Tag: Soul

Monday 6/28/21 12pm ET: Artist Countdown: 5th Dimension Top 30 Hits

The 5th Dimension is an American popular music vocal group, whose repertoire includes pop, R&B, soul, jazz, light opera and Broadway – a melange referred to as “champagne soul”.

Formed as the Versatiles in late 1965, the group changed its name to “the 5th Dimension” by 1966. Between 1967 and 1973 they charted with 19 Top 40 hits on Billboard’s Hot 100, two of which – “Up – Up and Away” (No. 7, 1967) and the 1969 number one “Medley: Aquarius/Let the Sunshine In (The Flesh Failures)” — won the Grammy Award for Record of the Year. Other big hits include “Stoned Soul Picnic” (No. 3), “Wedding Bell Blues” (No. 1), “One Less Bell to Answer” (No. 2), a cover of “Never My Love” (pop No. 12/Easy Listening No. 1), “(Last Night) I Didn’t Get to Sleep at All” (No. 8) and “If I Could Reach You” (pop No. 10/Easy Listening No. 1). Three of their records reached the Top Ten of Billboard’s Rhythm & Blues/Soul chart. Five of their 19 Top 20 hits on the Easy Listening chart reached number one.

The five original members were Billy Davis Jr., Florence La Rue, Marilyn McCoo, Lamonte McLemore, and Ronald Townson. They have recorded for several labels over their careers. Their first work appeared on the Soul City label, which was started by Imperial Records/United Artists Records recording artist Johnny Rivers. The group later recorded for Bell/Arista Records, ABC Records, and Motown Records.

Some of the songwriters popularized by the 5th Dimension went on to careers of their own, especially Ashford & Simpson, who wrote “California Soul”. The group is also notable for having more success with the songs of Laura Nyro than Nyro did herself, particularly with “Stoned Soul Picnic”, “Sweet Blindness”, “Wedding Bell Blues”, “Blowin’ Away” and “Save the Country”. The group also recorded songs by well-known songwriters such as “One Less Bell to Answer”, written by Burt Bacharach and Hal David, and the songs and music of Jimmy Webb, who wrote their hit “Up – Up and Away”. The group’s 1967 LP The Magic Garden features all but one song composed by Webb.

1Aquarius/Let the Sunshine In (The Flesh Failures)1969
2Wedding Bell Blues1969
3Up, Up and Away1967
4(Last Night) I Didn’t Get to Sleep at All1972
5Sweet Blindness1968
6Workin’ on a Groovy Thing1969
7Blowing Away1969
8One Less Bell to Answer1970
9Never My Love1971
10Save the Country1970
11Love’s Lines, Angles and Rhymes1971
12Together Let’s Find Love1971
13Puppet Man1970
14Stoned Soul Picnic1968
15If I Could Reach You1972
16Ashes to Ashes1973
17Light Sings1971
18On the Beach (In the Summertime)1970
19Paper Cup1967
20Go Where You Wanna Go1966
21Carpet Man1968
23Everything’s Been Changed1973
24The Girls’ Song1970
25California Soul1968
26The Declaration1970
27No Love in the Room1975
28Love Hangover1976
29Another Day, Another Heartache1967
30A Change Is Gonna Come/People Got to Be Free1970

Friday 6/11/21 2pm ET: Sounds of 2010s

Featuring music from Hootie & The Blowfish, Tyler Farr, Bon Jovi, Pink, Keb’ Mo’ and more

Friday 6/4/21 2pm ET: Sounds of 2010s

Featuring music from Carrie Underwood, Marc Cohn, Nickelback, Great Van Fleet, Natasha Bedingfield, Daughtry, Lady Gaga, Band Perry, Nelson, Daughtry, Maroon 5 and more. . .

Wednesday 4/7/21 12am ET: Feature LP: Marvin Gaye – What’s Going On (1971)

What’s Going On is the eleventh studio album by American soul singer, songwriter, and producer Marvin Gaye. It was released on May 21, 1971, by the Motown Records-subsidiary label Tamla.

