Craft Recordings



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Craft Recordings is pleased to announce the release of a new compilation celebrating the roots of American popular music. Jesus Rocked the Jukebox: Small Group Black Gospel (1951-1965) delves deep into the Specialty and Vee-Jay Records’ vaults, to honor such esteemed gospel groups as The Staple Singers, The Blind Boys of Alabama, The Swan Silvertones and The Soul Stirrers – several of whom would eventually cross over into the secular soul and pop radio airwaves. In his extensive liner notes, which accompany the release, gospel music author, talk show host, and editor-in-chief of the Journal of Gospel Music, Robert M. Marovich writes, “Whether stolen, borrowed, leased, or subconsciously emulated, the music of the African American church in the twentieth century has had a profound and permanent influence on popular music. Every perspiration-drenched performance by a soul singer [and] every shouting improvisation from a rock-and-roll vocalist…evokes the exuberance of black preachers, church singers, and church musicians in the throes of the spirit.”

In stores on September 15th, the 40-track compilation will be available as a 3-LP album, housed in a triple-gatefold jacket, or on 2 CDs. The collection contains some of the most sought-after sides of the genre, including “Father Don’t Leave” by the Silver Quintette and “People Don’t Sing Like They Used To Sing” by the Original Blind Boys, both long-forgotten gems that shine with new light.

The Church is where it all began: from Curtis Mayfield and Jerry Butler, who sang together in a choir before forming the Impressions, to Wilson Pickett, James Brown, and Aretha Franklin, who all sang in religious groups before making it big as soul singers. Jesus Rocked the Jukebox offers a variety of acts – some, like Sam Cooke and The Staple Singers, who became huge stars, as well as lesser-known artists, who stayed with the flock and declined to make the move to secular music, and, often, in turn, stardom.

In his liner notes, Marovich adds, “Black sacred music’s influence on popular music was inevitable if you consider that the church was the primary music school for generations of African American singers and musicians. The list of R&B and soul artists who honed their skills singing in the church choir, accompanying the church choir, or performing as part of a gospel group or quartet is prodigious.”

LP track list below and click here for CD track list.



  1. People Don’t Sing Like they Used to Sing – The Original Blind Boys (2:16)
  2. Jesus Gave Me Water – The Soul Stirrers (2:31)
  3. Uncloudy Day – The Staple Singers (2:59)
  4. Where Shall I Go – The Swan Silvertones (2:03)
  5. I Am So Glad – The Patterson Singers (3:24)
  6. I Dreamed Heaven Was Like This – The Highway QC’s – (2:45)
  7. Oh Sinner – The Harmonizing Four (3:16)


  1. God Has Not Promised – The Highway QC’s (3:01)
  2. Let Jesus Lead You – The Detroiters (2:49)
  3. Let Me Ride – The Staple Singers (2:43)
  4. Sinner Man – The Swan Silvertones (3:11)
  5. Ananais – The Chosen Gospel Singers (2:13)
  6. Wade In the Water – The Harmonizing Four (3:03)


  1. Just Another Day – The Soul Stirrers (2:44)
  2. The Way Up the Hill – The Highway QC’s (2:55)
  3. Living For My Jesus – The Happyland Singers (2:29)
  4. Pray On – The Staple Singers (2:49)
  5. Sinner’s Crossroads – The Silver Quintette (3:11)
  6. This May Be the Last Time – The Original Five Blind Boys of Alabama (2:33)
  7. It’s In My Heart – The Harmonizing Four (2:32)


  1. Swingin’ On the Golden Gate – The Happyland Singers (2:02)
  2. After While (take 8) – The Pilgrim Travelers (2:38)
  3. Mary Don’t You Weep – The Swan Silvertones (2:51)
  4. Heavenly Father – The Patterson Singers (2:53)
  5. Sit Down Servant – The Staple Singers (2:46)
  6. Stay With Me Jesus – The Chosen Gospel Singers (2:45)
  7. Come and Go to That Land (take 3) – The Soul Stirrers (2:36)


  1. Angels Watching Over Me – The Detroiters (2:16)
  2. I Can See Everybody’s Mother – Original Blind Boys of Alabama (2:26)
  3. Happy Home – The Harmonizing Four (2:07)
  4. Move Upstairs – The Gable-Airs (3:28)
  5. Pray – The Highway QC’s (2:27)
  6. How I Got Over – The Swan Silvertone Singers (2:54)
  7. Help Me Jesus – The Staple Singers (2:47)


  1. Sign of the Judgement – The Swan Silvertones (3:04)
  2. Hallelujah – The Harmonizing Four (1:59)
  3. Sinner Run to Jesus (take 1) – The Soul Stirrers (2:07)
  4. Father Don’t Leave – The Silver Quintette (1:59)
  5. He’s Alright – The Blind Boys of Alabama (2:03)
  6. The Lord’s Prayer – The Swan Silvertones (3:06)

Pre-order the 3-LP album on Amazon here:
Pre-order the 2-CD version on Amazon here:

For press inquiries, contact Reckoning PR:
Aaron Feterl:




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Los Angeles, CA – Craft Recordings announces the vinyl debut of the best-selling soundtrack to the 2005 Johnny Cash biopic, Walk The Line. Due out July 21st, the album features original recordings from the Academy Award-winning film, with fiery performances by actors Joaquin Phoenix and Reese Witherspoon, and deft production by the legendary T Bone Burnett.

