eMusic Review 0
Sly Stone took popular music even closer to disco through integration. James Brown exuded an aggressively male, righteously African-American energy. Stone did too, but surrounded himself with a band comprised of black, female and white members. And while many of their rhythms were nearly as funky as Brown's, Stone's melodies pulled from pop as well as soul, and the band's neon hippie vibe and distorted guitars drew on rock. It was a music that made a point to speak to everybody, and it fought preconceptions of race and gender.
While most late-'60s/early-'70s rock sat down and got stoned, Stone aimed to elevate, and the results sound like a civil rights meeting that was designed to liberate the entire human race. It's dance music as both personal and public revolution, and nearly everything disco stood for in its purest, pre-Saturday Night Fever/Studio 54 phase is contained in its lyrics. Everybody is a star! Stand! I am everyday people! From the beat of the drum to the honk of the horns this is music of exhilaration made with exclamation points. More than the other San Francisco bands that were its neighbors, Sly and the Family Stone were explicitly about communal love, and… read more »