Friday, May 31, 2013

40 Year Itch : Those We Missed from May of 1973

Jose Feliciano teams up with Bill Withers on the catchy title cut of his 1973 album Compartments.Classic early 70's sound! Wish I owned this one.

Following the legendary Argus and its Tolkien-like imagery, Wishbone Ash recorded a straight ahead, almost generic rock album. What were they thinking?

   New York rocker was just a a few months away from releasing his most famous single, "Wild in the Streets", when his promising Atlantic debut came out. Dr John and The Persuasions also performed on the record.


On his finest album, "Q" teams up with an all star cast including Stevie Wonder, Bill Withers and Bill Cosby. Most of You Got It Bad Girl  is lush. Sir Mix A Lot told me nobody has ears like Quincy Jones!


Peter Frampton's second solo album had future Frampton Comes Alive hits "Lines on My Face" and "Do You Feel Like We Do". Might be his best.


Thanks to the single "Avenging Annie" ( still embraced by the gay community to this day), preppy Andy Pratt's second album climbed all the way to #78 on the Billboard 100. Roger Daltry covered the song a few years later.

Thursday, May 30, 2013

40 Year Itch : Use My Body Like A Car


It's easy to see why so many fans consider Living in the Material World George Harrison's most spiritual album. The album cover is a Kirlian photograph of Harrison's hand holding a Hindu medallion in his palm.
And then there are the songs.
   There's the future #1 single "Give Me Love ( Give Me Peace on Earth)" which Harrison called "a prayer and a personal statement between him, the Lord and whoever likes it". Just as Harrison had slipped some of the Hare Krishna mantra into "My Sweet Lord", he managed to incorporate the sacred word OM into the single. (It comes just before he says "My Lord").
   There are other songs of devotion: "The Lord Loves the One (That Loves the Lord)", "The Light That Has Lighted the World" and the title cut most obviously.

Perhaps turning 30 was a big deal for the youngest Beatle. He would have known it was at that age that the Buddha left his palace to seek the truth and Jesus started his public ministry.

The album isn't all spiritual. "Sue Me Sue You Blues", written in 1971,  is one of the most caustic statements about the Beatles break up.

Well, you serve me and I'll serve you
 Swing your partners, all get screwed
 Bring your lawyer and I'll bring mine
Get together, and we could have a bad time.

   After All Things Must Pass, Harrison's career was considered the most promising of all the former Beatles. But after waiting two and a half years, critics couldn't muster up a lot of enthusiasm for Living in the Material World. While Rolling Stone hailed it as a pop classic others tired of the album's "preachy overtones". "So damn holy, I could scream" said the NME reviewer. The album still managed to top the US charts and peaked at a respectable #2 in the UK.

  40 years later, it sounds a bit monotonous to these ears. Harrison sounds whiny at times and so does his slide guitar. But there are some very nice moments as well: the single, "Don't Let Me Wait Too Long" and the beautiful "That is All.". Still, I'd rank it among his best,  after All Things Must Pass and the overlooked 1979 lp George Harrison.

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

40 Year Itch : Left of the Dial, May 1973

Rick Paddor of WTUL-FM in the 1970's

Low on wattage but high more ways than one, college radio stations offered a progressive alternative to what was going on to the right off them on the FM dials. By 1973, many were reporting their playlists to Billboard Magazine. Here's a sample beginning with my old station -- a decade before I ever spun a record there.


1. The Faces Ooh La La
2. Fairport Convention Rosie
3. Stardrive Intergalactic Trot



1. Help Yourself Beware the Shadow
2. Babe Ruth Wells Fargo
3. Wet Willie Drippin' Wet


1. Climax Blues Band Rich Man
2. Ellie Greenwich Let It Be Written, Let It be Sung
3. Gallery The Wind That Shakes the Barley

"Shake Your Love" by Climax Blues Band

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

40 Year Itch : "Frankenstein" Hits #1

What I heard in all of those solos were voices...the sound of people playing music with other people that made me want to play music with other people too.
  -Dave Grohl at South By Southwest, 2013

Yes, there was a time when not only a hard rock instrumental could top the AM radio charts, but another one could be sitting at #10. Named "Frankenstein" because of the number of cuts and patches needed to trim the master down to 4:47, the single that replaced Stevie Wonder's "You Are The Sunshine of My Life" at the top of the charts on May 26, 1973 was originally released as a B side to "Hangin' Around". Disc jockeys flipped the single to play the instrumental Edgar Winter had been performing since he toured with older brother Johnny. The "monster single" spurred the 1972 album They Only Come Out At Night, released six months earlier,  to over 1.2 million in sales.

