More Power

I’ve been exploring the Chi-Lites recently, an early 70s soul group from Chicago. They’re probably best known these days for “Are You My Woman,” since Beyonce used the song’s horn riff as the basis for her hit “Crazy In Love.” In 1971, the Chi-Lites released (For God’s Sake) Give More Power To The People, an album which called attention to a variety of societal problems (1971 was a big year for that, filled with albums like Sly Stone’s There’s A Riot Goin’ On, Curtis Mayfield’s Roots, and Marvin Gaye’s What’s Going On)Some people call Give More Power To The People the best Chi-Lites album, and it might be, though critics tend to get overly excited when R&B artists or rappers record “socially conscious music,” treating it as inherently more “serious” than, and thus superior too, the rest of their material. But one of the best songs on Give More is “You Got Me Walking,” which avoids political problems and focuses on soul’s favorite topic — love.

 

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