Alfa Anderson, former member of the iconic funk soul band Chic (Le Freak, Good Times, Everybody Dance), will release a new single, “When Luther Sings,” in honor of her longtime friend Luther Vandross 66th birthday. The rousing, heartfelt tribute is written by Anderson and co-produced by multi-talented Bert Price. Available nationwide on April 20, When Luther Sings is the first single from Anderson’s long-awaited debut solo album, From My Heart (set for release summer 2017).
“When Luther Sings is my homage to good friend and musical mentor Luther Vandross; the song is autobiographical in many ways,” said Anderson. “As our professional relationship grew, he taught me so much about vocal technique and stage presence. As a matter of fact, Luther is one of the co-creators of the Chic vocal sound. I am forever grateful for the doors he opened for me and for the golden friendship we shared.”
For years, Anderson was an integral member of Vandross’ touring band and performed at Wembley Stadium, among many other prestigious venues around the world. Her vocals can be heard on popular Vandross albums such as Give Me the Reason and The Night I Fell in Love, which Rolling Stone Magazine voted as one of the 100 Best Albums of the Eighties. A chance meeting at a rehearsal studio in NYC led to her introduction to Vandross while rehearsing for a Lou Courtney gig with Ednah Holt. After being introduced to Vandross, a musical bond was formed and Anderson became part of a cadre of in-demand New York session singers. It was Vandross who invited Anderson to a vocal session for Chic with Nile Rodgers, Bernard Edwards, Tony Thompson and Norma Jean Wright.
Chic went on to see commercial success with disco songs that include “Dance, Dance, Dance (Yowsah, Yowsah, Yowsah)” (1977), “Everybody Dance” (1977), “Le Freak” (1978), “I Want Your Love” (1978), “Good Times” (1979), and “My Forbidden Lover” (1979). Throughout the ’80s and ’90s, Alfa sang on albums by Bryan Adams, Gregory Hines, Mick Jagger, Teddy Pendergrass, Jennifer Holliday, Billy Squier, Sheena Easton, Jody Watley, Bryan Ferry, and Jonathan Butler.
This full-length album is not Anderson’s first foray as a published musician. In the late-’90s, Anderson and her husband Tinkr Barfield formed and produced Voices of Shalom, a group that explored spiritual themes through uplifting original compositions. They released two full-length albums, Messages (1999) and Daily Bread (2002), as well as a single called “What A Spirit” (2005), which featured guest vocals by Lisa Fischer and Keith Anthony Fluitt. Meanwhile, she continued introducing the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame-nominated group Chic’s music to younger audiences through feature films like Shrek 2, Toy Story 3, Up in the Air, 54, Roll Bounce, Spike Lee’s Summer of Sam and The New Edition Bio-Pic.
For more on Ms. Anderson and her upcoming musical endeavors, visit www.officialalfaanderson.com. Also keep up with her on Twitter @alfakanderson and Facebook at www.facebook.com/alfa.anderson.7 sings.