Get this crazy baby off my head!




War - The World Is A Ghetto - 1972 - Avenue Records

A classic seventies album. "War" at their best! This is the album that made WAR a crossover success, mainly due to title track. Songs like "Cisco Kid", "The World Is A Ghetto" became landmarks of that era. The other four tracks are simply hard to find in any other album of that kind. Take a trip back to '72 and discover (or re-discover) this astonishing album..


1. The Cisco Kid - Lee Oskar, Lonnie Jordan, Thomas Allen, Harold Brown, Howard Scott, Charles Miller, Morris Dickerson
2. Where Was You At - Lee Oskar, Lonnie Jordan, Harold Brown, B.B. Dickerson, Howard Scott, Charles Miller, Sylvester Allen
3. City, Country, City - Lee Oskar, Lonnie Jordan, Thomas Allen, Harold Brown, B.B. Dickerson, Howard Scott
4. Four Cornered Room - War, Richard Warner
5. The World Is A Ghetto - Lee Oskar, Lonnie Jordan, Papa Dee Allen, Harold Brown, B.B. Dickerson, Howard Scott, Charles Miller
6. Beetles In The Bog - Richard Warner


War (Main Performer), Lee Oskar (Harmonica), Lee Oskar (Percussion), Lee Oskar (Vocals), Lee Oskar (Concept), Lonnie Jordan (Organ), Lonnie Jordan (Percussion), Lonnie Jordan (Piano), Lonnie Jordan (Timbales), Lonnie Jordan (Vocals), Lonnie Jordan (Producer), Ken Perry (Remastering), Papa Dee Allen (Percussion), Papa Dee Allen (Bongos), Papa Dee Allen (Conga), Papa Dee Allen (Vocals), Harold Brown (Percussion), Harold Brown (Drums), Harold Brown (Vocals), B.B. Dickerson (Bass), B.B. Dickerson (Percussion), B.B. Dickerson (Vocals), Joe Gastwirt (Mastering), Jerry Goldstein (Producer), Chris Huston (Engineer), Bill Inglot (Remastering), Howard Scott (Guitar), Howard Scott (Percussion), Howard Scott (Vocals), Howard Scott (Producer), Charles Miller (Clarinet), Charles Miller (Sax (Alto)), Charles Miller (Sax (Baritone)), Charles Miller (Sax (Tenor)), Charles Miller (Vocals), Abbey Anna (Coordination), Art Slave, Bob Gordon (Photography) #msnlivesearch1{width:300px;height:60px;background-image:url(/main/images/livesearch300.gif);background-position:top left;background-repeat:no-repeat;}