week of May 26, 1973
1. Edgar Winter Group FRANKENSTEIN
2. Paul McCartney and Wings MY LOVE
3. Elton John DANIEL
8. Dobie Gray DRIFT AWAY

Top 5 New Charting Entries

83 Anne Murray WHAT ABOUT ME
99 Tanya Tucker WHAT'S YOUR MAMA's NAME

Monday, May 27, 2013

40 Year Itch : I Am, You Are,We Are... Crazy


For those of you who thought Syd Barrett or the Flaming Lips were as strange as Rock Music could get, fall upon your knees before Gong. Formedin 1967 in France by Daevid Allen, a former member of Soft Machine, and his wife, Sorbonne Professor Gilly Smyth, Gong celebrated the weird, the spacey, the outer fringes where jazz and psychedelia could intersect with repetitive chanting, improvisation and musical dexterity. Aw, fug it. You really can't write about what Gong sounds like. You simply must sit for a spell and listen:

In 1973, Gong released Flying Teapot, act one of the Radio Gnome Invisible trilogy. It's the first place to dip your feet into the Gong sound and find out whether you're strange enough to hear more. I think it's fun. And that's about as deep as I've studied the matter.

Sunday, May 26, 2013

40 Year Itch : The Sweet Tastin' Good Life


   On  May 26th 1973, the notoriously shy Carole King was met with huge cheers from a huge crowd ( 65,000 strong) when she sat down at her piano on a stage  in Central Park and performed a free concert. At this point Tapestry was the biggest selling rock album in history. 112 weeks since it's release it was still in the Billboard album charts at #131.The songs on the live Disc 2 of the most recently remastered versions of Tapestry are from Carole's 1973 tour. Some are from Columbia , MD. Some from Boston and some from this very show ( though I'll be damned if I can figure out which are which).

      As the concert came to an end, Carole King asked the audience to clean up their trash. They did. For that, both King and her fans received a commendation from the New York Parks Department Deputy Commissioner.

   She was willing to sing in front of thousands but she wouldn't be interviewed which led to The Washington Post's Tom Zito to write : "Carole King, who has sold more than 15 million albums in the past three years, would rather not talk about it."

  Weeks later the press had their revenge when King released her risky, self-orchestrated concept album  Fantasy, which still went gold despite mixed reviews.

Saturday, May 25, 2013

40 Year Itch : Tubular Bells Released

"Record companies looked at me as if I was mad. They all said, because there were no vocals, no words, no drums or anything, that it was not marketable."
 -Mike Oldfield, quoted in The Mojo Collection

19 year old Mike Oldfield pushed the limits of 1972 recording technology with his one man album Tubular Bells, released on May 25, 1973. It is jammed with twenty overdubbed instruments Oldfield played himself including the odd flageolet, glockenspiel and Farfisa organ.

 Virgin Records paid for the recording time but Richard Branson had to be convinced to release the effort. A good thing he did. The first album ever released by Virgin was outsold in the UK in the 1970's only by Simon and Garfunkel 's Bridge Over Troubled Water.

Aside from its massive 25 million sales worldwide, Tubular Bells also found an American audience thanks to its use in the soundtrack for The Exorcist.

I've been thinking about having my children listen to this CD as they fall asleep at night all summer.
And then on Halloween night, we'll watch The Exorcist together.
Kind of an experiment of sorts.

Friday, May 24, 2013

40 Year Itch: David Bowie 1973 TV Documentary

A ten minute UK doc on the "skinny lad with a pasty complexion" who has, in the past six months,  "transformed himself into an object that is worshipped by millions of girls". The film, narrated by a witty and disdainful narrator,  features a concert performed at The Winter Gardens on May 25, 1973.

40 Year Itch : Don't Be Skinny! Try Wate-On!

A message from our new sponsor? Actually a magazine ad from 1973. But don't worry you skinny chicks, we're adding sugar to Wonder bread and spaghetti sauce in the 70's. We'll get that weight on before you can say diabetes!

Thursday, May 23, 2013

40 Year Itch : My Latin Blood; My Soul Captive


On May 23, 1973 Secos And Molhados ( The Dry and The Wet) entered the studio Prova to record their debut album which would become such a sensation in Brazil it would sell 300,000 copies in the first two months...well on its way to to selling more than a million copies.

