The Soul Fire label was created in 2000 by Phillip Lehman, who amassed a deep collection (rumored to be 20,000 +) of jazz, funk, soul and afro-beat vinyl. Lehman had a vision to produce new recordings of raw, straight ahead music that would be a testament to the records he'd discovered. Hooking up with Jeff Silverman and Leon Michels (DJs of WKCR's influential "Across 110th Street"), the trio assembled musicians (including Michel's band, The Mighty Imperials) for non-stop 24-hour recording sessions. Recording in Lehman's Manhattan living room on a four-track cassette recorder, the musicians created a classic sound learned from 60s and 70s masters and taped them live and unpolished on 1/2" tape on reel to reel before getting edited. The space and energy in the records reflect the process and provide a signature.
This retrospective spotlights the best of, hard-to-find, and previously unreleased tracks compiled for the first time together on CD. Spanning everything from hard funk, soulful vocals and afro-beat to Latin jams, the CD is a must have for any serious soul music fan. Highlights include Lee Fields' "Problems" and "Honey Dove," The Whitefield Brothers, Massak "B.L.A. Pt.1," and tracks by El Michels Affair, JD & The Evil's Dynamite Band, The Fabulous Three and Bronx River Parkway. In the brief life span of the label, Soul Fire put out an impressive range of releases including seven vinyl full-length albums and over thirty singles (45s and 12"). The Majestic Collection represents artists who defy mainstream pop music standards, delivering songs with meaningful lyrics, live instruments and modern grooves. Dig in.
CD-I: Problems - Lee Fields
CD-I: Prowlin' - The Whitefield Brothers
CD-I: Quienes Que Resolverlo - Bronx River Pkwy