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Welcome To My Dream (Expanded Edition)
Nº of Discs:
FTG Records USA
|1. Thigh Ride|
|2. Did I Dream You|
|3. Love Shine|
|4. Love Goes Higher|
|5. Welcome To My Dream (Tears Of Joy)|
|6. Are You Serious|
|7. More Than Before|
|8. The Waiting's Over|
|9. No More Tears|
|10. Are You Serious - (12 Inch Version) * Bonus Track|
|11. Thigh High (Mtume Mix) * Bonus Track|
Tawatha's superb and only album Welcome to My Dream was produced by James Mtume.
The Release is Expanded with 2 Bonus Tracks.
Mastered by Mark Wilder (Sony) at Battery Studios, New York -
From the Original Master Tapes !!!!
For me, like a lot of people it all started with the voice on "So You Wanna Be A Star". That earthy voice singing "Took So Long To Make It, Now You're On The Top".
A full decade before any rapper ever thought to "So You Wanna Be A Star" was one of those turntable hits - they always played it on the radio, everybody knew it....but it seems it didn't sell all that much.
In those heady days of optimism and the long lost art of Artist Development that didn't matter. Now, let me back-track a bit...my buddies Clay Fielding & George Littlejohn were in their "jazz/bohemian/poet" phases and used to drive around the NY/NJ/Philly area looking for rare Jazz. Those were the days when Jazz Cats would record locally - major labels not needed, thanks.
Conrad Benjamin in Canada, Sun-Ra in Outer-Space and James Mtume in Philly. James Mtume recorded for Third Street Records in Philly. And that's where Philadelphia native Tawatha Agee came in...she was in college (Howard University), and in a band called Hot Tea (with another musical standout Angela Winbush) who James and (then production partner) Reggie Lucas recorded demos for.
After three years on and several production guest shots with Gary Bartz, Roberta Flack, Stephanie Mills, Rena Scott, etc. some of which Tawatha provided vocals on- we got the legendary Mtume 1983 album. By this point James Mtume decided to refine his sound a bit and break with his production partner. The industry was responding to sparser keyboard sounds- and Mtume knew which way the winds were blowing. Like any true musician/entertainer he adapted. But like only a Genius does, his adaptation made history. Two Words: JUICY FRUIT. If you were there, this was at once a distillation and brilliant musical refinement - Filtered through James, Cut by Grandmaster Flash and Mixed by Einstein. To examine Juicy Fruit in 2010 it is startling simple. But if you know what you are looking for - it is rhythmically complex and tonally three-dimensionally DEEP.
And damn.........Tawatha sounds TIMELESS. At once old, young, optimistic, jaded....but above all SEXY. THIS was a cut. James Mtume and his band wore this mutha of a conceptual sound out for another 2 albums !!
And then somebody (Epic? James? Tawatha?) had the brilliant idea to record Tawatha solo.
What can I say about this album? It is in essence an Mtume album. I would not be surprised if some of the more sensitive Tawatha songs were not outtakes from earlier Mtume albums. None of that matters. Nothing I or anybody else could say about this true work of Feminine Art matters.
The Groove is DEEP. Tawatha is TRANSCENDENT. The songs are EXCELLENT. So, please don't look for any real revelatory meaning in these notes. The meaning, the motion, the Emotion, the Tears in the Tracks (apologies to Smokey) are all courtesy of Tawatha Agee. And she speaks for herself far, far more eloquently than I ever could. This isn't an album. It is a biography. A journey.
"Can I take you on a ride"? Tawatha asks.
You go. What you come back with is up to you.
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