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  1. #1

    Classic Soul: Do you prefer the 1960s or 1970s

    Inspired the the Marvin Gaye thread.

    From a certain point of view the question there boils down to do you prefer 60s or 70s soul music?

    My answer is the same as it is for the Marvin Gaye question

    It depends on the day

    I love both and it's hard to choose between them

    A very quick and informal look at a small portion of my CD collection revealed about at 60-40 split in favor of the 70s and if I had to guess I'd say that it would be about that if I looked at my whole music collection

    I will also say when it comes to 60s soul - I don't really care for the early 60s say 60-64 there are some songs from that period that I really like but as a general rule I much prefer the 2nd half of the decade

    And as far as the 70s even though it's not as strict I prefer the 1st half of the 70s

    Which decade do you prefer?

    As a side note the term "classic soul" to me always means the 60s and 70s, even though the music is nearly 40 years old I never refer to 1980s soul music as anything other than 80s soul

  2. #2
    As a decade, I prefer the '60s because of the segue into disco at the end of the '70s. But soul music at the beginning of the '70s is my favorite music to listen to. It built upon everything from the previous 20 years to be (in my opinion) a darned nearly perfect sound. The O'Jays, Spinners, Harold Melvin & the Blue Notes and many others are the first thing I think of when I think about the words "soul music". By contrast, a lot of soul music from the '60s was actually urban-influenced pop music that I also love.

    But for the fact that ten years created that many more memories than the four or five magic years in the '70s, I have to say I prefer the '60s. I could probably put together a 20 CD essential set of songs from the earlier decade but a 15 CD compilation from half the time of the latter one.

    Great question.

  3. #3
    I prefer the[60's]but right after musically come the[70's]if you listen to early[70's]gems-i miss you-you're a big girl now-oh girl-i'll be around,any of these would've been a hit in the previous decade.

  4. #4
    I prefer from 1954-92, then picking up again in 1995-98. Those are the years I prefer most.

  5. #5
    I know Ray Charles, Sam Cooke and James Brown are like the patriarchs/pioneers/godfathers of soul and I respect and appreciate them but I love soul music of the mid 60's on. For me, Soul music means Stax/Volt and Atlantic, Memphis and Muscle Shoals, Otis and Aretha, etc. A very close second for me is the smooth Philly Soul of the 70's: Spinners, Stylistics, O'Jays, etc. It's hard to choose and changes from time to time.
    To be clear, Motown is a whole genre of its own for me, its own separate kingdom.

  6. #6
    Quote Originally Posted by marv2 View Post
    I prefer from 1954-92, then picking up again in 1995-98. Those are the years I prefer most.

  7. #7
    I think it is only natural that anyone prefers the music of what they considered "their generation." For me that would have to be the 60s, and in fact I could even narrow it down to one year...1966. Motown especially was ON FIRE that year!!!!

  8. #8
    I definitely prefer the 70s to the 60s. Motown is the king of it all in the 60s, but I also dig the last days of doowop, anything Aretha, and quite a bit of the stuff coming out of Chess and Stax and Atlantic and some of the other soul staple labels. But there's a lot of music in the 60s that for my personal taste doesn't hold up as well as I would have liked it too. As a child in the 80s and 90s I loved music from the 60s and I think it's because much of it was so simple that it easily appealed to a kid. The older I've gotten, the less I seem to play music from the 60s (excluding Motown and some of the my fav 60s artists like Aretha, Wilson Pickett, Etta James, Otis Redding, etc) and instead rely heavily on the 70s in comparison. The 70s had it going on. The songs were more serious, the tone so dramatic, the rhythms kicked it up a notch, just so many things to love about the 70s, including Disco.

    Quote Originally Posted by Optimal Saint View Post
    As a side note the term "classic soul" to me always means the 60s and 70s, even though the music is nearly 40 years old I never refer to 1980s soul music as anything other than 80s soul
    I agree. Soul, as we commonly think of it, was birthed in the 60s and cultivated in the 70s. By the time the 80s rolled through, soul wasn't new, the genre had already solidified it's legacy. Just like "classic rap". That term is 80s thru the mid 90s, when more than a few people were still wishfully referring to rap (or hiphop) as a fad that wouldn't last. Anything made after the mid 90s is just straight up hiphop (my opinion about whether the term "hiphop" is applied loosely in most cases, should be reserved for the thread titled "Is It Real Hiphop vs Fraudulent Hiphop", if someone ever decides to create it) because the genre was fully formed at that point.

