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Album Review

Listening to the Persuasions sing can be an enlightening experience. A true a cappella group in the sense that they use no instrumentation other than the human voice, their songs are as rich in tone and texture as any full-scale band. On Sincerely, the group pays debt to their street-corner singing roots of the past, while doing much to update an old sound and old material. Jarry Lawson's powerful lead singing dominates the album and its standout tracks such as "Building a Home" and "Five Hundred Miles," while Jimmy Hayes fills out the bottom, adding depth to the sound and taking lead on "Can't Do Sixty No More."


Formed: 1966 in Bedford-Stuyvesant, NY

Genre: Pop

Years Active: '60s, '70s, '80s, '90s, '00s, '10s

A cappella singing has been part of the African-American musical tradition since the days of slavery. Despite the recent success of the hi-tech a cappella group Take 6, the tradition has suffered a steady decline to the point where it is rare even in gospel circles. The Persuasions, though, are resolutely a cappella. Their chart successes have been minimal (two fleeting R&B entries in 1974-1975), but they carry forward the tradition without appearing ossified. Airplay will probably always elude them...
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Sincerely, The Persuasions
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