David Clayton Thomas is one of the most recognizable voices in all of popular music. He led the hugely successful band Blood Sweat & Tears for around 30 years, having hits like “You’ve Made Me So Very Happy,” and “Spinning Wheel,” before embarking on a solo career in the early 2000’s. His latest project is a true labor of love, Soul Ballads (view entry on Amazon.com) comprises 12 classic R&B tracks, filtered through Clayton-Thomas’ deep resonating voice. In part one of our interview, we delve into this project, talking about his influences from Otis Redding to Sam Cooke. He also tells us why he was reluctant to record “Midnight Train to Georgia” at first.