  9. #9
    I love that gif Jerry. I'm gonna have to steal it. Lol

  10. #10
    I love the '60s but it's the '70s and '80s for me lol

  11. #11
    Quote Originally Posted by RanRan79 View Post

    I agree. Soul, as we commonly think of it, was birthed in the 60s and cultivated in the 70s. By the time the 80s rolled through, soul wasn't new, the genre had already solidified it's legacy. Just like "classic rap". That term is 80s thru the mid 90s, when more than a few people were still wishfully referring to rap (or hiphop) as a fad that wouldn't last. Anything made after the mid 90s is just straight up hiphop (my opinion about whether the term "hiphop" is applied loosely in most cases, should be reserved for the thread titled "Is It Real Hiphop vs Fraudulent Hiphop", if someone ever decides to create it) because the genre was fully formed at that point.
    I agree with you that soul morphed and kind of disappeared in the '80s. A lot of that decade was soul-less as urban music transitioned to something different. But groups like Jodeci, Solo, Mint Condition and even (a lot of) Tony! Toni! Tone! were clearly soul outfits in the late '80s and '90s. I consider Jodeci to be the last truly great soul band and it amazes me how they pulled it off in the era that saw the rise of computers, sequencers and samplers. I mean, is this not soul music?


    And hip hop lost me when they began swearing, not for artistic effect, but just to be swearing to get the parental advisory on the cover. Kind of like all the influence Richard Pryor had on stand up comedians who followed him. Those words meant something in the comedy of Richard Pryor, Redd Foxx and Lenny Bruce but today's comedians swear as if the dirty word is the punch line.
    Last edited by Jerry Oz; 10-31-2018 at 02:41 PM.

  12. #12
    Quote Originally Posted by Jerry Oz View Post
    I agree with you that soul morphed and kind of disappeared in the '80s. A lot of that decade was soul-less as urban music transitioned to something different. But groups like Jodeci, Solo, Mint Condition and even (a lot of) Tony! Toni! Tone! were clearly soul outfits in the late '80s and '90s. I consider Jodeci to be the last truly great soul band and it amazes me how they pulled it off in the era that saw the rise of computers, sequencers and samplers. I mean, is this not soul music?
    I think the Soul of the 70s morphed into a generic r&b of the 80s due to the reliance on synthetic instrumentation, but I think the Soul of the vocals and the writing were still very much present, as the artists were products of the 60s and 70s themselves. Jodeci was my favorite male group in the 90s. I had all their albums and other memorabilia. (Dare I refer to myself as a fanboy?) They definitely bridged a gap between Classic Soul and the new era of music that the 90s brought in, Tony Toni Tone included. Mint Condition was another fav of mine. I believe they are the last of the Black bands playing real instruments to have a considerable hit on the r&b chart. I love Stokely's voice. Soul definitely didn't die after the 70s, but it did some morphing and birthing. Lol

    Quote Originally Posted by Jerry Oz View Post
    And hip hop lost me when they began swearing, not for artistic effect, but just to be swearing to get the parental advisory on the cover. Kind of like all the influence Richard Pryor had on stand up comedians who followed him. Those words meant something in the comedy of Richard Pryor, Redd Foxx and Lenny Bruce but today's comedians swear as if the dirty word is the punch line.
    And that was one of the genre's first missteps spelled out very well. I think what happened is that the cursing really took hold when the genre began to rely heavy on keepin it real, particularly where the more hardcore gangsta stuff was concerned. The argument was that if they were rapping about how they were living, then they have to say it the way they would ordinarily say it. And it's hard to argue against that. But there was a point when everybody felt they had to do it and now it's required not just in rap but even in the songs by singers. But now today the cursing is probably the least of the problems of the genre. 90 percent of rappers (even the street ones I come across) have zero talent, nothing to say, no sense of melody or the cadence of voice that made rap in the classic phase so noteworthy, and most of them are performers in a modern day minstrel show...and don't give a damn when you point it out to them. Of course there are some exceptions, and good hiphop being made today is hiphop worth hearing. But it seems to me like rap and r&b are becoming two more of African America's art forms that are dying a slow and painful death.

  13. #13
    for Motown I much prefer the 60's, but for Soul/Funk I prefer the 70's.

  14. #14
    Quote Originally Posted by RanRan79 View Post
    But now today the cursing is probably the least of the problems of the genre. 90 percent of rappers (even the street ones I come across) have zero talent, nothing to say, no sense of melody or the cadence of voice that made rap in the classic phase so noteworthy, and most of them are performers in a modern day minstrel show...and don't give a damn when you point it out to them. Of course there are some exceptions, and good hiphop being made today is hiphop worth hearing. But it seems to me like rap and r&b are becoming two more of African America's art forms that are dying a slow and painful death.
    Lil Wayne's infamous interview about Black Lives Matter immediately came to mind. It wasn't the fact that he reversed course and was suddenly against the movement, it was how ignorantly he reacted and suggested that there was no reason to have concerns about social justice because of all the white people he sees at his shows. There's a difference between not being down with a cause and opposing it because there's more money in avoiding it. He, for me, is the modern day version of a Stepin Fetchit.

    And I loved the rappers like De La Soul who changed the cadence of their rapping from that of artists before them. I even liked some Bone Thugs-n-Harmony songs because they were original and unique. Early OutKast, too. But I have to play some songs several times now to understand what they said. SMH.

