Single Of The Week: Howard Hewett – A Love Of My Own (Incendiary Entertainment Group
Oh yes, you might wonder about the presence of this unusual player on these shores. Then why the hell is this that we have to click to make it work from a sequence to another!?!
Well, to be honest, this is the only one I found so far as a decent illustration for you to make yourself an idea as to who and, in the meantime, what we’re talkin’ about. Something I suppose I wouldn’t do in other circumstances. But we’re here in the presence of one of the greatest singers of all time. A man whose golden voice has thrilled the Soul fans and way beyond since the late 70’s. As a member of Shalamar, but also on his own… Under his own banner or via collaborations with other luminaries such as Stanley Clarke or Narada Michael Walden for instance. In other words, as many of you may have guessed, we’re speaking of Howard Hewett!
To paraphrase an early Shalamar classic, I’d be tempted to say about this song that… this is for the lover in you! And from the very first arrangements, you know you’re getting into another galaxy. Hewett takin’ us once again on a highly vibrational trip perfectly recapturing the feeling which the discovery of finding real love when you least expected it. ‘A love of my own’ is just what it says!
More to come this fall with a new album in the pipeline…
Download from Juno.
Hailing from Akron, OH, Howard Hewett started singing as a child, fronting his older sisters in The Hewett Singers who toured the Gospel circuit. As a teen, he sharpened his crooner skills in a Funk band by the likes of Lyfe. He then moved to Los Angeles in 1976. There, he met John and Alonzo Daniels, the owners of the Maverick’s Flat an historical club in the LA Crenshaw district. The threesome joined forces as Beverly Hills and toured throughout Europe, Scandinavia and Asia for all of 1978 and until the middle of 1979.
After returning, Hewett started recording with producer Jeffrey Bowen on a solo project for guitarist Eddie Hazel. He never managed to complete it though because of a call he received from Jeffrey Daniel. The latter, who was in the middle of a promotional tour with Shalamar, offering him to join them as a lead singer.
Three days after, he was in Paterson, NJ along with Daniel and Jody Watley. There, they rehearsed the lip synch and choreography to the current Shalamar single ‘Take That To The Bank’ which they performed as a part of a local dance show. Returning to Los Angeles soon after, they immediately started recording the ‘Big Fun’ album with producer Leon F. Sylvers III.
Their collaboration with the latter would be synonymous with an impressive string of classics. From ‘Right In The Socket’ to ‘The Second Time Around’. Then ‘Make That Move’ and the lascivious ‘This Is For The Lover In You’ in 1980. But also ‘A Night To Remember’, ‘Friends’, ‘There It Is’ and I Can Make You Feel Good’ in 1982. Not to mention the vibrant ‘Over And Over’ the year after, with Jody Watley soon after leavin’, in the footsteps of Jeffrey Daniel. Hewett would nevertheless contribute to another Shalamar album, ‘Heartbreak’, in 1984 before launching his solo career.
On the heels of the recording deal he signed with Elektra, he made his solo debut, ‘I Commit To Love’, in 1986. Among its highlights, its title cut, which Hewett co-wrote with Sylvers. And also ‘I’m For Real’ which he co-wrote and produced with Stanley Clarke. Not to mention ‘Stay’ and ‘Say Amen’ which made quite some noise in the Gospel circuit.
Hewett got to the #2 position in the R&B charts with the vibrant ‘Show Me’ from his 1990 self-titled album. And he would reach one of his absolute peaks 4 years later with the release of his ‘It’s Time’ album on UK label Expansion Records. An LP which includes an impressive series of masterpieces… From ‘Crystal Clear’ to ‘This Love Is Forever. But also the highly spiritual ‘Call His Name’.
Later on, in 2001, he released the all inspirational album ‘The Journey’, where he shows us that his faith can’t be separated from his heart and soul.
Other moments definitely worth the check include his collaborations with Stanley Clarke. From ‘Heaven Sent You’ back in 1984 to ‘Fantasy Love’ 9 years after. And he also collaborated with George Duke, Deniece Williams and Stacy Lattisaw among others. And how about his presence on Narada Michael Walden‘s 1995 ‘Sending Love To Everyone’ album? Therefore sharing the vocal duties with Claytoven Richardson and Skyler Jett on ‘My Desire Is You’…