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The Best of Friends of Distinction

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Album Review

It's the summer of 1969, and the whole world is joyfully singing, "Grazing in the grass is a gas, baby, can you dig it!" The Friends of Distinction's debut single was a made-for-radio pop masterpiece that captured the ebullience of that last summer of the '60s in its three minutes of harmonic exuberance. While the group never quite reached those heights again, the Friends did produce a small body of work in their brief lifetime that has held up well. The foursome's two other major hit singles, "Love or Let Me Be Lonely" and "Going in Circles" have joined "Grazing in the Grass" in the permanent rotations of most "fun and oldies" formats. Other highlights of this 20-song compilation include "Grazing"'s flipside, "I Really Hope You Do," the group's reading of the Four Tops' hit "Ain't No Woman (Like the One I've Got)," David Gates' "It Don't Matter to Me," and the beautifully baritoned "Love Can Make It Easier."

Biography

Formed: 1968 in Los Angeles, CA

Genre: Pop

Years Active: '60s, '70s

Known best for their pop smash "Grazing in the Grass," the Friends of Distinction were founded by Harry Elston and Floyd Butler, also including Jessica Cleaves and Barbara Jean Love (plus Charlene Gibson, who replaced Love during her pregnancy). Elston and Butler's involvement in music entailed several groups, including the Hi-Fi's, Ray Charles' backing band. When the group disbanded in 1966, Elston and Butler recruited Cleaves and Love...
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The Best of Friends of Distinction, The Friends of Distinction
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