Beat Street Records

Don Blackman - Just Can't Stay Away 7-Inch

Melodies International

Melodies International are extremely proud to bring forward their latest reissue and 17th release, an early-2000s boogie anthem by Jazz-funk legend Don Blackman: Just Can’t Stay Away.

Don Blackman was an American pianist, singer and songwriter from Jamaica, Queens in New York. Better remembered for his seminal self titled album released in 1982 on Arista, with anthems such as Holding You, Loving You; Heart’s Desire or Never Miss A Thing, his influence stretches much further.

Blackman played in his younger days with household acts such as Parliament-Funkadelic, Earth,Wind and Fire and Roy Ayers, and through collaborating as a songwriter and session musician with artists such as Kurtis Blow, Bernard Wright, Roy Ayers or Weldon Irvine, his unique brand of jazz/funk soul would go on to inspire whole generations of artists and music lovers alike.

Blackman’s cult status has also been cemented by crossing over into Hip-Hop, getting sampled by the likes of Madlib, Jay-Z, Slum Village or even famously in Snoop Dogg’s Gz and Hustlas (Haboglabotribin with Bernard Wright).

Going through his body of work, it’s hard to tell where Blackman shines the brightest between his brilliant and heartfelt vocal performances and his virtuosity as a pianist and songwriter. Channelling jazz vocabulary into well crafted songs, he could do it all! But perhaps it’s the underlying bittersweet melancholy and his keen sense of humour that seeps through his peculiar arrangements and lyrics, that make his music so relatable and everlasting.

In 2002, Blackman released his second and final album dedicated to his family, “Listen”, in the UK in CD format only. Among the songs included on the CD, one of the tracks wasn’t supposed to be there until Blackman’s spouse convinced him otherwise: Just Can’t Stay Away, a straightforward DIY boogie banger with a soulful edge, was originally written and produced by Blackman as a greeting message for her answering machine!

DJs have been playing the tune for some years now but it’s in 2018, whilst Floating Points was DJing in the US and played Just Can’t Stay Away, that Blackman’s children, Kyle and Irene happened to be in the crowd and a connection was made.

Carefully remastered, MEL017 is presented in 7-inch format for the first time, comes with a 14’x14’ poster.

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