Johnny Pate

Brother on the Run

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In 2001, Castle Music put the soundtrack to Herbert L. Strock's Brother on the Run back into circulation. Originally issued on Perception, the album had long since become a rarity that fetched three figures from collectors. Scored by Impressions arranger Johnny Pate -- the same year he scored Shaft in Africa -- Brother on the Run falls into the second tier of blaxploitation soundtracks. It's a strong set, a mixed bag of funky chase-scene grooves (wah-wah guitars, nervously pattering percussion, blaring horn charts), low-key numbers for romantic interludes and pensive moments, and a title theme (sung by Adam Wade) that serves as the most significant part of the soundtrack. It's not on the level of Superfly or Shaft, but no self-respecting blaxploitation aficionado should be without it.

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