three years later the [lastfm]Ry Cooder[/lastfm] produced album, We’ll Never Turn Back, reminded all of Mavis’ musical connection to the Civil Rights Movement and brought together the musicians that still make up her band. The album Live: Hope at the Hideout was released on election day 2008. And now, You Are Not Alone comes out today, produced by [lastfm]Wilco[/lastfm]’s [lastfm]Jeff Tweedy[/lastfm]. If I was a really good writer I might say things the way Greg Kot did in today’s Tribune. If I was an excellent music reporter I might be able to tell you stories about Mavis like Dave Hoekstra does in the Sun-Times. And if I was the self-proclaimed Mayor of Chicago like Tony FitzPatrick is, this would be official Mavis Staples Day in Chicago.