Eric Clapton, Ben Harper, Jesse Harris, and Keb Mo For Solomon Burke CD
The songs on Like A Fire are based on Burke's reflections on life, and his concern for the state of the world. A spare, honest and emotionally raw album, Like A Fire was produced by Grammy-winning master drummer Steve Jordan, who has worked with Bob Dylan, Keith Richards, Stevie Wonder, John Mayer and countless other greats, and who also wrote three tracks for the album.
When a song receives the honor of being performed by Burke, the King of Rock and Soul, it is bestowed a rare and beautiful power. On Like A Fire Burke gives his unparalleled treatment to a new batch of songs that cover a wide range of emotions. "Songs take a message directly to your heart," says Solomon Burke. "When you can't speak for yourself, sometimes a song can say something in three minutes that you've been trying to say all your life."
Like A Fire features a top-notch band that includes studio legends Danny Kortchmar and Dean Parks on guitars and Larry Taylor on bass. The stripped-down ensemble seamlessly navigates the album's different moods, from the wry, loose "Ain't That Something" written by Jordan, to the one cover on the project, the American Standard and romantic album closer "If I Give My Heart To You," which was a hit for Doris Day in 1954.
Eric Clapton shows his respect for Solomon Burke by contributing not just one, but two songs to Like A Fire. Clapton penned the album's contemplative title track, which finds Burke waxing philosophical and looking for answers, and shares writing credit with Burke on the heartfelt "Thank You," which comes complete with an old-school recited breakdown.
Ben Harper's urgent "A Minute To Rest And A Second To Pray" deals with facing life's hardships with faith, in the vein of Curtis Mayfield's great 1970s urban political songs. Keb' Mo' wrote and lends vocals to the poignant "We Don't Need It," an emotional tale about the breadwinner of a family finding the courage to tell them he can't afford to buy them the things they want, only to be met with love and understanding.
Jesse Harris, who wrote the Norah Jones smash hit "Don't Know Why," contributed two country-tinged songs, the buoyant ode to a relationship that can weather the opinions of outsiders that is "You And Me," and "What Makes Me Think I Was Right," about hurting and forgiving in a relationship.
"These song writers have been listening to their moms and dads and their grandparents, and to the old songs," says Burke. "And they're combining their messages with the truth, with reality and with the times we live in."
Like A Fire serves as proof that one of American music's towering icons remains a vital, inimitable force. "I'm on a journey, and that journey is music," says Solomon Burke. "I want to give all I can to as many people as I can for as long as I can."
Solomon Burke will be touring the U.S. and Europe in 2008 to support Like A Fire, including stops at the Bonnaroo and Telluride Festivals in June, and a performance at the Hollywood Bowl in Los Angeles on August 13. Like A Fire is Burke's third recording for Shout! Factory, following 2006's Nashville, which featured the Grammy-nominated track "Tomorrow Is Forever" with Dolly Parton, and 2005's Grammy-nominated Make Do With What You Got.
Solomon Burke Like A Fire
1. Like A Fire (Eric Clapton)
2. We Don't Need It (Keb' Mo')
3. The Fall (Steve Jordan/Danny Kortchmar/Meegan Voss)
4. A Minute To Rest And A Second To Pray Featuring Ben Harper (Ben Harper)
5. Ain't That Something (Steve Jordan)
6. What Makes Me Think I Was Right (Jesse Harris)
7. Understanding (Steve Jordan/Meegan Voss)
8. You And Me (Jesse Harris)
9. Thank You (Eric Clapton/Solomon Burke)
10. If I Give My Heart To You (Jimmy Brewster/Jimmie Crane/Al Jacobs)