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Harold Melvin & the Blue Notes


Harold Melvin & the Blue Notes
Review by Matt Robinson

What makes this a great album, worthy of inclusion in the Legacy Rhythm and Soul series? The fact that Philly Soul architects Gamble and Huff penned all but one track. The fact that, in the space of seven songs, they were able to touch nearly every emotional point, from the loss of “I Miss You” to the yearning of “Let Me Into Your World” to the redemption of “Yesterday I Had the Blues.” The fact that you listen to every spoken word of the improvised intro to “Be for Real” and, even on a remastered CD, do not skip one of its 248 seconds. The fact that group leader Harold Melvin, evidently realizing what he had, showcases a young Theodore “Teddy Bear” Pendergrass, Jr. on not one, but two versions of “If You Don’t Know Me By Now,” neither of which is either Simply Red or simply blue. In fact, it is the human complexities present in nearly every note of this album that made it great when it was originally released in 1972 and that continue to make it one today.

- Matthew S. Robinson
c. 2004, M. S. Robinson, ARR


©2003-2005 Boston Beats





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