Mayfield, Curtis - Curtis - New LP
Essential debut solo album from Mayfield after his work with the Impressions, written, published and produced by Curtis, issued on this own Curtom label, featuring his talents as singer, songwriter and guitarist, prying open Pandora's box with a switchblade knife to give us a long look at realities of life, full of pain and full of hope. This one cuts deep into the heart of the listener, and deep into the heart of America.
Marvin Gaye had be listening to this one as he was forming both What's Going On and Let's Get it On.
- Arranged By – Gary Slabo, Riley Hampton
- Contractor – Marvin Heiman
- Engineer – R.J. Anfinson, Tom Flye
- Engineer [Assistant] – Danny Turbeville
- Lacquer Cut By – dh
- Musician – Robert Lewis, Clifford Davis, Donald Simmons, Elliot Golub, Gary Slabo, Harold Klatz, Harold Dessent, Harold Lepp, Henry Gibson, John Howell, John Ross, Leonard Druss, Loren Binford, Patrick Ferreri, Philip Upchurch, Richard Single, Robert Sims, Ronald Kolber, Rudolph Stauber, Sam Heiman, Sol Bobrob
- Photography By, Design – Bob Cato
- Producer, Published, and Written-By – Curtis Mayfield
"The first solo album by the former leader of the Impressions, Curtis represented a musical apotheosis for Curtis Mayfield -- indeed, it was practically the "Sgt. Pepper's" album of '70s soul, helping with its content and its success to open the whole genre to much bigger, richer musical canvases than artists had previously worked with. All of Mayfield's years of experience of life, music, and people were pulled together into a rich, powerful, topical musical statement that reflected not only the most up-to-date soul sounds of its period, finely produced by Mayfield himself, and the immediacy of the times and their political and social concerns, but also embraced the most elegant R&B sounds of the past. As producer, Mayfield embraced the most progressive soul sounds of the era, stretching them out compellingly on numbers like "Move on Up," but he also drew on orchestral sounds (especially harps), to achieve some striking musical timbres (check out "Wild and Free"), and wove all of these influences, plus the topical nature of the songs, into a neat, amazingly lean whole. There was only one hit single off of this record, "(Don't Worry) If There's a Hell Down Below We're All Going to Go," which made number three, but the album as a whole was a single entity and really had to be heard that way." -- Bruce Eder