George McCrae -- Take This LoveGeorge McCrae -- Take This Love
George McCrae is probably best known for his track "Rock Your Baby," a funk/disco number that dominated the charts in 1974; it's a great track, but he's put out some other gems as well. "I Get Lifted" is particularly great, rocking a funky bassline with some handclaps and an understated piano; "I Can't Leave You Alone" is another great one, also charting in 1974, as is "Sing a Happy Song."
But "Take This Love" is what I'm posting, because I'm digging the light/carefree/funky vibes off it--the guitar line, the vocal melody and harmony, the piano break, and, yes, the cowbell. It's, uh, easy to go wrong with a cowbell, but this song comes across like a cool breeze in summer, a screened-in front porch with a swing, a barbecue and a pool party in the back. And, you know it, there's a room upstairs with bedside lamp and a bit of privacy.
The song is simple but not simple-minded; it wears its heart on its sleeve; it can't be bothered with duplicity: "Baby take this love of mine / and spread it all around you." It's a joyful ballad and a come-on at the same time; it probably worked as both.
[Amazon.com]: George McCrae -- The Very Best of. Track 8 is a slice of wet bread, but the rest is pretty tight. Though I wonder why the tempo on "I Get Lifted" is so much slower than it is on the Miami funk comp. Slowing it was not an improvement.