The Last Shall Be First: the JCR Records Story, Volume 1 is a compilation of lost Memphis gospel music from the 1970s and is out 18 September via Bible & Tire. The set features liner notes from Michael Hutt and is available on both CD and vinyl.
Bruce Watson (Big Legal Mess/Fat Possum), who worked extensively with Pastor Juan D. Shipp, JCR impresario and producer, on the project, says that he views the music contained on the compilation as “sacred soul”. “I’ve been saying that it’s like soul music without the sex,” he says, pointing out that the music intersects nicely with the soul sounds emanating from Memphis during the same era. One can easily imagine some of the tracks appearing on the Hi or Stax imprint if only for different lyrical content.