Mighty Real

A Tribute to Sylvester

Djola Branner




                            I [Who have Nothing] 6:44

                                                REAL Bridge :45

                           Do Ya Wanna Funk 3:33

                                Can’t Stop Dancing 5:28

                             I Tried to Forget You 5:30

                                                   Changes 3:11

                                    Someone Like You 4:36

                          Here Is My Love 5:07

                                     Stars 4:47

                          You Make Me Feel [Mighty Real] 3:44

                           You Are My Friend 4:38

                                    You Will Be The One 4:50


The first person to put one of Sylvester’s albums in my hands was a short blonde man with baby  blue eyes. He said he LOOOVED Sylvester almost as much as he loved me, and thought I'd find a familiar in this sequined gay man of African descent. And he was right. I didn't understand what Sylvester was saying immediately - that took a little more living - but I understood exactly how he was saying it. I had waited all my life to hear a man, any man, rock like Aretha, shriek like Chaka and testify like Patti. And once I stepped onto my own sequined path, Sylvester – living, breathing, brazen – stepped forward as my patron saint. This album is a REAL tribute to his life and music.

- Djola Branner


THANKS to the Jerome Foundation and Metropolitan Regional Arts Council. This Album is made possible with their generous support.


MANY THANKS to alla the fine musicians who served-up this fabulous feast of sound. To Aaron and Jared for giving up three months of their lives to record, mix, create and recreate these tracks, Robert “Eddie” Robinson and the Twin Cities Community Gospel Choir for anointing me with love and light, Debbie and Aimee for keeping the faith, Fran for back-up shade, “Still Bill” for pumping up the volume, José for loosing the freak, Philip at ACF for patience, his brother David for persistence, Tom at Intermedia Arts for ... everything, Jeannie for her blessing (and for listening to “Here is My Glove” over the phone). To “Tip” ... sorry, I mean James, Philvester, Brian Bart, Steve over at Copy Cats. To Bryon. Eternal Thanks. To Sylvester for showing up at least a dozen times and breathing fire into my soul.

To alla my guides, living and non. To Norma ... Norma. To Osun, of course, and her huge iridescent heart. And last but certainly not least, to the great benevolent Spirit ... as above so below, as within so without ... Ashé.