You first heard “I Want to Take You Higher” 50 years ago today. Sly & The Famil…

Written by on May 14, 2018


You first heard “I Want to Take You Higher” 50 years ago today.

Sly & The Family Stone released their second LP “Dance To The Music” on April 27, 1968. It contained the Top Ten hit single of the same name, which was influential in the formation and popularization of the musical subgenre of psychedelic soul and helped lay the groundwork for the development of funk music.

The Family Stone itself never thought very highly of Dance to the Music while they were recording it; its existence was the result of CBS executive Clive Davis’ request for Sly Stone to make his sound more pop friendly. To appease Davis, Sly developed a formula for the band’s recordings, which would still promote his visions of peace, brotherly love, and anti-racism while appealing to a wider audience. Most of the resulting Family Stone songs feature each lead singer in the band (Sly, Freddie Stone, Larry Graham, and newcomer Rose Stone) sharing the lead vocals by either singing them in unison or taking turns singing bars of each verse. In addition, the songs contained significant amounts of scat singing and prominent solos for each instrumentalist.

The formula not only worked in selling records, but influenced the entire music industry. When “Dance to the Music” became a Top 10 pop hit, R&B/soul producers and labels immediately began appropriating the new “psychedelic soul” sound.

Besides the title track, the LP also included is the band’s first Epic single, “Higher” which was later reworked as “I Want to Take You Higher.”

Honestly, when is the last time your cranked up this or any album by Sly and The Family Stone?

Happy 50th Birthday to “Dance To The Music”!!

“I wanna take you higher

Boom laka-laka-laka
Boom laka-lak-goon-ka boom”




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