You have to be very careful with this because the work of Donny Hathaway is something like scripture in the tight-knit community of American soul. You don’t fuck around with the scripture. It demands a seriousness and a love equal to the love that created it and Joe Claussell and Timmy Regisford rise to the occasion.
Hathaway was once the brightest of bright lights of R&B in the 1970s until his career shattered by the schizophrenia and depression that eventually lead to his suicide at the age of 33. Much of his genius is still in evidence on his recordings, but “I Love You More Than You’ll Ever Know” is a song that never escaped the gravity of Hathaway’s death on a sidewalk in New York City. The desperation evident in the title and in Hathaway’s powerful performance made this in many ways his legacy. And again: you don’t just fuck around with people’s legacies…
Timmy Regisford approached this properly and that’s the X factor that sets it apart from the thousand dead-eyed edits that have bitten off bits of Hathaway’s soul. Dramatic without being overwrought, Regisford’s production seems to rise and fall to meet and provide fortitude for Donny’s vocals, a smoldering seance of hypnotic grooves which still evoke the magic of this special man many years later.
The b-side features Joaquin Joe Claussell‘s incredible work on the keys – truly a virtuoso performance and one of the finest edits I can recall. Like all good music, it retains a flexibility and you can play this with anything without losing a thing.
This series of unofficial edits (which earlier included the edits of Prince‘s “Sticky Like Glue”) is without peer. I don’t know what you have to do to find them, but if you’re a DJ the journey is the reward.
Donny Hathaway: I Love You More Than You’ll Ever Know
A1: Timmy Regisfords Original Version
B1: Joaquin’s Edit & Overdub Version