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2018 REISSUE – REMASTERED FROM ORIGINAL TAPE TRANSFERS, CAREFULLY REPRODUCED ORIGINAL ART.

Larry Jon Wilson came to the party late. When he arrived in Nashville, country soul pioneer Tony Joe White had already made six albums. Townes Van Zandt had made seven, Mickey Newbury eight. Kristofferson, the accepted High Priest of the New Nashville, had made five. Larry Jon, by the time he arrived, had spent ten years in corporate America.

He did not start playing guitar until the age of 30, but five years later he released his debut, New Beginnings (1975) and followed it just a year later with Let Me Sing My Song To You, both on Monument Records. A revelation among the hipsters and critics of Nashville, the LPs ensured Larry Jon was immediately embraced as part of the mid-70s “outlaw country movement” that eschewed slick production in favour of a raw, gritty approach. When a film crew came to document this burgeoning sound, they made straight for Larry Jon's door. The legendary Heartworn Highways (1981) featured his mesmerising performance of “Ohoopee River Bottomland”, a boogaloo funk monster.

He was a singer and writer of intensely private, painfully moving tales of southern life. With his deep, papa-bear voice, funky southern groove, and richly evocative narratives of rural Georgia, Larry Jon was a unique stylist but his gutsy, greasy sound did not translate into sales. Too funky for the country crowd, too heartfelt for pop radio, he fell between the cracks. We hope the long-overdue reissue of his first two albums will go some way to rectifying this. Indeed, both New Beginnings and Let Me Sing My Song to You - so similar they play like two halves of a double album – showcase his unique mix of country, folk, soul and swampy blues.

Driven by a crack rhythm section that included Elvis guitarist Reggie Young, New Beginnings is a rich, literate record. Anyone with even a passing interest in the union between soul and country music will be able to tell they’ve located solid gold as soon as Larry Jon’s deep baritone utters the first appreciative “mm-hmm” a few bars into the opening ‘Ohoopee River Bottomland’, a fat-bottomed swamp-funk account of hard times in the city and country alike. Funny, nostalgic, sad, wistful, righteously pissed-off: New Beginnings is country-influenced American songwriting at its finest, from the feverish country-got-soul groove pulsating behind the weary sigh of “Through The Eyes of Children” to the elemental lament “Things Ain’t What It Used to Be (and Probably Never Was)”, a country standard that somehow got away, Wilson’s compelling presence and rich voice keeping saccharine and self-pity at bay at all times.

The audio for New Beginnings comes from the original analogue tape transfers and has been remastered for vinyl by Be With regular Simon Francis. We’ve taken the same care with the striking cover art and we were honoured when Larry’s close friend Jeb Loy Nichols kindly agreed to contribute wonderfully unique liner notes, presented beautifully on the printed inner sleeve opposite a gorgeous black and white shot of Larry, mid-performance.


FORMAT INFORMATION

Ltd LP Info: 180 gram strictly limited to 500 copies worldwide.

“Larry Jon Wilson? He can break your heart with a voice like a cannonball.” - Kris Kristofferson.

Larry Jon Wilson came to the party late. When he arrived in Nashville, country soul pioneer Tony Joe White had already made six albums. Townes Van Zandt had made seven, Mickey Newbury eight. Kristofferson, the accepted High Priest of the New Nashville, had made five. Larry Jon, by the time he arrived, had spent ten years in corporate America.

He did not start playing guitar until the age of 30, but five years later he released his debut, New Beginnings (1975) and followed it just a year later with Let Me Sing My Song To You, both on Monument Records. A revelation among the hipsters and critics of Nashville, the LPs ensured Larry Jon was immediately embraced as part of the mid-70s “outlaw country movement” that eschewed slick production in favour of a raw, gritty approach. When a film crew came to document this burgeoning sound, they made straight for Larry Jon's door. The legendary Heartworn Highways (1981) featured his mesmerising performance of “Ohoopee River Bottomland”.

He was a singer and writer of intensely private, painfully moving tales of southern life. With his deep, papa-bear voice, funky southern groove, and richly evocative narratives of rural Georgia, Larry Jon was a unique stylist but his gutsy, greasy sound did not translate into sales. Too funky for the country crowd, too heartfelt for pop radio, he fell between the cracks. We hope the long-overdue reissue of his first two albums will go some way to rectifying this. Indeed, both New Beginnings and Let Me Sing My Song to You - so similar they play like two halves of a double album – showcase his unique mix of country, folk, soul and swampy blues.

New Beginnings failed to propel Larry Jon to even the relatively modest cult acclaim enjoyed by his likeminded contemporaries. And some of the frustration this conjured can be heard on 1976′s Let Me Sing My Song To You. Both the title track and the self-deprecating “Drowning in the Mainstream” speak of Wilson’s hope to inch at least a few steps towards the big time without making too many compromises. Any album containing the likes of the heartfelt, deeply beautiful tribute of “Ballad of Handy Mackey” and the superlative country-gothic funk opus ‘Sheldon Churchyard’ – the lead track from the lauded Country Got Soul compilation - must rank as essential listening.

The audio for Let Me Sing My Song To You comes from the original analogue tape transfers and has been remastered for vinyl by Be With regular Simon Francis. We’ve taken the same care with the striking cover art and we were honoured when Larry’s close friend Jeb Loy Nichols kindly agreed to contribute wonderfully unique liner notes, presented beautifully on the printed inner sleeve opposite a gorgeous black and white shot of Larry, mid-performance.


FORMAT INFORMATION

Ltd LP Info: 180gram 2018 reissue – remastered from original tape transfers, carefully reproduced original art, strictly limited to 500 copies worldwide – no repress.

The Moments

On Top

    The Moments’ On Top is a perfect example of symphonic soul. Amongst true heads, this is considered the most valuable of all their albums; an original copy of this LP, if you can find one, starts at around $75. Alongside contemporaneous acts from the early 70s - The Chi-lites, The Stylistics, The Delfonics, The Futures, Blue Magic and The Main Ingredient - The Moments exuded all that was compelling about deep, harmony-drenched, string-laden soul.

    The standout here is undoubtedly "To You with Love", a floating, tender ballad sung by Harry Ray that features the group’s patented handclap-tambourine combo, sweetly repetitive strings, serene guitar and gentle piano. It was famously sampled by J Dilla for “Last Donut Of The Night” - the gut-wrenching finale to his seminal Donuts. Concentrating solely on its sampled history would do The Moments a huge disservice, but its crucial appearance at the climax of Donuts directed fresh generations of pre-disposed soul fans to the absolute canon. Judged entirely on its merit, it’s one of the most heart-breaking songs of any decade and worth the price of admission alone. It’s the sweetest, most goose-bump inducing 3 minutes of aural bliss you’re ever likely to be exposed to.

