Robert Christgau: Dean of American Rock Critics

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Rufus and Chaka Khan

  • Live--Stompin' at the Savoy [Warner Bros., 1983] B+

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Live--Stompin' at the Savoy [Warner Bros., 1983]
Especially since "Ain't Nobody," the killer hit her last album cried out for, comes courtesy of Rufus's main man Hawk Wolinski, this reunion is like a gift--for three sides live and one studio she's finally free of her freedom. It's not the '70s best-of a cynical admirer like myself might wish, but the material is stronger than anything she's compiled with Arif Mardin for sure, and "Ain't That Peculiar" is a complete natural. But beyond "Ain't Nobody," Wolinski contributes nothing special songwise. Which I guess is one reason she wanted her freedom. B+