Essential recording. Best known for its distinctive fusion of Latin-flavored jazz, funk, rock, and soul, War was unquestionably one of the most successful fusion bands to emerge in the early '70s. Initially working with Eric Burdon, former lead singer with the British '60s band the Animals, the seven-member team enjoyed a commercial breakthrough with 1971's "All Day Music." The follow-up, The World Is a Ghetto took War mainstream thanks to the crossover success of the title track, a top 10 pop and R&B smash as 1972 became 1973. Cuts like the 13-minute-plus jazz-flavored adventure known as "City, Country, City" alongside the witty "Where Was You At" and the eerie "Four Cornered Room" were standouts on the six-track album. But it was the immediacy of the No. 2 pop single "The Cisco Kid," with its catchy hook that helped give the band a chart-topping No. 1 gold-selling album in 1973, arguably the best representation of its work as groove pioneers of the day. © David Nathan © 1996-2007, Amazon.com, Inc. or its affiliates
On THE WORLD IS A GHETTO, War's artistic vision moves one step beyond the preceding ALL DAY MUSIC. The band's multicultural musical stew is better blended, the social commentary of its lyrics more pointed, and its grooves are tighter and meaner. As the title indicates, THE WORLD IS A GHETTO is a dark album, but in the best possible sense--deep, thick beats predominate, as on the alternately punchy and dreamy title cut and the hypnotic "Four Cornered Room." The irresistible "The Cisco Kid" marries a slow Latin rhythm to pulsing funk on a song about the 1950s television hero, and the lively combination sent the tune up the charts. The syncopated backbeat to the New Orleans-flavored "Where Was You At" is infectious, while "City, Country, City" is an extended instrumental that allows each band member to stretch out with Latin, R&B, and jazz-inspired improvisations. One of the best-selling albums of '73, this disc is arguably War's finest. © 1996 - 2007 CD Universe
War has progressed far and fast since they disassociated themselves with Eric Burdon, with whom they had committed the all-time War atrocity, "Spill The Wine." Relieved of the necessity of shouldering this Burdon, they've developed a full, luscious sound that's engagingly funky. All Day Music saw the evolvement of this disctinctly urban sound to a point just short of proficiency -- War could talk but hadn't yet mastered the language. With The World Is a Ghetto, they edge even closer to total mastery of their music as they attempt to use it to communicate the essence of ghetto life.
It begins with "The Cisco Kid," a song just teeming with imagery about Cisco and obese buddy Pancho. Sittin' down by the Rio Grande, drinkin' wine and "eatin' salted peanuts from the can" C.K. and Pancho are no more than a fantasy in the minds of the ghetto youth singing their praises, but an important fantasy because it allows them hope, heroes, and a temporary respite from the harsh realities of ghetto existence. "Where Was You At," which follows, is a true delight, a soulful get-down cut from the Isley Brothers mold. Shit, man, just the kinda funk you need to get off on the good foot! These two cuts are truly Watts and Harlem unleashed -- ghetto life at its most brazen.
"City, Country, City" is a tour de force energizer in which everybody gets his musical rocks off. Through a series of solos ahead of varying rhythmic percussion accompaniment, War attempts to convey the hustle and bustle of a ghetto day, sandwiched between the comparitive calm of morning and night. It works well despite one terrible flaw, a total failure to communicate the desperate urgency of the situation. Somehow the boiling rage and pent-up frustration never seem to surface. By totally ignoring the blues heritage so richly ingrained in ghetto life (a major component of Savoy Brown and Santana in similar albums), War ends up conveying the mistaken impression that ghetto-dwellers are content with their lot. Given the fact that even black ghetto youth are similarly ignoring this heritage, the absence of a significant blues component in War's music is understandable, even factually accurate. Nonetheless, it's regrettable.
"Four Cornered Room" is a Temptationesque choral ballad, mildly interesting but hardly worth the eight and a half minutes devoted to it. But the title track is simply the most successful use of the "Groovin'" motif since the Rascals tantalized urban America with the prototype. A study in casual, laid-back musical discipline, it soothes savage passions, lulling them to sleep to be awakened only by the stark, sudden refrain, "the world is a ghetto." Charles Miller's sax solo is magnificent, as definitive a statement of emotion as can be imagined.
While they've yet to reach perfection (as they insist on demonstrating with self-indulgent crap like "Beetles in the Bog"), War has reached the point where they're becoming a significant force in the jazz and soul fields. Add a pinch of da blooze and they could well be artistic knockouts. © Gordon Fletcher, Rolling Stone, 3/1/73.
1972's Billboard's Album Of The Year, the career defining The World Is A Ghetto would place WAR at the top of the charts (reaching #1 on the pop album chart). On the chart for more than 68 weeks, this album sold more than three million copies and was the best-selling pop album of 1973. Beyond the commercial success, however, The World Is A Ghetto remains an influential masterpiece transcending musical, economic and social barriers. Whether it's addressing urban desolation in "The World Is A Ghetto" (#3 R&B), kickin' a funky ode to a '50s Latino television hero with "The Cisco Kid" (#5 R&B, #2 Pop) or breaking into an instrumental jazz-funk jam in "City, County, City", this is WAR at the height of their powers. © Rhino Records

