In 2014, D’Angelo came back. At the end of the year, the reclusive soul great released the powerful, uncompromising Black Messiah. The album, credited to D’Angelo And The Vanguard, was only D’Angelo’s third album, and it was his first in nearly 15 years. That album is almost four years old now. And rumor has it that there’s a new D’Angelo song out there in the world.
Last week saw the release of Red Dead Redemption 2, the extremely hyped-up new Western video game from Rockstar Games. And right now, there’s a lot of online chatter around a song that appears deep in the game. Between two missions in the game’s fifth chapter, players hear a song that may or may not be called “May I?” And while there’s been no official confirmation, it’s widely rumored that D’Angelo is the man behind that song.
If this new song does turn out to be D’Angelo, it’s a whole new sound for him — a dusty and evocative acoustic country-blues thing. But it really does sound like him; not too many people could do that voice. Here’s a rip of the song:
We’ve got an inquiry into RCA Records about whether the song really comes from D’Angelo, and we’ll let you know if we hear anything one way or the other. Don’t hold your breath, though.
UPDATE: A press release from the Red Dead Redemption 2 team confirms this is D’Angelo. It’s called “Unshaken.” Like the rest of the soundtrack’s vocal numbers, it was produced by Daniel Lanois and recorded exclusively for the game.