Peanut Butter Knife

Sunday, April 16, 2006

Chicago Soul Part 1: Chi-Lites

Some more soul music to get you through the week. Here is the first post in what I hope to be an ongoing spotlight on Chicago soul. This week I'm featuring two tracks from The Chi-Lites 1973 self titled album. Black music from Chicago is almost always exclusively talked about in terms of the blues, but the city had a sound that was distinct from that of Memphis, Philly, or Detroit. With deep roots in the vocal group culture of the late 50s, Chicago soul placed an emphasis on group harmony. The Chi-Lites were no exception, having begun their career as doo wop group the Hi-Lites before progressing into the soul era. Not as musically complex as Motown, slick as Philly Int'l or as funky as Atlantic soul, the Chicago sound tends to be mid-tempo and very melodic; the soundtrack for a city on the go. Listen to these tracks and try not to think of working men & women riding the L home or chilling after a long weekend.

Chi-Lites "Homely Girl" (Brunswick, 1973)

Chi-Lites "Go Away Dream" (Brunswick, 1973)


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