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SHOUT! Black Gospel Music Moments - Candi Staton

In her 50-year career, Candi Staton has sung every kind of music, but may be at her best with gospel, including her irresistible hit, “He Set Me Free.”

I’ll bet you’ve heard a song or two by Candi Staton – even if you don’t remember the name. How about “I’d Rather Be an Old Man’s Sweetheart (Than a Young Man’s Fool),” with the Muscle Shoals studio band? Or her searing R&B version of Tammy Wynette’s “Stand By Your Man”? Or maybe her #1 disco hit, “Young Hearts Run Free” ... or maybe what is the best version ever of a Bee Gees song, “Nights on Broadway”? And, if you’re into electronic dance music, you probably know her “Hallelujah Anyway.”

In Staton’s 50-year career – which is still going strong with a band that includes her sons Marcus and Marcel – she’s always returned to her roots in gospel music, beginning in the early ‘70s with “Holy Man.” From The Anointing album on the gospel oriented Beracah label, here’s Candi’s funky and soulful “He Set Me Free.”

2342 Candi Staton - He Set Me Free.mp3

MUSIC: Candi Staton, The Anointing LP, “He Set Me Free,” Side 1, Track 1 (October 15, 2023)

I’m Robert Darden … “Shout! Black Gospel Music Moments” is produced by KWBU, the Black Gospel Music Preservation Program at Baylor University Libraries and is funded by generous support from the Prichard Foundation.

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Robert F. Darden is the author of two dozen books, most recently: Nothing But Love in God’s Water, Volume II: Black Sacred Music from Sit-In to Resurrection City (Penn State University Press, 2016); Nothing But Love in God’s Water, Volume I: Black Sacred Music from the Civil War to the Civil Rights Movement(Penn State University Press, 2014); Jesus Laughed: The Redemptive Power of Humor(Abingdon Press, 2008), Reluctant Prophets and Clueless Disciples: Understanding the Bible by Telling Its Stories(Abingdon Press, 2006); and People Get Ready! A New History of Black Gospel Music(Continuum/Bloomsbury, 2004).