Sep 222019
 

from SOUL
Written by Deniece Williams, Hank Redd, Nathan Watts, Susaye Greene

“Free” was a soul/R&B evergreen originally included in Deniece Williams’ 1976 album, This Is Niecy. Ms. Williams co-wrote the song with fellow Stevie Wonder “Wonderlove” alumni Hank Redd, Nathan Watts and Susaye Green. This enchanting smooth jam was produced by two geniuses; the late Maurice White of Earth, Wind & Fire (1941-2016) and arranger extraordinaire Charles Stepney (1931-1976). Their unique musicality gave Ms. Williams the perfect landscape to let her four-octave voice shine and together they created a true work of art. Sadly, Stepney died just a few months before the release of This Is Niecy. “Free” was released as a single in March 1976, reached #2 on the US R&B chart and #25 on Billboard’s Hot 100. Almost two years later, “Free” went to #1 in the UK.

This sublime melody and infectious refrain attracted many famous singers like UK superstar Seal, who included it on his 2008 multi-million selling Soul cd. David Foster produced and arranged Soul. Foster helped the singer breathe new life into some of soul music’s most revered songs. The Foster/Seal rendition of “Free” was stylishly built with minimal keyboards, synth bass, programmed drums and classy guitar licks. The elegant arrangement paired with Seal’s smooth vocal performance was pure ear candy. The superstar’s rich and husky baritone really did justice to such a beautiful love song and the Foster upgrade would have made Maurice White proud. The whole Soul project was a stellar cd. Soul became a welcome opportunity for Foster fans to rediscover the Hitman’s R&B vein. Foster crafted so many gems for Earth, Wind & Fire, Average White Band, Deniece Williams, Michael Jackson, Chaka Khan, Al Jarreau and a score of others.


Listen

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  • Lead & Backing Vocals: Seal
  • Keyboards & Bass: David Foster
  • Guitar: Dean Parks
  • Synthesizer, Drum Programming & Sound Design: Jochem van der Saag
  • Produced & Arranged by David Foster
  • Co-Produced by Jochem van der Saag

Lyrics

Whispering in her ear
My magic potion to love
Telling her, I’m sincere
And that there’s nothin’ too good for us

And I’ve just got to be me, me, me

Whispering in her ear
My magic potion to love
Telling her, I’m sincere
And that there’s nothin’ too good for us

But I want to be free, free, free
And I’ve just got to be me yeah, me, me

Teasing hands on her mind
Give our nights such mystery
Happiness all the time
Oh and how that woman pleases me

But I want to be free, free, free
And I’ve just got to be me, me, me

I’ve just got to be me

Feelin’ you close to me
Makes all my senses smile
Let’s not waste ecstasy
Cause I’ll only be here for a while

I’ve gotta be free, free, free, oh
And I’ve just got to be me yeah, yeah, me, me

Free, free, free to be me
(I’ve just gotta be me)
And I just wanna, I just wanna be me

I’ve just gotta be me, me

Oh free
(I’ve just gotta be me)
I swear to my, I’ve gotta be me