Monday, 23 February 2009

Bunny Sigler - My Music - 1976 - Philadelphia International

This is my favourite album from Bunny Sigler, and I was absolutely over the moon when it was released on CD here in the UK courtesy of the good folks at Edsel. I have to be honest that Bunny's music either grabs me or leaves me stone cold. This album from 1976 is a mixed bag and is, I suppose, nicely representative of all of his 1970s work. I love his vocals, his writing and production from the 70s ‘til today and this album contains some of his best 70s output for Philadelphia International. Disco was really kicking in and it was a time of change. Some artists managed this well; others disappeared without trace. This album traversed the minefield of 'come fly with me' collars, hairy chests, medallions and dodgy movies with John Travolta well and managed to succeed enough for the album still to be heavily sought after today.

I can pick out four tracks that really do it for me. These commence with the anthemic "My Music" which is Philly through and through. It’s climatic, clever and descriptive. Bunny wrestles his yearning vocals over the vibrant percussion, guitar and horns and strikes a hot track in doing so. The CLASSIC "Come On And Dance, Dance, Dance" was featured on Philadelphia Uncovered a number of years ago, and rightly so too. Here it is in its original place. This is a superb dancer where the horns punch with real vigour, as Bunny gets smooth and gruff with his delivery. This is classic Philly soul at its best. My ultimate favourite is the gorgeous ballad “Somebody Loves You”. The intro is so amazing, that if the rest of the song were diabolical then it would still be worth it for this alone!!! The tinkling piano scale, the blowing wind, harp, bells, strings and flute lead us gently into an impassioned ballad of monster proportions. The Philly sound simply does not get any better than this. In the CD reissue, Tony Rounce has written an extensive essay well worth reading, but unfortunately failed to include Bunny’s recent recording with Larry Gold. I consider “Can I?” from 2003 to be the best thing that Bunny has EVER recorded and is CLASSIC Philly in every sense of the word - PLEASE check out my Y2K review of that here: This is a very welcome release, and big thanks to Edsel for this.

Barry Towler
The Vibe Scribe

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