Talk To The People (LP)Les McCann
Throughout the 1960s, composer/vocalist Les McCann cultivated a strong reputation as an innovator of soul-jazz piano, having released numerous albums worth of early fusion gems, including the historically acclaimed Swiss Movement, which rendered a Billboard Top 40 chart placement, as well as their million-selling cover of Gene McDaniels' "Compared To What." By 1970s, McCann had begun to put greater emphasis on his vocal-work, and was an early experimenter of the
Rhodes electric piano and the Hohner clavinet, which were exponentially growing in popularity. The decade wasn't McCann's most commercially successful, but it did render a slew of funky R&B obscurities.
Among these obscurities was 1972's Talk To The People, McCann's 6th release with Atlantic Records. Very much a record of its time, Talk To The People features seven tracks of earthy soul, funky jazz, and occasional social commentary, featuring McCann at the top of his keys game. Whether laying his gritty croon over covers of Marvin Gaye and Stevie Wonder classics, or paired with solid contributions by Donald Dean on drums, Keith Loving on guitar, James Rowser on bass, and Buck Clarke on percussion, most jazz aficionados and historians will agree that Talk To The People is
an underrated 70s gem, and not to be glossed over.