Another under-appreciated guitarist, Phil Upchurch recorded the double-album "Darkness, Darkness" soon after arriving in Los Angeles in 1971 from Chicago, where he had worked as prime sideman with both Curtis Mayfield and Jerry Butler. Upchurch signed with Blue Thumb Records at around the same time as The Crusaders and Arthur Adams joined the label, and it would appear that there was a general "love-in" between stable-mates; "Darkness, Darkness" featured members of The Crusaders, along with Adams (there would be continued cross pollination amongst this group of performers over the next several years). Donny Hathaway also participated on this album, playing electric piano on two tracks. Upchurch's output had a more laid back, mellow, mainstream jazz feel than that of his Blue Thumb label mates, but he could funk it up when he wanted to. Most of the songs on "Darkness, Darkness" are covers, with two originals. Highlights are the covers of "Cold Sweat" by James Brown, andMarvin Gaye's "Inner City Blues."
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(amazon.com) Darkness, Darkness
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