Apr 2, 2016

RhoDeo 1613 Grooves


Today, an American musical group from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. formed in 1971, when the sisters' ages ranged from 12 to 16, the group consisted of sisters Debbie, Joni, Kim and Kathy Sledge. Best known for their work with Chic in the late '70s, the siblings reached the height of their popularity during the disco era but had been recording since the early '70s and were still active in the late '90s. ... N'joy

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Daughters of Broadway tap dancer Edwin Sledge (who died in Houston, Texas on July 1, 1996 at age 73) and actress Florez Sledge (who died of a stroke in Phoenix, Arizona on May 17, 2007 at age 79), Debbie, Joni, Kathy and Kim were given vocal training by their grandmother Viola Williams, a former lyric soprano opera singer and protégé of civil rights leader Mary McLeod Bethune. Under Viola’s guidance they regularly sang at their family church, Williams Temple Christian Methodist Episcopal (CME) until forming a band and performing at charity and political events throughout Philadelphia, aptly named ‘Mrs Williams’ Grandchildren’.

The group toured much of the East Coast including New York, New Jersey and home town Philadelphia with Florez acting as their manager (and tour bus driver) and Debbie as musical director. They released their first single "Time Will Tell" in 1971 on local music label Money Back. In 1973, they released the single "Mama Never Told Me", which became a top 20 hit in the UK in 1975, but it was with the Haras Fyre & Gwen Guthrie single "Love Don’t Go Through No Changes On Me" (released in 1974) that the siblings enjoyed their first taste of success. The song was a big hit in Japan and as a result the girls were flown to the country to perform at the Tokyo Music Festival where they won the Silver Prize. The sisters also performed at the Zaire '74 concert in Africa alongside James Brown during the infamous Rumble in the Jungle boxing event.

Sister Sledge’s first album Circle of Love was released by ATCO (a subsidiary of Atlantic Records) in 1975 and included songs written by Soul legend Gwen Guthrie and Gwen's then-boyfriend, studio bassist Haras Fyre. The group enjoyed some success in Europe and as a result, the album Together was recorded in Germany in 1977. Released through the Cotillion label, the album produced a minor hit with the single "Blockbuster Boy" reaching No. 61 on the US R&B chart. Nearing the end of the decade all four sisters graduated

At something of a cross roads in their careers, the future seemed a little uncertain for the group but Atlantic Records connected them with producers Nile Rodgers and Bernard Edwards of the band Chic, and all that changed. After some initial challenges in working collaboratively, the breakthrough album We Are Family was recorded and released by Cotillion. The lead single "He’s The Greatest Dancer" charted at No. 1 R&B and was a No. 9 crossover hit. In 1979, the records anthemic namesake "We Are Family" followed and became a worldwide smash charting at No. 2 pop and No. 1 R&B. The song and group were nominated for Grammys and "We Are Family" was adopted as the official anthem for The Pittsburgh Pirates who went on to win the World Series that year. The album was certified platinum by the RIAA and produced two more classic disco singles, "Lost In Music" and "Thinking Of You". Around this time, Debbie Sledge went on maternity leave and the eldest sister, Carol, filled in for her. In 1980, their follow up album Love Somebody Today (also written and produced by Nile Rodgers and Bernard Edwards) was released.

In 1981, Sister Sledge worked with Narada Michael Walden who produced their fifth studio album, All American Girls. The project was intended as a collaboration but the resulting album is generally attributed to Narada Michael Walden. The title track became a number-three R&B, hit but the following singles "Next Time You’ll Know" and "If You Really Want Me" only did moderate business.
The girls self-produced their next record The Sisters in 1982. The album spawned the No. 14 R&B and No. 23 pop hit "My Guy" (a cover of the Mary Wells classic). The group subsequently appeared on a popular episode of The Jeffersons, in which they performed the song.

The album Bet Cha Say That To All The Girls was released in 1983, the lead single from which featured American Jazz singer Al Jarreau. The group experienced some considerable success in 1984, when they re-released "Thinking of You" and "Lost in Music" in the UK, the latter peaking at No. 4. The following year saw the release of their 7th studio album When the Boys Meet the Girls and continued success in the UK. Released by Atlantic Records, lead single "Frankie" hit the top spot on the UK Singles Chart, spending four weeks at No. 1 and consequently going Gold.

