Flack started out playing small clubs for several years before getting a record contract. Most of the songs here were recorded in three days, and came easily since they consisted the songs of her well honed stage act. The vast majority of the songs are covers. However, "Groove Me" is not the hit by King Floyd, which wouldn't come out until 1970. It's a Flack original.
The first song is a bit different. "All the Way" is a live recording done in 1969. But it wasn't released until decades later on a Les McCann archival album called "Les Is More." This was included on the "First Take" deluxe edition. (Another song on that, "Trade Winds," has been put on the stray tracks album "Freedom Song" instead.)
By the way, as generous as the bonus tracks on the deluxe edition are, there are many more songs recorded at that session. Other songs include: "On a Clear Day," "A Change Is Gonna Come," "Lovin' You," "Love for Sale," "With These Hands," "A House Is Not a Home," "Just a False Start," "Elusive Butterfly," "First of All," and "This House," plus early versions of the songs from "First Take." Let's hope those get released someday too.
If you like Flack's first few albums before she went fully into a slick, mainstream direction, you're sure to like this.
01 All the Way (Roberta Flack)
02 This Could Be the Start of Something (Roberta Flack)
03 Groove Me (Roberta Flack)
04 Nobody Knows You When You're Down and Out (Roberta Flack)
05 Hush-A-Bye (Roberta Flack)
06 Afro Blue (Roberta Flack)
07 It's Way Past Suppertime (Roberta Flack)
08 Frankie and Johnny (Roberta Flack)
09 On the Street Where You Live (Roberta Flack)
10 The House Song (Roberta Flack)
11 Ain't No Mountain High Enough (Roberta Flack)
12 The Song Is Love (Roberta Flack)
13 To Sir with Love (Roberta Flack)
I couldn't find any photos of Flack from 1968, which isn't surprising since she was largely unknown back then. The one I used is from a series of promo photos that came out when her debut album was released in late 1969. It was a black and white photo, but I colorized it.