People Got To Be Free 45 by The Rascals

January 29, 2013

People Got To Be Free

The Rascals, originally Young Rascals, were inducted in to THE ROCK AND ROLL HALL OF FAME in 1997. Their series of singles, 1965-1970, was one of the best of the era.

The biggest hit of their career came in 1968 when “People Got To Be Free” topped the BILLBOARD hOT 100 Chart for five weeks during the late summer.

They always had a soulful quality to their music, which was labeled blue-eyed soul. They would disband during 1972 but there have been a number of reunions with various members down through the years.

Good Lovin’ 45 by The Young Rascals

June 23, 2011

Felix Cavaliere, Dino Danelli, Eddie Brigati, and Gene Cornish formed The Young Rascals, (later changed to just the Rascals), during 1964. They would produce a number of what were called “blue eyed soul” classics, before disbanding during 1972. They were elected to The Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame in 1997.

Their break-out hit was “Good Lovin'” which was released March 12, 1966. It would top the BILLBOARD MAGAZINE Pop Single Chart for one week.

It was a blast of up-tempo rock/soul. It stayed on the charts for 14 weeks. It remains a song that still receives airplay 45 years later.

Time Peace: The Rascals Greatest Hits by The Rascals

January 13, 2011

The Rascals, or Young Rascals if you will, have reunited several times down through the years but the prime of their career was relatively short, 1965-1972. They made their mark during that seven year period, which led to their induction into The Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame during 1997.

Vocalist Eddie Brigati, keyboardist/vocalist Felix Cavaliere, guitarist Gene Cornish, and drummer Dino Danelli produced some of the best white eyed soul of their era. Time Peace: The Rascals’ Greatest Hits combines most of their hit singles plus some of their better album tracks onto one of the better compilation albums of its time. It would be the most successful album of their career reaching the number one position on the Billboard Magazine pop album chart.

While their studio albums contained some filler which made them inconsistent at times, when you gather their best material into one place, the results are excellent. Their third number one hit, “People Got To Be Free,” had not been released at the time and it would have made a very good album, spectacular.

The album is anchored by their fist two number one hits, “Good Lovin’” and “Groovin.’” The first is sixties up-tempo rock/pop at its best and the second is a feel good ballad. When you add in such hits as “A Girl Like You,” “How Can I Be Sure,” and the non album single at the time, “A Beautiful Morning,” you have the making of a memorable album.

“Come On Up” was a single in the tradition of “Good Lovin’” and while it may not have enjoyed its popularity, it was energetic and polished. “Mustang Sally” and “In The Midnight Hour” were cover songs issued on The Young Rascals album. They are prime examples of why they were considered one of the leading white practitioners of soul music. “Love Is A Beautiful Thing” was originally released as the flip side of the “You Better Run” single. It should have been the A side as it is polished pop and the equal of their best work.

Also included were the gritty “I Ain’t Gonna Eat Out My Heart Anymore” and the soulful “Lonely Too Long.”

The Rascals created a joyous fusion of rock and soul that has withstood the test of time well. If you want to experience the Rascals at their best, pick up a copy of Time Peace: The Rascals’ Greatest Hits. You won’t be disappointed.

Article first published as Music Review: Rascals – Time Peace: The Rascals’ Greatest Hits on Blogcritics.