Saturday, March 29, 2008
Yahoo LAUNCHCAST Song Of The Day-Curtis Mayfield & The Impressions
Artist:Curtis Mayfield & The Impressions
Song:This Is My Country
Album:The Anthology 1961-1977
This 2CD comp not only covers Curtis Mayfield's 70s recordings but also covers his work with The Impressions. The group started out in 1957 as The Roosters, a doo wop group started in Chicago by Sam Gooden (born Sept. 2, 1939 in Chatanooga) and Arthur & Richard Brooks. Jerry Butler joined and brought guitarist Curtis Mayfield (born June 3, 1942 in Chicago) with him. The two had been in a gospel group together. They were renamed The Impressions by their manager and had a top 20 hit in 1958 with For Your Precious Love. Butler sang lead but would soon leave for a successful solo career. Mayfield took over lead vocals and primary songwriting duties and brought in Fred Cash (born Oct. 8, 1940 in Chatanooga). Gypsy Woman was a top 20 hit in 1961 but follow up singles didn't catch on. The Brooks brothers left in 1962 and The Impressions remained a trio for the rest of the 60s. The other key addition was producer arranger Johnny Pate (born Dec. 5, 1923 in Chicago Heights, IL). The Impressions struck gold with the 1963 hit It's All Right. The mix of Mayfield's gospel influenced songs and Pate's arrangements were a very potent combination. As the 60s went on, Mayfield's songs became more socially aware. He also started his own label Curtom in 1968 and This Is My Country was the first album. The album did well but they were fading and Mayfield left to go solo in 1970. Cash & Gooden continue to tour today as The Impressions and Curtis Mayfield went on to major success with Superfly to cement his legacy as one of the all time greats of 20th century black music. Mayfield became a paraplegic when a scaffold fell on him during a performance in Brooklyn on Aug. 14, 1990 and he died on Dec. 26, 1999 at age 57. Here's Curtis Mayfield & The Impressions performing It's All Right on Hollywood A Go Go 1965.