*A creative new Afrobeat version of the Stevie Wonder track “Black Man,” remixed by Will Coloan, also known as Brennan Williams, producer and founder of Coloan Records, is now available for streaming. The inventive reimagining of this important history lesson can be accessed on Spotify, SoundCloud, and YouTube.
The original “Black Man” appears on Stevie Wonder’s seminal 1976 double album milestone Songs In The Key of Life and recounts all of the cultural, historical, and scientific contributions made to American society and the world by men of all colors. The original recording – at more than eight and a half minutes long – lists such achievements as the first man to die in the American Revolution, the invention of incandescent light, the innovation of open-heart surgery, and much more, with the vital message “This world was made for all men.”
Like most music fans, Williams counts Stevie Wonder’s genius as a major inspiration both in and out of the studio. “As an avid admirer and fan of Stevie Wonder’s music, I count ‘Black Man’ as one of my favorite tracks on Songs in the Key of Life,” Williams explains.
He adds that now is the right time to remind listeners that our society has been woven from the threads of many races and that social justice is achievable. “This album has been a fixture in my record collection, so it was only fitting to pay homage to the song during a time of civil unrest, social consciousness, and the global pandemic,” he adds. “Overall, I want the remix to serve as a beacon of light, empowerment, and a celebration to all black men and mothers of black boys across the globe.”
Williams says he also wanted to honor Wonder’s powerful message of positivity and uplift while injecting a danceable, drum-heavy contemporary beat that will excite fans of Afrobeat, dubstep, and world music. “With the Afrobeat influence, I was inspired by Nigerian music pioneer Fela Kuti’s politically driven album Zombie, which was released a year after Songs in the Key of Life,” says Williams, who uses the handle Will Coloan in the studio.
Founded by Brennan Williams in 2008, Coloan Records creates theme mixes that combine original and remixed tracks to deliver eclectic and complex music programming. With unparalleled expertise in sensory branding and cultural programming, Coloan Records delivers unique viewing and listening experiences that captivate and move audiences across the globe.
Coloan Records has created musical experiences for such clients as The Recording Academy, Harvard University, Toyota, McDonald’s, Black Portraiture Conferences (presented in New York, Italy, and South Africa), Misty Copeland’s Dance Tribute to Wynton Marsalis, and the African American Museum of Philadelphia’s 40th Anniversary Gala honoring media trailblazers Cathy Hughes and Alfred Liggins. In June 2020, Williams created specially curated playlists for the relaunch of Global Communicator magazine.