Ain't No Love in the Heart of the City
"Ain't No Love In The Heart Of The City" is a 1974 R&B song, written by Michael Price and Dan Walsh, and first recorded by Bobby "Blue" Bland for the ABC Dunhill album Dreamer. While Bland scored a minor hit with the song, landing in the top ten of the R&B charts, it is perhaps best known through cover versions and samples. While it is ostensibly a love song, some critics have also heard it as a lament on urban poverty and hopelessness; the reggae singer Al Brown's cover version even changes most of the lyrics to magnify this emphasis. The song is featured on the soundtracks to the 2009 film Fighting and the 2011 crime drama The Lincoln Lawyer.
Covers and samples
|"Ain't No Love In The Heart Of The City"|
|Single by Whitesnake|
|from the album Live...in the Heart of the City|
|B-side||"Take Me With You" (Live)|
|Recorded||November 23, 1978|
|Genre||Hard rock, blues-rock|
|Whitesnake singles chronology|
A well-known cover of the song is by the hard rock band Whitesnake, who included it on their 1978 debut EP, Snakebite, and again as a live recording on Live...In The Heart Of The City. The cover was the new band's first hit, and it became a staple of their live set.
For his 2001 album The Blueprint, rapper Jay-Z recorded the song "Heart Of The City (Ain't No Love)," a Kanye West-produced track built around a sample of Bobby Bland's chartmaking rendition. Jay-Z's song was used in the trailer for the 2007 film American Gangster, in a 2011 Chrysler commercial, as the theme song for the CBS series NYC 22 and a Crown Royal commercial in 2013.
Other notable cover versions have been recorded by:
- Allman Brothers (Blues, 2009 live recording)
- Mick Abrahams (rock, 1996)
- Long John Baldry (blues, 1977)
- Maggie Bell (rock, 2004, live recording)
- Al Brown (reggae, mid-1970s)
- Joe Budden(Rap, 2007)
- Cafe Jacques - on the album Round The Back (rock, 1977)
- Paul Carrack (Blue-Eyed Soul, Pop/Rock, 2008)
- Willie Clayton (R&B, 1998, as "Heart Of The City")
- Mary Coughlan (jazz, 2002)
- Chris Farlowe (R&B, 1985)
- Crystal Gayle (country, 1980)
- Jorn Lande (hard rock, The Snakes live in Europe 1998)
- Nicky Moore (blues rock, 2009)
- Ruthless Blues (blues, 1989)
- Barrett Strong (R&B, 1976)
- Grady Tate (jazz, 1977)
- Kate Taylor (rock, 1979)
- Joey Tempest (rock/metal, 2003)
- DJ Andrew Unknown & DJ Mekalek (hip hop/rap (intro), 2002)
- Vaya Con Dios (rock, 2004)
- Paul Weller (rock, 1998)
- YTcracker (From the "STC Is The Greatest" album, track #16, "spamcity", 2004)
- The Good Earth (pop/rock, 1994)
- Lukas Graham (Blue-Eyed Soul, 2012 as ″Daddy, Now That You're Gone (Ain't No love)″)
- Jay Z (The Blueprint, as ″Heart Of City (Ain't No love)″)
- by Jo-Ann Greene (2001-08-14). "Ain't No Love in the Heart of the City - Al Brown : Listen, Appearances, Song Review". AllMusic. Retrieved 2013-03-26.
- "The Lincoln Lawyer (Soundtrack)". Blogs.indiewire.com. Retrieved 2011-03-24.
- Hamilton, Andrew (1998-06-02). "Something to Talk About - Willie Clayton : Songs, Reviews, Credits, Awards". AllMusic. Retrieved 2013-03-26.
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