Those who remember my naming the Novos Baianos album Acabou Chorare as the best of 1972 probably won't be surprised how much I like this 13-song effort. You'll hear a uniquely Brazilian take on glam rock with some passing references to Crosby Stills Nash and Young.

Years before Kiss wore their black and white face paint on stage, Secos e Molhados performed "Sangue Latino" ( "Latin Blood") on Brazilian an unforgettable performance.

The lyrics:

I swore lies
And I go alone
 I assume the sins
 Uh! Uh! Uh! Uh!
 The northern winds
 Do not move mills
And I have left
It's just a whimper
 My life, my dead
My crooked roads
My Latin Blood
 Uh! Uh! Uh! Uh!
My soul captive
 I broke treaties
Betray the rites
 I broke the spear
 I launched into space
A cry, a rant
 And that matters to me
It is not to be won
My life, my dead
My crooked roads
My Latin Blood
My soul captive

Also remarkable is the sopranino voice of Ney Matogrosso whose career would last far longer than the band that launched him.

The Brazilian Rolling Stone magazine ranks Secos e Molhados #5 on their list of the Top 100 Brazilian albums and Ney Matogrosso as the #3 greatest singer.

The Brazilian Top 5

1.Acabou Chorare - Novos Baianos (1972)
2. Tropicália ou Panis et Circencis - Tropicália (1968)
3. Construcão - Chico Buarque (1971)
4. Chega de Saudade - João Gilberto (1959)
5. Secos e Molhados - Secos e Molhados (1973)

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

40 Year Itch : Poncho Drink the Wine


Lee Oskar, a founding member of the 70's pop-funk-jam band War, grew up in Denmark where he was given his first harmonica on his sixth birthday.

I remember the first time I breathed on it it would literally play me.
It would sound just like a symphony
I got hooked and that's where it all started

At 17, virtually pennyless, Lee moved to the US where his virtuosity on the harmonica and his easy-going nature eventually led to his friendship with Eric Burdon. Burdon had recently left The Animals and wanted to find a new band.

They drove around LA until they found a funk band in a dive bar. Together they would all form War. A strange name in the age of peace signs and flower power.

Everybody walks around saying "Peace!" and I always said "Peace? Nobody is at peace within themselves. The war within ourselves is what makes us be creative" and somebody pulled that out of my conversation and said "Hey let's call it WAR!" and that's how I remember it coming about.

From the very beginning War discovered the songs that worked best were the ones that came out of long improvisational jams. That suited Burdon just fine.

We would get on stage and we would basically improvise.
Eric might even set up a scenario "Ok guys, we're gonna go on a rocket ship and we're gonna fly to the moon and you're gonna be the captain"

In 1970, One of those jams landed at #3 on the U-S pop charts. It was called "Spill the Wine" and its chorus is one of those classics nobody knows the real words to.

You spill the wine and you take the pearl.
Not girl.
Pearl. --which was acid back in those days so he was talking about spill the wine.Take the pearl.

After Burdon left, the band played on. War scored more Top Ten hits. Among them, "Why Can't We Be Friends?", "Low Rider","The Cisco Kid" and "Slippin' Into Darkness". All of them emerging from jam sessions.

We were never successful when we tried to tell anybody what to play.
There would be an argument or fight or something.

The music stayed fresh even as the question the press asked Lee grew stale.He couldn't avoid being asked what was it like being the only white guy in a band of brothers.

I didn't have a hang up about stuff that I noticed a lot of people had
I remember one time somebody yelled "Hey Brother!" like that and then comes up close to look at me and asks "Are you a brother?"
So there were all these clichés between white and black and all that and I hated that frankly.I thought it was pretty arrogant or whatever.

That wasn't his only frustration.
Lee had trouble finding good harmonicas.

I would literally take every dime I had and buy every harmonica.
Hopefully I would find one out of ten that was good or something.
That was my passion: to be surrounded by my tools.

So Lee teamed up with a Japanese company to make Lee Oskar harmonicas.
How good are they?
Bluesman Junior Wells was buried with a tray of Oskar harmonicas.
Magic Dick of J Geils Band says "I just think, as a musical tool, they're a great musical tool so I can't think of a better endorsement to give them than that."