Stepping into the boots of one of music’s most iconic figures, Joaquin Phoenix delivers a collection of Johnny Cash’s most memorable songs on this GRAMMY®Award-winning soundtrack. Rather than sourcing Cash’s original masters, Director James Mangold took a fresh approach to the soundtrack, appointing legendary producer T Bone Burnett (O Brother, Where Art Thou? Elvis Costello, John Mellencamp) to navigate Phoenix and his fellow cast members through new recordings of classic country and rockabilly tunes. Phoenix’s performance captures the same rawness and power that made The Man in Black an undeniable force, while Reese Witherspoon brings the songs of June Carter alive. With the addition of classic country and rockabilly covers by Tyler Hilton, Johnathan Rice, Shooter Jennings and Waylon Payne, Walk The Line’s original soundtrack recording serves as a lively tribute to some of American music’s most legendary figures.

Following its original release in 2005, the album made quite a splash – peaking at #1 on the Billboard Soundtrack chart, #3 on the Country Albums chart and #9 on the Billboard Top 200. The title not only garnered a 2007 GRAMMY® Award for Best Compilation Soundtrack, but was also certified Platinum by the RIAA in 2006. praised the album as “A good tribute to both [Johnny Cash and June Carter], while providing some fascinating insight to the art and craft of Phoenix and Witherspoon as actors.”

Walk The Line (Original Soundtrack Recording) track list:

Side A:

  1. Get Rhythm (Joaquin Phoenix)
  2. Walk the Line (Joaquin Phoenix)
  3. Wildwood Flower (Reese Witherspoon)
  4. Lewis Boogie (Waylon Payne)
  5. Ring of Fire (Joaquin Phoenix)
  6. You’re My Baby (Johnathan Rice)
  7. Cry! Cry! Cry! (Joaquin Phoenix)
  8. Folsom Prison Blues (Joaquin Phoenix)

Side B:

  1. That’s All Right (Tyler Hilton)
  2. Juke Box Blues (Reese Witherspoon)
  3. It Ain’t Me Babe (Joaquin Phoenix / Reese Witherspoon)
  4. Home of the Blues (Joaquin Phoenix)
  5. Milk Cow Blues (Tyler Hilton)
  6. I’m A Long Way From Home (Shooter Jennings)
  7. Cocaine Blues Joaquin (Phoenix)
  8. Jackson (Joaquin Phoenix / Reese Witherspoon)

Preorder Walk The Line on vinyl on Amazon.
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Los Angeles, CA – Stax Records, an imprint of Concord Music Group and its Catalog Division, Craft Recordings, is pleased to announce the reissue of one of its most provocative titles: Melvin Van PeeblesSweet Sweetback’s Baadasssss Song. Consistently hailed as a landmark, genre-defining album, this 1971 soundtrack — performed by a then-unknown Earth, Wind & Fire with contributions by Van Peebles — will be made available on May 26th for the very first time in high-res and standard digital formats. The vinyl edition features audio remastered from the original analog tapes and cut on the original Stax lathe at Memphis’ Ardent studios, then pressed on 180-gram vinyl at Memphis Record Pressing. The remastered LP also includes new liner notes from author, journalist and music critic Jeff Weiss, as well as from Melvin’s son Mario Van Peebles, director of New Jack City (1991) and 2003’s Baadasssss!, which chronicles the making of his father’s landmark film.

Trailblazing writer, director, actor and composer Melvin Van Peebles was financially and creatively responsible for the entire production of Sweet Sweetback’s Baadasssss Song. Van Peebles not only directed, scripted, and edited the film, but also wrote the score and directed the marketing campaign. The film, which in the end grossed more than $10 million (the highest ever for an independent film at the time), was acclaimed for its political resonance with the black struggle. In his liner notes, Jeff Weiss notes, “For all the resistance mounting in the streets, no black director had yet made a film that captured the spirit of rebellion, frustration and the refusal to accept injustice. Van Peebles alchemized Malcolm X, Iceberg Slim and Soul on Ice with Huey Newton, Gil-Scott Heron and the French New Wave. Badass cinema was born.” The Black Panthers made the film required viewing. And despite the fact that few theaters would screen the X-rated film, the soundtrack helped to market the film to the masses, through radio waves and word of mouth. The success of the film proved to be a genre-defining moment, giving birth to Blaxploitation, and opening the doors for films like Shaft and Super Fly.

