Thursday, July 7, 2011

The Pointer Sisters The Pointer Sisters 1973

There's a reason why this is one of my favorite records, and it isn't just the performance, although that is particularly hard to fault. It was 1973. I was still (just) a teenager, and music was all about meaning and message. And everything was important. And along comes this record, all Delta bijoux Southern-fried funky sass and swing revival.

Sung by four angelic voices, written and arranged with great care by talented artists and producers, and sounding not quite like anything I'd ever heard. And I daresay like nothing I've heard since.

Allan Tousaint's Yes We Can Can kicks things off in high fashion with it's upbeat message, and it is a keeper, with the sneaky vocal arrangement it is easily my favorite version of the song, among several great ones. Cloudburst is a fast and furious romp of a song, and Jada is a sweet homage to motherhood. Both sound like they're from the forties. River Boulevard is a stompin' rocker with a funky bass line that cooks. Old Songs longs for the day and the songs that recall those special memories, and does so to a memorable vocal arrangement. On side two, That's How I Feel and Willie Dixon's Wang Dang Doodle are both long funky workouts that dig a deep groove. Between them, Sugar, Pains And Tears, and Naked Foot continue the Andrews Sisters on steroids and whiskey vocal stylings that pervade the record.

And it is those vocals, the close harmonies of sisters, real sisters, not just sistas, that makes this record so good. But it's more than that, too. Because the Pointer Sisters kept making records, and for a while they tried to make this one again, and they never could. (Or maybe they foolishly tried not to make this one again.) The material is strong, and the production is excellent, the band is hot and tight, and the funk is real. Check it out. This is not that terrible disco group that came later, this is The Pointer Sisters.

No comments:

Post a Comment