    If that wasn’t enough, On Top spawned two minor R&B hits: "All I Have" and "Lucky Me", each featuring Billy Brown's ice-melting falsetto. Opener “All I Have” is a sumptuous introduction to the album. With melancholic, understated guitar licks, twinkling keys and heartbeat drums, it’s a gem. The triumphant “Lucky Me” is simply gorgeous; all gentle chimes, swirling strings and, again, scarcely believable falsetto soaring atop proud horns.

    Also included are two singles that are different from anything the group had ever done; "I Can't Help It" and "That's How It Feels." The former features thundering kicks and crashing cymbals underneath floating flutes, progressively stabbing strings and horns. The yearning vocals embody an almost Temptations-like delivery at times. "That's How It Feels” is a two-parter wherein Brown's voice bestrides a bed of rhythms on a tune more aptly defined as a love suite than a song. Dripping in breakbeats, piano and strings, Brown describes the devastation of losing the one you love before the track brilliantly switches up with a sweeping string-led chorus and heavenly harmonies.

    The only genuine uptempo number, where anomalous happiness reigns, is "Sweeter As The Days Go By," led by Brown in his natural, gospel-inspired tenor. A charming but sorrow-filled "I Lost One Bird In The Hand" is an impressive, slow lamenter crooned by Ray, with horns and strings dominating the lushly arranged backdrop. Appropriately, we end on that down-lifting note that we've all come for: "Candy Shack."

    The audio for On Top comes from the original analogue tapes and has been remastered for vinyl by Be With regular Simon Francis. We’ve taken the same care with the memorable cover art, handling the reproduction duties with the utmost attention to detail.


    FORMAT INFORMATION

    Ltd LP Info: 180 gram 2018 reissue – remastered from original tape transfers, carefully reproduced original art, strictly limited to 500 copies worldwide – no repress.

    Alan Parker And Madeline Bell

    The Voice Of Soul LP (Themes Reissues)

    2018 Reissue – Remastered From Original Tapes, Carefully Reproduced Original Art.

    Veteran library musician Alan Parker recorded with session vocalist Madeline Bell for his Themes International Music label and the result was 1976’s The Voice of Soul.

    The sensational uptempo dancer “That’s What Friends Are For” is probably the most well known track on the record, and is a big hit on the rare groove scene, but it is by no means an anomaly. The Voice of Soul is essentially a perfect, sophisticated soul album with heaps of swagger and sass from beginning to end. Its once generic-sounding title is now deservedly definitive.

    And the whole LP oozes sex. It oozes sex so much that it could have soundtracked a period porn film. Indeed, parts of it did. “Love Is All” and “You’ve Got What It Takes” both featured on the infamously banned Pretty Peaches from the same year.

    As is usual with library records, The Voice of Soul was hard to get even when it was first released. It’s next to impossible now. So here’s your opportunity to own what is in our opinion one of the finest rare soul LPs of the late 70s, and a superb example of Madeline Bell’s superlative vocal talents.

    But that’s not the whole story. As well as pitching the record as “a varied selection of modern female vocal features which are equally suitable for background or radio programme usage”, the original release notes go on to explain that “the corresponding backing tracks are issued on TIM 1022 The Sound of Soul. Therefore it is possible to edit from vocal to instrumental version and vica versa where commentary or scene changes occur.”

    So yes, all of the backing tracks from The Voice of Soul were released as The Sound of Soul, and we couldn’t re-issue one without re-issuing the other.

    As with all ten re-issues, the audio for The Voice of Soul comes from the original analogue tapes and has been remastered for vinyl by Be With regular Simon Francis. We’ve taken the same care with the sleeves, handing the reproduction duties over to Richard Robinson, the current custodian of KPM’s brand identity.


    FORMAT INFORMATION

    Ltd LP Info: 180 gram vinyl edition.

    Alan Hawkshaw And Brian Bennett

    Full Circle LP

      Their NEW album, in full, iconic KPM cover is a return to the laidback jazz-funk that helped Alan and Brian demonstrate their library chops. The album is classic Hawkshaw/Bennett. It swings, it grooves, moves and thrills with a flair these two have perfected over years.

      Alan Hawkshaw (piano/Hammond) and Shadow’s drummer Brian Bennett are responsible for some of the slickest, funkiest and most sought-after library records ever made in the UK, particularly ones recorded on the legendary KPM label. Their work has now become the go-to place for sampling in music today. Artists such as Dilla, Nas, and the xx, right through to the billion selling Kanye & Drake have taken Hawkshaw’s and Bennett’s immaculate beat-driven soundscapes for their own usage.

      Their new album, in full, iconic KPM cover is a return to the laidback jazz-funk that helped Alan and Brian demonstrate their library chops. The album is classic Hawkshaw/Bennett. It swings, it grooves, moves and thrills with a flair these two have perfected over years.

      Standout tracks such as "Hole In One", "In The Clouds", "Interchange", "Oasis", "On The Nile" and "Corcovado" are no mere excursions in nostalgia, for they carry lots of deft studio work that many a producer would give their right arm for. Hawkshaw’s arrangements allow the drums, guitar, bass, strings, Hammond, flute and brass to swirl elegantly around the 12 original tracks; a masterclass in recording.

      Cut by Pete Norman, housed in a beautifully designed Richard Robinson sleeve and pressed at 180g by Record Industry in Holland, this release has been afforded the care and attention it rightly deserves. Essential.


      STAFF COMMENTS

      Patrick says: The kings of the KPM library scene, groove barons Alan Hawkshaw and Brian Bennett hit the studio together for the first time in years and treat us to an eagerly anticipated LP of new material. As you'd expect from this pair of heroes, it's a far out and funky affair. KPM x BeWith for the win!!!

      FORMAT INFORMATION

      Ltd LP Info: 180 gram vinyl edition.

      Keith Mansfield / John Cameron

      Voices In Harmony LP (THE KPM Reissues)

      2018 Reissue – Remastered From Original Tapes, Carefully Reproduced Original Art.

      Voices In Harmony was released in 1973 as “a selection of contemporary pop titles featuring voices, brass and rhythm”. We choose to describe this collection of works by Keith Mansfield and John Cameron as “a string-laced, harmony-drenched KPM classic”.

      From the bright, lilting harmonies of “Liquid Sunshine” to the melting flutes of “Loving Touch” and “Gentle Persuasion”, this is warm, effervescent soul music for dreamy, idyllic moods. The supreme “Husky Birdsong” is so, so smooth, with its unrelenting bossa bassline and warm keyboards. “Half Forgotten Daydreams” is a gorgeous wordless groove.

