The Decoders - Walk On By - out now (digital self-release)
Los Angeles-based The Decoders release a Walk On By cover as Burt Bacharach's great lyricist Hal David passed the first day of September this year. Of course it's a coincidence but now the single turns to be a great unintentional tribute to the co-author of so many Bacharach's hits. Walk On By was originally recorded with Dionne Warwick on vocals in 1963, then it became a huge hit one year later - and a cult track covered hundreds of times. Fav versions among this endless list are Isaac Hayes' (1969), The Stranglers' and its crazy organ solo (1978) and, more recently, El Michels Affairs (2009). The Decoders' take on Walk on By is very different from what we've heard. Itai Shapira and friends stick to their initial project of great standards revisited in californian reggae-soul. And it is indeed a heavy reggae-soul cover with superb horns arrangements (thanks to Todd Simon), huge spring reverb, echo effects and delicate classical string instruments (violin and viola). No need to say - at last- that new hot funk diva Noelle Scaggs from Fitz and the Tantrums delivers a lovely inspired performance on vocals.
The Decoders - Walk On By
(Digital Single) self-released, 2012-10-16
Walk On By featuring Noelle Scaggs by The Decoders
01. Walk On By feat. Noelle Scaggs 6:33
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Press Release :
We are pleased to announce the arrival of the first single from Vol. 2, featuring one of our favorite singers from Los Angeles, Noelle Scaggs ( of the band FItz & The Tantrums). This isn't our first collaboration with Noelle...
Our very own Todd M. Simon inked a new Rock Steady arrangement of James Brown's "Think (About It)" for The Lions back in 2007, which featured Noelle on vocals. Noelle has also graced many other collaborations on her own, including Quantic (aka Will Holland) and Dilated Peoples, as well as being the featured lead female vocalist in the L.A. funk and soul outift The Rebirth.
This version of "Walk On By" is an extrapolation of the original Dionne Warwick version, mutated with the stylings of Isaac Hayes rendition and finally given a "decoded" Lovers Rock backbeat. This was quite the undertaking, and Noelle did a great job invoking the classic women of soul from the 60's era to give this version a refreshing-yet old school feel.
Burt Bacharach and Hal David (R.I.P) were a great composer team, penning many a classic hit including "I Say A Little Prayer For You" which is also slated for a Decoders vol. 2 release later this year. We hope that we did justice to their vision with our version of "Walk On By".
The strings were recorded by San Diego native, Thomas Lea. Thomas is the latest addition to the Decoders production team, and you can hear his lush string arrangements on upcoming releases from Rhye & Quadron.
The Decoders are Los Angeles-based producer duo Itai Shapira (producer/engineer & studio/live musician) and Todd Simon (trumpeter/arranger for Mayer Hawthorne, TV On The Radio, The Lions, Quantic, etc.), with heavy contributions from Adam Berg (Grammy nominated producer/engineer), Quincy McCrary on keys (Mayer Hawthorne) and Blake Colie on drums (The Lions of Stones Throw Records) . They just released their first installment of modern-Jamaican Lovers Rock-inspired versions of soul classics they dug up from the vaults of the Music Sales publishing catalogue.
In this first batch, Shapira and Simon have deciphered some Earth, Wind and Fire, Minnie Riperton and even one from Ruby and the Romantics! The project is overseen by the songwriter and producer behind many of Minnie Riperton’s hits - Richard Rudolph.
The Decoders have enlisted the help of vocalists Sy Smith (Macy Gray, Foreign Exchange) original “Baby This Love I Have" songwriter and legendary producer Leon Ware (Michael Jackson, Marvin Gaye, Maxwell), Coco Owino (of Quadron), Kevin Sandbloom and Boston Fielder (of Muthawit). Miguel Atwood Ferguson (Suite For Ma Dukes, Brainfeeder) also makes a guest appearance on the new single "Les Fleurs".
Volume 2 features guest vocalists Noelle Scaggs (of Fitz & The Tantrums), Raul Midon, Alex Isley and many more...