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Deborah Manning

Deborah Manning could've/should've been a gospel Cinderella. She got an early break as a young teenager, participating in the chorus of the Bar-Kays 1967 single "Soul Finger." Three years after that, she was discovered by Isaac Hayes and Al Bell as an undergraduate at Memphis State University, singing in a 1970 theatrical piece entitled An Evening of Soul -- her repertory included no less a mountain to climb than Sam Cooke's monumental "A Change Is Gonna Come." Her work was good enough to get her a spot working at Stax Records in preparation for a recording career, and she ended up with a featured spot at the Wattstax Festival in 1972 -- her coming out party, as it were, singing "Take My Hand, Precious Lord." It was a transcendent moment, and one that, between the festival, the film, and the albums that followed, should have represented a serious launch to a major career. Unfortunately, according to scholar Rob Bowman, it never happened, mostly because the company could never come to terms with her husband of the time, on a contract for her. As a result, Manning -- who could have been a star -- never rose beyond the ranks of backup singer on other people's records. The public got a fresh reminder of her potential in 2003 with Ace Records' release of Music from the Wattstax Festival and Film, again showcasing Manning's performance at the concert. ~ Bruce Eder
full bio

Selected Discography

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Track List: Music From The Wattstax Festival & Film

Disc 1
Disc 2
Disc 3

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Love the song
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She has an amazing voice
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amazing singer. does anyone know anything about her?

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