      As with all ten re-issues, the audio for Voices In Harmony comes from the original analogue tapes and has been remastered for vinyl by Be With regular Simon Francis. We’ve taken the same care with the sleeves, handing the reproduction duties over to Richard Robinson, the current custodian of KPM’s brand identity.


      FORMAT INFORMATION

      Ltd LP Info: 180 gram vinyl edition.

      2018 Reissue – Remastered From Original Tapes, Carefully Reproduced Original Art.

      James Clarke’s Mystery Movie was released in 1974 as “modern, small group compositions in various moods. Ideally suited to the new Americanised style of T.V. and cinema film where music is used to create the mood and carry the action”. So this collection covers a lot of bases, but it does so brilliantly and has absolutely no right to be such a fantastic listen from start to finish. Mystery Movie is best known for the slick drum breaks underpinning the top-notch jazz-funk chase theme “Car Patrol”, the fuzz riffing and ARP soloing of “The Heavies” and the slow-mo strut of “Mystery Moll”. “Study In Fear” and “Empty Streets” are horror soundtrack fodder of the finest sort. However, it’s the understated, plaintive pieces that we find the most rewarding. Ambient feels and strung-out fried-folk treats, full of cyclical naïve melodies. Music that evokes the ‘downlifting’ Ronnie Lane and Ron Wood instrumentals from their great Mahoney’s Last Stand LP, as well as the beautiful soundtrack work of Jack Nitzsche and Ry Cooder. You might also recognise “Waiting Game” from being sampled by melodic downbeat masters Express Rising. Check “Relaxed Theme”, “Quiet Girl”, “Routine Procedure” and “Quietness Sustained” for a melodic, melancholic set, with the last three performed on just acoustic guitar and harp. Gorgeous work. As with all ten re-issues, the audio for Mystery Movie comes from the original analogue tapes and has been remastered for vinyl by Be With regular Simon Francis. We’ve taken the same care with the sleeves, handing the reproduction duties over to Richard Robinson, the current custodian of KPM’s brand identity.


      FORMAT INFORMATION

      Ltd LP Info: 180 gram vinyl edition.

      2018 Reissue – Remastered From Original Tapes, Carefully Reproduced Original Art.

      When Alan Parker recorded the killer library soul-funk LP The Voice of Soul with session vocalist Madeline Bell in 1976, some bright spark at Themes decided to also release all of the backing tracks as a separate, and equally innocuously title LP called The Sound of Soul. Thank goodness for bright sparks.

      Released as a collection of “unobtrusive musical backings in various rhythmic styles”, the LP’s original description dryly explains “these tracks have been issued without melody and are therefore particularly suitable for use behind commentary. Female vocal versions of these tracks are issued on TIM 1021 The Voice Of Soul and it is possible to edit from vocal version to instrumental version or vica versa where commentary or scene changes occur”.

      Madeline Bell was backed by The Rhythm Section, who were for all intents and purposes the Themes International Music house band. So what we end up with here is entire album of instrumental work-outs by a band comprised of the formidable talents of Alan Hawkshaw on keyboards, Alan Parker on guitars, Barry Morgan on drums, Les Hurdle on bass guitar and Frank Ricotti on percussion.

      Without Bell’s vocals these backing tracks are given all the room they need to breathe. Each one more than stands up on its own.

      The Sound of Soul is a real diggers’ delight and, unsurprisingly, a must-have counterpart to The Voice of Soul.

      As with all ten re-issues, the audio for The Sound of Soul comes from the original analogue tapes and has been remastered for vinyl by Be With regular Simon Francis. We’ve taken the same care with the sleeves, handing the reproduction duties over to Richard Robinson, the current custodian of KPM’s brand identity.


      FORMAT INFORMATION

      Ltd LP Info: 180 gram vinyl edition.

      Keith Mansfield / Alan Hawkshaw / David Snell

      Big Business / Wind Of Change LP (THE KPM Reissues)

      2018 Reissue – Remastered From Original Tapes, Carefully Reproduced Original Art.

      The two sides of 1973’s Big Business / Wind of Change are mainly the work of the great Keith Mansfield but there’s a killer cameo each from Alan Hawkshaw and David Snell to help deliver “a thematic suite, diverse in mood, applicable to dramatic and environmental situations”. A Be With favourite and truly one for the heads.

      The Big Business of side A is all the work of Keith Mansfield. It’s heavy on the suspense and features the vital “Hot Property”, an insistent groove so good that Madlib sampled it to lace the ace “Long Awaited” by Lootpack with Dilated Peoples.

      “Sleeping Giant 1” is a more fleshed out version of the equally-dazzling “Fatal Error”, evoking the orchestral magic of David Axelrod. Indeed, it conjures images of Diamond D falling over himself in the early-to-mid 90s to loop its intoxicatingly eerie soundscape. Complete with guitar fills that recall Paris, Texas-era Ry Cooder, you need this record for this piece alone.

      The horn-and-flute-led "Tycoon" is a head-nodder and "Power Complex" has some fantastic percussion. Other highlights include the breezy glide of “Whistle Stop Tour” and its sister groove “Clean Air.”

      Over on Side B is the more expansive Wind Of Change, which includes the David Snell and the Alan Hawkshaw contributions. But these ain’t no filler. Snell’s shuffling “International Flight” sounds like a smooth Dorothy Ashby track tossed from the heavens. Hawkshaw’s “Road And Rail” is about as luxurious and strung-out as the great man gets and it might just be the highlight of this whole set.

      Not to be outdone, if Mansfield’s “Balance Of Power” doesn’t make you feel like king of the world then you must be playing it wrong. Oh, and did we mention “World In Action”?!

      As with all ten re-issues, the audio for Big Business / Wind of Change comes from the original analogue tapes and has been remastered for vinyl by Be With regular Simon Francis. We’ve taken the same care with the sleeves, handing the reproduction duties over to Richard Robinson, the current custodian of KPM’s brand identity.


      FORMAT INFORMATION

      Ltd LP Info: 180 gram vinyl edition.

      Francis Coppieters

      Piano Viberations LP (THE KPM Reissues)

      2018 Reissue – Remastered From Original Tapes, Carefully Reproduced Original Art.

      Piano Viberations’ “small group jazz featuring piano and vibes with rhythm” makes for a gorgeous Francis Coppieters showcase, surely one of Belgium’s best-kept musical secrets. Released in 1975, and arguably the most low-key of the KPM and Themes records we’re re-issuing, this is easily our current favourite.