Gaye recorded the album between 1970 and 1971 in sessions at Hitsville U.S.A., Golden World, and United Sound Studios in Detroit, and at The Sound Factory in West Hollywood, California. It was his first album to credit him as a producer and to credit Motown’s in-house studio band, the session musicians known as the Funk Brothers.

What’s Going On is a concept album with most of its songs segueing into the next and has been categorized as a song cycle; the album ends with a reprise of the album’s opening theme. The narrative established by the songs is told from the point of view of a Vietnam veteran returning to his home country to witness hatred, suffering, and injustice. Gaye’s introspective lyrics explore themes of drug abuse, poverty, and the Vietnam War. He has also been credited with promoting awareness of ecological issues before the public outcry over them had become prominent.

The album was an immediate commercial and critical success, and came to be viewed by music historians as a classic of 1970s soul. In 2001, a deluxe edition of the album was released, featuring a recording of Gaye’s May 1972 concert at the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C. Broad-ranging surveys of critics, musicians, and the general public have shown that What’s Going On is regarded as one of the greatest albums of all time and a landmark recording in popular music. In 2020, it was ranked number one on Rolling Stone’s list of the 500 Greatest Albums of All Time.

  1. “What’s Going On” 3:53
  2. “What’s Happening Brother” 2:43
  3. “Flyin’ High (In the Friendly Sky)” 3:49
  4. “Save the Children” 4:03
  5. “God Is Love” 1:41
  6. “Mercy Mercy Me (The Ecology)” 3:16
  7. “Right On” 7:31
  8. “Wholy Holy” 3:08
  9. “Inner City Blues (Make Me Wanna Holler)” 5:26

Friday 3pm ET: New Music Show

This week we feature NEW music from:  Blair Lee, Ya Tseen Feat. Portugal. The Man, Drew Holcomb and The Neighbors, Timothy Moore, Dylan Cartlidge, Shaed, Eric Hutchinson, Ollee Owens, Eric Hutchinson, Noga Erez Feat. Rousso, Genius Aretha Cast Feat. Cynthia Erivo, Katie Toupin, Jack Ingram and Miranda Lambert and Jon Randall, Tom Petty and more . . . 

Wednesday 3/10/21 1am ET: Feature LP: TLC – Fanmail (1999)

FanMail is the third studio album by American girl group TLC. It was released on February 23, 1999, by LaFace and Arista Records. The title of the album is a tribute to their fans who sent them fan mail during their hiatus. FanMail debuted at number one on the US Billboard 200, selling 318,000 copies in its first week of release, and spent five weeks at number one.

The album received eight nominations at the 42nd Annual Grammy Awards, including one for Album of the Year, winning three. It has been certified six-times platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA), and has sold 10 million copies worldwide. FanMail is TLC’s second best-selling album after their 1994 studio album CrazySexyCool. To promote the album, TLC embarked on their first concert tour, the FanMail Tour. It was the group’s final album released in Lisa “Left Eye” Lopes’ lifetime before she died on April 25, 2002, as she was killed in a car crash prior to the release of their fourth studio album 3D (2002).

1. “FanMail” 3:59
2. “The Vic-E Interpretation – Interlude” 0:19
3. “Silly Ho” 4:15
4. “Whispering Playa – Interlude” 0:52
5. “No Scrubs” 3:34
6. “I’m Good at Being Bad” 5:39
7. “If They Knew” 4:04
8. “I Miss You So Much” 4:56
9. “Unpretty” 4:38
10. “My Life” 4:01
11. “Shout” 3:57
12. “Come On Down” 4:17
13. “Dear Lie” 5:10
14. “Communicate – Interlude” 0:51
15. “Lovesick” 3:52
16. “Automatic” 4:31
17. “Don’t Pull Out on Me Yet” 4:33