War's third album as an act separate from Eric Burdon was also far and away their most popular, the group's only long-player to top the pop charts. The culmination of everything they'd been shooting for creatively on their two prior albums, it featured work in both succinct pop-accessible idioms ("The Cisco Kid," etc.) as well as challenging extended pieces such as the 13-minute "City, Country, City" -- which offered featured spots to all seven members without ever seeming disjointed -- and the title track, and encompass not only soul and funk but elements of blues and psychedelia on works such as the exquisite "Four Cornered Room." "The Cisco Kid" and "The World Is a Ghetto" understandably dominated the album's exposure, but there's much more to enjoy here, even decades on. Beyond the quality of the musicianship, the classy, forward-looking production has held up remarkably well, and not just on the most famous cuts here; indeed, The World Is a Ghetto is of a piece with Marvin Gaye's What's Going On and Curtis Mayfield's Curtis, utilizing the most sophisticated studio techniques of the era. Not only does it sound great, but there are important touches such as the phasing in "Four Cornered Room," not only on the percussion but also on the vocals, guitars, and other instruments, and the overall effect is a seemingly contradictory (yet eminently workable) shimmering blues, even working in a mournful and unadorned harmonica amid the more complex sounds. © Bruce Eder, All Music Guide


One of the most popular funk groups of the '70s, War were also one of the most eclectic, freely melding soul, Latin, jazz, blues, reggae, and rock influences into an effortlessly funky whole. Although War's lyrics were sometimes political in nature (in keeping with their racially integrated lineup), their music almost always had a sunny, laid-back vibe emblematic of their Southern California roots. War kept the groove loose, and they were given over to extended jamming -- in fact, many of their studio songs were edited together out of longer improvisations. Even if the jams sometimes got indulgent, they demonstrated War's truly group-minded approach: no one soloist or vocalist really stood above the others (even though all were clearly talented), and their grooving interplay placed War in the top echelon of funk ensembles.

The roots of War lay in an R&B cover band called the Creators. Guitarist Howard Scott and drummer Harold Brown started the group in 1962 while attending high school in the Compton area, and three years later, the lineup also featured keyboardist Leroy "Lonnie" Jordan, bassist Morris "B.B." Dickerson, and saxophonist/flutist Charles Miller (all of them sang). The group had an appetite for different sounds right from the start, ranging from R&B to blues to the Latin music they'd absorbed while growing up in the racially mixed ghettos of Los Angeles. Despite a two-year hiatus following Scott's induction into the service, they released several singles locally on Dore Records (their first, "Burn Baby Burn," was with singer Johnny Hamilton), and backed jazz saxophonist Jay Contreli, formerly of the psychedelic band Love; they also went by the names the Romeos and Señor Soul during this period. In 1968, the band was reconfigured and dubbed Nightshift; Peter Rosen was the new bassist, and percussionist Thomas Sylvester "Papa Dee" Allen, who'd previously played with Dizzy Gillespie, came onboard, along with two more horn players. B.B. Dickerson later returned when Rosen died of a drug overdose. In 1969, Nightshift began backing football star Deacon Jones (a defensive end for the L.A. Rams) during his singing performances in a small club, where they were discovered by producer Jerry Goldstein. Goldstein suggested the band as possible collaborators to former Animals lead singer Eric Burdon, who along with Danish-born harmonica player Lee Oskar (born Oskar Levetin Hansen) had been searching L.A. clubs for a new act.

After witnessing Nightshift in concert, Burdon took charge of the group. He gave them a provocative new name, War, and replaced the two extra horn players with Oskar. To develop material, War began playing marathon concert jams over which Burdon would free-associate lyrics. In August 1969, Burdon and War entered the studio for the first time, and after some more touring, they recorded their first album, 1970's Eric Burdon Declares War. The spaced-out daydream of "Spill the Wine" was a smash hit, climbing to number three and establishing the group in the public eye. A second album, The Black Man's Burdon, was released before the year's end, and over the course of two records it documented the group's increasingly long improvisations (as well as Burdon's growing tendency to ramble). It also featured War's first recorded vocal effort on "They Can't Take Away Our Music." Burdon's contract allowed War to be signed separately, and they soon inked a deal with United Artists, intending to record on their own as well as maintaining their partnership with Burdon. However, Burdon -- citing exhaustion -- suddenly quit during the middle of the group's European tour in 1971, spelling the beginning of the end; he rejoined War for a final U.S. tour and then left for good.