      “The Open Highway” is the appropriately-named opener, and immediately demonstrates Coppieters’ dexterous interplay between piano and vibes in assured, joyous fashion. The shuffling bossa of “Sales Notes” is a jaw-dropper, well-mined by samplers with impeccable taste. The mellow head-nod drum-break that is “Funky Chimes” brilliantly demonstrates Coppieters’ quiet majestic side with its slow-motion funk rhythm with beautifully reflective notes throughout.

      The upbeat and joyful “Cross Talk” closes out side A. Vibes and piano are definitely at the heart of the arrangement here. The quick cut movement of “Piano In Transit” is another gem, driven principally by piano but those vibes along for more than just the ride. On a more gentle, elegiac note, “To Shearing With Love” is a warm, slow, romantic piece in the style of George Shearing. It’s plaintive and sublime.

      Piano Viberations is one of those rare library records the original description of which makes as much sense now as it did when it was first released. Piano and vibes with rhythm indeed.
      As with all ten re-issues, the audio for Piano Viberations comes from the original analogue tapes and has been remastered for vinyl by Be With regular Simon Francis. We’ve taken the same care with the sleeves, handing the reproduction duties over to Richard Robinson, the current custodian of KPM’s brand identity.


      FORMAT INFORMATION

      Ltd LP Info: 180 gram vinyl edition.

      Alan Hawkshaw And Brian Bennett

      Synthesis LP (THE KPM Reissues)

      2018 Reissue – Remastered From Original Tapes, Carefully Reproduced Original Art.

      The “vivid contemporary sounds for a fresh visual image” make up the now canonised Synthesis from Alan Hawkshaw and Brian Bennett. These two greats go deeper than usual on this collection, and the end result is a synth concept record of sorts. Released in 1974, it’s an essential companion piece to their Synthesizer and Percussion LP, released on Themes International Music in the same year.

      Like most of our favourite library records, Synthesis has that gloriously funky, “weird electronic music” vibe without ever being inaccessible. With the awesome ARP Odyssey at the fore, Hawkshaw and Bennett have created a blissed-out soundscape that, whilst laid back in all the right places, somehow remains heavy on the funk. It’s a sort of throbbing, proto-G Funk sound and you can find it on many of these low-lit basement workouts.

      Take the ice-cool “Alto Glide”. It’s a sunset-funk highlight with an electro-flute refrain that conjures those dreamier Dre / DJ Quick instrumentals from ’91 to ’92. Stereolab, Koushik (again) and all those Ghost Box artists were clearly listening very closely in the years since. The equally relaxed “Mermaid” glides effortlessly with soft, shimmering piano, understated percussion and kaleidoscopic synths. It’s a really beautiful piece.

      With these two soft-focus closing tracks allowing the LP to float away over the horizon, the preceding ten tracks have a more insistent, neck-snapping rhythm section to back the synth overload. Highlights include the head-nod funk of “Getting It Together” and the synth break in “The Executive”, which informed classic video game soundtracks.

      For once Be With really is stuck for words to describe just how good this record is. Best just to listen.

      As with all ten re-issues, the audio for Synthesis comes from the original analogue tapes and has been remastered for vinyl by Be With regular Simon Francis. We’ve taken the same care with the sleeves, handing the reproduction duties over to Richard Robinson, the current custodian of KPM’s brand identity.


      FORMAT INFORMATION

      Ltd LP Info: 180 gram vinyl edition.

      Alan Hawkshaw And Brian Bennett

      Synthesizer And Percussion LP (Themes Reissues)

      Released in the same year as Synthesis over on KPM, 1974’s Synthesizer and Percussion is its essential companion piece. “This record features the many distinctive sounds of the ARP Synthesizer plus percussion in various moods and tempos” is the even more underwhelming than usual library record sales pitch for Alan Hawkshaw and Brian Bennett’s second collection of what is basically minimal G-funk, with overtones of primitive acid house. This is ridiculously good.

      This is one of Hawkshaw and Bennett’s wilder joints and aeons ahead of its time. Bennett’s tough drums provide the underpinnings for the prominent bass, keys and bubbling synths high up in the mix, alongside Hawkshaw’s deranged clavinet-funk-rock. There are heavenly break loops galore.

      Opener "Mon Amour" is ultra-smooth funk, all inter-weaving melodic lines whilst the seminal "Oddball" is an incredible hard electro strut with a knocking break. "Mile High Swinger" is a tranquil Spaghetti Western whistling theme over double tempo rhythmic movement and the pulsating "Auto Pilot" has a percussive groove elevated by electric piano and synthesizer. Check "Driving Force”, “Home Run” and "Pacesetter" for electroid prog-funk dripped in acid squelch.

      All five final tracks are beatless synth workouts, because they can.

      As with all ten re-issues, the audio for Synthesizer and Percussion comes from the original analogue tapes and has been remastered for vinyl by Be With regular Simon Francis. We’ve taken the same care with the sleeves, handing the reproduction duties over to Richard Robinson, the current custodian of KPM’s brand identity.


      FORMAT INFORMATION

      Ltd LP Info: 180 gram vinyl edition.

      Nick Ingman

      Distinctive Themes / Race To Achievement LP (THE KPM Reissues)

      2018 Reissue – Remastered From Original Tapes, Carefully Reproduced Original Art.

      Released in 1976, Distinctive Themes / Race To Achievement is legendary arranger Nick Ingman exploring the two distinct ideas of “impressive themes varying in style from ‘Basie to Elgar’” and “a study in the pressure and rewards of achievement”.

      Distinctive Themes is a veritable indulgence of variously-tempoed, full orchestra, big band workouts, from relaxed swing to more propulsive themes. The progressively building “Expanding Markets” is a true highlight, with its rolling pianos, contemplative electric guitar solos and moody horns over skipping beats. The dramatic “Against The Odds” is another stand-out.

      Race To Achievement is all rugged funk with stabbing chords and strutting horns and it’s probably our favourite side. Of course we have to acknowledge the fantastic “Tense Preparation”, sampled by Prince Paul and Dan The Automator for Handsome Boy Modeling School’s seminal “Magnetizing” with Del Tha Funky Homosapien. But the whole side’s range from tense underscores to fast and punchy chase themes makes this is a gem of the KPM catalogue.

      As with all ten re-issues, the audio for Distinctive Themes / Race To Achievement comes from the original analogue tapes and has been remastered for vinyl by Be With regular Simon Francis. We’ve taken the same care with the sleeves, handing the reproduction duties over to Richard Robinson, the current custodian of KPM’s brand identity.


      FORMAT INFORMATION

      Ltd LP Info: 180 gram vinyl edition.

      2018 Reissue – Remastered From Original Tapes, Carefully Reproduced Original Art.

      Hot Wax is an assured KPM masterclass from a dream team line-up of Brian Bennett, Alan Hawkshaw and John Fiddy. Here we’re treated to what happens when all three decide to explore “the latest trends in production music”. The latest as of 1976, of course.

