Donny Hathaway | Sack Full Of Dreams [Live] (Atlantic Records 1972)

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"Sack Full of Dreams" is a song by Gary McFarland & Louis Savary. Most notable renditions were done by Grady Tate in 1968 as well as Gene Ammons in 1971.

Donny Edward Hathaway (October 1, 1945 -- January 13, 1979) was an American jazz, blues, soul, and gospel vocalist and musician. Hathaway contracted with Atlantic Records in 1969 and with his first single for the Atco label, "The Ghetto, Part I" in early 1970, Rolling Stone magazine "marked him as a major new force in soul music."

His collaborations with Roberta Flack scored high on the charts and won him the Grammy Award for Best Pop Performance by a Duo or Group with Vocals for the duet, "Where Is the Love" in 1973.
Donny Hathaway is also known as the co-composer and performer of the Christmas standard, "This Christmas". The song, released in 1970, has become a holiday staple and is often used in movies, television and advertising.

At the height of his career Hathaway was diagnosed with paranoid schizophrenia and was known to not take his prescribed medication regularly enough to properly control his symptoms. On January 13, 1979, Hathaway's body was found outside the luxury hotel Essex House in New York City; his death was ruled a suicide.

Sessions for a ninth album of duets were underway in 1979. On January 13 of that year, Hathaway began a recording session at which Eric Mercury and James Mtume were present. Mercury and Mtume each reported that although Hathaway's voice sounded good, he began behaving irrationally, seeming to be paranoid and delusional. According to Mtume, Hathaway said that "white people" were trying to kill him and had connected his brain to a machine, for the purpose of stealing his music and his sound. Given Hathaway's behavior, Mercury said that he decided the recording session could not continue, so he aborted it and all of the musicians went home.

Hours later, Hathaway was found dead on the sidewalk below the window of his 15th-floor room in New York's Essex House hotel. He had jumped from his balcony. The glass had been neatly removed from the window and there were no signs of struggle, leading investigators to rule Hathaway's death a suicide. His friends were mystified, considering his career had just started to pick up again, and Roberta Flack was devastated. Amongst many of Hathaway's friends in Chicago, the rumor was that he was in "hot water" with elements of "The Mob". Hathaway had mentioned he thought "white men" were out to kill him for "gambling debts" he could not pay.

Spurred by his death, Flack included the few duet tracks they had finished on her next album, Roberta Flack Featuring Donny Hathaway. According to Mercury, Hathaway's final recording, included on that album, was "You Are My Heaven", a song Mercury co-wrote with Stevie Wonder.

Hathaway's funeral was conducted by the Reverend Jesse Jackson. Later in 1979, The Whispers recorded the tribute song, "Song for Donny", for their self-titled breakthrough album. The song reached #21 on the R&B chart.

Donny Hathaway Live, which featured noted R&B musicians Willie Weeks (bass), Fred White (drums), Mike Howard (guitar), Phil Upchurch (lead guitar side 1), Cornell Dupree (lead guitar side 2) and Earl DeRouen (percussion) has been cited as an influence by numerous artists including Alicia Keys, Jon B., Chris Brown, Amy Winehouse, Beyoncé, George Benson, Victor Wooten, India.Arie, Jon Gibson, Stevie Wonder, Brian McKnight, Anthony Hamilton, Usher, Justin Timberlake, John Mayer, Led Zeppelin, Freddie Jackson, and Frank McComb. Hathaway's use of the Rhodes Piano on his early Atco R&B recordings has also influenced many neo soul artists & producers.

A second live album called In Performance, released in 1980 following his death, also included tracks recorded at venues in Los Angeles and New York between 1971 and 1973, showing Hathaway to be a fine stage performer. Later, in 2004, selected tracks from these two albums were added to previously unreleased live recordings for These Songs for You, Live!

I've got a dream for the world
Peace in the rivers and everywhere
Bridges of steel and love and cities that smile

Gray empty faces walk by
And hands try to hide all the lonlieness
Lighting a cigarette to blow time away

Lost in the noise, lonely as a wind
People on sidewalks with no place to go
Can they learn to understand
The world of love that I'm dreaming
The world of love

And I, I said I, I've got a sack full of dreams
Streets filled with laughter and toy ballons
And people with hearts that care
Who listen for love

Wanting to sing
Wanting to care wanting to share
All my dreams for the world
Can they learn to
Understand the world of love
That I'm dreaming
The world of love

Wanting to sing
Wanting to care
Wanting to share
All my dreams for the world
Can they learn, can they learn
Can they l

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