Wed. Jan. 17, 2018

10 essential Blaze productions…

10 essential Blaze productions10 essential Blaze productions… Like always, a selection is per definition limited, and God knows how House Music (Garage) would definitely not have sounded the same without the precious contribution(s) of Blaze
With their protagonists, Kevin Hedge, Josh Milan and (in the early days) Chris Herbert brilliantly displaying the variety of their influences. From Stevie Wonder to Earth, Wind & Fire. But also Gospel, African, Latin and Jazz vibes in a way that became a signature synonymous with upper quality music. Serving as the ideal vehicle to express countless ideas. From love to dedication to the other. But also the celebration of life as a gift of the creator. Not to mention the inner search of meanings to elevate ourselves as human beings to name a few…

As a result, many are the gems we couldn’t talk about here, even though they would definitely have deserved a mention. No need to say how this selection is way from being exhaustive though, most likely due to find an extension later when the right time comes. Nevertheless, you should find thereafter a pretty much illustrative sample of versatile gems where the soulfulness of the groove predominates…

Wishing you’ll enjoy the ride as much as we did, while putting this together for you. With your feedback, and a mention of your favorite song more than welcome.

10 essential Blaze productions… / Blaze – Lovelee Dae (Simplex Records)
The fact that ‘Lovelee Dae’ saw the light on many different labels and under different remixes pretty much helped Blaze‘s music to reach different crowds. With no offense intended to those who happened to rework it, nothing would beat the original though. As rare are the ones to the exception of Swag on ‘My Beat’ (see therafter) or Timmy Regisford who managed to do better than them at the end…
10 essential Blaze productions… / Blaze – How Deep Is Your Love (Shelter Vocal Remix) (Shelter Records)
If ever someone had a deep connection with Blaze, this has been Timmy Regisford who eventually signed their debut-album on Motown when he was A&Ring for the label. Besides, seeing Kevin and Josh as regulars of Timmy‘s Shelter parties at the vinyl was most likely a part of the ceremonial back then. As a result, no wonder why nor how Regisford came to bring his own renditions of some of their gems. Eventually givin’ a rhythmic boost to the blowing ‘How Deep Is Your Love’ back in 2001…
10 essential Blaze productions… / Blaze – Found Love (West End)
Another brilliant illustration of Blaze‘s versatility. With the uplifting ‘Found Love’ seeing them venturing into Bossa Jazz territories back in 2004. Meanwhile reachin’ a rare level of deepness in terms of both musical and vocal arrangements. Givin’ its title 3 years later to their CD Mix compilation of the likes on their Blaze Imprints label, it also fully demonstrates the timelessness of their music. Don’t you think?
10 essential Blaze productions… / Blaze – Lovely Ones (Life Line)
Japanese labels such as Flower Records or Life Line most likely became the home of some of the most beautiful pieces of music back by the end of the 90’s /early 2000’s. With deepness becoming their main keyword. As a result no wonder how Joe Claussell and Blaze‘s music met such a positive response on the Japanese scene. With the hedonistic ‘Lovely Ones’ in a… deep ‘N jazzy vein, standing as one of its most vibrant illustrations…
10 essential Blaze productions… / Blaze – Sweeter That The Day Before (Slip ‘N Slide)
I guess I’ll never thank enough the late Peter Harris at Slip ‘N Slide for havin’ introduced me to Blaze back in the day. But in the meantime, I remember I couldn’t help myself lettin’ him know how I never understood why he didn’t give a single release to ‘Sweeter Than The Day Before’. A song which to me stands as the most beautiful message one could address to the beloved one…
10 essential Blaze productions… / Blaze – Elevation (Life Line)
Another illustration of Japanese label Life Line’s willing for the best music with the uplifting ‘Elevation’. A delicately Latin fused deep gem where it feels hard to not make the connection with artists such as Earth, Wind & Fire or George Duke in terms of arrangements. A track which also appeared on their ‘Natural Blaze’ album along with ‘How Deep Is Your Love’ and ‘Lovely Ones’. Thus makin’ of it an essential investment…
10 essential Blaze productions… / Blaze – My Beat (Swag’s Spiritual Mix) (True)
The infectiously syncopated ‘My Beat’ as remixed by Swag… Or one of the rare reworks that happened to be better than Blaze‘s original music. Here again, it would get me to wonder and eventually ask Slip ‘N Slide label head Peter Harris why he passed on it at the time. Even though he introduced me to a Scandinavian guy doin’ some A&Ring for him, soon discovering he didn’t have a single clue as to what (quality) music was about…
10 essential Blaze productions… / Blaze presents UDAUFL – We Are One (Shrine Horn Mix) (King Street)
Not to be missed with Black Coffee & Hugh Masekela‘s classic of the likes, ‘We Are One’ is a song about universality despite our differences. One of the key tracks of their 2004 Blaze presents UDAUFL‘s ‘Keep Hope Alive’ album. A concept they put together with the will to get funds to help financing the research against AIDS. Meanwhile recruiting luminaries such as Ultra Naté, Kenny Bobien and Barbara Tucker to name a few…
10 essential Blaze productions… / Blaze presents UDAUFL feat. Ultra Naté – Wonderful Place (Bobby & Steve & James Ratcliff Afro Mix) (King Street)
Famous British Garage-ists Bobby and Steve Lavinière along James Ratcliff delivering a brilliant rework of ‘Wonderful Place’. One of the definitive highlights of Blaze presents UDAUFL‘s ‘Keep Hope Alive’ album. They gave it an intoxicating Afro Jazz Funk feel with the help of Nathan Haines on sax and flute. Eventually bringin’ Ultra Naté‘s sultry vocal performance to some unsuspected level.
10 essential Blaze productions… / Blaze – Seasons Of Love (Original Afro) (NiteGrooves)
From the aptly titled ‘The Many Colours Of Blaze’ compilation back in 1998… Hedge and Milan exploring their African influences. And more precisely diggin’ into West African High Life music. A local response to American Jazz as embodied by Manu Dibango, which Fela Kuti and Tony Allen used as a basis before givin’ birth to Afrobeat. I never managed to know whose the female artist standing as the MC on this gem. With the same applying to ‘My Beat’ as a matter of fact…

You might also like…
10 essential Garage classics…

About indamixworldwide 2153 Articles

Story teller, record pusher, compiler & web designer…

%d bloggers like this: