Shantel Mitchell for NPR
Mavis Staples performs at the 2011 Newport Folk Festival.
Mavis Staples performs at the 2011 Newport Folk Festival. Shantel Mitchell for NPR
- Wonderful Savior
- Creep Along
- Freedom Highway
- This is My Country
- Too Close to Heaven / I'm On My Way to Heaven Anyhow
- We're Gonna Make It
- Short Jam
- I'll Take You There
Mavis Staples has accomplished so much as a singer and civil-rights icon, it's easy to forget how approachable and relatable she is as a performer. Sure, she's performed for Martin Luther King Jr., had her hit "I'll Take You There" used as a central song in Barack Obama's presidential campaign, and won over generations of admirers as both a solo artist and a leader of The Staple Singers. But she also possesses an incredibly easy-going and pleasant nature that makes her a natural star on stage — she's like the mayor of gospel music. Staples' newest album, 2010's You Are Not Alone, was recorded with the aid of a younger icon, Wilco's Jeff Tweedy. Hear Staples perform live at the 2011 Newport Folk Festival in Newport, R.I.