First Listen: PJ Morton and friends "Bring It On Home" with Sam Cooke cover

(April 27, 2021) No matter how many decades have passed since Sam Cooke’s untimely death in December 1964, his music will always be treasured by soul fans far and wide.  However, interest in his music was recently heightened by the Oscar-nominated/Regina King-directed 2020 movie One Night in Miami..., which centers on a gathering between Sam Cooke, Jim Brown, Muhammad Ali, and Malcolm X in February 1964.

Now, BJ The Chicago Kid, PJ Morton, and Kenyon Dixon as well as guitarist Charlie Bereal have teamed up for a glorious rendition of the Sam Cooke classic, “Bring It on Home to Me,” and it’s our newest First Listen.  The official video for the song was inspired by the film, One Night in Miami...

(April 27, 2021) No matter how many decades have passed since Sam Cooke’s untimely death in December 1964, his music will always be treasured by soul fans far and wide.  However, interest in his music was recently heightened by the Oscar-nominated/Regina King-directed 2020 movie One Night in Miami..., which centers on a gathering between Sam Cooke, Jim Brown, Muhammad Ali, and Malcolm X in February 1964.

Now, BJ The Chicago Kid, PJ Morton, and Kenyon Dixon as well as guitarist Charlie Bereal have teamed up for a glorious rendition of the Sam Cooke classic, “Bring It on Home to Me,” and it’s our newest First Listen.  The official video for the song was inspired by the film, One Night in Miami...

PJ Morton explained on Facebook how the recording came together: BJ and Charlie had already recorded it for another project.. BJ hit me to do the 2nd harmony while I was in LA.. The more we listened the more we wanted a 3rd harmony and we both separately said @kennygotsoul is the only one! .. Ken hopped on the next day.. Right after that our guy @leslieodomjr’s Oscar nomination was announced!! I was like B we should just put it out now for the people and do a #OneNightMiami inspired visual to pay homage to the king #SamCooke as well as our brother @leslieodomjr and @iamreginaking for that amazing film! That’s how quick it came together!

This cover is soul at its finest; there are no gimmicks, just pure vocals and simple instrumentation.  It just makes you feel good like down-home soul always does.  If you close your eyes, you will think you’ve been transported back to the 1960’s, especially with the subtle crackling sound of a vinyl record in the song.  Plus, the harmonies are impeccable.  On the original record, there were two voices – that of Sam Cooke and Lou Rawls; so to hear three voices blending together on this new cover just adds to the richness of the track. 

Reaction to the single has been great thus far, with many saying that Sam Cooke would be proud.  In appreciation for the feedback, Kenyon Dixon tweeted: “Thanks 4 all of the love on #BRINGITONHOMETOME,” adding that it’s “4ever a special moment 2 be able 2 pay homage to the great #SAMCOOKE & also super cool to see SOUL music still be appreciated in today’s climate.” 

If this quartet decides to record some more music together, soul fans are ready for it; some are even calling for a dual PJ Morton/BJ The Chicago Kid album.  We shall see what the future holds.  But in the meantime, check out the video for “Bring It on Home to Me” below, and let the song touch your soul as it did ours.

By Darnea N. Samuels

Darnea N. Samuels is a Washington, DC-based sports radio producer, news personality, writer, and host of her own radio show, "The Sound of Soul with D'Nicole" on Takoma Radio, where she shares her love of classic R&B/soul music. You can read her blog here and connect with her on Twitter.

 

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