The Emotions – 1977 – Rejoice
A huge hit for both The Emotions and Maurice White – whose Kalimba Productions handled this album in the same hit mode they’d been using for Earth Wind & Fire! There’s a polished, soaring bounce her that definitely shows the Earth Wind & Fire touch – and which takes the girls miles from their rougher, rootsier soul of the Stax/Volt years – yet like all the best EWF records of the time, the sound is also plenty soulful, with lots of righteous undercurrents. The album includes the group’s wonderful track “Don’t Ask My Neighbors“, a heavenly tune that builds on a long tradition of sweet female soul from Chicago; the super-huge “Best Of My Love“, a hit on dancefloors and radios for years to come.
A1 Best of My Love 3:40
A2 A Feeling Is 3:36
A3 A Long Way to Go 3:48
A4 Key to My Heart 5:21
A5 Love’s What’s Happenin’ 3:18
B1 How’d I Know That Love Would Slip Away 4:41
B2 Don’t Ask My Neighbors 4:26
B3 Blessed 4:36
B4 Rejoice 5:22
In the summer of 1977 the Emotions came out with their second Maurice White produced album and from the start we get the r&b/dicso smash “Best Of My Love” which went number one r&b and pop. This song became their trademark song which is sung by lead singer Wanda Hitchinson and was played in disco’s all across the country. This albums is flawless and you can let it play all through but my personal favorites are “Don’t Ask My Neighbor“,”Blessed“, and “Rejoice” which are all the last three songs on the album respectively. The second single “Don’t Ask My Neighbor” with its laid back and sexy melody was also a big hit off this album, but the best song has go to be the inspirational “Blessed” with its its back and forth tempo and another stunning lead by Wanda showing off her great vocal range on the vamps. The production by Maurice(who also helped out on vocals) and co-producer Clarence McDonald is top notch and the song arrangements are all done by Tom Tom 84, with key members of Earth Wind & Fire(which include bassist Verdine White and drummer Fred White,and guitarist Al McKay) supplying their excellent musicianship along with other great studio musicians of the era. Some of these songs could have been done by EWF which is really not a bad thing considering the band was at a peak moment in their careers creative wise. One of many albums the Emotions collaberated on with Maurice White and their most popular, considering its the only one available on cd. A sure keeper and a must have along, but still waiting on the previous album Flowers to be release on cd which was also great.
Rejoice featured two singles, and both rendered Top Ten action. The first was the rapidly paced R&B number one “Best of My Love“. This spirited cut is seasoned with a fierce arrangement, in particular the horns, and incomparable vocals. In addition, it claimed the number one position on the pop charts for five straight weeks. The second single, “Don’t Ask My Neighbor“, came on a mellower note. This album, the second under the tutelage and production of Maurice White of Earth, Wind & Fire, could have continued with several more chart-successful releases. The radiance the Emotions impart is heartwarming and uplifting. Their gospel roots bring a welcome spiritual feel to this album, which is a superb effort.