In 1989, Kathy left the group to pursue a solo career. Debbie, Joni and Kim continued to perform as Sister Sledge and in 1992 collaborated with Bluey from UK acid jazz group Incognito on the single "World Rise and Shine". The song featured on their greatest hits album And Now…Sledge…Again. The single reached No. 1 in Italy and resulted in the trio hosting their own TV show there. The group (including Kathy) experienced a resurgence of success in the UK the following year when the Sure as Pure remix of "We Are Family" was released and peaked at No. 5. In 1996, after witnessing a shooting in LA, Joni Sledge wrote the protest song "Brother, Brother stop" that was recorded by the trio and featured on a new greatest hits CD. In 1997, Joni produced the group's 8th studio album African Eyes, that garnered critical acclaim and was nominated for a Grammy as best produced CD.

In December 2000, Sister Sledge performed at The White House for the President and First Lady at the final Christmas party of the Clinton Administration. The following year, in the aftermath of 9/11, all four sisters re-recorded "We Are Family" as a benefit record with a host of other artists, including Diana Ross and Patti Labelle. Debbie, Joni and Kim produced solo material during this period before being reunited in the studio to record the album Style in 2003. Due to legal difficulties, the project officially remains unreleased.[citation needed] Kim, an ordained minister, took some time out from the group and Joni and Debbie continued to tour (with various guest artists), and in 2005 performed on the famous pyramid stage at the The Glastonbury Music Festival in the UK.

With Kim re-joining in 2015, all three sisters performed at a large scale charity benefit in London for Save The Children and were invited to perform for Pope Francis along with Aretha Franklin and Andrea Bocelli at The world Festival of Families in Philadelphia, PA. The performance was covered by the worlds media and went viral due to crowds of Nuns in the audience dancing to "We Are Family". Controversy surrounded the event when stories appeared in the media claiming that Kathy had been banned from performing with her sisters. Debbie, Joni and Kim soon thereafter launched the brand concept, Nothing Is Greater Than Love, and posted a personal response to these allegations on the campaign blog.

The trio are currently in the studio working on new material including a single set for release in Spring 2016, and are also said to be in the process of setting up the Florez Sledge Foundation, a charity named in remembrance of their late mother.

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After recording two albums under the direction of Chic leaders Nile Rodgers and Bernard Edwards, Sister Sledge surprised the R&B world by working with Narada Michael Walden on All American Girls. The Philadelphia siblings had become identified with the Chic sound, and were ready for a change. It was a gamble that paid off artistically more than commercially. Far from a bomb but not as successful as it deserved to be, the album (reissued on CD in 1995 with informative liner notes by music journalist Gary Jackson) boasts its share of gems, including the hit title song (which, ironically, does have a few Chic-ish touches), the rock-influenced "He's Just a Runaway" and the infectiously funky "Make a Move." Interestingly, "Runaway" didn't became a hit until given a reggae remix that isn't nearly as exciting as the version heard on All American Girls, clearly one of the group's finest accomplishments.

Sister Sledge - All American Girls  (flac 283mb)

01 All American Girls 4:43
02 He's Just A Runaway 3:57
03 If You Really Want Me 4:38
04 Next Time You'll Know 4:01
05 Happy Feeling 3:39
06 Ooh, You Caught My Heart 4:25
07 Make A Move 3:48
08 Don't You Let Me Lose It 2:53
09 Music Makes Me Feel Good 4:25
10 I Don't Want To Say Goodbye 3:40

Sister Sledge - All American Girls   (ogg  98mb)