    And to tell you how old I feel when I hear modern hip hop, I always wonder if young people dance together when they hear it. Every generation of urban music, including blues, ska, swing and reggae, had songs that could get people out of their seats to dance. But I hear today's hip hop and it just doesn't make me think that I'd find a girl to dance with me when it came over the sound system if I was a young man today.

    Side note: Dancing in the '60s was much more intimate and sexier than any era before or since. Maybe that's a reason to pick the '60s.

  15. #15
    I can't pick one decade over the other as I like the late 60's (especially 1968) through the 1970's including disco.

  16. #16
    I love the 70s. All those 3-5 man groups singing sweet love songs, it can't get much better than that!

  17. #17
    Quote Originally Posted by daviddesper View Post
    I think it is only natural that anyone prefers the music of what they considered "their generation." For me that would have to be the 60s, and in fact I could even narrow it down to one year...1966. Motown especially was ON FIRE that year!!!!

    My favorite year in music was 1978 from beginning to end!

  18. #18
    Quote Originally Posted by daviddesper View Post
    I think it is only natural that anyone prefers the music of what they considered "their generation." For me that would have to be the 60s, and in fact I could even narrow it down to one year...1966. Motown especially was ON FIRE that year!!!!
    I never really thought about it before, but 1966 is definitely my favorite year in music, too! Motown was absolutely ON FIRE. All four of the Supremes singles were awesome. My favorite Motown single that year: Shorty Long's Function at the Junction.

  19. #19
    Quote Originally Posted by marv2 View Post
    My favorite year in music was 1978 from beginning to end!
    I don't know if I have a favorite year, but 1978 is when music went from being emotional and introspective to being FUN. I think in my case, music went from being my life's soundtrack to being the focus of my life's story right about then. It's more than just the danceabilty of the songs, too. For the next decade, clubs took off because loud music, fast, slow, whatever, just became the thing. I think we might both feel that way because (sort of like daviddesper said) we came of age right about that time.

  20. #20
    Quote Originally Posted by Jerry Oz View Post
    I don't know if I have a favorite year, but 1978 is when music went from being emotional and introspective to being FUN. I think in my case, music went from being my life's soundtrack to being the focus of my life's story right about then. It's more than just the danceabilty of the songs, too. For the next decade, clubs took off because loud music, fast, slow, whatever, just became the thing. I think we might both feel that way because (sort of like daviddesper said) we came of age right about that time.
    Jerry, I just remember how amazing that time was for music. I bought more records that year and from that year (around 100 albums from 1978). I still hear that music regularly today. Just today I heard "The Closer I Get to You" Roberta Flack and Donny Hathaway and "Emotion" by Samantha Sang. A few years ago, I looked at a few Billboard Charts for 1978 and noticed that for any given week about 70% of songs on the charts that year and now generally regarded as "classics". "Saturday Night Fever" alone produce a slew of them.

  21. #21
    I started buying my own records about a year later when I got my driver's license. When I started driving, I started working. And when I started working, I began to leave high school at lunch time to go to Record & Tape Outlet to buy new albums on Friday afternoons. I'd take them back to school and play them on the art room turntable. It was soon after that when I began to drive all over town to buy records every payday. I couldn't tell you now when I purchased my last wax album or even what it was.

    And just like that... I feel sad.

  22. #22
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    I prefer the music from the early 1950s and early-to-mid 1960s equally. After that, a second tier of late 1940s and late 1950s. After that, I like the late 1960s. After that, the early 1940s. After that, the late 1930s. After that, ancient Chinese, Keltic, Japanese, and other primitive music, then, finally, early '70s music. The only music I like after the early 1970s is Jazz of the style of the 1960s, classical European music, and Blues still played and sung in the old style. I don't like any of the new styles that started after the mid 1960s.

    I started listening to music at the beginning of the 1950s, and bought my first records in 1953. Before that, I was listening to my parents' 78 RPM records from the 1930s and 1940s.
    Last edited by robb_k; 11-05-2018 at 01:40 AM.

  23. #23
    Such a great question!!! I have thought about this before. I LOVE both 60s and 70s soul, but I'd have to go with the 70s. (I'm pretty sure I own more and listen to more 70s music than 60s.)

    I'm not a fan of a lot of early 60s stuff, much of it sounds too dated for me. I like ALL of the 70s as a decade, including disco, which, if done right and kept nice and soulful and funky, is usually excellent!

    Also, consistency. For me the quality of the 70s is much more consistent. I could listen to any soul album of the 70s and I'd probably love it. Not sure the same could be same of the 60s; as much as I love Motown, I struggle with some of those early albums.

  24. #24
    I love both 60's and 70's soul also, but my heart is with the 70's.
    I was in a cab over the weekend and the driver was playing a CD
    by the Spinners and each song just got better and better. Then
    Ghetto Child came on, and I'm looking out the window and then
    came the tears. That darn Philadelphia Soul!!

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