Many a musical career began in the gospel church choirs of the black communities, but that of Donny Hathaway must certainly be one of the most meteoric. Rolling Stone magazine named him the 49th greatest singer (of 100) of all time, though this might sound somewhat abstract. But just the very first few bars of the opening number "Voices Inside" promises a programme in which the instrumental and human voices are on a par.
After his early avant-garde years with Blue Note Records, Herbie Hancock achieved much success with pop music fans by gradually turning towards a mixture of Afro-American styles in which he combined soul, jazz and funk. Having composed the soundtrack to Bill Cosby’s animated children’s show "Fat Albert and the Cosby Kids" and released a popular family-orientated album entitled "Fat Albert Rotunda", Hancock stated that instead of looking for jazz musicians who could play funky music, he had searched for funk musicians with a feeling for jazz.