Boomkat Product Review:
Pioneering the same genre-bending mindset that would later take form in artists like Prince and Outkast, Betty Davis' recording career was about bringing incompatible elements together - outside of her own music, she's even credited with introducing Miles Davis (her husband) to Jimi Hendrix. This debut from 1973 was recorded with Sly & The Family Stone's rhythm section and sports a hard-edged funk to match the ferocity of Davis' incredible vocal approach. Betty's style, both in terms of her look and manner of performance, draws clear parallels with the uninhibited showmanship of Kelis or Lil Kim. The fact that this was recorded thirty-something years ago makes this all the more remarkable. Also of note is the fact that Davis enforced a very brave, spirited sense of independence that saw her turning down recording deals with Motown and declining Eric Clapton's services as producer. There's something about the particular kind of aggressive flamboyance of Davis' work here that sounds so utterly vital to this day, and any fans of the wilder side of funk will be blown away by this reissue, which comes lovingly remastered from the original tapes, packaged with three previously unreleased tracks, recorded circa 1974. Awesome.