The Edge Of Daybreak - Eyes Of Love
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Released in 1979, Eyes of Love was recorded in one take on a $3,000 budget at the Powhatan Correctional Center in State Farm, Va. The band members were all inmates, incarcerated for armed robbery and assault, with sentences ranging from six to 60 years. The musicians, some of whom played in other bands before they were locked up, were allowed to play instruments at the prison complex. They covered songs by the Isley Brothers, Slave, and Earth, Wind & Fire. Jamal Jahal Nubi, the Edge of Daybreak’s lead singer and drummer, entered the Virginia prison in 1976 and established another group called Cosmic Conception with Edward Tucker and William Crawley. He’d later form Edge of Daybreak with fellow prisoners Harry Coleman on additional vocals, James Carrington on keys, Cornelius Cade on guitar, McEvoy Robinson on bass, and Willie Williams on percussion. The band didn't have equipment to overdub, so they brought in backup musicians to play instruments when the regulars had to sing.
Only half of the incarcerated members of Edge Of Daybreak were even aware it was nearly showtime when faculty from Alpha Audio in Richmond arrived at the prison gates for the Eyes Of Love recording session. In just five hurried hours, the band set up and knocked down each of their eight original compositions in one, miraculous take. The resulting LP, Eyes Of Love, is a touching collection of earnest R&B, recorded under the most unfortunate of circumstances.