Slave – S/T

Another Dayton, OH funk band, Slave’s popularity didn’t endure like Funkadelic or The Ohio Players, but their funk was as popular in the late 70’s. Their debut in 1977 reached #22 on the Billboard Charts and is certified Gold. It’s mostly a straightforward funk record with a couple ballads closing it out, but the band […]

George Benson – Give Me The Night

Quincy Jones produced 1980’s Give Me The Night and predictably it sounds amazing. Benson’s guitar playing is tasteful and sparing as this is definitely a Benson vocal, or pop album. Rod Temperton wrote many of the songs and one of the last great disco hits in the title song. The few instrumental tracks are quite […]

The Byrds – Untitled

The Byrds released this double album in 1970, selling a live album and one recorded in a studio for the price of a single LP. Its a very folk-rock album, with a 16 minute live performance of Eight Miles High, and the studio album is composed of leftovers for a country-rock performance of Peer Gynt. […]

Weather Report – Tale Spinnin’

Tale Spinnin’ was released in 1975 and features Leon “Ndugu” Chancler on drums, spending his off-time on this one album while the Carlos Santana group was on a hiatus. Tale Spinnin’ was also the second to feature Alphonso Johnson on electric bass, and the combination of the two produces some really funky grooves like Wayne […]

Mongo Santamaria – Up From The Roots

Cuban percussionist Mongo Santamaria moved from Havana to New York in 1949 and recorded with Tito Puente in the 1950’s before becoming a bandleader and coming into fame himself. He released Up From The Roots in 1972, and the cover’s African art gives a pretty good idea of the sound being explored. Most of the […]

Marcos Valle – Garra

Marcos Valle recorded and released Garra in 1971 while writing tunes for telenovelas after recording music throughout the latter half of the ’60s, and it is a magnificent example of Brazilian pop music, incorporating bossa nova, funk, Beatles pop, orchestral arrangements and lots of Afro-Caribbean percussion. Together with his brother Paulo Sergio, Valle recorded a […]

Pink Floyd – A Momentary Lapse of Reason

“Pink Floyd” recorded this album without Roger Waters, who left the band a couple years earlier but spent many after that fighting the band and CBS Records in court before resigning and relenting the name. David Gilmour and Nick Mason recorded it mostly on Gilmour’s houseboat, which was turned into a studio. As a result, […]

The Isley Brothers – The Heat Is On

I love the Isley Brothers, and The Heat Is On is another great album from them, released in 1975 and produced by The Isley Brothers and Cecil and Margouleff. Amazing musicianship and every song is a trip. Side 1 starts with Fight The Power (Part 1 & 2) and keeps one foot heavy in the […]

Earth, Wind & Fire – Spirit

One of EWF’s better albums and one of its most uplifting, due mainly to Philip Bailey’s singing on tracks like Imagination. The entire album puts the soulful vocals to the fore and the production on the album is typically great. Charles Stepney, who had co-produced or collaborated with Maurice White numerous times, died during the […]

Ultravox – Systems of Romance

Ultravox dropped the exclamation point in their name before releasing this, getting a little more serious and into their keyboards. Systems of Romance has got some synthesizers and cheap guitars and was recorded in 1978 as Kraftwerk reached punk. Interesting early new wave sounds for the time, but not a great listen anymore. Quiet Men […]