First Listen: Lasperanza and Izzy Chase rewrite a classic

(March 1, 2019) The occasion of a new spin on a Gwen Guthrie classic is one worth celebrating. Although many soul devotees are familiar with her 1986 number-one hit, “Ain’t Nothin’ Goin’ on but the Rent,” earlier gems like “Padlock,” “Peanut Butter,” and “It Should Have Been You” are often contained only in the collections of dance floor enthusiasts. Thus, UK-based producer/saxophonist Rico Garofalo’s new rendition of the latter, released under the alias Lasperanza (“the hope”) and featuring vocalist Izzy Chase, is a standout from the start.

(March 1, 2019) The occasion of a new spin on a Gwen Guthrie classic is one worth celebrating. Although many soul devotees are familiar with her 1986 number-one hit, “Ain’t Nothin’ Goin’ on but the Rent,” earlier gems like “Padlock,” “Peanut Butter,” and “It Should Have Been You” are often contained only in the collections of dance floor enthusiasts. Thus, UK-based producer/saxophonist Rico Garofalo’s new rendition of the latter, released under the alias Lasperanza (“the hope”) and featuring vocalist Izzy Chase, is a standout from the start.

But what really makes this new incarnation of “It Should Have Been You” so special is that neither Garofalo or Chase have tried to emulate or duplicate Guthrie’s original. While Chase vocally maintains the sort of subtlety that Guthrie was such a pro at, she offers up new phrasing and melodic embellishments which take Garofalo’s surprisingly slowed-down, rearranged interpretation into a different sort of space. The horn lines and guitar strums inhabit a realm somewhere between funky reggae and a jazzy, tropical groove. While purists might be taken aback the first couple of listens, Guthrie fans will likely appreciate such a refreshing and unexpected cover that is steeped in quality instrumentation, tasteful vocals, and overall musicality. It seems likely that the ever-prolific Guthrie and songwriter Darryl Thompson might be smiling down from above at such a well curated treatment of their timeless work.

by Justin Kantor

Lasperanza featuring Izzy Chase
"It Should Have Been You"

 
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