19 February 2010

The Dictionary of Soul: Sharon Jones & The Dap-Kings

Since their last full-length release in 2007, Brooklyn soul collective Sharon Jones & The Dap-Kings has hardly faded into the woodwork. In addition to touring, the band has contributed notable work to 2009's Dark Was The Night benefit compilation (a cover of Shuggie Otis' "Inspiration Information") and the soundtrack to the film Up In The Air. Ms. Jones acted in and contributed music to the Denzel Washington helmed The Great Debaters; the versatile Dap-Kings followed their praised backup work on Amy Winehouse's Grammy-winning Back In Black by working with soul legend The Rev. Al Green on 2008's Lay It Down.

On 6 April, the fourth album drops, titled I Learned The Hard Way. Again produced by Bosco Mann and recorded on an old Apex eight-track machine by Gabe Roth at independent Daptone Records, a sneak preview was provided this week: the title track, which to our ears echos the under appreciated Laura Nyro & LaBelle classic Gonna Take A Miracle, produced by Philadephia masters Kenny Gamble & Leon Huff back in 1971. "I Learned The Hard Way" is available via free download or you can listen here:

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