The reissue of the 1980 track wraps up the busiest year yet for the label run by Floating Points and friends.
As usual, the imprint run by Floating Points, Mafalda, Elliot Bernard (AKA Seiji Ono), DJ Love On The Run and Red Greg took a deep dive into the record's provenance for the reissue. Le Stim was a band fronted by Donald Jennings, now an ordained minister in Detroit. The tribute to Ali was written by the late Herbert Andrei Duncan, another Detroiter who spent five years trying to convince Jennings to sing the song. Jennings eventually relented and recorded the song with 17 musicians. It became a local hit and reportedly found favour with the heavyweight champion himself. These days, the original goes for upwards of $600.
Melodies says the reissue was their "biggest research project as of yet," involving a visit to Duncan's former house in Detroit, only to discover it had burned to the ground. They finally tracked down Duncan's family in Texas with the help of Jeremy Morris of New Zealand's Rain & Shine records. Melodies then licensed, remastered and cut the two versions—one longer than the other—to half-speed lacquers at 45 RPM (instead of the original 33 1/3 RPM format).
Melodies' 2018 reissues have included music by Bobby Wright, Trio Ternura and Majik, as well as Frankie Knuckles' remixes of Womack & Womack.
Listen to clips over at the Melodies site.
Check out the promo video.
We’re proud to bring you at last, a disco anthem from Detroit originally recorded in 1980 and dedicated to the King Of The Champion Fighters: Le Stim – A Tribute to Muhammad Ali (We Crown The King)!— Melody Johnson (@MelodiesInt) October 1, 2018
Pre-order from https://t.co/PCQptMq77C & get digital instantly! 🎥 Nevil Bernard pic.twitter.com/6atzqjAfMh
A A Tribute To Muhammad Ali (We Crown The King)
B A Tribute To Muhammad Ali (We Crown The King)
Melodies International will release A Tribute To Muhammad Ali (We Crown The King) in mid-November.