The 70’s were an incredible decade for music. It was when psychedelic rock turned progressive, and when R&B evolved into soul, funk, and disco - laying the ground for music as we know it today. And nobody brought all those elements together together like Earth, Wind & Fire did. Over the course of the decade, they recorded a legendary run of albums whose influence is still being felt.
You can’t pinpoint just one thing that made them so great, which is kind of the point - they were a band that fired on all cylinders, all the time. They wrote memorable songs with show-stopping arrangements. They were masters of the studio who always delivered a party on stage. They could shake the earth with a hard-hitting groove while singing harmonies that could lift you to the sky.
If you’re a musician, you probably already know the respect they command. If not, a list of artists who’ve sampled their music would help give you a sense. It’s much too long to include here, but includes Easy-E, Mary J. Blige, Young Thug, and countless other artists who didn’t just make music, but defined it for each successive generation of listeners.
And if you’re still not persuaded as to their greatness, just listen to some of their hits. Whether the unstoppable pop funk of “Shining Star,” an uplifting ballad like “That’s the Way of the World,” the joyously funky disco of “September,” or something that’s a little bit of all those things, like “Fantasy” - each song is memorable in its own unique way.
But for all their musical gifts and wholly unique sound, Earth, Wind & Fire never hit you over the head with their talents. Instead, they made what they did look effortless. The better to take you on a journey - even if sometimes you can’t help but sometimes marvel at how you got to where they took you.
And the journey was the thing. In a time of social discontent and economic crisis in America, Earth, Wind & Fire sang about universal love and harmony with a spiritual conviction that reminds us of gospel music but doesn’t feel tied to a particular belief system. It was one way in which their music could transcend time and place - and to us, helps explain why their music has continued to feel so right. In a time when the country seems so divided, unity is a message we can get behind.
As you may know, Earth, Wind & Fire’s name comes from their founder and leader Maurice White’s astrological sign, Sagittarius. The other element is water, one that means so much to us here at Noah. So we made some special pieces to complete the four elements in our own way. We couldn’t be more thrilled than to introduce this collaboration and pay our respects to Earth, Wind & Fire - in our eyes, one of the most important and groundbreaking bands of all time.