To listen to Lee play today is quite astonishing if you've never heard a harmonica played as a jazz instrument. He has, in his lifetime, expanded the possibilities of what conventional harmonicas can do.

But Lee isn't all business. He's always looking for a chance to play. Especially with other War veterans, who for legal reasons have to call themselves The Low Rider Band.

The integrity of the music and the jam band that we've always been
That's still there
That's the real deal
That's what The Low Rider Band is.
Nothing homogenized.

Lee can even be found jamming around Seattle these days.
That six year old who got a magical harmonica for his birthday still needs to find a play.

I get grouchy if I don't eat.
I get grouchy if I don't play music.

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

5 Wretched Songs That Ruined Classic Albums

1 "Mind Gardens" from Younger Than Yesterday
David Crosby must have been inspired by The Incredible String Band for this foray into psychedelic folk. Roger McGuinn hated including the song on the poppy Younger Than Yesterday, claiming the tune had no "rhythm, meter, or rhyme." Crosby was fired during the recording of the next album.

2. "Mother" from Synchronicity
Andy Summers' Mother was a bomb dropped right into the heart of The Police's Synchronicity. Small wonder that it was the last album the blond boys did together.

3. Phenomenal Cat from Village Green Preservation Society

  Were The Kinks smoking helium? "Phenomenal Cat" is kitty litter compared to the rest of Village Green Preservation Society, which has become a fan favorite for good reason.

At least it's better than Bowie's equally helium filled "Laughing Gnome"

4. Fitter, Happier from OK Computer
It's the NOT OK tune on OK Computer. Described by Thom Yorke as a checklist of slogans for the 1990s, he considers "Fitter, Happier" "the most upsetting thing I've ever written". Might have been better as liner notes.

5. Student Demonstration Time from Surf's Up
'   The Beach Boys were always better at offering us breakaways from our troubled times than commenting on them. But good old Mike Love had something to say about student protests--even if it meant swiping the Leiber-Stoller song "Riot in Cell Block #9" to do it. The must skip track off Surf's Up was also released as a single as if it say "Look, we can crank up our guitars too!"

What's your choice for wretched songs that nearly ruin great albums?

Monday, May 20, 2013

My Top Ten : Phil Lynott of Thin Lizzy

In May of 1980, with the hopes of promoting his UK Top 30 solo album Solo in Soho, Phil Lynott of Thin Lizzy presented Smash Hits Magazine with a list of his all time Top 10  songs. As with all lists of this sort, a big shout out is due to the fabulously coiffed Brian at Like Punk Never Happened.

Sunday, May 19, 2013

40 Year Itch; A Breath-Taking Anti War Statement

I am passing on to you , as clearly and powerfully as I can, this gift which was extended to me by the sheer chance  of being somewhere at the right time in history and living through it.
--Joan Baez

Mike Allen, Joan, Barry Romo walking through the rubble of Gialam Intl Airport after it had been bombed by American B52s during their visit to Hanoi.

On May 19, 1973 Joan Baez 's amazing anti war statement, Where Are You Now, My Son? entered the Billboard charts. The album contained both new songs and actual field recordings Baez and her party made in the days around massive Christmas bombing raids in Hanoi, North Vietnam in 1972. Read more about Baez's experience in Hanoi here  The LP peaked at 138.

Saturday, May 18, 2013

40 Year Itch : Shining, Flying, Purple Wolfhound


Why would you buy a live album from a group that always seemed to be trying to achieve studio perfection?
Yessongs sounds ike it was recorded from outside the where the trucks were parked. Yet there is greatness here...but it's certainly not in the sound quality. It's how Alan White managed to learn all the drum parts in an incredibly short amount of time. Here's his story in Alan's own words;

Alan White in 1973

In his third year as a session and touring drummer Alan White shared an apartment with Yes and Emerson Lake and Palmer recording engineer Eddy Offord. One night Offord invited White to stop by a sewing shop on the West End of London where he met the members of Yes.

Alan: They were actually rehearsing for Close To The Edge and they were playing and (drummer) Bill Bruford had to leave because he was going to dinner with somebody.And Eddy said "Well Alan can play the drums.Why don't you play the song (Siberian Khatru) so everybody can go through it?" So it's basically bar of 8, bar of 7 intro and I was quite used to that because of the band I was playing in so I just got into it and played it and they all kind of went "He knows how to do this stuff".

