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Thursday, November 15, 2012


This record is flat out OUTRAGEOUS r&b that has an undercurrent of sophistication on top of the primitive sounds. The sound is dense, and flute and melodica fight to be heard over the incredible drumming and pounding piano track, while Bobby and Valerie vocalize some serious heat. Rhythmically, this record takes some slight cues from the then massive NYC boogaloo scene, but its truly somethin' else entirely and wholly unique.

Known more as a jazz pianist and educator, Valerie Capers (who was blinded as a child) has a fascinating story, which I highly recommend reading here. Her and brother Bobby were brought up in Harlem with a STRONG musical background (father Alvin was a stride pianist who was close to Fats Waller), and Valerie became the first blind graduate of the prestigious Julliard School Of Music in 1959. From '60' til '67. Valerie served as a teacher at the Bronx Neighborhood School Of Music; all the while she was composing music, and her first LP of jazz compositions was cut around the same time as this single.

Sadly, Bobby died in 1974; Valerie continues on to this day in the New York jazz scene as a performer and teacher.

from 1967...


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