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The Nuc plus ultra: a Britti in New Orleans and Brits in Lagos

In addition to his ongoing activities within the group The Black Keys, which will release a new album next April, singer and guitarist Dan Auerbach has a successful career as a producer.

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The Nuc plus ultra: a Britti in New Orleans and Brits in Lagos

In addition to his ongoing activities within the group The Black Keys, which will release a new album next April, singer and guitarist Dan Auerbach has a successful career as a producer. This man must not sleep much. His label Easy Eye Sound has already released around twenty albums since 2017, notably those by Yola, Robert Finley and even beautiful reissues of Son House or Tony Joe White. Dan Auerbach's new protégé is named Britti. Born Brittany Guerin in Louisiana, the cradle of American music, the young woman has a phenomenal soulful voice, coupled with an unparalleled temperament.

Heiress to the great singers of the genre - from Aretha Franklin to Mavis Staples, via Diana Ross - Britti grew up in a household where we listened to jazz, blues and zydeco. “I sang before I spoke, in our house, in the grocery store aisles, in the car,” she explains today. A true vocation which pushed her to get started after having worked for a long time in a music store. He had to go through a major emotional breakup to write and compose the songs that adorn this first album.

Passionate, moving or angry, Britti is a highly expressive singer, who is not shy. We sometimes think of Betty Davis, whose beautiful records are currently being reissued. Soul, of course, rich in brassy arrangements but also garnished with country and psychedelic ambiance. “I have the impression of being heard, seen and felt,” she explains after years of perseverance.

Paul McCartney is celebrating the 50th anniversary of his masterpiece Band on the Run a few weeks late (the album was released at the end of 1973). Solo since 1970, the former Beatle wasted no time in embarking on a new collective adventure, Wings, with his wife Linda and, here, singer and guitarist Denny Laine, formerly of the Moody Blues. This ideal line up, which will not last, is also the one to whom we owe the best Wings album. Recorded in less than ideal conditions (the EMI studio in Lagos, Nigeria), Band on the Run is a true miracle. The unstoppable melodist that is McCartney then wrote some of his most beautiful compositions, in a clever balance between rock pieces (Jet, Let Me Roll It) and more delicate pieces (Mammunia or the exceptional Bluebird). Blocked by Fela who accuses him of having come to Lagos in order to plunder his music, McCartney delivers an album in his own style, which does not owe much to the sound of Lagos. The album will be finished in the much more comfortable Air Studios in London, under the direction of sound engineer Geoff Emerick, a regular at Beatles sessions.

If Band on the Run has been reissued several times since the end of the last century, this new box set features a new mix of the album. Finalized at the end of 1973, it was never released, McCa having entrusted orchestral arrangements to the American Tony Visconti at the last minute. It is therefore in stripped-down versions that the titles of the disc appear here. Paul McCartney had already proposed Let it be Naked 20 years ago. Here now are the “underdubbed mixes” of one of his greatest albums. It will take many years before he finds this level again on an album. So let's celebrate Band on the Run, with or without a band.

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