MFSB Biography

‘Mother, Father, Sister, Brother’ or MFSB (and there was a less flattering alternative), was the house band employed by producers Gamble And Huff. Jesse James, Bobby Martin, Norman Harris (10 February, d. 21 March 1987), Ronnie Baker (d. 1990), Earl Young, Roland Chambers (b. 9 February 1944, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA, d. 8 May 2002, Wynnewood, Montgomery County, USA) and Karl Chambers (b. 9 September 1946, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA, d. 24 February 2002, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA) came to prominence as the uncredited performers on ‘The Horse’, a hit for Cliff Nobles (And Co.) in 1968. As the James Boys, the septet replicated that hit with a cash-in release, ‘The Mule’, and the unit also recorded under other names, including the Music Makers and Family. It was as the instrumental muscle behind the Philadelphia International stable and artists such as the O’Jays and Harold Melvin And The Blue Notes that the group garnered its reputation. ‘TSOP (The Sound Of Philadelphia)’, the theme from television’s Soul Train show, was a million-selling single in 1974, but later releases failed to match its exuberance and purpose. Undeniably rhythmic and undoubtedly competent, MFSB nonetheless lacked the focal point that the Three Degrees’ voices provided on those early successes.

Source: The Encyclopedia of Popular Music by Colin Larkin. Licensed from Muze.

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