Essential Philly Soul

Apple Music
Essential Philly Soul

Resplendent with strings, horns, and backing vocals and given to extended jazz-inflected arrangements, Philly soul rose out of the City of Brotherly Love in the early ‘70s, the studio-based hub of songwriting-production teams like McFadden & Whitehead and Gamble & Huff. Before long, brilliant performers like Teddy Pendergrass and The O'Jays arose as superstars, dressing to the nines on stage and delivering sweeping romantic ballads that set the style's lusty, gutsy tone. By the end of the '70s, it had paved the way for disco, which copped much of Philly soul's orchestral groove, dance-floor opulence, and sartorial flair.

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