The soundtrack features a combination of hymn-based vocalization and jazz rhythms, capturing the funky, gritty and soulful spirit of the time, and foreshadowing the use of sampling that would occur in hip hop music, some 20 years later. Weiss adds, “The soundtrack operates like a surrealist Mobius strip comprised of call-and-response chants against the man…It’s as avant-garde as the film’s kinetic mix of psychedelic jump cuts and dream-like sequences. The music becomes a character itself, unseen but forcefully heard.”

The reissue of Sweet Sweetback’s Baadasssss Song is part of a wider, year-long initiative, celebrating Stax Records’ 60th anniversary. The cross-label collaboration between Concord Music Group and Rhino Entertainment will highlight the hits, deep cuts and rare tracks from the Memphis label’s heyday of the ’60s and ‘70s.

About Stax 60:
The 60th anniversary of the legendary soul label Stax Records commemorates its extraordinary legacy as an international hit-making machine and its indispensable chapter in American musical history as an integrated company in the heart of the Civil Rights movement. The Stax 60 celebration will highlight the hits, deep cuts and rare tracks from the Memphis label’s heyday of the ’60s and ‘70s, including the many legendary artists who jointly created the world-renown “Stax sound,” – Otis Redding, Booker T & the MGs, Isaac Hayes, The Staple Singers, Carla Thomas, Rufus Thomas, Johnnie Taylor, Eddie Floyd, William Bell, Sam & Dave, The Dramatics and many more. The Stax 60 campaign will honor the music from Soulsville USA through curated collections, deluxe box sets, hi-resolution audio, streaming playlists and unique vinyl initiatives.

Track listing:
A1. Sweetback Losing His Cherry
A2. Sweetback Getting It Uptight And Preaching It So Hard The Bourgeois Reggin Angels In Heaven Turn Around
A3. Come On Feet
A4. Sweetback’s Theme
B1. Hoppin’ John
B2. Mojo Woman
B3. Sanra Z.
B4. Reggins Hanging On In There As Best They Can
B5. Wont Bleed Me
B6. The Man Tries Running His Usual Game But Sweetback’s Jones Is So Strong He Wastes The Hounds (Yeah! Yeah! And Besides That Will Be Coming Back Takin Names & Collecting Dues)

Preorder Sweet Sweetback’s Baadasssss Song on Amazon.


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For an all-too-brief, magical time in 1957, two of the greatest musicians in history —
Thelonious Monk and John Coltrane — performed together every night at New York’s Five Spot Cafe and between April and July of that year, they made their only studio recordings together.

This June 9th, the newly minted imprint Craft Recordings, is set to reissue Thelonious Monk and John Coltrane’s Complete 1957 Riverside Recordings as a deluxe vinyl edition box set featuring new artwork, rare photos and 180-gram vinyl pressed at RTI from lacquers cut by George Horn at Fantasy Studios in Berkeley, CA. Remastered from the original analog sources, audio will also be released in hi-res digital formats. The collection features such stellar musicians as Art Blakey, Wilbur Ware, Coleman Hawkins, Shadow Wilson, Ray Copeland and Gigi Gryce. Rounding out the package is an insightful essay by the late Orrin Keepnews, who, as producer of the original sessions, was present at the creation of every note.

Coltrane was poised to make a giant leap forward and ready to learn from one of the masters, Monk. In a DOWNBEAT interview Coltrane recalled, “Working with Monk brought me close to a musical architect of the highest order. I learned from him in every way.”

Regarding Craft Recordings inaugural release, Sig Sigworth, President, Craft Recordings, shares: “Craft Recordings is built on a dedication to create innovative, high-quality releases. The intersection of John Coltrane and Thelonious Monk in 1957 defines high quality and innovation, so it was an easy choice to have this unique package be Craft Recordings’ debut release.”

2017 marks what would have been Monk‘s 100th birthday and this release celebrates the brief but prolific intersection of genius between two of jazz’s all-time luminaries.

The 3-LP box set is available to pre-order on Amazon.

Track List:

Disc One
A1. Monk’s Mood [false start]
A2. Monk’s Mood
A3. Crepuscule with Nellie [take 1]
A4. Crepuscule with Nellie [take 2]
A5. Crepuscule with Nellie [breakdown]
B1. Blues for Tomorrow [first stereo release]
B2. Crepuscule with Nellie [edited: retakes 4 & 5]

Disc Two
A1. Crepuscule with Nellie [retake 6]
A2. Off Minor [take 4]
A3. Off Minor [take 5]
A4. Abide with Me [take 1]
A5. Abide with Me
B1. Ephistrophy [short version]
B2. Ephistrophy
B3. Well, You Needn’t [opening]

Disc Three  
A1. Well, You Needn’t
A2. Ruby, My Dear [with Coleman Hawkins]
B1. Ruby, My Dear [with John Coltrane]
B2. Nutty
B3. Trinkle, Tinkle

For more info on Craft Recordings, visit:


For press inquiries, contact Reckoning PR:
Aaron Feterl: