Charles Bradley feat. The Menahan Street Band “No Time for Dreaming” [ALBUM REVIEW]]

Daptone Records out of New York is one of my favorite indie labels for one reason and one reason only, the ability to go above and beyond with their artists in production value and sound.  OK fine that was two reasons, sue me.  They have managed to keep the sounds of 60’s and 70’s soul and blues alive in a big way.  Artists like Sharon Jones and the Dap Kings have flourished because they have been given an environment to create new music with respect to the old sounds.  Now Dunham Records (an offshoot of Daptone) has found another diamond in the rough, Charles Bradley.

Charles Bradley –  I Believe In Your Love

I read Mr. Bradley’s bio and I was blown away.  Talk about hardship scarafice and true unadulterated love of music.  The man has hitchhiked or traveled all over America, from Maine to Alaska, picking up odd jobs along the way.  Basically living  on the streets for a good part of his life, Charles Bradley has always had a love for music.  After seeing The Godfather of Soul James Brown at the Apollo in 1962 he knew he wanted to be a apart of the scene, but circumstance after circumstance led Bradley away from what he loved.

Charles Bradley – The World (Is Going Up In Flames)

This record in a word, heavy.  It’s a biography of a man’s life leaning on hard times and suffering.  The thoughtful music is sung by a man who has not only felt these emotions but lived them.  I’d tell you more about Charles, but I think I’ll let him fill you in better than I ever could.

Charles Bradley –  Why Is It So Hard?

Bradley was discovered playing, his idol James Brown, covers in Bedstuy, NY under the name “Black Velvet” by a representative from Daptone Records.  After listening to this record I can see where Bradley’s raw vocal talent comes from.  He and his label mates knew it was time to put his story on tape.  He like many other successful artists sings about what he knows and doesn’t pull any punches.  Backed by the Menahan Street Band, Bradley is a vocal force reminiscent of the great James Brown who he loved so much.  If you love the soulful sounds of the 60’s and 70’s do yourself a favor and check out Charles Bradley and the Menehan Street Band.

Charles is currently on TOUR and his new record “No Time For Dreaming” is available in many formats through the Daptone site HERE.  He will be playing LA’s Echo on May 4th.

Here’s the title track and the last track from “No Time For Dreaming”

Charles Bradley – No Time for Dreaming

Charles Bradley – Heartaches and Pain

Check out Daptone as well.  They are an awesome little label with an amazing roster.  And as they say, I hope they “Keep Puttin Soul Up.”

By: Steve Rippin | Beat-Play Ambassador Los Angeles | @stevewithMWL|Music Without Labels & Beat-Play, LLC

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