Dallas Austin – arrangements (tracks 1, 3, 7, 9, 11, 12, 15–17); gang vocals (tracks 3, 11)
T-Boz – background vocals (tracks 1, 11, 13, 16); gang vocals (track 3)
Chilli – background vocals (tracks 1, 5, 8, 11, 16)
Debra Killings – background vocals (tracks 1, 3, 5, 7–13, 15–17); bass (tracks 9, 12, 17)
Rick Sheppard – MIDI, sound design (tracks 1, 3, 9, 11, 15, 17)
Vic-E – speech (track 2); rap (track 3)
Leslie Brathwaite – gang vocals (tracks 3, 11)
Ty Hudson – gang vocals (tracks 3, 11)
Joi Gilliam – gang vocals (track 3)
Peach – gang vocals (track 3)
Sonji – gang vocals (track 3)
Carolyn Paige – gang vocals (track 3)
Kevin Wales – gang vocals (track 3)
“Big” Stan Smith – gang vocals (track 3)
Papi – playa (track 4)
Kandi Burruss – background vocals (track 5)
Tameka “Tiny” Cottle – background vocals (track 5)
She’kspere – MIDI, sound design (track 5)
Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis – arrangements, all other musical instruments (track 6)
Mike Scott – guitar (track 6)
Alex Richbourg – drum programming (track 6)
Jerry Lumpkins – additional keyboards (track 7)
Babyface – drum programming, acoustic guitar (tracks 8, 13); keyboards, electric guitar (track 13)
Greg Phillinganes – piano (track 8); Wurlitzer (track 13)
Michael Thompson – acoustic guitar (track 8); electric guitar (track 13)
C.C. Thomas – bass (track 8)
Necia Bray – background vocals (track 8)
Tomi Martin – guitar (tracks 9, 17)
Tom Knight – drums (track 9)
LaMarquis Jefferson – bass (track 10)
Marde Johnson – gang vocals (track 11)
Koko Watkins – gang vocals (track 11)
Solomon Jackson – gang vocals (track 11)
James Killings – guitar (track 12)
Nathan East – bass (track 13)
Paulinho da Costa – percussion (track 13)
Colin Wolfe – bass (track 15)
Melvin M. Jones – trumpet (track 17)
Gregory Hudspeth – saxophone (track 17)
Anthony Roberson – trombone (track 17)

Wednesday 3/10/21 12am ET: Feature LP: Paula Abdul – Forever Your Girl (1988)

Forever Your Girl is the debut studio album by American singer Paula Abdul. It was released on June 21, 1988 through Virgin Records. The album was Abdul’s breakthrough into the music industry after being a choreographer for high-profile artists including George Michael, ZZ Top, Duran Duran and most notably Janet Jackson. At the time of the album’s release it was the most successful debut album of all time and was the first time an artist scored four US Billboard Hot 100 number-one singles from a debut album.

1. “The Way That You Love Me”  5:22
2. “Knocked Out” 3:52
3. “Opposites Attract” (with The Wild Pair) 4:24
4. “State of Attraction” 4:07
5. “I Need You” 5:01
6. “Forever Your Girl” 4:58
7. “Straight Up” 4:11
8. “Next to You” 4:26
9. “Cold Hearted” 3:51
10. “One or the Other” 4:10

Paula Abdul – lead vocals, backing vocals
Peter Arata – mixing assistant
Babyface – keyboards, producer, backing vocals
Glen Ballard – drums, producer, programming
Russ Bracher – engineer
Pattie Brooks – backing vocals
Wally Buck – engineer
Francis Buckley – engineer, mixing
Annette Cisneros – assistant engineer
Dave Cochran – guitar, backing vocals
Keith “KC” Cohen – mixing, producer
Delisa Davis – backing vocals
Tami Day – backing vocals
Jimmy Demers – backing vocals
Eddie M. – saxophone on “I Need You”
Al Fleming – assistant engineer
Basil Fung – guitar
Jon Gass – engineer, mixing
Bobby Gonzales – guitar
Danny Grigsby – assistant engineer
Evelyn Halus – backing vocals
Dann Huff – guitar
Tim Jaquette – engineer, mixing
Jesse Johnson – drums, keyboards, producer
Cliff Jones – assistant engineer, engineer
Kayo – synthesizer, synthesizer bass
Oliver Leiber – arranger, drum programming, guitar, keyboards, producer, programming
Jeff Lorber – drum programming, engineer, guest artist, keyboards, producer
Yvette Marine – backing vocals
Pat McDougal – assistant engineer
Lucia Newell – backing vocals
Ricky P. – keyboards
Pebbles – guest artist, backing vocals
L.A. Reid – drums, guest artist, percussion programming, producer
Angel Rogers – backing vocals
Josh Schneider – assistant engineer
Daryl Simmons – backing vocals
Bob Somma – guitar
St. Paul – arranger, bass, keyboards, Organ, vocoder
Kendall Stubbs – engineer
Randy Weber – programming, synthesizer
Steve Weise – engineer
Troy Williams – saxophone on “Forever Your Girl”
Wild Pair – vocals, backing vocals

