Note: this release was originally purchased as an LP, later replaced by a CD.
Even though it doesn't contain my favorite EWF song (September), this remains my all-time favorite EWF album. David Foster is given a few writing credits and, while he doesn't get a producer credit here, his hand is all over this album. This soul/funk is highly polished and smooth. Sadly, this release marked the beginning of the end - the band would never again record an album this good. Regular readers of this blog know that I'm not a huge fan of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, but they got it right when they inducted this group in 2000. When I say that I listen to this CD quite often, I'm not exaggerating. It's almost always within reach.
Peak on the US Billboard Top 200 chart: #3
Peak on Billboard's R&B albums chart: #1
Peak on Cash Box album chart: #4
Tracks: I'll listen to all 9 tracks here without skipping. In The Stone (you'd recognize it from the movie Drumline) is one of the best album openers of all-time and sets the tone for the rest of the album. Also on side one is After The Love Is Gone, one of the best ballads of the '70s. For the most part, EWF had always ignored disco, but when they paired with The Emotions for Boogie Wonderland, they scored a top ten hit. However, that song is the only disco song here; the rest is the typical EWF blend of R&B, funk, and pop. Other top tracks include Let Your Feelings Show, Star, and Rock That!
Personal Memory Associated with this CD: Good memories of junior high. I think I originally got this album as part of a Columbia House 12 albums for 1¢ promotion. While everybody knows that deal is ultimately a rip-off, it can't be too bad if Earth, Wind & Fire music shows up in your mailbox.
If you have a friend that is familiar with this album, ask him/her to sing the introduction to In The Stone then sit back and listen to what comes out. Hilarious. (We musicians are easily amused, apparently.)
Previously revisited for the blog: