Tower Of Power – 1973 – Tower Of Power
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Tower of power album is overflowing with pure UNCUT Soul & Funk!!!
With THAT MONSTER HORN SECTION!!!!
This is the third album release for the Oakland-based band and is their most successful album to date, which was released in the Spring of 1973. The album peaked at #15 on the Billboard Pop Album chart in 1973 and received a gold record award. The Album also spawned their most-successful single “So Very Hard To Go”. Although the single only peaked at #17 on the Billboard Hot 100, landed in the Top 10 on the surveys of many West Coast Top 40 radio stations; hitting #1 on most of them. The Album also charted two other singles on the Billboard Hot 100, “This Time It’s Real” and “What Is Hip?“.
1. What Is Hip? 5:08
2. Get Yo’ Feet Back On The Ground 4:52
3. So Very Hard To Go 3:41
4. Soul Vaccination 5:13
5. Clean Slate 3:22
6. Clever Girl 2:56
7. This Time It’s Real 2:54
8. Will I Ever Find A Love? 3:51
9. Both Sorry Over Nothin’ 3:25
10. Just Another Day 4:34
Greg Adams – Strings, Trumpet, Arranger, Conductor, Flugelhorn, Horn, Vocals, String Arrangements
Brent Byars – Bongos, Conga
Emilio Castillo – Saxophone, Sax (Tenor), Vocals, Production Supervisor
Bruce Conte – Guitar, Vocals
David Garibaldi – Drums
Mic Gillette – Trombone, Trumpet, Flugelhorn, Horn, Horn (Baritone), Vocals
Stephen “Doc” Kupka – Oboe, Saxophone, Sax (Baritone), Vocals
Lenny Pickett – Clarinet, Flute, Saxophone, Sax (Tenor), Vocals
Francis “Rocco” Prestia – Bass
Jay Spell – Piano
Bruce Steinberg – Harmonica, Art Direction, Design, Photography, Illustrations, Cover Design
Chester Thompson – Organ, Keyboards, Vocals
Lenny Williams – Vocals
Tower of Power has always been difficult to define or describe. It has been, and continues to be, a fascinating amalgam of talent. The most prolific period, while signed with Warner Brothers records, showcased a rare and formidable combination of talents under the leadership of Emilio Castillo.With the principle songwriting of Doc Kupka and Emilio, and horn arrangements of Greg Adams as the foundation, the musicianship of the entire ensemble percolated with the precision of a Swiss watch. Doc, Emilio and Greg were complemented by powerful trumpet and trombone of Mic Gillette and the soulful ease of Lenny Pickett on lead tenor.
The unique rhythmic synergy of David Garibaldi on drums and Rocco Prestia on bass, gave Tower its sophisticated syncopation. The distinctive guitar solos of Bruce Conte and the world class B-3 work of Chester Thompson, complete the rhythm section in full effect.. The unique silky vocals of Lenny Williams stood out, brilliantly, against the force of the band. It is indeed, amazing, that five of the ten members, from that period, are members, today.Through the years, before and since, there have been a plethora of fine musicians and vocalists that have ‘held a chair’ within Tower of Power. It is not a position one owns, but one is a caretaker of. Tower’s sound has had an evolutionary ebb and flow as different musicians lent their talents to the band.
This is the recording that takes ToP out of Oakland and places them permanently on the national stage. Local’s were still trying to figuring out Kool & Gang riff’s while ToP had moved on to a different level using Latin & soul rhythms and a quality group of horn players that could sit in with the JB’s anytime. If you haven’t heard this group (which is very hard to believe) this is the recording to get to hear the full range of material this group is capable of performing.
Oh yeah ! This sounds so hot to me.In this album you can hear the mellowness, cool funkiness inspired by JAMES BROWN. This album is too hot to handle. Handle with care so that you will not be carried away so far. These soul music searchers are so eager to tighten up the band sound. Sit back and loosen up yourself in the OAKLAND WHITE FUNK WAY. Well-structured brass section will hit you in the face. This album won’t get you wrong.
This is truly one of the best albums of the early 70’s. I am a big fan of CHICAGO but this collection and “Bump City” should have blown them right off the charts. The fabulous horn section played on many other artist’s records, but listen to “What is Hip?” and hear them in their own element knock it out of the park! These guys are the real deal.