Sunday, October 22, 2017

Chicago – Street Player (Columbia)

Most Wanted! Chicago – Street Player (Columbia)

Although ‘Street Player’ is most likely associated to Chicago, justice has to be paid to the other artists who released it first. In other words, Rufus and Chaka Khan, as the title cut of their 6th studio album on ABC Records in 1978.
Chicago covered it the year after on their ‘Chicago 13’ LP. An album considered as an unpopular release. The fans criticizing it for having included sounds reputedly too far from the group’s usual style…

This didn’t stop though the 12″ (and more specially its promo package) from generating high bids on eBay. And even more after Kenny Dope sampled it under his The Bucketheads guise on ‘The Bomb’ back in 1994.

Formed in 1967, Chicago simply took their name from the one of the capital of Illinois.
Describing themselves as a Rock & Roll band with horns, their music was first filled with social content. It was experimental at times, then Rock, before moving to softer sound which generated several hit ballads.
Jean-Paul Bluey Maunick (Incognito) admitted the influence of Chicago‘s horn arrangements in an interview we had back at the beginning of the 90’s. Meanwhile the late Jimi Hendrix said their horn players were like one set of lungs…

The inclusion of ‘Street Player’ as a part of the ‘Chicago XIII’ album engendered a myriad of bad reactions. Seen as as threat by critics who saw it as a dive into Disco. And (as usual) by fans which this change of direction disoriented. All of this resulting in the firing of lead guitarist Donnie Dacus with no explanation given to him.

Kenny Dope wasn’t the only one who sampled it. Nicola Fasano VS Pat-Rich did it too on ’75, Brazil Street’. Not to mention Pittbull on his 2009 hit ‘I Know You Want Me (Calle Ocho)’ among a few others…

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