Skip ahead two to three week later: Bill Bruford has left the band to join King Crimson. Alan is finishing up a European tour with Joe Cocker when he gets a phone call.

Alan:(Jon Anderson said) "We want you to join the band. We know you can do this. Just listen to the music", and he said "This is the set list."
  He said "We've got a gig on Monday in Dallas, Texas" and I said "Are you joking? I can't learn all this stuff in that time."
   He said "We just have to go for it" so that's what I did.

Alan smack in the middle of Yes, 1973

By this time Yes had already recorded five albums including two classics, The Yes Album and Close to the Edge. Alan had his work cut out for him.

Alan: It's not like riding a bicycle like some songs.When you play songs like ( the 19 minute) "Close to the Edge" or "Tempus Fugit" from Drama, those songs are just a whole thing you have to go through. Lots of mood changes and different tempos. You just have to, over the years, get it into your head.

It always seemed a bit unfair to Alan that Yes recorded its three disc live album (Yessongs) and concert film on his first tour. But as he approaches 40 years with the band, he says he doesn't spend much time looking back.

Alan: Yes has always been a great vehicle for me to study and move forward. This is the kind of band that doesn't look at the horizon. They always try to see over it and try to create something new. And that, to me, presents a kind of challenge that I like to take on. I always like something new to go for.

Friday, May 17, 2013

40 Year Itch : Tricky Dick and The Birth of Sampling

The Watergate scandal inspired "the King of Novelty",  Dickie Goodman,  to record one of his "break-in" records, "Watergrate". With a Mad Magazine sense of humor, Goodman had been blending snippets of hit songs that seem to be answering questions from a reporter since 1959's "Flying Saucer". "Watergrate" hit #42. In 1975 Goodman's "Mr Jaws" would hit #4. You could argue these were among the first records to "sample" other artists.

Earlier in the year, Goodman wrote and produced "Superfly Meets Shaft", a blaxploitation-inspired novelty tune that hit the Top 40 in May of 1973.

Thursday, May 16, 2013

40 Year Itch : Three Moments of Extraordinary Beauty


As Cilibrinas do Eden, Rita Lee of Os Mutantes and musical partner Linda Turnbull released this hit-and miss album that mixes straight boogie rock with tropicalia. The misses are often awful but when it all comes together, as it does on "Bad Trip", it's brilliant. The album Cilibrinas do Eden was reissued in 2008 in a limited run of 500 copies, some of which are selling now for nearly $100.


Before 1973 ended, Candian rockers Bachman Turner Overdrive would hit it big with the first of their  three minute party rock anthems ("Takin Care of Business", "You Ain't Seen Nothing Yet", "Hey You", "Let It Ride") but on the debut album the most outstanding cut is the jazz influenced "Blue Collar", a single that peaked at just 68 in the US. Strange that BTO didn't pursue this sound which reminds us of Randy Bachman's days in the Guess Who.

While the first two entries are great tunes from spotty albums, this cover of Jobim's "Aguas de Marco" comes from a breathtakingly perfect Bossa Nova album recorded by the father of Bossa Nova, Joao Gilberto. Also known as the "white album", Joao Gilberto is a spare effort--mostly just Gilberto, his guitar and his soft voice. Perfection.

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

40 Year Itch: You Are the Sunshine of My Life Hits #1

Four months after topping the charts with "Superstition" , Stevie Wonder returned to the Number 1 spot with "You Are the Sunshine of My Life", a song he wrote for his first wife Syreeta Wright, a Motown secretary who taught transcendental meditation and brought Stevie some centeredness to his life..if not sunshine. Future #1s "Frankenstein" and "My Love" were also in the Top 10 and another, George Harrison's "Give Me Love", entered the chart at #59. Sweet's "Little Willy" peaked at #3.

1. You Are The Sunshine Of My Life Stevie Wonder
2.Tie A Yellow Ribbon Round The Ole Oak Tree Dawn Featuring Tony Orlando 
3. Little Willy Sweet

4. Frankenstein Edgar Winter Group
5. Daniel Elton John
6. My Love Paul McCartney and Wings
7. Drift Away Dobie Gray

 8. Stuck In The Middle With You Stealers Wheel
 9. Pillow Talk Sylvia
10. Wildflower Skylark

11. Reeling in the Years Steely Dan
12. The Night The Lights Went Out In Georgia Vicki Lawrence
 13. Hocus Pocus Focus
14. Daisy a Day Jud Strunk

