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Billy Butler's Sugar Candy Lady

Billy Butler

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Billy Butler, brother of Jerry and author of one of the greatest songs in soul music history — "I Stand Accused" — is one of the unluckiest men in the history of recorded music. Despite his phenomenal abilities and in-the-cut songs, the earmarks of his career were false starts, record company politics and double-dealing, and being in the right place at the wrong time. This 1977 album, his first for Curtis Mayfield's Curtom label, is a mixed bag. Ballads such as "I Know the Feeling Well," the two-part "Alone at Last," and "I'm Gonna Make Her Mine" offer portraits of Butler as a solid singer, writer, and arranger. His guitar playing, like Terry Callier's and Curtis Mayfield's, is also highly individualistic and expressive. The mid-tempo tracks, such as "Feel the Magic," "She's Got Me Singing," and "The Saga of Sadie Lee," are among the finest in Chicago soul, with their Philly-influenced grooves and solid Northern soul bridges. But on the title track, "Play My Music," and "My Love for You Grows," Butler's flirtation with disco feels far too formulaic, like pandering to the genre to make an impact. Alas, these three tracks — one that opens and another that closes the album — mar what could have been a mid-'70s classic.

Biographie

Né(e) : 7 juin 1945 à Chicago, IL

Genre : Jazz

Années d’activité : '60s, '70s, '80s

The younger brother of Jerry Butler, Billy Butler wasn't nearly as well known as his sibling, but recorded some fine Chicago soul in the '60s. Recording for OKeh under producer Carl Davis, Butler's mid-'60s singles were quite similar to labelmates Major Lance's and (less obviously) Curtis Mayfield's as stellar examples of the finest features of the Chicago soul sound. Similar to Motown in its full, brassy production, the Chicago brand was earthier, with stronger tinges of gospel, doo wop, and Latin...
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Billy Butler's Sugar Candy Lady, Billy Butler
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