Before there was social media there were social clubs and before fellow South Sider Donny Hathaway recorded his holiday classic “This Christmas,” there was Donny Hathaway Live at The Bitter End.
Just listening to this album will put you right there on a foggy 1972 Bleeker Street night. As you make your way to the door down a cracked and broken sidewalk you hear the band through the brick facade and smell the “smoke” as you enter this now iconic stage. You pull up a seat at a cocktail table lit by red crystal candlelight, order a Schlitz and look down by the stage. The dance floor is packed, everyone dressed to the nines and you try your best to remember every minute because you know you are experiencing history.
Back then the Bitter End was just a place to jam, and jam they did with songs from Marvin Gaye, Carol King, and Leroy Hutson. This album is a “must have” if you are a fan of live music.
Before Record Store Day came around the only way to get this album on wax was to browse those bins in far away places like the ones we have here at Beverly. Your vacations, business trips, road adventures all required at least one stop at a record shop. Now through the power of RSD this iconic album will be available on virgin vinyl for the first time in 43 years and of course for only one day only, April 19.
You may be asking yourself, “But Beverly Records you specialize in great albums like this. Aren’t you worried that with this album now being re released and can be found anywhere even Urban Outfitters, won’t you lose customers?” We aren’t worried. Albums like this are a gateway drug to 70’s jazz soul. And Beverly Records is the Mr. White of Record Shops. One minute You are enjoying Donny Hathaway, the next thing you know you are showing up with a battery operated califone listening to 5 different versions of Gene Ammons Jungle Soul.
“What’s Goin’ On” (Renaldo “Obie” Benson, Al Cleveland, Marvin Gaye) – 5:18
“The Ghetto” (Donny Hathaway, Leroy Hutson) – 12:08
“Hey Girl” (Earl DeRouen) – 4:03
“You’ve Got a Friend” (Carole King) – 4:34
“Little Ghetto Boy” (Derouen, Eddy Howard) – 4:29
“We’re Still Friends” (Hathaway, Watts) – 5:12
“Jealous Guy” (John Lennon) – 3:08
“Voices Inside (Everything Is Everything)” (Richard Evans, Philip Upchurch, Ric Powell) – 13:47