The Ghetto (Donny Hathaway song)
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|Single by Donny Hathaway|
|from the album Everything Is Everything|
|A-side||The Ghetto, Pt. 1|
|B-side||The Ghetto, Pt. 2|
|Writer(s)||Donny Hathaway & Leroy Hutson|
|Producer(s)||Donny Hathaway & Ric Powell|
|Donny Hathaway singles chronology|
"The Ghetto" is a socially conscious, mostly instrumental Jazz/Latin Jazz flavored anthem, released as the first single off American soul singer Donny Hathaway's debut album, Everything Is Everything, released as a single in 1970 on Atlantic Records.
The song was co-written by Hathaway and Leroy Hutson. The song was a 6 minute and 50 second extravaganza which built upon a cinematic feel with its lengthy instrumental though it did feature vocal ad-libs from Hathaway, who played electric piano on the song, and constant chants of the song, which had a distinguished Afro-Cuban sound with congas.
The song also featured additional backgrounds, dialogue from what sound like men talking on a street corner and a baby crying before Hathaway ended the song with frenetic hand claps.
The song was also featured on Hathaway's revered Live album in which Hathaway and his musicians played a faster version of the song and later featured Hathaway getting the audience into it singing the final chorus. The song was also used in the 1977 film Short Eyes
Co-writer Leroy Hutson recorded a version of the song entitled "The Ghetto '74" for his album The Man! (1973). Since then, the song has been covered in hip-hop singles, most famously, Too Short's "The Ghetto", which featured Gerald Levert re-singing the chorus.
- Donny Hathaway: lead vocals, electric piano, bass
- Master Henry Gibson: conga solo
- Morris Jennings: drums
- Marshall Hawkins: bass
- Phil Upchurch: guitar
- Richard Powell: percussion & Timbales Solo
- Written and composed by Donny Hathaway and Leroy Hutson
- Conducted and arranged by Donny Hathaway
- Produced by Donny Hathaway and Ric Powell
- Whitburn, Joel (2004). Top R&B/Hip-Hop Singles: 1942-2004. Record Research. p. 247.