“…War! What is it good for? Absolutely nothin…say it again, ya’ll’!” from the lyrics of the song, “War” by Edwin Starr
As we all sit on the edge of our seats and watch current global events unfold with uncertainty, it is a perfect time to share a lighter side of war (yes…there is one). A side that embodies a musical vision: the band called War. And, as the t-shirt above proclaims, they have been low-riding since 1969.
War (originally called Eric Burdon and War) is considered a funk/rock/soul/R&B/blues/reggae band that came out of Compton and Long Beach, CA. The original members of the band were known for their defining musicianship, sense of togetherness and great brotherhood. Their sound was considered “world music” well before the term was coined in popular culture. Rumor has it that they were the last band to play with the legendary Jimi Hendrix.
Before making it big on their own, they toured with Isaac Hayes, Santana and the Wailers. They continue to tour worldwide today introducing their music to new generations of fans. You will find the same iconic logo seen on the black t-shirt above incorporated into all of the design concepts for their album covers. The photo montage below includes a shot of the original band members (left) and two of their classic album covers (center and right).
They were inspired by and have inspired many. Their classic song “Slipping into Darkness” inspired Bob Marley to write “Get Up Stand Up”. “All Day Music”, another one of their classic hits is a soul tune that was inspired by the late jazz legend Pharoah Sanders’ song, “The Creator has a Master Plan”. Some of their other timeless classics include “The World is a Ghetto”(one of my all time favorites!!) “Low Rider” “Cisco Kid” and “Why Can’t We Be Friends?” Why can’t we all just be friends. That is the question the international leaders, prime ministers and presidents gathered at this week’s G20 Summit in Russia should be seeking an answer to. Anything less is status quo.
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