“I’m gonna tell you, in plain English — just as plain as I can — I’m gonna love you like woman,” Koko says. “But I’m also gonna fight you like a man.”
Holy crap. I broke down The Politics of Ike Turner last time around. Chances are, when old Ike plucked a teenage Tina out of a church and helped her launch a rocket ride to stardom in the late 1950s, Koko wasn’t in his sights. But if she was, this here song would make his blood run cold. And with its threat of violence, make his balls shrivel up and ache.
Funny thing is, Koko Taylor insinuated she was a fairly reserved, conservative person in real life back when she recorded this track. She confessed she was mortified when mentor Willie Dixon first got her to sing “Wang Dang Doodle,” basically a radio ad for one nasty upcoming bar fight — including knife play. It went on to become her signature song.
This cut, if nothing else, established Taylor as the Aretha of the blues, a title that she never really relinquished — although some fans today would say the torch has been passed to Shemeika Copeland. No matter. “Love You Like a Woman” (download) is a classic. Once you hear it, you’ll never forget it.