On this day in music history: November 3, 1992 - “Love Deluxe”, the fourth album by Sade is released (UK release date is on October 26, 1992). Produced by Sade and Mike Pela, it is recorded at Studio Condulmer in Venice, Italy, Ridge Farm Studios in Capel, Surrey, UK, The Hit Factory in London and Image Recording in Los Angeles, CA from May - August 1992. Returning from a more than three year long hiatus after the release of their previous album “Stronger Than Pride”, Sade begin work on their fourth release in the Spring of 1992. Working on a very tight timeline, the band write and record the album in a relatively brief and intense four months. Most of “Love Deluxe” is recorded in Venice during the Spring and Summer, moving to London and Surrey, with the final recording taking place in Los Angeles. During the sessions, Sade herself often writes her lyrics while listening to the already completed tracks, then recording vocals singing into a Shure SM 57 microphone in either a vocal booth in the studio control room. Lyrically many of the songs focus on themes of “unreciprocated love”, with the intensely private singer giving listeners a glimpse into her tumultuous marriage to Spanish film director Carlos Pliego. Along with meditations on relationships (or the lack thereof), one of the emotional centerpieces of “Love Deluxe” is the powerful ballad “Pearls”. The songs’ narrative follows the struggle of a Somalian woman foraging for food by the road side to feed her daughter, and rejoicing at the few meager grains she scrapes from the dirt. The song is later given a deep house remix, which is rejected by the band for commercial release. However, the remix slips out as a bootleg and becomes a big underground club hit. Led by the mesmerizing first single “No Ordinary Love” (#28 Pop, #9 R&B, #14 AC), it wins Sade their second Grammy Award in 1994 for Best R&B Performance By A Duo Or Group With Vocal, and is also prominently featured in the film “Indecent Proposal”. The elegant and understated cover art work features a striking sepia toned photo of Sade covered in bronze body paint, taken by famed fashion photographer Albert Watson. The album spins off three other singles including “Kiss Of Life” (#78 Pop, #10 R&B, #20 AC), “Cherish The Day” (#116 Pop, #45 R&B) and “Feel The Pain” (#59 R&B). The album is remastered and reissued on CD in 2000, and is reissued on vinyl by Music On Vinyl in 2010. “Love Deluxe” peaks at number three on the Billboard Top 200, number two on the R&B album chart, and is certified 4x Platinum in the US by the RIAA.
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