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Keeping to their regular routine of releasing an album a year, Sister Sledge emerged in 1982 with The Sisters, their first self-produced effort. Keeping their disco-fied R&B in place, the sisters added a few contemporary kicks to hold their own in a decade fast leaving them behind. The move proved correct, as the group was rewarded with another Top 20 hit. The punchy, horn-heavy, and lightly funky "Super Bad Sisters" not only opens the album in fine style, but also adds a surprising sonic update via a rap from Kenneth and James Williams. Following that feat, though, the rest of the set settles down to soft-edged R&B and mediocre ballads. A less-than-stellar remake of the Mary Wells classic "My Guy" managed to reach number 14 R&B, while a passable duet between Kathy Sledge and David Simmons actually emerges as one of The Sisters' best moments. "Jacki's Theme: There's No Stopping Us," meanwhile, brought the set to a close with its quirky, snap-happy disco grooves. At the end of the day, and despite the fact that it's obvious that the band was still full of good ideas, The Sisters just doesn't reach its full potential. It could be that the band was too far out of its time and place.

Sister Sledge - The Sisters  (flac  273mb)

01 Super Bad Sisters 4:36
02 My Guy 3:44
03 Lightfootin' 3:58
04 My Special Way 5:02
05 Grandma 3:48
06 Get You In Our Love 3:41
07 Il Máquillage Lady 4:31
08 Everybody's Friend 4:31
09 All The Man I Need 4:39
10 Jacki's Theme: There's No Stopping Us 4:06

Sister Sledge - The Sisters   (ogg 99mb)

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Their last album to hit the charts, 1985's When the Boys Meet the Girls found Sister Sledge attempting to return to past form as they brought Chic's Nile Rodgers back onboard to produce and perform. And although the move would ultimately prove ineffective, as the album appeared and hovered just out of the Top 50, this easy pairing returned the sisters to an earlier edge. With the title track backed by an eclectic arrangement, those classic punchy Sister Sledge vocals were pushed well into the front of the action. The album birthed two further standouts, as both "Frankie," which is spun to become reggae-lite, and the heavily Rodgers-influenced club hit "Dancing on the Jagged Edge" rippled off the grooves. The latter, just barely limping to a paltry number 73 R&B, would prove the band's last hit until their comeback in the early '90s. Elsewhere, the Kathy Sledge-led ballad "You Need Me" emerges the best of the bunch, while the snappy "Peer Pressure" wades into wave territory, leaving the frenetic and not-quite-pleasing "Hold out Poppy" well out of the loop. When the Boys Meet the Girls is a fine effort, but this late in the day it just doesn't pull enough tricks out of the hat to make it worthwhile. And even through it's a major step up from their last effort, Sister Sledge is far better sampled across their earlier R&B heyday.

Sister Sledge - When The Boys Meet The Girls  (flac 283mb)

01 When The Boys Meet The Girls 5:28
02 Dancing On The Jagged Edge 5:44
03 Frankie 4:16
04 You're Fine 5:23
05 Hold Out Poppy 3:57
06 The Boy Most Likely 4:12
07 You Need Me 4:43
08 Following The Leader 5:06
09 Peer Pressure 3:20

Sister Sledge - When The Boys Meet The Girls (ogg  106mb)

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Sure Is Pure Remixes here, bring that nineties feeling into these 79 discofunk classics by Sister Sledge. I mixed up the seperate 12" releases and omitted the original versions. For the dancefloor.......

Sister Sledge - 93 Mixes  (flac 299mb)

01 We Are Family (Sure Is Pure Remix Edit) 3:58
02 Lost In Music (Sure Is Pure Remix Edit) 3:56
03 We Are Family (Sure Is Pure Remix) 8:02
04 Lost In Music (Nile Rodgers 1984 Remix) 6:38
05 We Are Family  (Steve Anderson DMC Remix) 8:11
06 Lost In Music (Sure Is Pure Remix) 8:35
07 Lost In Music (Philip Kelsey DMC Mix) 7:47

Sister Sledge - 93 Mixes (ogg  92mb)

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Mick said...

Great. Frankie at fuckin last.

Anonymous said...

hi rho, could you please fix the flac link of 'When The Boys Meet The Girls' ?

thanx for everything.

Rho said...

OOps forgot to enter the link, its live now. N'Joy

Anonymous said...

hey again Rho, can you re-up some more groovy Sisters. Thanks v.much, Larry