My very first encounter with muli-talented bassist, hitmaker, songwriter and producer Michael Henderson occurred during my first few years as the US correspondent for Britain’s “Blues & Soul” magazine. It was January 1977 and I vividly remember a call from the late Barbara Shelley, the publicist at Arista Records who invited me to see and do an interview with one of the new additions to the label’s roster as a result of Arista’s distribution of Buddah Records.

We began our conversation at Michael’s hotel in Manhattan which had to be cut short so he could head down to the popular Bottom Line club on West 4th St. for the soundcheck/rehearsal for his show with then-dance/R&B sensation, Vicki Sue Robinson who had been enjoying massive global success with “Turn The Beat Around”.  Time constraints meant that I would have to go to the rehearsal to complete the interview and I didn’t catch Michael at his best since Vicki was the headliner.  In truth, given all that Michael had already achieved then at the age of 26, working with legends like Miles Davis, Stevie Wonder and Aretha Franklin (as well as having hits like “Valentine Love” (his timeless duet with Jean Carn from Norman Connors’ 1975 album “Saturday Night Special”), his duet with Phyllis Hyman, “We Both Need Each Other” followed by the late 1976 R&B/pop hit” You Are My Starship”), his obvious frustration (at the way show was billed) was clear when we completed our interview for “Blues & Soul.”

Over the years that followed, I got the opportunity to do further interviews with Michael and observed how his recording career flourished as was evident with the 2CD anthology “Take Me I’m Yours” which was released in 2018 on SoulMusic Records.  Some seven years earlier, I saw Michael live at The Luxury Soul Weekender in Blackpool with longtime friend and fellow hitmaker, Jean Carne and ahead of his arrival in the UK, we did an interview for

In soulful remembrance of the ever-distinctive musical pioneer (July 7, 1951-July 19, 2o22), here’s the audio version in full. Rest peaceful, Michael

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