Tuesday, February 14, 2006:

pop/soul and the power of whimsy

The Sylvers -- Showcase
The Sylvers -- Ain't No Good in Good-bye
The Sylvers -- Clap Your Hands to the Music
Another used record find here. About half of the LP is light poppy R&B saddled with a young man's voice apt to make most people think of the Jackson 5 and find the Sylvers wanting in comparison. The other half is funkier but it's still a poppy funk, not a mighty funk like George Clinton or Flea or Stevie Wonder might lay out.

The first track here sounds like it could have been a radio staple with its harmony, melody, and beat--that piano, bass, and string section a perfect package for lyrics about farewells. And of course they're right that there ain't no "fair" in "farewell," if only because it's more along the lines of "fare thee well," a wishful imperative on departure not unlike "take care." But never mind about all that.

"Clap Your Hands to the Music" is a bit of silly dance/funk starting off with even sillier 808-sounding handclaps (if you can, give it fifteen seconds before making a decision). It works into a solid groove coupled with joyful slight lyrics--unless you consider joy as substantial as pensiveness, in which case the song would be a solid celebration of life. The vocals are top-notch and there are two breaks ripe for the sampling.


So why didn't you post "Free Style" instead? It's more popular than either of these.
--I don't know. It wasn't grabbing me right then. I'm sorry.

this is a treasure of 70's funk

Thanks; I'm glad you like it.

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