NEW YORK (AP) – An unreleased solo version of the late Aretha Franklin’s a captivating and powerful collaboration with faith and race with Mary J. Blige, “2006 Never Gonna Break My Faith” arrived on June 19.
On Friday, Sony’s RCA Records, RCA Inspiration and Legacy Recordings released the song, in keeping with the holiday celebrating the day of 1865. All blacks enslaved learned that they had been released from bondage.
“Never Gonna Break My Faith” resonates today, with words like: “You can lie to a child with a smiling face / Tell me that color is not a race. “
“The world is very different now. Change is everywhere and each of us hopefully is doing our best to move forward and make change as positive as possible, “said Clive Davis, Creative Director of Sony Music and close friend and collaborator of Franklin, in a press release.
Dozens of artists have released new songs detailing the experience of blacks in the midst of global protests triggered by the recent deaths of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery and many others. Some artists have released covers of protest hymns or reissued older songs that resonate over time, such as “Never Gonna Break My Faith”.
The lyrics of the song include: “My Lord, will you not help them to understand / That when someone takes the life of an innocent man / Well, they never really won, and all that they really did / Is put the free soul where it is supposed to be. ”
Calling Franklin’s performance “scary,” Davis said the lyrics and relevance of the song “will shake every fiber in your body.”
“Everyone should hear this record,” said Davis. “It deserves to be an anthem. “
“Never Gonna Break My Faith” won the best gospel performance at the 50th Grammy Awards in 2008, marking Franklin’s 18th and last Grammy win. She died in 2018 at 76 years old.
The song was originally featured in the film “Bobby”, about the assassination of US Senator Robert F. Kennedy in 1968, and features background voices from the Boys Choir of Harlem.
“This solo version has been installed on my computer for years, and when I heard that Clive was making a film about Aretha’s life, I sent him this version. The world didn’t hear her full performance and it really had to be heard, “said Grammy award singer Bryan Adams, who co-wrote the song, in a statement. “I’m so glad it’s published, the world needs it right now. “