In recognition of Black History Month, ABKCO Records will release "16 Year Old Soul," the album that launched the career of Billy Preston, on Feb. 22. The release will mark the first time the LP is available in more than 45 years.
"16 Year Old Soul" not only reflects the start of Billy Preston's music, but also the legacy of Sam Cooke's SAR label - one of the first African American-owned and operated record companies.
Cooke and Preston's working relationship began when Preston was tapped to play for Cooke's 1963 "Nightbeat" album. He impressed Cooke and SAR partner J.W. Alexander so much that he was signed on the spot to SAR's sister label Derby Records. A month later, Preston began recording "16 Year Old Soul" and the album was eventually released June that very year.
Before his death at the age 59 in 2006, Preston would go on to collaborate with such acts like The Beatles, The Rolling Stones, Ray Charles, Little Richard, Aretha Franklin, Bob Dylan, the Jackson 5, Barbra Streisand and many more.
Here is the track list for "16 Year Old Soul":
1. Greazee (Alexander, Preston, Smith)
2. Lost and A' Lookin' (Alexander, Jordan)
3. I Can't Stop Loving You (Gibson)
4. Born To Lose (Brown)
5. Ain't That Love (Smith)
6. Bring It On Home To Me (Cooke)
7. God Bless The Child (Holiday, Herzog)
8. Pretty Little Girl (Jordan, Alexander, Redmond)
9. In The Spring (Jordan)
10. Good News (Alexander, Smith, Preston)