Today 07:29 AM

"50 Years Later, Gamble and Huff’s Philly Sound Stirs the Soul" Part 2 of 2

From today's NY Times:

“The string players came from the Academy of Music,” Huff said. “They were all accomplished musicians, playing classical music, and then they’d come over to our studio and get funky, and they loved it.”

Eddie Levert of the O’Jays — whose 1972 album “Back Stabbers” is often considered the pinnacle of the Philly Sound — said PI.R. “was almost like a workshop,” in a telephone interview. “They were able to take people who had the talent, and then rehearse those songs until they became a part of you, and really lived in you.”
As the label and its roster grew, so did the subject matter of the songs. Where Motown had resisted political messages in its lyrics (Berry Gordy Jr. fought hard to convince Marvin Gaye not to release “What’s Going On”), at P.I.R. they came to the foreground: “The Love I Lost” and “When Will I See You Again” gave way to “For the Love of Money” and “Wake Up Everybody.”

“That was the atmosphere in the world at that time,” Huff said. “We were always aware of what was going on in the community and with the people around us, so we wrote about real life — just expressed ourselves through music.”
Levert pointed out the continuing relevance of their recordings. “Those songs stand the test of time,” he explained. “When we did them, we were talking about that period we were living in, what was going on at that time. But they’re still relevant, because nothing has changed — the same message can still apply to us and our way of life today.”

Philly Soul laid out a road map for disco, and the songs have been consistently covered and sampled in the hip-hop era. The label continued to release important records in the ’80s, most notably “If Only You Knew,” Patti LaBelle’s first solo single to reach No. 1 on the R&B chart, and first to cross over to pop success.

But as the hits slowed down, Gamble and Huff increasingly turned their attention to activism. In 1977, they put together an all-star benefit project called “Let’s Clean Up the Ghetto,” and Gamble got involved in real estate, building and renovating homes in South Philadelphia and backing local businesses and charter schools. (“He went into the worst neighborhoods,” Carter said. “Talk about putting your money where your mouth is.”)
Jimmy Jam said that the duo modeled an approach to having a second or third act, “where you’ve already been successful, but you take that platform and the money you made and the lessons you’ve learned and you put that into making your community thrive.”

After 50 years of Philadelphia International Records, it’s that achievement — spreading a message of empowerment and then backing it up with action — that Gamble and Huff point to as their true source of pride. “We’ve done a lot to contribute to the future and try to help our people,” said Gamble. “The music was the bottom line to the whole thing, but what did that music represent?

“When you think of our music, it was 360 degrees of knowledge that we gave,” he continued. “A lot of great love songs, which is important in life, but also a lot of songs about building our community, building people. It don’t mean anything if you don’t leave something for the next generation.”
A version of this article appears in print on Feb. 28, 2021, Section AR, Page 17 of the New York edition with the headline: Heart and Soul of the Philly Sound.

Today 03:08 AM

Stevie Wonder Says He's Moving to Ghana

Stevie Wonder is planning out his future. The music legend recently revealed to Oprah Winfrey that he is set on heading out to West Africa to spend his remaining years.
"I wanna see this nation smile again, and I want to see it before I leave to travel to move to Ghana," Wonder, 67, told Winfrey in a recent interview. "Because I'm going to do that."
According to the celebrated musician, he plans to move in an effort to protect his grandchildren from the racial injustice and prejudice that he feels is pervasive in American society.
"I don't want to see my children's children's children have to say, 'Oh, please like me. Please respect me. Please know that I am important. Please value me,'" Wonder shared. "What kind of [life would that be]?"
Wonder -- who has won 25 GRAMMY awards and has been nominated 74 times -- has reportedly been considering a move to Ghana for more than 25 years.

Back in 1994, Wonder said at a gathering for the International Association of African American Music that he wanted to relocate to the West African country because he felt there's "more of a sense of community there," according to CNN.
Today 02:07 AM

Sister sledge's "all american girls" album turns 40

Attachment 18631
One of my favorite's by these fine fillies from Philly. Released February 2, 1981 this project turned up the energy from their previous work with The Chic Organization. This writer gives a great retrospective on a great recording. https://www.albumism.com/features/si...-retrospective
01-16-2021 07:55 AM

Songs with dances in the title

Mickey's Monkey
Twistin' Postman
Come On Do the Jerk
Can You Jerk Like Me?

All of the above songs were original compositions released on various Motown labels, and all contain the names of dances.

I know there are more. Can you name more songs released by Motown that contain the names of dances that are NOT covers?
Today 04:56 AM

2021 Motown Reissues

From the japanese Oldays Records :

_ The Marvelettes Smash Hits Of '62 + The Marvelettes Recorded Live On Stage

Yesterday 06:42 PM

Another-temptin question

Hi temptaholics, the question of the day is this...the temps recorded three songs dealing with shall we say-the imagination,now of course the first one is[just my imagination]can you name the other two?


Ralph Terrana

Welcome to Soulful Detroit! Kindly Consider Turning Off Your Ad BlockingX
Soulful Detroit is a free service that relies on revenue from ad display [regrettably] and donations. We notice that you are using an ad-blocking program that prevents us from earning revenue during your visit.
Ads are REMOVED for Members who donate to Soulful Detroit. [You must be logged in for ads to disappear]
And have Ads removed.