Soul Africa
(original soundtrack)



Original release:
LP: Atlantic (South Africa) ATC 9366 (1971)

Swazi Lady
Yeah Baby (You're The Live I Knew I'd Find
When A Man Loves A Woman
Help Me Make It Through The Night
Soul Fire
Sister Soul
Cover Me
To Bring My Love To You
Knock On Wood
Come Softly To Me
The First Time (Instrumental)

Duane Allman plays on track 6 and is suspected to play on track 1, but this has not been confirmed yet.

On June 10, 2013 Scott Cantor spoke with Jackie Avery, who remembered recording Percey Sledge in the studio with Duane. It was a movie soundtrack Jackie wrote, either the cut or the movie was called "Sister Soul" and there is both video and audio of the recording.

(Thanks to Scott Cantor for this information)

On June 13, 2013 Scott Cantor spoke with Jackie Avery again, and he said Duane definitely plays on 'Sister Soul' maybe on 'Swazi Lady'. He also told that the session was recorded and filmed at Capricorn Studios in Macon, GA.

(Thanks to Scott Cantor for this information)

And on we found the following information:

readers post; Percy Sledge in Soul Africa, a movie by Ashley Lazarus 1971

May 14, 2012
updated 5th June 2012

reader Stuart Krause wrote some interesting comment on my previous post Percy Sledge in South Africa 1970 and I’d like to share it with you. Keep sending your comments, it’s inspiring and well appreciated. Thanks Stuart!

   by Stuart Krause

there is an LP called Soul Africa featuring Percy Sledge on all tracks. I found it on ebay after looking for quite some time. It was a soundtrack to a film and some of the tracks were recorded at Capricorn studios. Paul Hornsby, record producer, remembers this film being made and says the masters are still on reel to reel tape and stored at Capricorn studios. There are tracks by Percy not found anywhere else, for example “Swazi Lady” and “Sister Soul”, written by Jackie Avery, Capricorn Studios in house song writer. I did speak to Hornsby about this a few years ago, so I did get first hand info. The film was produced by a guy named Lazarus. you cannot find it anywhere. I would say this would be a rare find if you search enough. I believe the album came out in 1971. I have it here if anyone has more questions about it. I’m just glad someone else knows of its existence.

Of course I was titillated to find the described album, a soundtrack by Percy Sledge and his band, recorded in South Africa exclusively…17 shows! Not an easy album to track down, I must agree but last February luck was on my side as I went digging into a hospice shop in the Eastern Cape. Between all the nicks and nacks and lots of broken tracks and poor old vinyl,  there it suddenly was; Percy Sledge in Soul Africa, music from the soundtrack recording. It’s actually a film about the soul singer touring South Africa in 1970. Most of  Percy’s worldwide hits can be heard, although live creates another vibe, another energy.

Most of all it contains a few really funky tracks, unusual James Brown -type-o-sound like “Yeah Baby (You’re The Love I Know)”, ”Soul Fire” and the groovy, funky instrumental “The First Time“. Percy and his band getting down!! And  ’Soul Fire’ is perpretated by the true Zulu spirit, with tribal chanting in a steaming 7 minutes version. Can you feel it?!!


Percy Sledge in Soul Africa. Music from the soundtrack recording

Filmed and directed by Ashley Lazarus.

The idea of making this film started at Mbabane in Swaziland, where a film crew from Aka Productions in Cape Town shot Percy Sledge’s entourage and the last concert of the tour.

Sledge held concerts for 17 weeks, breaking all records in South Africa from Mouille Point to Mbabane. He captivated audiences throughout South Africa when he threw back his head, started jiggling with microphones and sang unforgettable numbers like  ” Come Softly To Me”,  ”When A Man Loves A Woman”, “ Knock On Wood” and “ Soul Fire”.

The concert at Swaziland was the last for Sledge, but the start of Soul Africa, which may prove an even bigger legend than the live Sledge.

When Sledge left South Africa, Ashly Lazarus and two men armed with cameras went to Zululand, the Kalahari Desert, Mashonaland, the Okavango Swamps and Botswana, and in three weeks completed the filming.

The recurring theme of Soul Africa is the contrast between the original Soul of Africa and the sophisticated Soul of the American singer. Music is in the animals and birds of Africa, explains photographer Billy Crauser. Also in the desert, the sands of the Kalahari and the scorching heat.

Ashley Lazarus spared no trouble on this film. His camera swings from the magnificence of the Swazi Independence celebrations to the ritual slaughtering of an ox, from a sangoma and the bones to a bushman rubbing sticks to make a fire, from the dazzling spotlights on Sledge’s stage to insects making love.

In the end, the Swazi tribal drummers and the dancing flames in front of the rostrum join Sledge and his crew in the blue mood soul throb of ” She’s a Gentle Swazi Lady” and “Soul Fire”.

excerpts from the liner note of “Soul Africa” -Percy Sledge  -Atlantic ATC 9366 South Africa 1971

On February 9, 2007 Stuart Krause wrote the following in the forum on the Allman Brothers Band website

" far as Percy Sledge goes, according to Jackie Avery (who would be a great interview by the way) Duane supposedly played guitar on a track for a Percy Sledge album called "Soul Africa" which was only released in South Africa. I had begun to think the album never really existed until I finally found a copy on Gemm. It was recorded as a movie soundtrack, which was only shown in Africa (Swaziland I think) in 1971 and some of the tracks were recorded at the Capricorn studios while others were recorded live in Africa during one of Percy's tours. According to Paul Hornsby, he remembers some footage being filmed at Capricorn, and since interracial bands weren't accepted at the time in Africa, an all black band was filmed at Capricorn more or less lip syncing to the music including Jaimoe on drums! Avery wrote the track "Sister Soul" which is a beautiful song and swore Duane played lead on it, but to my ear there is no real lead guitar and I don't hear any Duane unless he played rhythm. Nonetheless, it is fantastic album and wortht the search for all the tracks not found anywhere else, very soulful and funky, not the typical ballads crooned by Percy at all. A couple older hits were included in the soundtrack as well. The film is not found on file with any archive, I checked, but must exist out there somewhere. Paul Hornsby has the original reel to reels but nothing to play them on he says. So, did Duane play on this? Not sure. He could have been involved at some level, but he is not audible to me. There is a fantastic live in the studio version of "Knock on Wood" that rips and some some laid back soulful tracks like "Swazi Lady" and "Sister Soul" and some real funk closer to James Brown like "Yeah Baby" and "Soul Fire" that have Percy sounding more like a Voodoo preacher than a balladeer. I haven't seen these tracks anywhere else."