• The disco era’s most famous “family”, Sister Sledge went from promising success in Europe to phenomenal mainstream success in 1979 with the platinum-selling Nile Rodgers/Bernard Edwards-helmed (Chic) album WE ARE FAMILY. ‘He’s the Greatest Dancer’, ‘Lost in Music’ and ‘We Are Family’ remain classic anthems in disco’s final years before sustaining respectable hits through to the mid-80s.
• Before reaching their commercial peak, the band released their debut CIRCLE OF LOVE (1975) on Atco. Despite the sisters still being in their teens (the youngest being lead singer, Kathy, at 15), there is a remarkable maturity to their approach to the album. Mostly in line with Philly Soul, the group are already confident here, with most of the songs co-written by Gwen Guthrie. First single ‘Love, Don’t You Go Through Changes On Me’ (US #92/R&B #31/DISCO #5) is an immediate gem with a surprising wistfulness to Kathy’s vocals here as well as an intro that hints at some darkness in the sunny serenity. Popular album cut ‘Protect Our Love’ (DISCO #7) is a turnaround, with the quintessential bustle of Philly Soul in full effect. Second single, ‘Circle of Love (Caught in the Middle)’ sees the sisters in fine form from the reassuring harmonies to Kathy’s joyous vocals. The album boasts another highlight in ‘Pain Reliever’ (DISCO #7) which is the closest the album gets to a disco-inclined strut. Best of all, album closer ‘Fireman’ is giddy in its silliness with sultry harmonies that are never overplayed, as well as sublime guitar work by Charles Sampson (who would also appear on Cameo’s early releases) and the horn section. It’s a humorous selection which undoubtedly adds to Sister Sledge’s hugely personable presence, even this early.
• BBR’s 40th Anniversary edition includes a whopping ten bonus tracks featuring the group’s remaining single releases on Atco and Cotillion between 1973 and 1976, most of which have never been on CD. Highlights include the UK charter ‘Mama Never Told Me’ (UK #20) and the Bobby Eli produced hits ‘Thank You For Today’ (R&B #78) and ‘Cream Of The Crop’ (R&B #100)
• BBR are thrilled to present the 40th Anniversary Edition of CIRCLE OF LOVE in a deluxe super jewel case, expanded and remastered, featuring a new interview with Kathy Sledge and ten bonus tracks.
NB: This product is released 29th January 2016 and will not be dispatched until this date.
1. CIRCLE OF LOVE (CAUGHT IN THE MIDDLE)
2. CROSS MY HEART
3. PROTECT OUR LOVE
4. GIVE IN TO LOVE
5. LOVE, DON’T YOU GO THROUGH NO CHANGES ON ME
6. DON’T YOU MISS HIM NOW
7. PAIN RELIEVER
8. YOU’RE MUCH BETTER OFF LOVING ME
10. THE WEATHERMAN
11. HAVE YOU MET MY FRIEND
12. MAMA NEVER TOLD ME
13. NEITHER ONE OF US (WANTS TO BE THE FIRST
TO SAY GOODBYE)
14. LOVE HAS FOUND ME
15. LOVE AIN’T EASY
16. THANK YOU FOR TODAY
17. HAVE LOVE, WILL TRAVEL
18. CREAM OF THE CROP
19. MAMA NEVER TOLD ME (“A TOM MOULTON MIX”)