12 Songs, 1 Hour 12 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

It was the Commodores’ special mission in the 1970s to combine killer funk grooves with classic R&B/pop songwriting and serve the finished product up to a huge and hungry public. Anyone who thinks the group was merely a showcase for Nicole Richie’s dad should check out Commodores Live! This 1977 release testifies how crisp, tight and sizzling the six-member band could be. While singer/saxophonist Lionel Richie became their star attraction, the Commodores were truly a precision-fused unit whose smoothly-moving parts were sublimated to the good of the whole. “Won’t You Come Dance With Me,” “Slippery When Wet” and the extended take of “Brick House” included here demonstrate their ability to jam with abandon without losing focus. Of course, the ballad side of the band isn’t neglected — Richie’s seductive vocals on “Just To Be Close to You” and “Easy” are bedroom invitations par excellence. The frisky, brass-powered “Too Hot Ta Trot” (a studio track heard in the film Thank God It’s Friday) complements the concert recordings. This is high-order funkmanship rivaling Sly Stone at his best. Commodores Live! shows how the group could be easy like Sunday morning — and steamy like Saturday night.

EDITORS’ NOTES

It was the Commodores’ special mission in the 1970s to combine killer funk grooves with classic R&B/pop songwriting and serve the finished product up to a huge and hungry public. Anyone who thinks the group was merely a showcase for Nicole Richie’s dad should check out Commodores Live! This 1977 release testifies how crisp, tight and sizzling the six-member band could be. While singer/saxophonist Lionel Richie became their star attraction, the Commodores were truly a precision-fused unit whose smoothly-moving parts were sublimated to the good of the whole. “Won’t You Come Dance With Me,” “Slippery When Wet” and the extended take of “Brick House” included here demonstrate their ability to jam with abandon without losing focus. Of course, the ballad side of the band isn’t neglected — Richie’s seductive vocals on “Just To Be Close to You” and “Easy” are bedroom invitations par excellence. The frisky, brass-powered “Too Hot Ta Trot” (a studio track heard in the film Thank God It’s Friday) complements the concert recordings. This is high-order funkmanship rivaling Sly Stone at his best. Commodores Live! shows how the group could be easy like Sunday morning — and steamy like Saturday night.

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