Mavis Staples performs at the 2011 Newport Folk Festival. Shantel Mitchell for NPR hide caption

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Shantel Mitchell for NPR

Mavis Staples performs at the 2011 Newport Folk Festival.

Shantel Mitchell for NPR

Newport Folk Festival

Mavis Staples: Newport Folk 2011

Mavis Staples: Newport Folk 2011

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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.

Set List

  • "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"
  • "Hallelujah"
  • "I'll Take You There"
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