LINDA HOPKINS + ROGER: WALK TO FREEDOM



Linda Hopkins: Walk On In
From S/T (RCA, 1972)

Roger and the Human Body: Freedom
From The Vinyl Days (Circe Communications, 1976). Also on We Can Make You Dance

I’m cleaning out my closet of old sound files that I’ve been stacking but never got around to posting. Sorry folks, no real deep themes here but at least the music’s good (I hope).

The Linda Hopkins album I found a while back – her bio is so deep, I can’t even begin to try to summarize it but I’ll say this much about the music on the LP: you can definitely hear her gospel roots in both the singing and arrangement. The production is good – quite diverse actually since some of it shows off Hopkins’ Broadway skills too. “Walk On In” drew me in for its blend of gospel and soul sensibilities (I’m a sucker for background singing too). I’d be curious to know who her rhythm section is too – they got nice chops here.

This Roger and the Human Body was a hand-me-down from Cool Chris at the Groove Merchant in S.F. It comes off of a compilation by Cincinnati’s WEBN (part of a series of comps the station put out) designed to highlight the city’s local talent. Along side a smattering of disco-influenced soul, folksy light rock ballads, and a dab of country is this early, early song by Roger Troutman and his first group, the Human Body. 45 copies of this song go over $150 and the LP it appears on can price well over $500(!!!) Chris thought this might have been the first place “Freedom” appeared though upon further research, the 7″ was released in ’75 so this is probably after the single came out. What I think it most interesting is how Roger was already playing with the vocoder that would become such a signature part of the late funkateer’s sound.

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