Donny Hathaway Live13 Feb 2006
Uncle proposes that Les Claypool is amazinger than Victor Wooten – though the consensus in the comments is where I stand as well. For my money, though, there’s no better bass player than Willie Weeks. His bass solo on “Voices Inside (Everything is Everything) from Donny Hathaway’s Live is my favorite bass solo of all time. It lacks the technical wizardry of someone like Claypool or Wooten, but it’s way more fun. It’s funky, playful, and creative..
[http://www.place.org/~cwage/sounds/Donny_Hathaway-Voices_Inside-Willie_Weeks_Solo.mp3] Willie Weeks - Voices Inside - Bass Solo
(UPDATE: Bass Player Magazine has a good interview with Willie Weeks about this solo and his career.)
I really haven’t given this album enough blog-love, seeing as how it’s easily in my top 10, maybe top 5 albums. It’s one of the best R&B albums ever made – live or in the studio. The fact that it was live only adds to its impressiveness and charm. It’s also got one of my favorite guitar solos – Cornell Dupree on “We’re Still Friends” (which I think was a hit for Donny Hathaway as a duet with Roberta Flack):
[http://www.place.org/~cwage/sounds/Donny_Hathaway-Were_Still_Friends-Guitar_Solo.mp3] Cornell Dupree - We’re Still Friends - Guitar Solo
And just for fun, here’s a clip from the first track, a cover of Marvin Gaye’s “What’s Goin’ On”. If this doesn’t sell you on the album, I don’t know what will:
[http://www.place.org/~cwage/sounds/Donny_Hathaway-Whats_Goin_On-Beginning.mp3] Donny Hathaway - What’s Goin’ On
Willie Weeks’ bass playing on this track is astounding as well – he plays the hell out of this song without stomping on anyone else. Both Cornell Dupree and Willie Weeks are still successful and active studio musicians – Willie Weeks lives right here in Nashville. Sadly, on January 13, 1979, the year I was born, Donny Hathaway took his own life. Do yourself a favor and honor the memory of Donny Hathaway and the phenomenal talent of the amazing musicians on this record and go buy it. Immediately.