Willie Clarke On The TK Records Bankruptcy: “It Was Like A Tomb…Henry Stone Was All Alone”

tk records reunion

Little Beaver, Jimmy Bo Horne, Timmy Thomas, Willie Clarke, and Henry Stone on Grove Isle, 2013 – Jacob Katel

“You talk about loving something….I am so in love with writing songs and producing music that when TK had to close down that was devastating to me. I can only speak for myself but it was almost like someone trying to kill me.

I lost the power of being behind the board calling shots, being in control, being the last word among all these talented people sharing ideas. I was the last to leave the boat and get the songs all done and mixed down.

It was truly a highlight of my life and a wonderful adventure. I had to go back to teaching school.

After they burned all those “disco” records in that stadium in Chicago, the so called “Disco Demolition Night,” the TK Records studio looked like one of those movies where everything is dark and scary. Too quiet. It was like a tomb and Henry Stone was in there all alone in his office.

They told me what happened with the bank cutting off their backing on us. They revoked the TK Records credit line, which Henry needed to operate the business.

They said that disco had reached its peak. But we had all that good R&B that we coulda gone with. We had this material a long time ago but disco took over the scene.

We did really well during that because we were one of the creators, but in the end we were left looking at each other wondering what to do.”

Excerpt from an interview with Willie Clarke by Jacob Katel

©Jake Katel. All Rights Reserved

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