Today is my birthday, and I tend to get reflective on days like this. Thanks to social networking (it's not ALL bad, you know), I been flooded with incredible words from friends all around the world. I'm not trying to brag, but I feel incredibly fortunate that I have been able to work in the music biz all around the world, and have met hundreds of incredible people along the way, and it shows that the gap between us all is incredibly small. We may be thousands of miles away, but we're all very, very similar; languages and colors are NOT a divider, only a reminder that life is not black and white but made up of billions of colors, and the flavor of our diversity is akin to how we season our food. If there is no flavor, it's bland and who wants that?
King Solomon. We lost him recently but the records that he bequeathed upon us are some of the most moving, beautiful and REAL pieces of art that can ever grace our ears. I know I'm writing more than usual today, but there are so many moments in "Home In Your Heart" that are mindblowing; first off, whoever is behind the drum kit has a direct hotline to MY heart, and his stop time fills are not only impressive but so effective to complement the lyrics. Then there's the matter of Solomon's voice; in a world full of musical fakery, this is a man that fully believes what he's singing here, and throws his entire soul into the performance, sending the microphone, preamps, and/or tape machine into distortion at JUST the right times, as the distortion drives home words that he wants to enunciate with even more color. It's all capped off with a slightly sinister laugh at the outro...I've listened to it a dozen times this morning and I could easily listen a dozen more.
"Words", the other side, is one of those southern soul ballads that helped make Solomon the stuff of legend early in his career; Solomon's effect on his female fans is the type of lore that is best devoured in Guralnick's excellent "Sweet Soul Music" book.
I hope you enjoy today's post; it's possibly the greatest record ever made. But I could just as easily give that award to "Cry To Me"... Good, better, best doesn't really matter; I'm simply thankful for ALL of it. Since I've already turned in more words than normal, I'll tell you the story on why I started this blog. I had just been through the most difficult breakup of my life, and I realized more than ever that music was the salvation, specifically those little records that spin at 45 RPM. I figured that since they brought so much happiness to my life, it only made sense to spread the love; it's heartwarming when I receive messages thanking me for what I do, because it's validation that my intention has been a success.
SOLOMON BURKE - HOME IN YOUR HEART