2012 marks the 40th anniversary of the hugely influential Philadelphia International Records. To mark this, and following our reissue of some of the labels other acts such as the Three Degrees, Harold Melvin & The Blue Notes and the O’Jays. We are pleased to present another album from one of the most identifiable voices of the Philly Sound. Billy Paul is a Grammy Award winning soul singer, most noted for his R&B and Pop #1 ME AND MRS. JONES from this 1972 album 360 DEGREES OF BILLY PAUL.
Cavin Yarbrough and Alisa Peoples were childhood friends from Dallas, Texas who went on to have great chart success as an R&B duo through the 1980’s. While on tour as a backing vocalist with Leon Russell in the late 1970’s Cavin met the Wilson Brothers from The Gap Band, who in turn introduced Cavin to their collaborator Lonnie Simmons and his Total Experience Recording Studios who produced the duos debut album and later signed them to his Total Experience label, joining The Gap Band on the roster. Yarbrough & Peoples debut album, THE TWO OF US was released through Mercury Records in 1980 and quickly achieved both critical and commercial success. The album gained Gold status hitting the top spot on the Billboard R&B album chart as well as peaking at #16 on the Billboard Hot 100.
A really special record from a really special group – one of two sublime 70s gems from Azteca – a wicked blend of jazz, funk, Latin, and soul – all put together by a young Coke Escovedo! Coke's ostensibly the leader of the group, but there's also a richly collaborative feel going on – a style that brings together jazz players like Tom Harrell on trumpet, Mel Martin on saxes, George Muribus on Fender Rhodes, and Flip Nunez on organ – and Latin players like Victor Pantoja on congas, Coke Escovedo on timbales, and Pete Escovedo on added percussion. In fact, the set's a key early example of the strength of the Escovedo family – and like their best later efforts, the set really stretches out and pushes the boundaries of conventional genres. There's also some great guest work from Lenny White on drums, Mike Nock on keyboards, and Neal Schon on guitars – and vocals are by a range of singers who really keep things fresh.