16 Songs, 55 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

Sly Stone’s erratic behavior had made his live performances hit and mostly miss affairs. But in the studio, Stone managed to harness his troubles and channel his energy into music that remained among the era’s most challenging and exciting. Coming after his two strongest albums, 1969’s Stand! and 1971’s There’s A Riot Goin’ On, 1973’s Fresh suffered from unrealistic expectations and a soul music marketplace that had absorbed his innovations and replicated his results with stunning vitality, as the socially conscious music of Curtis Mayfield and Marvin Gaye and the powerful funk of Funkadelic clearly illustrated. Drummer Greg Errico quit and bassist Larry Graham was fired after a heated argument with Sly. This shift in rhythm section sends the music into a direct, hard-hitting funk. “Keep On Dancin’” channels “Dance to the Music,” adding a sardonic edge, while “In Time,” “I Don’t Know (Satisfaction)” and “Let Me Have It All” groove with a shockingly modern edge. The album serves as a primer for the works of Prince. The 2007 reissue includes four alternate mixes and an alternate version of “Babies Makin’ Babies” that top off Sly Stone’s most artistically fruitful period.

EDITORS’ NOTES

Sly Stone’s erratic behavior had made his live performances hit and mostly miss affairs. But in the studio, Stone managed to harness his troubles and channel his energy into music that remained among the era’s most challenging and exciting. Coming after his two strongest albums, 1969’s Stand! and 1971’s There’s A Riot Goin’ On, 1973’s Fresh suffered from unrealistic expectations and a soul music marketplace that had absorbed his innovations and replicated his results with stunning vitality, as the socially conscious music of Curtis Mayfield and Marvin Gaye and the powerful funk of Funkadelic clearly illustrated. Drummer Greg Errico quit and bassist Larry Graham was fired after a heated argument with Sly. This shift in rhythm section sends the music into a direct, hard-hitting funk. “Keep On Dancin’” channels “Dance to the Music,” adding a sardonic edge, while “In Time,” “I Don’t Know (Satisfaction)” and “Let Me Have It All” groove with a shockingly modern edge. The album serves as a primer for the works of Prince. The 2007 reissue includes four alternate mixes and an alternate version of “Babies Makin’ Babies” that top off Sly Stone’s most artistically fruitful period.

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