Since September 2010, this blog has recorded the journey of this middle-aged man as I attempt to listen to all the music in my CD collection. CDs revisited in their entirety from start to finish - no skipping tracks, no shuffle. CDs only - no vinyl, no tapes, no downloads. And just as CD technology (and the album format itself) becomes obsolete. I'm no music critic, just a music junkie with too much time on my hands.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

The Delfonics - La-La Means I Love You: The Definitive Collection (1997)

In addition to having one of the best band names ever, The Delfonics were pioneers of the "Philadelphia sound" of soul music. Smoother and slicker than Motown or Stax with tight vocal harmonies singing lots of mid-tempo ballads with lush string arrangements. The group is still around in some form today, but they were most popular in the late '60s and early '70s. Songs on this disc cover their best music from 1968-1974, after which the group temporarily split. Part of the magic of this group lies in writer/producer Thom Bell, who would go on to work with the Stylistics and the Spinners. In his review of this disc, Andrew Hamilton wrote that this release is "more than enough Delfonics for most; you'll want two copies -- one for the car and one for the crib."

Tracks: A staggering 20 cuts clocking in at 64 minutes. Most are top notch and wouldn't be out of place at a cocktail party or when you've got the lights down low. Top cuts for me include La-La Means I Love You, I'm Sorry, Somebody Loves You, and the incomparable Didn't I (Blow Your Mind This Time). Weaker tracks are Ready Or Not Here I Come, the plodding instrumental Delfonics Theme, Tell Me This Is A Dream, and any of the songs that weren't co-written by Bell. While their minor hit Hey! Love is a favorite of the group's hardcore fans, it doesn't do anything for me. My advice is to listen to the first 12 tracks, then move on to something else.

Personal Memory Associated with this CD: Embarrassingly, I was unfamiliar with The Delfonics by name until I became a fan of the 1997 movie Jackie Brown, in which their music is prominently featured, particularly Didn't I (Blow Your Mind This Time). I have that movie soundtrack as well as the DVD, but I couldn't pass up a used copy of this disc when I saw it for $3.

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