THAT 70S SOUND

Center stage1619

The Center Stage: Everyday’s a Fantasy
From 7 “(RCA, 1971)

“Crossover” is fairly ill-defined (which is saying a lot since most music genres are ill-defined). I find that it’s one of those cases where “you know it when you hear it” and if you had to come up with a gold standard for what crossover sounds like, you could do worse than Eddie Kendricks or the Sylvers II album but you could just as easily have mentioned Donny Hathaway too. He was as much an architect of that ’70s sound as anyone else and besides his own solo work and partnership with Roberta Flack, he also tried to put together a few groups on his own, include The Center Stage who practically slay me with this Hathaway-arranged cut, “Everday’s a Fantasy.” So good, so good, so good. It’s on a promo-only RCA 7″ but it flies far enough below people’s radar as to be fairly easily to cop if you’re patient.

1619 B.A.B.: World
From 7″ (Brown Door, 1973)

I have no illusions that I will ever own the 1619 Bad Ass Bad LP (either version). A man can still dream, of course, but in the meantime, I shall content myself with the very easily attainable 7″ from the group, which features an absolute gem from them: “World.” Again, I could try to explain it but it’s just “that ’70s sound” that’s perfect here.

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