The Young Mods' Forgotten Story

The Young Mods' Forgotten Story

Though it clocks in at a shockingly brief 25 minutes, The Impressions’ 1967 release The Young Mods’ Forgotten Story may well be one of the strongest collections of original material that Curtis Mayfield would ever assemble as leader of The Impressions. (No small claim for a man whose songwriting credits include the likes of “People Get Ready” and “Keep on Pushin’.”) None of the selections on The Young Mods’ Forgotten Story have the monumental, epoch-defining quality of those more politically conscious tracks, but the album is nonetheless rich in examples of perfect songcraft. Mayfield’s impeccable songwriting is bolstered by talented arrangers, including longterm collaborator Johnny Pate and a gifted young musician named Donny Hathaway, who'd soon launch his own solo career under Mayfield’s auspices. While Pate’s arrangements more often hark back to The Impressions’ doo-wop and gospel-inflected early work, the selections on which Hathaway’s sensibility dominates look forward to the funkier productions of Mayfield’s early solo career.

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