      John Fiddy’s numbers are sumptuous, string-led and light. Floaty soft-psych underpinned by a solid groove, particularly on “Taste For Living” and "Fresh Start". If you're into Koushik and those early Manitoba/Caribou records - and you should be - you’ll appreciate these.

      For us, the Bennett and Bennett/Hawkshaw stuff is on another level. “Capitol City” oscillates between driving funk and downbeat sentiment. “Name Of The Game” is tough, smokin’ funk, famously sampled in 2007 by Madlib for Percee P’s “Who With Me”. “Bop On The Rocks” knocks hard and “Full Throttle” features a guitar solo with some of the nastiest, about-to-explode fuzz you’re ever likely to hear.

      As with all ten re-issues, the audio for Hot Wax comes from the original analogue tapes and has been remastered for vinyl by Be With regular Simon Francis. We’ve taken the same care with the sleeves, handing the reproduction duties over to Richard Robinson, the current custodian of KPM’s brand identity.


      FORMAT INFORMATION

      Ltd LP Info: 180 gram vinyl edition.

      With powerhouse production trio Organized Noize, Sleepy Brown orchestrated Atlanta's hallmark sound of the 90s; his slow-cooked southern-fried G-Funk providing hits for TLC, Outkast and Goodie Mob. However, by 1998 and post-Aquemini, his desire was to take centre stage. The dizzying result was Sleepy's Theme and their wonderful throwback LP, The Vinyl Room. Their vintage, 70s soul-steeped magnum opus was promptly passed on by Jimmy Iovine at Interscope, released only on CD on a limited scale, and mostly...um...slept on.

      To mark the 20th anniversary, Be With Records finally present the album on the format it was so clearly inspired by yet seemingly destined never to appear on. The inaugural vinyl edition of this landmark record boldly arrives as a DJ friendly double LP, fully remastered and pressed loud and heavy at 180g. Elegantly housed in a sleek, sumptuous gatefold jacket, adorned with an appropriately pimped-out purple foil layer, it features printed lyrics across two double-sided inner sleeves.

      Blending organic instrumentation from one of the tightest, greasiest, yet sophisticated bands in the land, The Vinyl Roompresented dreamy melodies, warm synth textures, stately horns and wayward beats. Brown conceived his "garage funk band" as adhering to the sonic touchstones of Blaxploitation and he achieved it. Featuring keyboardist/singer Eddie Stokes, drummer Victor Rico Cortez, guitarist Bill Odum, vocalist Keisha Jackson and the late Pimp C, the sound was always going to be in the pocket.

      While it eschewed contemporary trends, the underground sound was nevertheless fresh and grounded in the hat-tip spirit of hip-hop. With Sleepy bragging that there were no samples, The Vinyl Room comprised a richly textured, mesmerizing and confident sound where the recurring themes were women, cars and weed. As he explained, "the music of the 70s wasn't computerized, it was just realness from the heart and that's what we captured." Indeed, Brown wasn't just inspired by bygone funk; he grew-up in it. As a boy, he travelled to gigs with his music playing father and founder of the legendary Brick: Jimmy Brown.

      The album lopes at a weed-stoned pace, with sweet falsetto leads, spoken word raps and honey-coated female background vocals with just enough superfly sensibility to give you a contact high. The luscious bass grooves, silk-soft cymbal pats, raindrop-drowsy keyboards and country-fried wah-wah guitar licks conjure Bobby Womack in the lab with Marley Marl, Isaac Hayes laced by Dr. Dre or Curtis Mayfield bring introduced to DJ Quik.

      Opener "Can't Let Go", with its heist movie aesthetic, morphs into a strung-out love song as Sleepy slurs compellingly throughout. Pimp C's low-riding beat for "Simply Beautiful," a bouncing track brilliantly inspired by Barry White's swaggering "You're the One I Need", is exceptional. Perhaps as a nod to the great Brick, the horn section on "Grind On" is quietly joyous and profound whilst "Curse On You" is a dark groover and features a great vocal from Cee-Lo Green. "Still Smokin'", another rousing track, is a peculiarly laidback anthem; hypnotic, hot and smooth. Perhaps the highlight of the entire piece, "Choked Out Saturday Night" sounds like the old Atlanta. Like rolling in a Cadillac about 12 midnight, going to club after club, passing the churches and juke-joints, preachers and pimps, lush trees and the red dirt.

      The last word goes to Sleepy, from his recent interview with RBMA: "I just wanted to do the most funkiest album ever. When you play the album, I just wanted you to just sit back and just ride out. If you've had a long day, play the album. If you're smoking, if you don't smoke. Whatever you do, at that time when you got to relax, throw that on."


      A certified UK boogie bomb, originally released in 1982, and coming hot on the heels of the Be With Records Pink Rhythm reissue campaign. Original copies are incredibly hard to come by so grab a copy of this officially licensed, fully remastered, reissue before the 500 copies (for the world) find their forever homes.

      Side On were a one-off UK soul dream team, consisting of Peter Maas (Freeez/Pink Rhythm bassist), Everton McCalla (Freeez/Light Of The World/Potion) and the legendary Rick Clarke (Potion). 

      Originally released on Beggars Banquet, it's a huge, feel good, Brit Funk classic and a massive record with everybody's favourite boogie aficionado, Dam-Funk.

      Unmissable.

      STAFF COMMENTS

      David says: Hoowee it's getting hot in here, did someone put the heating on? No? Then it must be the fire that is Side On's 'Magic'playing in the shop. The ace, Beggars, Brit Funk classic, lovingly restored just for you, you lucky LUCKY people.

      You'd think that following "Melodies Of Love" would be an impossible task. Not so, if you happen to be genius Brit-Funk pioneers John Rocca and Andy Stennett. On their more understated - yet, pound for pound, stronger - second record, Pink Rhythm stretched out to create a 4 track EP of richly melodic, exquisite beauty. In the process, they trumped their most well-known release.

      Cruising on a funk-fuelled journey from the swaggering title track, via the blue-eyed soul of "Trust Me", to the stabbing staccato synth heat of "More And More" and back again ("India" dub) this EP has ESSENTIAL seared onto its substantial grooves.


      STAFF COMMENTS

      Sil says: Dreamy, galactic, synth-ridden and surprisingly soulful killer funk 4-tracker for those who dig deeper. Perfect soundtrack for my Saturday night ride back from clubbing hard on my Delorean.

