Top Artists – Donny Hathaway

Flack / Hathaway – Roberta Flack & Donny Hathaway

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  • An outstanding copy, with Shootout Winning Triple Plus (A+++) grades throughout, making this the best copy to hit the site in many years!
  • There’s Tubey Magic, sweetness and spaciousness all over this recording – when it all comes together on Where Is The Love, you won’t believe how good it sounds
  • One of our favorite duet albums, Flack and the woefully underrated Soul Man Donny Hathaway are in top form here
  • Allmusic raves: “A duet classic, and perhaps the most popular album Roberta Flack made. ‘Where Is the Love’ dominated urban contemporary radio for almost the entire year, while ‘You’ve Got a Friend’ was just as influential…”

These soulful duets sound wonderful. The best sides are big, bold, open and transparent with a huge three-dimensional soundfield, strong presence, good rhythmic energy, and wonderfully dynamic leads and choruses. (more…)

Donny Hathaway – Extension of a Man

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  • Hathaway’s superb 1973 release finally arrives on the site with KILLER Shootout Winning Triple Plus (A+++) sound from start to finish
  • Clearly better than every other pressing we played – when you can hear it sound this good you may just come to appreciate what a talent the man was
  • Donny’s final releases as a solo artist and arguably his studio masterpiece (his live album is absolute Must Own)
  • 4 stars: “Ranging from inner-city soul to orchestral grandeur to a bluesy ballad to easy-listening pleasantries, Extension of a Man was Donny Hathaway’s most ambitious LP, the justly titled capstone to his phenomenal career.”

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Donny Hathaway – The Best of Donny Hathaway

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  • Hathaway’s 1978 compilation album finally arrives on the site with outstanding Double Plus (A++) sound or BETTER throughout
  • Richer, warmer, more natural, more relaxed, these vintage pressings are what analog is all about, that long-lost sound that never calls attention to itself and just lets the music flow
  • The legendary Roberta Flack joins Hathaway on two or our favorite duets of all time: “You’ve Got A Friend” and “Where Is The Love” – the results are nothing short of magical
  • 4 stars: “…taste the musical genius of the late Donny Hathaway… he delivers a strong, understated reading of Leon Russell’s song. He blends deliciously with Roberta Flack… their chemistry is breathtaking.”

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Donny Hathaway – Live

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  • Stunning sound throughout for this superb live album with both sides earning shootout winning Triple Plus (A+++) grades
  • Hathaway and his band are on fire here playing for an enthusiastic small club audience – this is the best album the man ever made and a true Must Own
  • Clean originals of this Classic Soul album are practically impossible to find in audiophile condition, and this one has its fair share of problems, but with music and sound this good, it’s a lot easier to overlook them
  • 4 1/2 stars: “Donny Hathaway’s 1972 Live album is one of the most glorious of his career… Live solidified Hathaway’s importance at the forefront of soul music.”

This is an absolutely superb recording. The best copies capture the feeling of a live club like few recordings you’ve ever heard. The enthusiasm of the crowd, the honest, emotive performances, the superb musicianship — it’s all there on a Shootout Winning Hot Stamper copy like this! (more…)

Donny Hathaway Lives On Through His Masterful Live Album from 1972

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This live recording has YOU ARE THERE sound! It’s so natural, rich and transparent, what is there to fault? The soundstage is wide and deep. Within moments of the needle hitting the groove your speakers disappear and the music just flows into the room. On the best original domestic pressings you can immediately understand and appreciate the honest, emotive sound that made Donny Hathaway the tremendous performer he was known to be.

I’ve been playing this record regularly since I first heard it back in the mid-’90s and even after twenty years it has never failed to thrill. If I could take only one soul album to my desert island, it would be this one, no doubt about it.

Listening Test — Don’t Be Fooled

Pay close attention to the audience chatter and clapping. Most copies, being compressed and veiled, have no hope of reproducing the handclaps and audience shout-outs correctly. Only those copies with transparency and presence let you “see” the crowd properly.

But don’t be fooled by thinner, leaner sounding copies. There is tons of low end and lower midrange in this recording — it’s one of its prime strengths, and it’s what it would have sounded like if you were there — so make sure you have plenty going on in the lower frequencies before you start evaluating the audience participation. Many audiophile recordings are leaner and cleaner, producing a phony kind of transparency and detail at the expense of the fullness and richness of the recording. This is almost never a good thing. (more…)