Day 330: Earth, Wind & Fire – That’s the Way of the World

24 Jan

Yearnin’ Learnin’

A few weeks ago, my father sent me an email with five picks for upcoming Dad Rock Tuesdays.  On a list loaded with punk records, it was only natural that I left a record by Earth, Wind & Fire until the last possible moment.  They’re no punk band, and, as we all know, my forays into soul music have not been too successful, regardless of whether or not they were encouraged by my dad.

It may be the large quantity of uninventive punk music that I’ve been subjected to for the past few Tuesdays, but I’m actually liking this record. That’s the Way of the World opens with “Shining Star,” a song that we’ve all heard a million times before.  However, I, probably like a lot of you, have never actually sat down and listened to the song.  This is a track that’s usually pumped into my ears in unnatural contexts (commercials, grocery stores, cheesy montages).  I failed to realize that it’s a really good tune, and, at risk of taking a bit of heat for using this upcoming adjective, it’s pretty catchy.

There’s plenty to like about this album beyond that one hit. Whether going on a rant (the content of which I didn’t really listen to, although I assume it’s about love) on “All About Love,” or just engaging in a 5-minute jam bender on “Africano,” Earth, Wind & Fire have a really clean and clear sound that can’t make you mad.  I just wish our modern indie rock bass players could do it like these guys do.

About these ads

8 Responses to “Day 330: Earth, Wind & Fire – That’s the Way of the World”

  1. B. Frank January 24, 2012 at 7:16 pm #

    Note that several players came out of Hyde Park High School as did Herbie Hancock, Amelia Earhart, James Watson, and a host of notables. And never was a horn section as tight as that one!

    • Sun Chops, God of Nile Crocodiles of some new agey thing like that January 25, 2012 at 2:51 am #

      Yeah, but ETHS produced Marlon Brando and Wally Cox.

      Can’t dispute that the EWF horn section is – as Goldmember might say – toyt. These guys could play but I have always felt Maurice White was a little “challenged” in the lyrics department. Exhibit “A” could possibly be one of their biggest hits, “September':

      Ba de ya, say do you remember
      Ba de ya, dancing in September
      Ba de ya, never was a cloudy day

      How is it that no one else ever picked up on that “ba de ya” thing?

      • clawson203@aol.com January 25, 2012 at 10:47 am #

        Maurice did not write September. Allee Willis did.

  2. Yuanny Dollar January 25, 2012 at 5:36 am #

    What’s wrong with Ba de ya — that gives him a writing credit when some other guy actually penned that brilliant tune. It is all about the vocals and the horns (and the bass I guess). The late-70s mystical blather is pretty funny too.

    And I know a guy, who knows a guy who went to school with R. Kelly at Kenwood. That still tops them all.

  3. clawson203@aol.com January 25, 2012 at 10:42 am #

    You’ve only scratched the surface. Listen to all of their albums and I guarantee you’ll become addicted to them. And take the time to listen to the “rant”. BTW Shining Star was not the only hit from that album. You young folk..so much to learn.

    • Dave Chops January 25, 2012 at 1:28 pm #

      clawson203, Mr. Ear may indeed have things to learn (who does not? – I just found out that one Allee Willis is responsible for the lame lyrics to “September” – not the guy who sang them) but he did not say that Shining Star was the only hit on the album. He said that it was the only song he knew previous to listening. Give the boy some love. If we are nice to him, he might even listen to some more soul/funk.

      Now let me share my newfound Allee Willis knowledge: Allee is a 64 year old white woman from Detroit who also wrote the lyrics for “Boogie Wonderland” and the theme from “Friends”. How she hooked up with EWF, I have no idea. She looks like this:

      http://thebarclayhour.blogspot.com/2009/11/113009-allee-willis.html

      • clawson203@aol.com January 25, 2012 at 8:15 pm #

        Perhaps I read him wrong when he wrote “There’s plenty to like about this album beyond that one hit.” I assumed he wasn’t aware that “That’s The Way of The World”, single from the album , was in the top 20 at that same time.
        “The guy who sang them” was Maurice White who is a musical genius to say the least. His music is inspirational and deeply introspective. I wish more people would really listen to his music beyond those that received “AirPlay”. Devotion, Pure Gold oh the list goes on and on with 31 albums, over 400 songs amazing, true musicians and an overall message in their life’s work…”It’s all About Love”.
        40 years their music has stood the test of time. They are still constantly touring and draw huge, loyal fans. I have everything they’ve ever done and had the pleasure of meeting them several times.
        BTW, they have a new single, “Guiding Lights”, to be released on Jan. 31st on their compilation album “Now, Then Perhaps I read him wrong when he wrote “There’s plenty to like about this album beyond that one hit.” I assumed he wasn’t aware that “That’s The Way of The World”, single from the album , was in the top 20 at that same time.
        “The guy who sang them” was Maurice White who is a musical genius to say the least. His music is inspirational and deeply introspective. I wish more people would really listen to his music beyond those that received “AirPlay”. Devotion, Pure Gold oh the list goes on and on with 31 albums, over 400 songs amazing, true musicians and an overall message in their life’s work…”It’s all About Love”.
        40 years their music has stood the test of time. Young people are now hearing music not auto tuned fir the first time. Most parents gladly share their music with their kids knowing it is empowering. Little kids know sone songs. EWF are still constantly touring and draw huge, loyal fans. I have everything they’ve ever done and had the pleasure of meeting them several times. Perhaps I read him wrong when he wrote “There’s plenty to like about this album beyond that one hit.” I assumed he wasn’t aware that “That’s The Way of The World”, Perhaps I read him wrong when he wrote “There’s plenty to like about this album beyond that one hit.” I assumed he wasn’t aware that “That’s The Way of The World”, single from the album , was in the top 20 at that same time.
        “The guy who sang them” was Maurice White who is a musical genius to say the least. His music is inspirational and deeply introspective. I wish more people would really listen to his music beyond those that received “AirPlay”. Devotion, Pure Gold oh the list goes on and on with 31 albums, over 400 songs amazing, true musicians and an overall message in their life’s work…”It’s all About Love”.
        40 years their music has stood the test of time. They are still constantly touring and draw huge, loyal fans. I have everything they’ve ever done and had the pleasure of meeting them several times.
        BTW, they have a new single, “Guiding Lights”, to be released on Jan. 31st on their compilation album “Then, Now and Forever”. Also, look forward to a new studio album this summer. Perhaps I read him wrong when he wrote “There’s plenty to like about this album beyond that one hit.” I assumed he wasn’t aware that “That’s The Way of The World”, single from the album , was in the top 20 at that same time.
        “The guy who sang them” was Maurice White who is a musical genius to say the least. His music is inspirational and deeply introspective. I wish more people would really listen to his music beyond those that received “AirPlay”. “Devotion”, “Pure Gold”, “Keep Your Head to the Sky”,oh the list goes on and on with 31 albums, over 400 songs you never tire of amazing, true musicians and an overall message in their life’s work…”It’s all About Love”.
        40 years their music has stood the test of time. Something punk bands will never achieve. Every time I hear their songs I hear an element of the song I’d never heard before. It’s like peeling the layers off a sweet onion. I guess that’s why they are the “Mighty Elements”. They are still constantly touring and draw huge, loyal fans. Not something punk bands will never achieve. I have everything they’ve ever done and had the pleasure of meeting them several times.
        BTW, they have a new single, “Guiding Lights”, to be released on Jan. 31st on their compilation album “Now, Then and Forever”. Also, look forward to a new studio album this summer. Here is the link to their new, inspirational single, “Guiding Lights”.

        http://m.soundcloud.com/valeri-lenartowicz/exclusive-earth-wind-fire

        BTW, they have a new single, “Guiding Lights”, to be released on Jan. 31st on their compilation album “Then, Now and Forever”. Also, look forward to a new studio album this summer. Perhaps I read him wrong when he wrote “There’s plenty to like about this album beyond that one hit.” I assumed he wasn’t aware that “That’s The Way of The World”, single from the album , was in the top 20 at that same time.
        “The guy who sang them” was Maurice White who is a musical genius to say the least. His music is inspirational and deeply introspective. I wish more people would really listen to his music beyond those that received “AirPlay”. “Devotion”, “Pure Gold”, “Keep Your Head to the Sky”,oh the list goes on and on with 31 albums, over 400 songs you never tire of amazing, true musicians and an overall message in their life’s work…”It’s all About Love”.
        40 years their music has stood the test of time. Something punk bands will never achieve. Every time I hear their songs I hear an element of the song I’d never heard before. It’s like peeling the layers off a sweet onion. I guess that’s why they are the “Mighty Elements”. They are still constantly touring and draw huge, loyal fans. Not something punk bands will never achieve. I have everything they’ve ever done and had the pleasure of meeting them several times.
        BTW, they have a new single, “Guiding Lights”, to be released on Jan. 31st on their compilation album “Now, Then and Forever”. Also, look forward to a new studio album this summer. Here is the link to their new, inspirational single, “Guiding Lights”.
        EWF is irrevocably the best band ever! Bar none.

        http://m.soundcloud.com/valeri-lenartowicz/exclusive-earth-wind-fire

      • clawson203@aol.com January 25, 2012 at 8:30 pm #

        I have no idea why my message repeated itsel like 5 times. Sorry.
        I have no idea why my message repeated itsel like 5 times. Sorry.
        I have no idea why my message repeated itsel like 5 times. Sorry.
        I have no idea why my message repeated itsel like 5 times. Sorry.
        I have no idea why my message repeated itsel like 5 times. Sorry.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

%d bloggers like this: