Friday, June 23, 2017

Kool & The Gang – Take My Heart (De-Lite Records)

Classics: Kool & The Gang – Take My Heart (De-Lite Records)

NJ hailing band Kool & The Gang during their Disco heydays along with producer Eumir Deodato. We catch them here on their ‘Something Special’ LP released back in 1981. An album that would see them adding ‘Steppin’ Out’, ‘Be My Lady’ and ‘Get Down On It’ to their collection of classics.
That ‘something special’ therefore being the no less classy ‘Take My Heart’. A cut which, built on a 4X12 rhythm pattern, came up as another brilliant reminder of their Jazz roots.
“Take my heart! You can have it…”

Overview
In 1964, 13 year-old Robert ‘Kool’ Bell, his brother (Ronald) and 5 high school friends formed an instrumental band called The Jazziacs. They changed their name to Kool & The Flames 4 years later, then to Kool & The Gang in 1969 (to avoid confusion with James Brown‘s Famous Flames). They got signed on Gene Redd‘s newly launched De-Lite Records label during the same year.

Their career, just like like Earth, Wind & Fire, can be split into 2 periods. The first (1973 – 1978) establishing them on the burgeoing Funk scene with a twist of Jazz, blending earthy brass, funky bass guitar and chanted vocals. A period which they paved with classics such as ‘Summer Madness’, ‘Jungle Boogie’ and ‘Open Sesame’.
The second one seeing them makin’ a clear-cut transition into Dance/Soul Pop territories. As a result, they would turn themselves into an impressive hit machine, reaching their peak during the first half of the 80’s. Classics such as ‘Ladies Night’, ‘Celebration’ and ‘Big Fun’ among others summarizing their leadership at the time…

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