Today's album, Lewis Taylor's Stoned Part 1, has grooves for days and invites comparisons to the best work of Marvin Gaye, Stevie Wonder and even Prince. It's a party platter of the laid back kind. The artist is a bit of a mystery man and this is the third album Taylor released and the fourth album he recorded.
Taylor's self-titled first album was released in 1996 on Island. It was critically lauded, a cult favorite but a non-seller. When he submitted his second album, with a
slightly drastically different sound, the label balked and he came back with Lewis II (sadly, unavailable on Spotify in the States) to fulfill his contractual obligation in 2000. Taylor started his own Slow Reality label to release his future recordings, the first of which was Stoned Part 1.
But what about that second album?
David Gorman is a Lewis Taylor believer who started Hacktone Records to release Taylor's music in America. After re-releasing Stoned Part 1, Hacktone finally released that second album under the title The Lost Album. It is his final album as Taylor quit the music business in 2006. He goes by his given name Andrew Taylor now (Lewis is his middle name) and has worked with Gnarls Barkley among other artists. The enigmatic Taylor maintains a strong copyright front much like that other mega-talented multi-instrumentalist Prince, issuing take-down notices to protect his works, like the one below:
Yes, Virginia, there is a Stoned Part 2:
So we're two weeks in - let's take a beat and answer a few questions:
1) What's your process? How do you select each album and determine when it will be published?
HERC has a bucket hat at his workstation and a ton of Post It notes. He thinks of an album, checks to see if it is on Spotify, writes it down and drops it in the hat. He'll add one track from the album to a running playlist which serves as a album title checklist. When he is ready to write, he'll reach in the hat and draw a title out.
If album is not on Spotify, HERC will try to piece together songs from compilations as he recently did with Loverboy's debut album. If the artist isn't on Spotify, the album title is added to a Google Doc for future use.
The first album drawn from the hat was David Bowie's Let's Dance. Upon doing his due diligence, he saw that the album's anniversary was coming up so he scheduled the post to coincide with that date. All the other albums thus far have been randomly selected and scheduled.
2) Why do you insist on sharing a Spotify playlist of each album?
Spotify is a great service and HERC is proud to be a paying user. That being said, the service is free and easily available to most Hideaway readers. And unlike Songza, which HERC also uses extensively, Spotify lets you create a playlist with less than a minimum of 8 different artists and 20 songs.
3) When will you feature <insert album title here>?
There are over 75 albums in hat with more being added each day. If you suggest an album not in hat and HERC has an affinity for the album, he'll add it. No albums will be featured that aren't among his personal favorites. (Not to tease but there are three Cars albums on the list so far.) HERC will not repeat any albums already featured on The Hideaway.
4) How long are you going to keep it up?
The plan is to take a break of indeterminate length after every 27 albums. Six and twenty-seven are HERC's lucky numbers.
5) Did I miss something - you jumped from #12 to #14?
You didn't miss anything - HERC doesn't do thirteen. Ever.