Classics: Mr. Fingers – Closer (The Deep Basement Mix) (MCA)
I guess I’ll never thank enough both Paris’s Bonus Beat record shop owner Sal Russo and London’s Black Market founder René Galston. The first for havin’ introduced me to Deep House by the second half of the 80’s. And the second for havin’ linked me to Mr. Fingers (Larry Heard) soon after.
From then on, I would be enjoying his music from a year to another with the same pleasure. A music with a rare sensitivity serving as the communication tool to an introspected character dubbed with a perfectionnist.
Be he on his own as under the Fingers Inc. guise along with Ron Wilson and Robert Owens, Larry is responsible for some of the most beautiful melodies in the history of contemporary music. With the soothing ‘Closer’, taken from his 1992 released ‘Introduction’ album, makin’ no exception. Thus showing how Mr. Fingers could vibrantly sing too. But also come up with heartfelt lyrics. “Let’s get closer. Closer than close can be…”
A native of Chicago, IL, Larry Heard pretty much found his influences while listening to Jazz. But also in labels such as Motown, Philadelphia International Records and Salsoul.
One could first hear him back at the end of the 70’s as a drummer of a local band along with a certain Adonis. Meawhile working as a benefit authorizer for the US Government allowed him to buy his first studio equipment.
A “musicholic”, Larry released music under quite a bunch of different guises. Beginning with his own name but also Mr. Fingers. But also as Fingers Inc. along with singer Robert Owens and Ron Wilson. Or The It with Harry Dennis. This giving birth to an impressive series of timeless masterpieces. With the man seen as the genitor of Deep House, no less…
Among his most famous gems, the mythic ‘Can You Feel It’… Originally an instrumental that would soon after incorporate Martin Luther King‘s ‘I Have a Dream’ speech. But also cuts such ‘Donnie’ then ‘Rainforest Serenade’ as The It. ‘Mystery Of Love’ and ‘Bring Down The Walls’ as Fingers Inc. Not to mention ‘Washing Machine’ and ‘What About This Love’ as Mr Fingers. Eventually securing a record deal with a major company (MCA). Out of which would come the 1992 ‘Introduction’ album featuring extra smoothies such as ‘Closer’, ‘On A Corner Called Jazz’ and ‘On My Way’.
Strangely enough, this absolute genius never got the recognition he truly deserved. Which didn’t get him from keepin’ on doin’ music along with time. This in addition to outstanding remixes carrying his unique signature. From ‘Il parlait pas Français’ for Hanna Hais back in 2002 to ‘Think Of You’ for Dino & Terry 2 years after. Or, more recently, ‘Take A Chance’ for Kai Alcé featuring Rico + Kafele Bandele among others.