Title - 'On And On: The Buddah/Columbia Anthology'
Artist - Gladys Knight & The Pips
For those not in the know, Gladys Knight & the Pips were an R&B/soul family musical act from Atlanta, Georgia that remained active on the music charts and performing circuit for three decades.
Starting out as simply The Pips in 1952, derived from a cousin's nickname, the founding members were Gladys Knight, brother Merald "Bubba" Knight, sister Brenda Knight and cousins Eleanor and William Guest.
After a couple of years performing in talent shows, the group signed with Brunswick Records in 1957, recording a couple of singles that failed to chart.
Brenda Knight and Eleanor Guest were eventually replaced by another cousin, Edward Patten and a non-relative, Langston George in 1959. This lineup produced the group's first hit single, "Every Beat of My Heart".
After the single was released on three different labels, they changed their name to Gladys Knight & the Pips in 1961.
Langston George left the same year and Gladys Knight left in 1962 to start a family with musician Jimmy Newman. Knight rejoined in 1964 and this lineup continued until the group's disbandment in 1989.
The group reached commercial success after signing with Motown Records in 1966. After a year and a half, the group recorded the first hit single version of "I Heard It Through the Grapevine" in 1967, which led to several hit singles for Motown's Soul Records label, including "Nitty Gritty", "Friendship Train", "If I Were Your Woman" and "Neither One of Us (Wants to Be the First to Say Goodbye)."
They then left the label for Buddah Records in 1973, where they recorded the hits "Best Thing That Ever Happened to Me", "I've Got to Use My Imagination" and their number-one hit single, "Midnight Train to Georgia".
Contractual difficulties with their labels forced the group to record side projects until 1980 when they signed with Columbia Records. Later hits included "Save the Overtime (For Me)" and the Grammy-winning single "Love Overboard".
In 1989, the group disbanded with the Pips retiring and Knight embarking on a successful solo career.
Gladys Knight & the Pips are multiple Grammy and American Music Award winners and are inductees into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and the Vocal Group Hall of Fame in 1996 and 2001 respectively.
SoulMusic Records is very proud to present On & On: The Buddah/Columbia Anthology, a hit-filled 2-CD by the iconic Gladys Knight & The Pips, whose international appeal, as aforementioned, spanned over three decades from the mid-60s to the mid-80s.
This 37-track collection of recordings by the legendary family group (Gladys, brother Merald ‘Bubba’ Knight and cousins William Guest and Edward Patten) focuses on a particularly successful period of their consistent presence as mainstay global hitmakers from 1973-1985.
1. "The Way We Were / Try to Remember"
2. "Midnight Train to Georgia"
3. "I've Got to Use My Imagination"
4. "Best Thing That Ever Happened to Me"
5. "Where Peaceful Waters Flow"
6. "On and On"
7. "To Be Invisible"
8. "The Makings of You"
9. "Make Yours a Happy Home" (Alternate Mix)
10. "I Feel a Song (In My Heart)"
11. "Love Finds It's Own Way"
12. "The Need to Be"
13. "Part Time Love"
14. "So Sad the Song"
15. "Everybody's Got to Find a Way"
16. "Little Bit of Love"
17. "Baby Don't Change Your Mind"
18. "Walk Softly"
19. "Come Back and Finish What You Started"
20. "It's a Better Than Good Time"
The first disc of this wondrous, simply stunning new anthology chronicles the group's five-year run of non-stop hits for Buddah Records.
Staring off with an intro from Gladys talking about the good old days, and how we should try and remember the kind of September when life was slow and oh so mellow, etc. in the live medley intro to "The Way We Were / Try to Remember," before the flashback gem "Midnight Train to Georgia."
The funky brilliance of "I've Got to Use My Imagination" is then backed by the laid back love song duo of "Best Thing That Ever Happened to Me" and "Where Peaceful Waters Flow," with the title track, "On and On" following along nicely.
Another, to my mind, great run of tracks begins with the heartfelt ode to finding the perfect partner for love, "Part Time Love<" which is backed seamlessly by both "So Sad the Song" and the upbeat Gospel sing-along "Everybody's Got to Find a Way."
Drawn from eight Buddah albums that included production by Curtis Mayfield, Tony Camillo and Van McCoy among others, The Buddah Years features over a dozen charted singles and an alternate mix of "Make Yours A Happy Home" from the 'Claudine' soundtrack.
2. "Taste of Bitter Love"
3. "Still Such a Thing"
4. "Get the Love"
5. "Add It Up"
6. "Bourgie', Bourgie'"
7. "We Need Hearts"
8. "I Will Fight"
9. "A Friend of Mine"
10. "Reach High"
11. "When You're Far Away"
12. "Save the Overtime (For Me)"
13. "You're Number One (In My Book)"
15. "You've Got My Word on That"
16. "Kiss Away the Pain"
17. "Hero" (Aka "Wind Beneath My Wings")
The second disc chronicles the group's five years with Columbia Records during which they initially reunited with Nick Ashford & Valerie Simpson (with whom they had worked at Motown), resulting in further hits such as the laid back openers of the slap bass beauty "Landlord" and the dancefloor funk of "Taste Of Bitter Love".
Moving through the album and one of my all-time fav's of theirs from this era has always been 'Bourgie', Bourgie' (although, for the longest time growing up I seriously thought they were singing "Boogie Boogie"!) and here it just sounds so crystal clear; so perfect, even after all these years.
That's backed by the infectious foot-tappin' rhythms of "We Need Hearts," the electro beats of "I Will Fight," and both the delightful jazz funk slow blues of 'A Friend of Mine' and all-out funky strains of "Reach High."
Further success came with "Save The Overtime (For Me)", "You're Number One (In My Book)" and an early version of the pop classic "Wind Beneath My Wings" (here as "Hero").
A first-of-it's-kind comprehensive collection drawn from both Buddah and Columbia albums by the group, it includes all (22) US charted hits released over a twelve-year span.
Liner notes by renowned US writer Kevin Goins include quotes from former Buddah executive Cecil Holmes, songwriter Jim Weatherley, arranger/musician Ray Chew and producer / songwriter Charles Kipps; with remastering by Nick Robbins, artwork by Roger Williams.
Official 2CD Purchase Link