Billy Valentine - one half of the Valentine Brothers of ‘Money’s Too Tight To Mention’ fame - and Bob Thiele Jr have been working together for some time, writing songs for amongst others Ray Charles, Joe Cocker and Axwell from the Swedish House Mafia.
During the 2020 - lockdown and the protests around George Floyd and on behalf of BLM - the pair started working on an album of politically relevant covers from soul music’s past. The first fruits were this stunning version of Curtis Mayfield’s ‘We The People Who Are Darker Than Blue’, where Billy is accompanied by The Larry Golding Trio and Blue Note Records recording artist and very special saxophone talent Immanuel Wilkins.
It stunned both me and my partner in Acid Jazz Records Eddie Piller.
It was something that should have just been a diversion but the results were stunning and an album’s worth of material was recorded featuring amongst others Jeff Parker, Joel Ross, Theo Croker, Pino Paladino, James Gadson and Linda May Oh.
Bob and I had been working on the Flying Dutchman catalogue at Ace Record - It was of course Bob's father's label and he working with his father’s legacy for the first time - and he felt that this record could sit proudly and appropriately alongside that catalogue and that it should be the first new release on Flying Dutchman since 1976. Myself and Eddie offered to release it on Flying Dutchman via Acid Jazz, a collaboration between two classic labels.
The album is coming next year, but for now there is a limited one sided 7 white label 7-inch available from the Acid Jazz online shop.
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