      This is it. The number one. El Numero Uno. The Bomb. The tune that gives you street soul bass up in your face and will destroy your speakers if you're not careful. Quite simply the greatest & most sought after street soul holy grail of them all. The sound of Manchester then and now. Adored the world over and currently (ambitiously) selling on Discogs for £1999.00. Bô'vel - Check 4 U (1996) will finally be available again via Be With in July.

      Fully remastered, produced in conjunction with Bô'vel herself and our man RUF DUG and featuring the huge METRODOME remix everyone's been raving about on the flip. Ltd. to 1000. Don't sleep. ENJOY.

      STAFF COMMENTS

      Matt says: Here it is folks! Most anticipated 12" of the year following HOT-2-TROT plays at Ruffy's Lab, Red Laser, Wet Play AND Friend's And Family. A taste of pure MCR history, from '96 to now with the original conceived way back during the first bout of Three Lions fever while Metrodome's remix brings the flavour straight back to Moss Side circa 2k18. This is the real shit!!!

      A continuation of his kaleidoscopic sun-dappled cosmic-disco, Neon Leon was the much-loved CD-only sophomore album by Sorcerer. Just in time for Spring/Summer, we present the first ever vinyl issue, released as a deluxe double LP.

      A perfectly formed suite of ten tracks featuring soft guitars, subtle synths and lightly grooving percussion, Neon Leon magically evokes that elusive summer feeling throughout. The guitar-driven "Algorhythm" serves as the album opener, blasting bold, sun-drenched jazz chords atop bright synths and groove-based drum programming. "Ride The Serpent" and "Distort Yourself" are guided by a more sultry, slo-mo disco impulse whilst the staggering "Chemise" and strident "Face It" merge 80s West Coast production sheen with Sorcerer's trademark laid back, gentle disco. "Raydio"'s undeniable head-nod groove adds a rare vocal to the proceedings, joyously combining with the bubbling cosmic funk.

      Since its initial release in 2009, exceptional producers have created vibrant variations on the dreamy, dubby, melodic nu-disco theme. Happily, the emergence of such luminaries as Jex Opolis, Harvey Sutherland, Suzanne Kraft, Tornado Wallace et al has only served to make the master – Sorcerer - sound ever more brilliant and vital.

      Utilising his array of guitars, drum machines, synths, and trusty MPC, the loved-up Sorcerer sound inspires halcyon memories of warm days, endless sunsets and pure youthful abandon. Influenced by surf, 80s dance pop, acid-R&B, space jazz, krautrock, disco, dub, and am radio gold, his music maps a tour through a uniquely Californian lifestyle. Yet when music so vividly captures a vibe and a feeling, it can make writing about it appear almost redundant. Instead, to glean the full colour of what your turntable will soon gratefully radiate, we prescribe the generous soundclips presented here.

      And, for a unique insight into the process behind the wonderful sounds conjured up, here's Sorcerer himself:

      "Neon Leon's is the name of a bar in a Elmore Leonard book I was reading on a vacation to Belize with my future wife. I was soaking up his brand of noir during the making of the songs on this record, along with another favorite Ross Macdonald. We were living in a small apartment in the Mission District of San Francisco where i had my own room to jam. It was painted Orange and Turquoise and was a very inspiring place to create and focus. I could walk out of my house to any number of hole in the wall bars where people were deejaying, hanging-out, and knew about me and my music.

      After White Magic I developed more confidence in my style and process so I stuck with it and I believe it shows in the tunes I selected for the record. The sounds are rich and I dug deeper into sampling from obscure dollar records and getting looser musically. I made a handful of collage videos for the tracks at this time as well, which represent where my mind was at visually. In my mind it's Cosmic Funk that rules the day and I am thankful to have the opportunity to share it with the world again."



      Two seminal 12" mixes of a pair of enormous tracks from The Whispers. Both boogie/street-funk flavoured, these sought-after versions have never been paired on the same record. Side A features the notorious anthem "Keep On Lovin' Me" (the one with *that* life affirming video) whilst Side B houses the outstanding, semi-slept-on "Turn Me Out".

      Oh yes! First ever official reissue of the positively sublime and very rare Butterfly LP, recorded in Tokyo in 1979 by Japanese songstress Kimiko Kasai and jazz legend Herbie Hancock.

      Due to its super-rare status as a Japan-only release, this exquisite collection of covers never got the recognition it deserved at the time, despite incredibly inspired performances from Kimiko, Herbie and the supremely talented musicians assembled for the project. From heavenly drummer Alphonse Mouzon and renowned organist Webster Lewis to bassist Paul Jackson, reedman Bennie Maupin and the master percussionist Bill Summers, the legendary performers crafted amazingly good vocal versions of Herbie / Headhunters jazz-funk. Unsurprisingly, it has been heavily in demand for many years.

      The LP opens with Kimiko's highly desirable version of "I Thought It Was You", an elegant take on Herbie's own anthem. Other superb re-workings include the delicately soulful "Butterfly", jazzy groover "Sunlight", the smooth and sexy "Tell Me A Bedtime Story" and the beautiful ballads "Maiden Voyage" and "Harvest Time". A wonderful example of perfectly understated and masterful jazz-funk soul fusion that shouldn't be missed, the set closes with a jaw-dropping version of Stevie Wonder's "As".

      This lovingly curated reissue enables a long overdue reappraisal of this hitherto unavailable masterpiece. The stunning artwork which adorned the original jacket - complete with OBI strip and sumptuous 4 page folded insert - has been faithfully restored. Simon Francis' sensitive mastering elevates the sound throughout and, as ever, it has been pressed at a reassuringly weighty 180g. Essential.

      Originally released in Japan only, back in 1979, "Prone" is considered by most aficionados to be Ned Doheny's crowning glory. Even better than the superlative "Hard Candy" in fact. So quite why this AOR / mellow jazz-funk gem has not been available legitimately on vinyl for over 35 years is anyone's guess. To celebrate "Be With Ned", the West Coast maestro's first ever tour of the UK and Europe in March 2015, Be With Records do tha right thing and proudly present the first ever officially licensed reissue of this forgotten-funk classic. What makes this release truly special is the inclusion of the full-vocal version of jazz-funk classic "To Prove My Love", a total oversight on other pressings. Produced again by the legendary Steve Cropper, "Prone"'s super-smooth grooves showcase Ned's beautifully laid-back vocals, virtuoso playing and forever-wry lyricism. Aside from "To Prove My Love", it boasts some of Doheny's most under-appreciated tracks; witness the slickness of "Think Like A Lover", "Guess Who's Lookin' For Love Again" and "Funky Love". Pressed on audiophile 180gram vinyl and featuring the original artwork for both jacket and lyric-insert, this limited reissue is one to treasure.