Thursday 1/7/2021 12am ET: Feature LP: Michael Jackson – Off The Wall (1979 / 2001)

Off the Wall is the fifth solo studio album by American singer Michael Jackson, released on August 10, 1979, by Epic Records. It was Jackson’s first album released through Epic Records, the label he recorded under until his death in 2009, and the first produced by Quincy Jones, whom he met while working on the 1978 film The Wiz. Several critics observed that Off the Wall was crafted from disco, pop, funk, R&B, soft rock and Broadway ballads. Its lyrical themes include escapism, liberation, loneliness, hedonism and romance. The album features songwriting contributions from Stevie Wonder, Paul McCartney, Rod Temperton, Tom Bahler, and David Foster, alongside three tracks penned by Jackson himself.

Between 1972 and 1975, Jackson released a total of four solo studio albums with Motown as part of The Jackson 5 franchise; Got to Be There (1972), Ben (1972), Music & Me (1973) and Forever, Michael (1975). Before recording his next album, which came to be Off the Wall, Jackson desired to create a record not sounding like a Jacksons record, but rather showcasing creative freedom and individualism.

Off the Wall peaked at number three on the Billboard Top LPs & Tapes chart and number one on the Top Black Albums chart, staying at number one on the latter for 16 weeks, and was an enormous critical success. Five singles were released from the album. Jackson wrote three songs himself, including the Billboard Hot 100 number one single “Don’t Stop ‘Til You Get Enough”, which was Jackson’s first solo number-one single since “Ben”, seven years prior. The second single from the album, “Rock with You” also peaked atop the chart. With the title track and “She’s Out of My Life” reaching the top 10 of the chart, Jackson became the first solo artist to have four singles from the same album peak inside the top 10 of the Billboard Hot 100.

Off the Wall was a significant departure from Jackson’s previous work for Motown and was hailed as a major breakthrough for him. In retrospect, writers have hailed it a landmark of the disco era and one of the greatest albums of all time. Critics often debate whether it or Thriller is Jackson’s best album. It has sold over 20 million copies worldwide, making it one of the best-selling albums of all time. In August 2009, it was certified 8× platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA). At the 1980 Grammy Awards, it was nominated for two Grammy Awards, with Jackson winning Best R&B Vocal Performance, Male for “Don’t Stop ‘Til You Get Enough”. In 2008, Off the Wall was inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame.

1. “Don’t Stop ‘Til You Get Enough” 6:02
2. “Rock with You” 3:38
3. “Working Day and Night” 5:10
4. “Get on the Floor” 4:42
5. “Off the Wall” 4:11
6. “Girlfriend” 3:08
7. “She’s Out of My Life” 3:41
8. “I Can’t Help It” 4:28
9. “It’s the Falling in Love” 3:52
10. “Burn This Disco Out” 3:39
11. “Quincy Jones Interview #1” 0:37
12. “Introduction to Don’t Stop ‘Til You Get Enough Demo” 0:13
13. “Don’t Stop ‘Til You Get Enough” (Original Demo from 1978) 4:48
14. “Quincy Jones Interview #2” 0:30
15. “Introduction to Workin’ Day and Night Demo” 0:10
16. “Working Day and Night” (Original Demo from 1978) 4:19
17. “Quincy Jones Interview #3” 0:48
18. “Rod Temperton Interview” 4:57
19. “Quincy Jones Interview #4” 1:32