“Everyday People” by Sly and the Family Stone (1968)

5 12 2008

What’s not to like about this band?  Elements of rock, soul, funk, and even psychedelia fused into a bubbling stew of sonic joy.  You’ve probably heard a lot of their songs in many different places, but I wanted you to really hear the music on its own merits.

At a time when the country was bitterly divided, Sly and the Family Stone ignored boundaries and brought people together.  Their music is overwhelmingly positive, getting the most uptight people up on their feet, if only to clap along.  Even the makeup of the band, a mix of genders and races—almost unheard of back then—ignored boundaries.  This is a revolutionary band with an incredible catalog of empowering and enlightening music.

Sometimes I’m right and I can be wrong
My own beliefs are in my song
The butcher, the banker, the drummer and then
Makes no difference what group I’m in

And who can’t dig the refrains, sung by Sly Stone’s sister Rose, good-naturedly mocking intolerant people:

There is a blue one who can’t accept the green one
For living with a fat one trying to be a skinny one
And different strokes for different folks
And so on and so on and scooby dooby doo-bee

I hope you like it.  I will always love their music.

And I want you to know that you and I are also, in every sense, everyday people.  That’s one of the things we have going for us.


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