      Plush

      Fed (RSD18 EDITION)

        THIS IS A RECORD STORE DAY 2018 EXCLUSIVE, LIMITED TO ONE PER PERSON.

        Double LP, pressed at 45rpm, gatefold sleeve, download code

        A wonderful companion piece to the totemic Fed, we proudly announce the first ever vinyl edition of Korp Sole Roller by Plush. Liam Hayes' magical fourth full-length LP was previously only available on a rare Japanese import CD. Produced and arranged in 2010 by Pat Sansone (Wilco / The Autumn Defense), it finally arrives in a limited edition of 500 copies.

        The common impression of Plush is that of an underground rock myth, lent greater poignancy by the lofty vision that galvanised his music. Yet while he has long been a cult concern, clued-up celebrity fans periodically declare their profound love for Hayes' maverick genius. Indeed, after Jason Schwartzman introduced Plush to Roman Coppola, several stunning songs from Korp Sole Roller soundtracked Coppola's A Glimpse Inside The Mind Of Charles Swan III.

        As ever with Plush, it's easy to imagine you are listening to a privately pressed rarity from the mid-late 1970s. Or one of the criminally neglected jewels from the discography of Jimmy Webb or Burt Bacharach. The sound on Korp Sole Roller does differ crucially from Fed, however. It is more streamlined. These 10 gorgeously seductive creations careen around ornate string and wind instrument arrangements and producer Sansone's deft work is likely the reason for this. Yet, brilliantly, it still possesses that sun-warped take on classic pop-rock, that Plush specialises in. That peculiar "down-lifting" phenomenon of performing upbeat songs in an enigmatically mournful way.

        Upon completion, Korp Sole Roller barely received anything resembling a release. Press coverage was zero because none of the major magazines or blogs knew of its existence. His management at the time essentially buried the album in order to concentrate on other releases. Looking back on this decision, it really made little sense. Everyone involved in its creation of these near-perfect gems is extremely proud of it. Liam himself has described it as the favourite of his albums. Pat's delicate work is astounding. Remastered especially for this special limited edition, it is presented in a sumptuous gatefold jacket with high-end art photography throughout, including full colour inner sleeves. Finally, here's your chance to own a slice of kaleidoscopic pop history.

        STAFF COMMENTS

        David says: It's very rare these days that a record's reissued that no one here at Piccadilly HQ doesn't have at least some glimmer of knowledge stored away in a dusty part of their brain. This Plush album however, is just that, a genuine bolt of lightning that's electrified all of us with it's lush, Peak Bowie orchestration and kaleidoscopic embrace of pop history. Brilliant.

        Timeless drum-machine soul music from genius Brit-Funk pioneer John Rocca. Pink Rhythm were a mid-80s evolution of Rocca's London-based band Freeez, featuring the great Andy Stennett and Peter Maas.

        "Melodies Of Love" was first released in 1985 yet, still sounding staggeringly fresh, it's no surprise that discerning DJs call on it now more than ever. As the title suggests, it's so melodically profound and so effortlessly funky, once you hear it, you never forget it. Accordingly, it has been growing in demand on 12" for the past decade.

        Gliding serenely, its epic, melancholic synths appeal to fans of Italo, whilst its stabbing Moog bassline and wall-shaking drums retain an unmistakable boogie / electro-disco feel. Rocca himself delivers a memorably androgynous vocal that only adds to the majesty.

        Backed with the strutting sax workout "Walking In The Rain", this officially licensed, remastered 12" - presented in a heavier sleeve than the original - is one not to miss.

        Michael Wycoff

        Looking Up To You / Diamond Real (Tee Scott Instrumental Mix)

        Two seminal 12" mixes of a pair of Michael Wycoff heavy hitters from 1982. One a two-step favourite and one a Loft classic, these sought-after versions have never been paired on the same record.

        Side A features the smooth-gliding anthem "Looking Up To You". The unmistakable snap of that sighing intro is unlike anything else. As such, it's no surprise that Leon Ware, celebrated master of the unexpected chord, has his fingerprints all over the track. Co-written with Zane Grey, "Looking Up To You" stands among the very best of Leon's staggering bank of compositions, both solo and with Michael Jackson, Minnie Riperton and Marvin Gaye. It's such an influential track, serving as the sample foundation of a massive top five R&B hit for Zhane in 1993, but it has never been bettered upon. Original 12" copies – if you can find them – go for over £50 today, making this side worth the price of admission alone.

        If that wasn't enough, it's arguable that the B-Side wins again. A staple of David Mancuso's New York Loft parties, the Tee Scott mix of uplifting boogie gem "Diamond Real" is on another level entirely. A DJ legend of infamous clubs Better Days and Zanzibar and a trailblazing innovator, Tee Scott mastered the art of the reconstructive club mix.

        For maximum destruction of discerning dancers, Be With have opted for his heavenly dub. 7 minutes of devastatingly slick dance floor dynamite, at once polished and dilapidated, its ecstatic charm is universal.

        Devout lovers of modern soul have long worshipped the rapturous, sophisticated funk of Michael Wycoff. In combining that richly elegant voice, redolent of Donny Hathaway, with the production of keyboardist and arranger Webster Lewis, it's no surprise that both of these tracks became vital club classics of the early 80s R&B scene. Clear, full-bodied and bright – the 12" versions of these tracks are notoriously punchier than those featured on Wycoff's LP, and feature boomin' low end and neck-snapping drums. Buy on sight.



        STAFF COMMENTS

        Patrick says: MASSIVE Be With 12" here pairing Michael Wycoff's biggest hit, the hair raising disco/club soul/jazz funk gem'Looking Up To You', with a rare Tee Scott instrumental mix of Loft classic "Diamond Real". Pressed to perfection, this is must have tackle for the collector and DJ alike.

        Arthur Russell epitomised the spirit that defined downtown NYC in the 70s and 80s. Yet his inability to complete projects resulted in limited output. Be With now present the reissue of Event Horizon, an album Arthur did finish with his cult group The Necessaries. Criminally neglected for 35 years, its scarcity on vinyl has caused it to evade his most diehard fans and its relative obscurity has rendered it largely unknown, even amongst Arthur acolytes.

        Arthur played keys in the new wave/power pop quartet, as well as writing half the songs and contributing his inimitable vocals and avant-garde cello. Fronted by the muscular guitar of lead singer Ed Tomney, the band was rounded out by Ernie Brooks (The Modern Lovers) on bass and drummer Jesse Chamberlain (ex-Red Crayola). The record was produced by the legendary Bob Blank and featured the pulsing trombone of Peter Zummo.

