- Released: March 14, 2006
- Originally Released: 2005
- Label: Collectables Records
- Original Album: Warner Bros. 1864 (1970)
Description by OLDIES.com:
The defining album for the legendary Charles Wright & The Watts 103rd Street Rhythm Band. Express Yourself was originally released by Warner Bros. in 1970, with the title track reaching #12 on the Billboard Pop Singles chart.
Q (Magazine) - p.1184 stars out of 5
-- "[T]he real measure of Wright's range lies in the 25-minute 'High As Apple Pie,' a sprawling, jazz-inspired psychedelic soul odyssey..."
Mojo (Publisher) - p.1223 stars out of 5
-- "[T]hey crafted the 18-minute transcendental funk epic 'High As Apple Pie,' a piece as glorious and foreboding as anything emerging from George Clinton's crazy P-Funk camp."
- 1.Road Without An End
- 2.I Got Love
- 3.High As Apple Pie - Slice I
- 4.Express Yourself
- 5.I'M Aware Wright
- 6.Tell Me What You Want Me To Do
- 7.High As Apple Pie - Slice II
Charles Wright/The Watts 103rd Street Rhythm Band/Charles Wright & the Watts 103rd Street Rhythm Band: Charles Wright; John Raford (vocals, tenor saxophone); Bernard Blackman (guitar); Bill Cannon (tenor saxophone); Raymond Jackson (trombone, piano); Yusuf Rahman, James Gadson, Gabriel Flemings, Melvin Dunlap.
Personnel: Charles Wright (vocals, guitar, piano); John Rayford (vocals, tenor); James Gadson (vocals, drums); Bernard Blackman, Al McKay, Werner Schuchner (guitar); Bill Cannon (saxophone, tenor saxophone); Gabriel Flemings (trumpet, piano); Yusuf Rahman, Raymond Jackson (trombone, piano); Raymond Jackson (trombone); Sonny Burke (keyboards); John Dukes (upright bass); Melvin Dunlap (bass guitar); Earl Palmer , Maurice Miller (drums); Tommy Henderson (percussion); Carolyn Willis, Sandra Peeler, Oma Drake, Sentell Willis, Jr., Oren Waters (background vocals).
Liner Note Author: John Morthland.
Recording information: Gold Star Recording Studios, Inc.
Arrangers: Gabriel Flemings; Yusuf Rahman; James Anthony Carmichael; Raymond Jackson ; Raymond Jackson ; Bill Cannon; Al McKay.
The quintessential Charles Wright & the Watts 103rd Street Rhythm Band record, Express Yourself displays the purposefully sloppy rhythms and shout vocals that would make this band a legend in soul circles. Every track on this album is a classic, from the oft-sampled and high-charting pop single "Express Yourself" to the first of many readings of "I Got Love" that would appear on the band's records -- and even Wright's solo works for years to come. The aching balladry of "Tell Me What You Want Me to Do" and the complex compositions "High as Apple Pie -- Slice 1" and "High as Apple Pie -- Slice 2" showcase a versatility found in other West Coast collectives such as War. Perhaps the treasure of this album is the opener, "Road Without an End," a charming, stepping groover punctuated by choppy horns and snapping drums that blend beautifully with one of Wright's best vocals of his career, all accented by sweeping strings. Express Yourself is '70s soul at its most creative and satisfying. ~ Douglas Siwek