Wed. Feb. 20, 2019

Big Muff – My Funny Valentine (Body & Soul Remix)

Classics: Big Muff – My Funny Valentine (Body & Soul Remix) (Maxi Records)

Alright, let’s say things that way. Here we go on this specific day with not only one but two celebrations. The first one, as you may guess, to celebrate the one in our heart and thoughts. But what about the second? Follow the guide…

A quick look back at history tells us this song got written by the likes of Richard Rodgers and Lorenz Hart as a part of their musical ‘Babes In Arms’. So far, nothing that special, some of you might think. Apart from the fact that it saw the light back in… 1937, therefore reaching the venerable age of 80 this year! Eventually appearing on over 1300 albums performed by over 600 artists! It is to say how the challenge was a one of a kind for an underground group such as Big Muff at the time…

Big Muff made it though, and in such a beautiful way, coming up with an atmospheric deep version on their album. With exquisite musicianship, such as the flute part courtesy of Richard Worth. And an vibrant vocal performance by the likes of female singer Aiya. As many elements which François K and Matthias Heilbronn perfectly recaptured on their Body & Soul Remix’. Rebuilding the whole with sparkling percussion and lush key lines courtesy of James Preston over a rumblin’ rounded bassline…

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Overview
Itaal Shur came to higher recognition as the co-writer of ‘Smooth’ with Rob Thomas for Santana. A cut which received the Grammy Award for ‘Best Song Of The Year’ back in 1999. It went on to help sell over 25 million copies. Shur received a nomination for the ‘Best Song of the Year’ at the Latin Grammys in 2004. That was for ‘Mas Y Mas’ by Robi Rosa. A song which the latter re-recorded with Ricky Martin. Both of them getting a nomination for ‘Record of the Year’ 9 years later at the same Grammys.
Itaal has also written the classic ‘Ascension (Don’t Ever Wonder) with Neo-Soul singer Maxwell

A musician, composer and producer, Itaal Shur first came to attention as a founding member of Groove Collective. A group which most likely embodied the Acid Jazz revival in NYC in the first half of the 90’s. They more or less opened the path for live hybridations to come in the local House scene with acts such as Abstract Truth or Blue 6. Not to mention Milk & Honey and Big Muff which Shur gave birth to. Big Muff releasing one album – ‘Music From The Aural Exciter’ – back in 1998 featuring the memorable ‘My Funny Valentine’…

– Germany native Matthias Heilbronn pretty much followed the example of long time friend François K. This while relocating to New York at an early age…. Heilbronn, a man whose name is synonymous with some of the best pieces of music one may think of in the history of House Music, along with James Preston. Be it a production like ‘Love and Understanding’ as Too Deep. But also ‘Keep On Moving’ as The II Deep Allstars or ‘That Girl’ under his own name. Not to mention remixes. From Abstract Truth‘s ‘We Had A Thing’ to Big Muff‘s ‘My Funny Valentine’ along with François K. This in addition to Chichi Peralta‘s ‘Un Dia Mas’ and Chaka Khan & Mary J Blidge‘s ‘Disrespectful’ to name but a very few.

Heilbronn and Preston eventually reappeared as The II Deep Allstars back in 2001. Successively with ‘Keep Moving’ and a cover version of Eden Ahbez‘s classic ‘Nature Boy’…

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10 essential Valentine mellow jams…

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