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Gonna Take a Miracle by Laura Nyro and Labelle (1971)
Laura Nyro is on the Mount Rushmore of female singer/songwriters to emerge from the mid-/late-60’s folk era. While she may remain lesser known than fellow contemporaries Joni Mitchell or Carole King, Nyro actually released nine albums over a strong twenty year career, influencing artists of her time like King, Todd Rundgren, and Elton John, who have all name-checked her in Interviews.
Her songs were hits for artists like Blood, Sweat, & Tears and The 5th Dimension, who covered her song “Stoned Soul Picnic”. On her 1971 album “Gonna Take a Miracle” she teamed up with Labelle (Patti Labelle’s first group) to record and perform covers of the 60’s do-wop and R&B songs that inspired her as a young girl growing up in New York City. The group takes these songs and makes them their own, providing a warmth and approachability that leaves the listener feeling as though Nyro and Labelle are performing in their own living room. The album was produced by the iconic Philadelphia production duo Gamble & Huff who bought in the right players to compliment the songs as only they could. The result: soul music.
“Dope beats/Dope rhymes/What more do ya’ll want!”
– “Not Enough” by Little Brother from the album “The Minstrel Show”
Conscious rap. Coke rap. Underground rap. Political rap. Weird rap. Indie rap. Swag Rap. Mainstream rap. Retro rap. etc. etc. All titles and sub genres of rap that fans and writers have created to classify and understand rap. This assigning of style has also been used to separate and divide (East coast rap vs West coast rap). The general idea of the sub-genre is that its a new take on a already established style. As artists do they innovate and take previous ideas further than had been done before thus creating a sub-genre. This progression can look forward or backwards while still creating a new strand of music. In the mid to late 90’s you had Kool Keith with his Dr. Octagon project which had a futuristic twinge to it while other artists like Jurassic 5 reinterpreted late 70’s Hip Hop. Both artists created something new and exciting while going in two different stylist directions. All of these sub-genres have their designated albums that people hold as testament to that particular style. Like I mentioned in my progressive column on Rundgren these albums take the established idea and tweak it just enough that its something new but not too foreign.
Photography: Shannon Sturgis (link)
Thanks to everyone that braved the cold winter night to come and rock out with us in honor of No Jacket Required. Much props to Obey City who absolutely KILLED it. He went from Valerie to Bone-Thugs-In-Harmony to random electronic jams to EVERYTHING else that is great. This blend of Tropicalia, Indie, Hip Hop, 80’s and other work inspired by No Jacket Required was seamless and mind blowing to experience in person. The Woods filled up during the second half of the event as everyone mingled and jammed along to hit after hit. Thanks to PBR, everyone who helped with the event, and of course Phil Collins. Continue reading
In preparation for Classics Party #2 No Jacket Required by Phil Collins I put together a mix. The mix takes us from Collins prog/pop transition with Genesis to perfecting his sound to a chorus of hundreds of thousands of fans singing along live at the apex of his solo career. The mix also features songs from artists who’s work touch upon the same sonic motifs that Collins established between 80-85 as a solo artist and with Genesis.
Get the mix, track-list, and break down of each song below.
DJ Set by Obey City
12/9/10 | Thursday | 8pm – 11pm
48 South 4th Street