War had already issued their self-titled, Burdon-less debut at the beginning of 1971, but it flopped. Before the year was out, they recorded another effort, All Day Music, which spawned their first Top 40 hits in "All Day Music" and "Slippin' Into Darkness"; the album itself was a million-selling Top 20 hit. War really hit their stride on the follow-up album, 1972's The World Is a Ghetto; boosted by a sense of multicultural harmony, it topped the charts and sold over three million copies, making it the best-selling album of 1973. It also produced two Top Ten smashes in "The Cisco Kid" (which earned them a fervent following in the Latino community) and the title ballad. 1973's Deliver the Word was another million-selling hit, reaching the Top Ten and producing the Top Ten single "Gypsy Man" and another hit in "Me and Baby Brother." However, it had less of the urban grit that War prided themselves on; while taking some time to craft new material and rethink their direction, War consolidated their success with the double concert LP War Live, recorded over four nights in Chicago during 1974.

Released in 1975, Why Can't We Be Friends returned to the sound of The World Is a Ghetto with considerable success. The bright, anthemic title track hit the Top Ten, as did "Low Rider," an irresistible slice of Latin funk that became the group's first (and only) R&B chart-topper, and still stands as their best-known tune. 1976 brought the release of a greatest-hits package featuring the new song "Summer," which actually turned out to be War's final Top Ten pop hit; the same year, Oskar released his first solo album, backed by members of Santana. A double-LP compilation of jams and instrumentals appeared on the Blue Note jazz label in 1977, under the title Platinum Jazz; it quickly became one of the best-selling albums in Blue Note history, and produced an R&B-chart smash with an edited version of "L.A. Sunshine."

Yet disco was beginning to threaten the gritty, socially aware funk War specialized in. Later in 1977, the band switched labels, moving to MCA for Galaxy; though it sold respectably, and the disco-tinged title track was a hit on the R&B charts, it fizzled on the pop side, and proved to be the last time War would hit the Top 40. After completing the Youngblood soundtrack album in 1978, the original War lineup began to disintegrate. Dickerson left during the recording of 1979's The Music Band (which featured new female vocalist Alice Tweed Smith), and not long after, Charles Miller was murdered in a robbery attempt. After The Music Band was released, the remaining members attempted to refashion their image to fit the glitz of the era, and added some new personnel: bassist Luther Rabb, percussionist Ronnie Hammon, and saxophonist Pat Rizzo (ex-Sly & the Family Stone). The Music Band 2 flopped, and the group was thrown into disarray; Smith exited, and the follow-up took an uncharacteristic three years to prepare. Released in 1982, Outlaw was a moderate success; the title track was a Top 20 R&B hit, and "Cinco de Mayo" became a Latino holiday standard. Yet it didn't restore War's commercial standing. Rizzo left later in the year; Harold Brown followed in 1983, after Life Is So Strange flopped; and Rabb was replaced with Ricky Green in 1984. In the years that followed, War was essentially a touring outfit and nothing more. Papa Dee Allen collapsed and died on-stage of a brain aneurysm in 1988, leaving Jordan, Hammon, Oskar, and Scott as the core membership (Oskar would finally leave in 1992). Interest in War's classic material remained steady, however, thanks to frequent sampling of their grooves by hip-hop artists. 1992's Rap Declares War paired the band with a variety of rappers, paving the way for the 1994 comeback attempt Peace Sign; for that record, Brown returned on drums, and Jordan (now on bass), Scott, and Hammon were joined by saxophonists Kerry Campbell and Charles Green, percussionist Sal Rodriguez, harmonica player Tetsuya "Tex" Nakamura, and Brown's son, programmer Rae Valentine (plus guests Lee Oskar and José Feliciano). The album failed to chart, however, and the group returned to the touring circuit. Brown and Scott left the lineup in 1997. © Steve Huey, All Music Guide


bullfrog said...

dead link, will you please re-post, thanks

A.O.O.F.C said...

Hi,bullfrog. Try

Thanks to original uploader