- A valuable reissue of classics from a low-key house US producer.
- Warren "Hanna" Harris is a tennis instructor living in Chicago who flips on his equipment once a year and records beautiful, jazzy house tracks. He's had this ritual—making records for his small but fervent fan base—for over 20 years. Harris's low-key career in dance music began when he met Dan Curtin and Mike Filly on the shop floor at a music equipment store where he worked. The influential Ohio producers encouraged him to try his hand at techno. Harris was initially trained in double bass by a member of the Cleveland Orchestra Chorus. Regularly practicing eight hours a day, he acquired a virtuosity that is the defining factor behind forays into metal, jazz, hip-hop, gospel and the house music he's best known for.
The bass playing is what's immediately striking on "I Needed," a Hanna classic previously only available on the 2004 CD-only album, Exquisite Style. I remember the first time I heard it in the back of a car driven by a devoted Hanna fan. The bright synth solos, fretless bass and gospel-influenced vocal demonstrated a musical aptitude rarely heard in dance tracks. The B-side off this valuable Melodies International reissue, "Intercession, On Behalf," is equally worth your time, with dextrous vocal cut-ups reminiscent of Todd Edwards' classic remix of St. Germain's "Alabama Blues." On each track, the master musician refrains from showiness, each brilliant melody in service of a larger, exultant whole.
A I Needed
B Intercession, On Behalf