15. The Cisco Kid War
16. Funky Worm Ohio Players
17. Out of the Question Gilbert O'Sullivan

18. The Right Thing to Do Carly Simon
19. Thinking of You Loggins and Messina
20. I'm Gonna Love You Just a Little More Baby Barry White


 59. Give Me Love ( Give Me Peace on Earth) George Harrison

71. Shambala Three Dog Night
76. You'll Never Get to Heaven (If You Break My Heart) Stylistics
82. Kodachrome Paul Simon
84. Money Pink Floyd

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

40 Year itch : Every Inch Exists in Miles


" In my own evolution as an artist and as a fan , Hawkwind were second only to the Stooges in importance to me"
   Jello Biaffra, Dead Kennedys

The sonic space rock assassins Hawkwind were riding high on their Top Ten single "Silver Machine" when they set out on their 1972 Space Ritual tour with dancers ( including the voluptuous Stacia), a mime, the extraordinary lighting effects of  Jon Smeeton and resident poet Robert Calvert. Their ambition: to create a multi-media sci fi interplanetary rock opera while melting ear drums all across the UK.

   Calvert explained the story line succintly:

 The basic idea is that a team of starfarers are in a coma...and the opera is a presentation of the dreams that they are having in deep space.

The resulting double live album Space Ritual/Alive in Liverpool and London became Hawkwind's most successful ever...leaping into the English Top 10 in 1973. Many of the better tunes roar past the nine minute mark repeating the same riffs until they seem to be swirling around your head. In that respect they weren't all that different from what was happening in the Krautrock scene. The ultimate head trip/ road trip album.

Monday, May 13, 2013

40 Year Itch : Musikladen Uber Alles

Originally called "Beat Club", the West German TV series Musikladen was one of the best music programs of its day because it kept things simple. There was no overbearing host. Bands were filmed in club settings. And Lip Syncing was not welcome. Here are just some of the performances I believe were televised in May of 1973.As the 70's fell victim to the disco craze, Musikladen hired go go dancers. Supringingly , not all of the boys complained about the girls

Sunday, May 12, 2013

40 Year Itch : The Curse of the Child Singer


What hath Michael Jackson wrought? 1973 was the year of the singing child. And much of it was pure crap. Here are 5 of the worst performances involving children from 1973.

5. Danny Bonaduce "I'll be Your Magician" - the lead off cut from the cynical Partridge who released an entire album despite the fact that he couldn't sing ( or play the bass, tv fans).

4. The Carpenters "Sing"--Sure,  your grandmother found this song "delightful" but shouldn't that be your first clue that it's awful?  Eve Plumb of the Brady Bunch was once a member of the creepy Jimmy Joyce Children's Choir who provide the singalong "la la la" chorus.

3. Donny Osmond "Twelth of Never" -- This syrupy cover of the Johnny Mathis hit knocked Slade out of the top spot in the UK Charts on March 31, 1973. Donny's voice had changed. His choice in bland cover songs ( like "Puppy Love" and "Young Love --all #1 in the UK) had not.

2. Little Jimmy Osmond "Tweedle Dee" -- What was it about the Osmonds that melted UK hearts?  In April of 1973, the least talented of the brood, Little Jimmy Osmond, reached #4 with "Tweedle Dee" and sat one spot ahead of David Cassidy and two ahead of brother Donny. Any other year this would have easily been the worst song. But this was 1973.

1 Clint Holmes "Playground In My Mind" You have to hand it to Clint Holmes. He has somehow made a lifelong career as a Vegas singer and entertainer despite tainting 1973 with its worst hit song. "Playground " went all the way up to #2 thanks in part to yet another talent free child, Phillip Vance, the son of the record's producer.

 Clint shared his thoughts about the recording with Super

  The biggest memory I have of recording 'Playground' was when we tried to match vocals with Paul's son, Phillip, who was the little boy's voice on the record. He was eight or nine years old at the time, and not a professional singer by any means. I put my vocal down and then we tried to have him sing along with me. Eventually, we had to reverse it and have me sing along with him. I remember having to sing softer and softer to try to get some kind of vocal blend. I was so afraid of overpowering him.

And now: One Brilliant Child Singer from 1973:

    Foster Sylvers was a member of the same Sylvers who hit #1 in 1976 with "Boogie Fever" and #5 with "Hot Line". Older brother Leon wrote "Misdemeanor" for Foster.