Release date: June 26, 2020
Grammy® Lifetime Achievement Award Recipients and Rock & Roll and Gospel Hall of Fame Inductees, The Staple Singers are an American music treasure.
In the 50s they were among the greatest of the post-war gospel groups. The 60s found them recording for a variety of labels like Vee-Jay, Riverside, Epic and ultimately Stax, pioneering the ‘soul folk’ sound. By the end of the decade, they were becoming the soul music superstars they’re most widely known as now.
During the ’70s, they placed 13 singles on the U.S. Pop Chart and 20 on the U.S. R&B Chart. Besides recording, touring and chasing songs up the charts, the group also found time to not only appear in music-related motion pictures like Wattstax (1972) and The Bands’ The Last Waltz (1976), but they also contributed to the Sidney Poitier-directed film soundtrack, Let’s Do It Again with music produced by Curtis Mayfield. This, their first post-Stax effort, sent the title track, “Let’s Do It Again” to the number one spot on both the Pop and R&B charts.
While Curtis Mayfield produced Let’s Do It Again and 1976’s Pass It On, The Staples switched it up on 1977’s Family Tree opting to work with another Chicago-based producer Eugene Record who had experienced his own chart success co-writing and singing lead on a number of hits with his band the Chi-Lites. The album spun off two singles. The first, “See A Little Further (Than My Bed)” only made it to #77 on the R&B chart, but the second, a cover of “I Honestly Love You” made popular by Olivia Newton-John was a seven minute plus epic. Sadly, it too didn’t do much on the charts, making it only as high as the #68 notch, but it is among Mavis Staples’ greatest recordings.
Though the hits slowed after the mid-’70s, they did have a number 5 dance chart hit with a cover of the Talking Heads song, “Slippery People” in 1984. Mavis Staples had been releasing solo albums dating back to 1969’s self-titled effort on Stax, but started to pick up the release tempo and carry the family business forward with a pair of albums for the Paisley Park label under the direction of Prince in 1989 and 1993. She continues performing and releasing albums to this day, working with artists and producers like Ry Cooder, Jeff Tweedy, Arcade Fire, Gorillaz, and Ben Harper, among others.
Omnivore is proud to present the remastered 1977, Eugene Record-produced album, Family Tree. This new edition features liner notes from Grammy®-Award winning author, Rob Bowman and add all single edits issued for the album as bonus tracks. The reissues are produced and remastered by Grammy®-winners, Cheryl Pawelski and Michael Graves respectively, and include photos and ephemera in the booklets.
Family Tree What You Doing Tonight See A Little Further (Than My Bed) I Honestly Love You Hang Loose Let’s Go To The Disco Color Me Higher Boogie For The Blues I Honestly Love You(Single Edit) Let’s Go To The Disco(Single Edit)