MusicDish e-Journal - August 24, 2019
MusicDish Advertising Network
» HOME » INSIDER SCOOP » CAREER TIPS » MUSIC SPOTLIGHT » MUSICDISH*CHINA
» INDUSTRY INTERVIEWS » NEWS BEAT » DIGITAL SKOOL » OPEN REVIEW » MUSICDISH EDELWEISS
Search MusicDish e-Journal (Advanced)
Subscribe To MusicDish e-Journal
About | Contact | Advertise | RSS | Submit Article | Submit News | Artist Development | Premium PR Distribution
Mi2N | MusicDish*China | MusicDish Network | MusicDishTV | Urban Music News Network

Yesterday Is All We Have: Earth, Wind & Fire
The Music Of Brotherly Love
By John Mendes, MB Records
(more articles from this author)
2005-02-02
Comment | Email | Print | RSS

Last summer, I signed up my eleven-year-old daughter for acting lessons in Allston, MA. One Saturday morning, after dropping her off for her 10:00 AM class, I decided to go around my old neighborhood and find something to occupy myself for the 3-hour wait. So, I took a drive by Brookline Avenue. Sandwiched between a launder-mat and a neighborhood grocery store, stood the small record shop - Diskovery; I mean a real vinyl record shop. With windows decorated with album covers of Elvis Presley, James Brown, Marvin Gaye, Diane Ross & the Supremes, I had to stop in.

Pulling the cranky red door open, I entered the store and navigated myself between reams of old books to the record section. Finally, lying before me on rows of old tables, laid the old hit records of American music. Flipping through the Soul section I found a mint copy of one of the greatest albums ever recorded, All ‘N All, by Earth, Wind & Fire. I couldn’t believe my eyes. The masterpiece album’s artwork and vinyl was in perfect condition. But there was more. To my total surprise, inside the double-jack album, there was a black and white 30”x40” poster of the entire group; and, the price tag: four dollar and fifty cents ($4.50). I had to get it, though I’ve had another copy of the same album at home for over 12 years.
Feeling good about my treasure hunt, I dug deeper into the section and found more records of EW&F I never knew existed: Gratitude, a double record jam-packed “live” and studio album, layered inside with concert photos of the group, and featuring classic songs like “Reasons,” “Shining Star” and “Singasong” for $7.50.
Then, I found I Am, another great album with ancient Egyptian artwork themes, packed with timeless songs like: “Boogie Wonderland,” “After the Love is Gone,” “Star,” “In The Stone,” for $3.50.
And lastly, I found Touch The World, a single vinyl release album, featuring snapshots of EW&F walking through inner-city neighborhoods, also containing songs I always heard on the radio but never owned in a record, for $4.50. I bought them all.
Now I couldn’t stop. I had to see what else I could find from the ‘70s. So I moved to the adjacent table. Digging through another pile of old records, I found another gem, Stevie Wonder’s Talking Book, the album containing the classics “You are the Sunshine of my Life,” “Superstition” and “I Believe,” all for $6.00.
Finally, feeling guilty for spending all this money on old vinyl, I had to buy my wife a record to soften the blow. So I looked for an all-party album and found the classic collection: Donna Summer Greatest Hits, On The Radio, Volumes I & II, a double vinyl release featuring hits like “On the Radio,” “I Feel Love,” “Last Chance,” “Hot Stuff,” “Bad Girls” and the all time disco classic, “Love to Love you Baby.” And, the price, you may ask, only $5.00.

Done with my shopping, I picked up my daughter and rushed home to listen to my records, bragging the entire forty minutes trip about my shopping spree. I got home and went right to the stereo system.

As the needle dropped on Earth, Wind and Fire’s “Boogie Wonderland,” a feeling of joy and homesickness filled my heart. I was transported to summer of 1979, the first time I remember hearing this song on the radio. As a newly arrived Cape Verdean immigrant, I could barely put a sentence together in English. But, these songs spoke to my soul. They gave me a feeling of joy beyond the meaning of the lyrics, which I would understand much later.

But more than just a sense of homecoming, their recordings bring me back to a time when artists appealed to our feelings of love and innocence. In fact, they said it best:

For a while, to love was all we could do.
We were young and knew.
Our eyes were alive, deep inside we knew
Our love was true.

But something happened along the way
What use to be happy was sad.
Something happened along the way
Yesterday was all we had.

Listening to Earth, Wind & Fire, Chic, Parliament & Funkadelic, Sugar Hill Gang, Commodores, Bee Gees, Tavares, Kool & Gangs, Stevie Wonder, Marvin Gaye and countless other supper bands and solo artists of the ‘70s, there is a overwhelming feeling that in fact, ’yesterday is all we have’.

These gifted artists and songwriters have all been forgotten. They are the real victims of the rise of Hip-Pop, replaced by hardcore artists breaded on Reagan policy of turning the urban populous into criminals, drug dealers, and convicts. All their music of love and brotherhood gave way to gangster Hip-Hop as the new ghetto of America exploded with drugs, gang violence and drive bye shootings.

Music, more than any other art form, is a mirror of time. The beautiful music of the ‘70s reflected an era of fun and innocence - a time now forever lost.

Last month, I brought my wife to visit my favorite record shop, in search of more Earth, Wind & Fire records. This time I found another gem: That’s the Way of The World , an album featuring a playful cover with EW & F members dancing and jumping around in true ‘70s fashion: afro, bell bottoms and happy-go-lucky.

