Charles Bradley’s unconventional, soulful, and uniquely American career has been well-documented -- including the documentary film Charles Bradley: Soul of America – but the 65 year old singer’s perspective on music and his own story gets especially interesting when he and co-writer Tom Brenneck (Sharon Jones & the Dap-Kings, The Budos Band) sit down for the latest episode of The Hivecast With Matt Pinfield. Bradley recounts the encounter that led him on the unlikely path from aging handyman and occasional James Brown impersonator to becoming a star in his own right.
“I wanted to go forward,” Bradley says of the place he was in with his music at the point when he met Brennek through Daptones Records founder Gabriel Roth -- for whom he worked as a handyman. “It seemed like the band I was with was still in the same space, going around on the same circuit, and I wanted to grow.” It all turned for Bradley when he got the chance to jam with Brennek. “Tom invited me to Staten Island. They had a band there, and when I went, they started playing some music that I liked, that was funky. I just started ad-libbing, and letting the words come out of me. Tom told me he wanted to record with me, but everyone tells me that, so I didn’t believe it. Then I went back home, me and Tom lost contact, and I didn’t see him for five years. Then one day he got on the phone and called me. That’s why I never change my phone number.” Listen to the rest of the episode for more wisdom and storytelling from Charles Bradley. [Download & subscribe to the Hivecast via iTunes.]
Charles Bradley's new album Victim of Love is out now on Daptone. Stream The Hivecast below: