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Written-By – Kool & The Gang. B. I Remember John W. Coltrane. Written-By – Ronald Bell. Producer, Arranged By – Kool & The Gang. DEP 555. Kool & The Gang. Country Junky, I Remember John W. Coltrane (7"). DJ 555.
Tracklist: 1. Good Times, 2. Country Junky, 3. Wild Is Love, 4. North, East, South, West, 5. Making Merry Music, 6. Coltrane, 7. Rated X, 8. Father, Father. 4. North, East, South, West.
The secret to Kool & The Gang’s pollination is contained in their lifespan: not just that their catalog stretches across 44 years, but that they worked in so many styles, from soul jazz to hard funk, touching on disco before finding their commercial groove as a pop-funk act. The Kool in Kool & The Gang is bassist/singer Robert Kool Bell, who founded the first incarnation of the group with his brother, Khalis Bayyan (born Ronald Bell) when they were in high school. Within the catalog of such a posi group (and on an album titled Good Times), Country Junky stands out as perhaps the meanest thing Kool & The Gang ever recorded. It’s a shaggy-dog tale of a heroin addict from the sticks on a trek for that big-city dope.
Taylor's silky voice and several catchy arrangements, R&B fans regard their true glory days as the 1970s. The New Jersey-based ensemble patented a jazz-tinged funk approach keyed by Robert "Kool" Bell's basslines, red-hot horn lines, chunky keyboards and guitar riffs, and functional vocals. Although they seldom ventured beyond the R&B charts during this era, their music had far more bite than their later pop hits.
The bands debut album, Kool and the Gang, produced three hit singles on the pop and R&B charts of Billboard magazine. Wild and Peaceful gave the three more hits, Funky Stuff in the Top 40 pop chart and Jungle Boogie and Hollywood Swinging in the Top 10. The latter two songs sold over one million copies and were certified gold by the Recording Industry Association of America, the band remained productive, with albums coming out in 1974 and 1975. The songs Ladies Night and Too Hot were hits and the album was certified platinum by the RIAA. Even more successful was the album Celebration, also produced by Deodato, also certified platinum, giving Kool and the Gang its first number one hit, more international hits followed in the early 1980s, including Big Fun, Get Down on It, and Joanna.