A little music for the afternoon. Here’s a cover of one of the great overlooked soul song’s of the early 70s, Syl Johnson’s “Is It Because I’m Black?”
Reggae singer Ken Boothe does the honors.
I love Johnson’s version, but I heard Boothe’s take first. So Johnson gets measured unfairly against the pedestal of memory on which Boothe’s version sits. Regardless, I always thought Boothe sang the hell out of this and the instrumentation captures the haunting quality of the original while eschewing the mellower rhythm.
For reference, check the original after the break, along with a “Hollow Bones,” a Wu Tang track that makes use of Johnson’s song.