        Event Horizon represents the partial overhaul given to The Necessaries' first record Big Sky (1981). Renamed and relaunched in 1982, The New York Rocker described the revised LP as benefitting from "some shuffling, some trimming of deadweight and the setting of real gems in their place. The biggest plus – "More Real" - is easily the prettiest song the Zombies never wrote". That track, as well as the towering "Driving And Talking At The Same Time" (below), "Detroit Tonight", "On The Run" and "The Finish Line", came from the pen of Arthur. They are undoubtedly the best tracks on the album, wonderfully capturing Arthur's softer, more melodic approach to pop.

        With an uncompromising post punk attitude, The Necessaries blended distorted guitars and loud drums with melodious, intelligent songwriting. It's weird and minimal, but it's still resolutely pop. Like much of Arthur's work, the songs are warm, shimmering and modern; catchy, hypnotic and utterly timeless. As well as handling a lot of the lead vocals, he arranged the tracks too, stripping away some of the new wave poppiness and adding his signature beautiful moodiness. It sounds like the most transcendent idea of what pop music could be.

        Event Horizon should've been one of the most influential records in rock music history. Like most slept-on classics, it didn't make the immediate impact it intended to, and was forgotten by Sire and, eventually, by fans. Nevertheless, Arthur forged ahead with his solo career after abruptly quitting the band by jumping out of the van at the mouth of the Holland Tunnel in New York, while on the way to an important gig.

        Whilst Event Horizon will appeal to all Arthur Russell completists, it demands further examination beyond his fans. It's long been an elusive missing piece to the lore of the downtown scene, but it won't be for much longer. Art Pop? Jangle Pop? Power Pop? Whatever. Far ahead of its time, this is pure pop for now people.

        The original, iconic artwork has been faithfully restored whilst Simon Francis' dextrous mastering adds real clarity throughout. As ever, the record has been pressed at a reassuringly weighty 180g. Additionally, the album features extensive liner notes on a printed inner sleeve by renowned writer and friend of the downtown scene Mikey IQ Jones.

        Originally released in 1977 on RCA, this rare and sought-after album followed the 1973 disbanding of Edna's much-loved Honey Cone. Produced by her husband, legendary producer/songwriter Greg Perry, the album was somewhat of a risk; a deep soul album released during the period when disco was altering the landscape of popular music. And perhaps inevitably, despite the stellar production and spine-tingling vocals throughout, the album glided gracefully under the radar, spawning only one single and seeing no chart action.

        That single - the magnificent title-track - soon became a notorious rare groove stepper in its own right. However, in the years since, it has become a crate diggers classic. Its fame was elevated among hip-hop heads when Prince Paul memorably looped the shimmering intro when crafting the melodic hook for De La Soul's late-summer-stunner "Pass The Plugs", a wistfully melancholic back-porch nostalgia trip. And, more recently, Leon Vynehall liberally lifted the same intro for his sepia-tinged "Midnight On Rainbow Road" to augment the excellent Rush Hour compilation Musik For Autobahns 2.

        Officially licensed and beautifully remastered for vinyl by celebrated engineer Simon Francis, it has been pressed on audiophile 180g vinyl for the first time and features the original iconic artwork. Each copy includes a printed inner sleeve with a sumptuous black & white photo, full lyrics and heartfelt notes from Edna herself.

        Korallreven

        Here In Iowa Remix EP - Inc. Peaking Lights Remix

        In autumn 2015, Swedish dream-pop duo Korallreven bid us all farewell by releasing the "round-the-world-in-a-day" sounding final single Here In Iowa, alongside memorable shows in New York City and Scandinavia. Now, they return for one last time with a disco dub dream remix of said song by the mighty Peaking Lights. This forms part of a 12" EP released by Be With Records. The record - limited to just 500 copies - will see its worldwide release for Record Store Day on 16th April 2016.

        The 12" will also, for the first time on vinyl, include Korallreven's breathtaking cover of Guns & Roses' 'November Rain' from 2014 as well as Shine On, the duo's rework of their own 2010 single Honey Mine, featuring Taken By Trees' Victoria Bergsman.

        From the guys:

        "Hard to say if Here In Iowa was an end or a start of something new. You'll see! Whether or not, we hold it as one of our highest heights and, after this beautiful season, we truly deeply madly felt that it was worth some extra limelight. And hey! Thanks for the remix, Peaking Lights! It's so wonderful! Life surely is."


        Most recent converts to the world of Ned Doheny discovered his genius via 'Hard Candy' or 'Prone'. Be With's introduction was by way of "Postcards From Hollywood", a cult song from his stunning, self-titled debut album. Beautifully poignant, it can only be found on said LP. And whilst his later albums are rightly revered, "Postcards" - and the 9 additional tracks that comprise this exceptional opening statement - represent a criminally overlooked gem. Original vinyl copies of this album are extremely rare - and correspondingly expensive - so we're thrilled to present the first ever vinyl reissue of a true lost classic.

        Of everything he recorded, we know this LP to be Ned's favourite. An intoxicating brew of acoustical jazz-rock, folk and country-rock - delivered in Ned's supremely laid back West Coast style - it features gorgeous melodic lines throughout, complimented by his distinctly funky overtones and tightly-coordinated instrumental textures. With albums as perfect as this, it is routinely tricky to identify standout tracks. However, rivalling the heartbreaking "Postcards" is the phenomenally propulsive "Lashambeaux", strident opener "Fineline" and "On And On", featuring the harmony vocals of Graham Nash.

        When a beginners guide to Ned surfaced last year, he and many others were surprised by the startling number of omissions from his best album. You can now enjoy the fleshed out, non-demo versions of these wonderful originals.


        Leon Ware

        Leon Ware - Be With Records Edition

        Leon Ware’s self-titled 1982 album has long been a holy grail for rare groove record collectors. Indeed, mint copies are rarely found for less than £100.

        So Be With Records, a new vinyl-only reissue label, is pleased to mark its first release with Ware’s classic - a set that features the timeless 'Why I Came To California', a beautiful example of early 80s soul funk that should be of interest to yacht rock fans as well.

        A truly unsung legend, Leon Ware has written a stunning variety of classic soul music over the course of six decades. He joined Motown in the late 60s and became one of the label’s key writers.

        His most indelible contribution at Motown was Marvin Gaye’s masterpiece 'I Want You'. Ware's production and songwriting memorably took Gaye to another creative level.

        Despite recording a handful of critically acclaimed solo albums for Motown and Elektra, including this one here, he has remained a secret to many outside the music industry. Be With Records hope this timely reissue goes some way to rectifying that.


        STAFF COMMENTS

        David says: Official, 100% pedigree reissue and with only 500 copies for the WHOLE world this won't be around for long. Perfect sunshine soul with a hint of yacht rock, and worth it alone for the absolute bomb, 'Why I Came To California'.


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