22 04 2010

Whoa! I just found this video of Sly & The Family Stone (the original band) performing live on the short-lived TV show Music Scene circa 1969. This is some true Sly at the peak of it all. This performance is essentially a medley of some of their hits including “Everyday People”, “Dance To The Music”, “Hot Fun In The Summertime”, “Don’t Call Me N(word), Whitey” and “Gotta Take You Higher”.  Now, as far as medley’s go I am typically not a fan. As a purist, I enjoy the full cut of the song as it was intended to be, but I have yet to see live footage of Sly that is this good. This is legit, not that past-his-prime,  burnt out stuff that has recently surfaced. For someone that wasn’t around in ’69, I actually get the sense that this is what the “Music Scene” was actually like… hence the name of the show.

Despite loving this video, of all those songs the only one I really listen to by choice would be “Hot Fun In The Summertime”. The others I appreciate and enjoy but they are not at the top of my Sly queue. Two songs that always seem to jump out as my favorites are “If You Want Me To Stay” and “Family Affair”. They are from his later years and all but, man, do they sound great… pure slow burning Sly soul funk. To check them out follow the links below:

If You Want Me To Stay

Family Affair

Reference Links:

More info on Sly Stone

More info on The Family Stone

More info on Music Scene

Previous GG posts:

Sly At His Slyiest

Purchase Online:

Sly & The Family Stone on iTunes

Buy The Essential Sly & The Family Stone


Sly at his Slyiest

21 01 2010

This Sly tune is probably my all time favorite. It’s from the 1973 album Fresh, which is actually from his darker years. By darker, I mean both personally and musically. By this time Sly was very flaky and unreliable due to a nasty drug habit. In the same period, the music had also progressed to something much darker in tone in comparison to the hits of his earlier years like Everyday People, Hot Fun in the Summertime, Dance to the Music, Stand, etc. On this particular track there really is no Family Stone, though it’s still funky as hell. Sly plays everything himself except the drums and horns. His vocals are the real stand out though, the singing is just phenomenal on this one. It’s Sly at his Slyiest. There is an alternate mix that is available and some live versions too but this one is definitely the best.

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