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***Born and raised in Bedford-Stuyvesant, Brooklyn, BETTE SMITH reconnected with her musical roots in Memphis and Mississippi—and fulfilled a promise to her late brother in the process. Recording her debut full-length album in Mississippi brought her to the roots of the gospel she sang in the church and the soul music she heard on the block on hot summer nights music growing up on the corner of Nostrand and Fulton. “The south came to me and grabbed me and pulled me down there. The southern migration came up and got me." JIMBO MATHUS produced the album at Water Valley’s Dial Back Sound. Mathus dug deep into the Mississippi and Memphis soul bags, unearthing “Flying Sweet Angel of Joy” by Famous L. Renfroe, a song with which Smith particularly connected. Mathus also picked Isaac Hayes’ “Do Your Thing,” which simmers with Memphis heat. The raucous soul-rock of “Man Child,” the spare funk of “Shackles & Chains,” and Blaxsploitation soundtrack feel of “Durty Hustlin’” were all written or co-written by Mathus specifically for Smith. She gets rough, wrestling the title track to the ground; the song captures the late nights and lack of sleep inherent in a musician’s life. First-call Memphis horn players MARC FRANKLIN (Robert Cray, Lucero) and KIRK SMOTHERS (Don Bryant, Melissa Etheridge, Cyndi Lauper, Buddy Guy) were summoned to complete the album’s sound. "An incredible debut from the next big-voiced soul sensation." - MOJO (★★★★)