Again, I rushed home to play the record, expecting no major hit songs, since the album was recorded in 1975 and the entire group looked rather young and inexperienced. Well, this was the record that truly shocked me. The titled song alone is a priceless piece of recording; a beautiful, awe-inspiring composition that lifts your soul towards the heavens and the stars - a true joy. But the album doesn’t stop there. It continues with the original recordings of “Reasons” and “Shining Star” - a stunning accomplishment for such a young musical group.

Yet the most profound and un-expected track on the album is at the end of the song, “See the Light” - a spontaneous African chant in local dialect. It blew my mind that Earth, Wind & Fire would include in their album, what seemed to me, an on-source track that could have been recorded at the Sandjon in “Djandan,” Fogo, Cape Verde (West Africa), in 1975. You’ve totally earned my respect!

But then again, when was the last time you read an album note that contained the following humble dedications:

In deep appreciation to our many universal brothers and sisters, we dedicate our music to you, thanking you for bringing us into your homes and hoping our songs will enlighten and bring you much joy. May God bless you. - Maurice White.

Original Band Members:

Maurice White: Vocals, Drums & Kalimba
Verdine White: Vocals & Bass
Philip Bailey: Vocals, Congas & Percussion
Larry Dunn: Piano, Oberheim, Moog Synthesizer
Al McKay: Guitar (left in 1980)
Fred White: Drums
Ralph Johnson: Drums
Johnny Graham: guitar (left after 1981)
Andrew Woolfolk: Tenor Saxophone

For more information and to contact the author, click on the author’s name at the top of the page.


Home » Music Spotlight » Yesterday Is All We Have: Earth, Wind & Fire
Permalink:http://www.musicdish.com/mag/?id=10025
Email |Print |Comment |RSS

back | top


MusicDish Advertising Network

Music Spotlight

» Hollywood Heavyweights Launch New Christian Music Label

» Round Hill Music And Zync Sign Madge To Joint Venture

» YG PLUS and Gracenote to Bring K-POP to Fans around the World

» Lithuanian Band Grabs Bronze at the Silk Road Indie Music Festival 2017

» HBC Fall Festival Celebrates 12 years of HBC Fest

Music Spotlight Directory



» [2018-09-16] Live Nation Electronic Asia Inks Deal With Budweiser For Creamfields Festivals; Together, Creamfields And Budweiser Will Focus On Building Entirely New Content For Dedicated Electronic Music Fans Throughout Asia

» [2018-08-23] Andy Ma Appointed Warner Music China CEO; Andy Ma Has Also Been Appointed EVP, Commercial And Business Development For Greater China

» [2018-08-23] IndieOn Connects Music To The Blockchain; IndieOn Is Confident Of Creating A "music Miner" Who Listens More And Grow Their Token Value

» [2018-06-23] The 2018 MIDEM Silk Road International Music Alliance Signing; International Music Industries Signing Of A Mutual Resource Sharing Agreement With Shanghai Conservatory Of Music & The China Records Group

» [2018-06-06] Screen Music Connect To Explore The Music Of Film, Television And Interactive Media; Created By James Hannigan, Award-winning Composer And Game Music Connect Co-founder, Screen Music Connect Builds On The Success Of The Sold-out Game Music Conferences

» [2018-06-05] Fred Casimir To Develop BMG's Global Recordings Business; As Well As Building BMG's European Infrastructure, Casimir Was Instrumental In Developing BMG's Recordings Business

» [2018-06-03] 13 Music Label Sold To MTN; DSN Music Spins Off Record Label To Albuquerque Music Entrepreneur's New Group

» [2018-06-02] CISAC 2018 Annual Report; A Comprehensive Overview Of The Confederation's Work To Serve 4 Million Creators And 239 Authors Societies Across The World

» [2018-06-02] MusicDish Announces A Love Electric 2018 China Tour; The Tour Will Crisscross Through China With 12 Shows In 8 Cities, Including Guangzhou, Dongguan, Zhuhai, Shenzhen, Kunming, Jiaxin, Wuhan And Beijing

» [2018-06-02] Darcus Beese Named President Of Island Records; Renowned U.K. Music Executive To Join Universal Music Group's U.S. Label Leadership

» [2018-05-17] Avant-Garde Label Maybe Noise Launches In Beijing; The Official Launch Will Be On May 26 At Magnet Theater With A Performance Supporting Its First Vinyl Release: Píng Zè

» [2018-05-04] Award-Winning Lithuanian Rock Band Colours Of Bubbles "She Is The Darkness" 2018 China Tour; The Tour Will Kickoff In Shanghai Where The Band Will Represent Lithuania During The Country's Signing To The Silk Road Music Alliance
MusicDish Advertising Network

follow MusicDish on
Follow MusicDish on Twitter

Mi2N Music PR


PaTRAM Institute To Record Next CD In Saratov, Russia, Accompanied By The Wonderworking Kursk Root Icon Of The Mother Of God

East Rutherford Metal Band Harvest Falls Debuts New Single And Charity Drive

The Indie Spotify Bible - Contact Information For Over 3000 Spotify Playlists!

Roger D'Arcy Releases "Fool Me Once"

Emotional Debris Release New Singles 'Hey Roman' & 'California Song'

Latido Music Announces Advisory Board - Notable Execs From Univision, Warner Bros., Cinedigm

Roger D'arcy Releases "Velvet Ghosts"



Websites: Mi2N | MusicDish*China | MusicDish Network | MusicDishTV | Urban Music News Network
Services: Submit Article | Submit News | Submit Video | Artist Development | Premium PR Distribution

Copyright © 1997-2018 MusicDish LLC., all rights reserved.
About MusicDish e-Journal | Contact Us | Advertise | RSS | Internships