You get to hear from @Riiiiiiiii
Here we have a record that has performed spectacularly, considering the first lot of scores thrown at it. For most of the voting period Want Ads was lingering around the #40-#45 mark but with a couple more assertive scores thrown at it, the girls make the top 35! With this cut, we lose another 70s number, and when reviewing that era’s list – we can see it includes the most soulful records so a cut of those is always a little painful to me as I have come to adore that pop soul sound since starting this rate.
Want Ads has an interesting background to it, which this hosting process has allowed me to really research – another thing I am thankful for! Greg Perry and General Norman Johnson had written a song called ‘Stick-Up’ for a female singer but upon reviewing, they didn’t find it substantial enough so they re-wrote it with amendments to the chord progression and the opening line “Wanted, young man, single and free” and Want Ads was born. The song was workshopped and recorded by other acts at first, with the writers and producers not being very satisfied with the result. Lightning struck when Honey Cone singer Edna Wright passed through the studio and she was asked to record it. Edna’s voice more than suit the frustration and angst of the protagonist of the song, the effect making it so I have difficulty picturing anyone else performing the track. That didn’t stop others covering it though, Taylor Dayne does a ‘disco’ flavoured version that suits the song very well but isn’t quite to the same level as the original.
Want Ads was incredibly successful in the Billboard charts, eventually making the #1 spot, and being (the) major success for the girls’ record label Hot Wax Records (which folded shortly after the group split up in 1973 due to increasing debt). The track sold over one million copies and was Honey Cone’s biggest hit. Mary Mary also sampled the tune for their record breaking (nine weeks at the top of the gospel chart) ‘Heaven’ in 2005 and Edna Wright made a cameo appearance in the video lip-synching to her own sampled vocals.
‘The song is also said to have been a major contributor to the structure, sound and grit of the pre-disco movement that would rock the popular music world’, but what did PopJustice think?
DJHazey (7) appreciates the associations - A bop, even if it's not something I'd ever really choose to listen to. When I think of this era and 'Soul Train' this is exactly the style of song I'd expect to hear. Unnameable (7) does too but the buck stops right there – fun but not a classic. Ufint (8) may have heard the songs Want Ads influenced before the original - Lots of fun even though it totally sounds like a dozen other songs
Iheartpoptarts (10) gives obtuse Confucius eleganza! - I got my life to that Ricki-Lee song. High five me, Australia! DominoDancing (5) likes but doesn’t love - I guess it's got a little bit of spunk, but apart from that this is pretty mediocre. LondonRain (7.5) can see the appeal - A bop with great lyrics. Works for me.
Empty Shoebox (7) gives us a bit of history lesson - There's one word that comes to mind when you listen to this and that's 'motown'. That's not necessarily a bad thing, but it does limit the distinctiveness of this record. Decent lyrics, if nothing brilliant. Trouble In Paradise (8.5) is getting his life! - This gives me serious Jackson 5 vibes in the best way.
Filippa (4) has the same reference as TIP but takes it differently - Sounds like Jackson 5 song with Michael on the lead. But a rather bad one. Spillett (8) loved this discovery - (funky, never heard this but I like it. "Extra, extra... read all about about. Wanted - young, single and free!") Riiiiiiiii (8.6) finally gives us commentariiiiiiiii! - I know it’s super lame but when I first heard this two weeks ago I thought she was singing “gonna put it in ya booty”, and I have been singing it like that ever since.
Kermit_The_Frog (6) is surprised at his discovery - A mainstay of compilations in my collection, though I never knew that they were a group (assumed a solo female with a saucy stage-name) Further Listening: If I Can’t Fly. Zar-Unity (7) likes this too !- Very catchy! I like the funky sound over the lead singers vocals. Tech: 4 Taste: 3 = 7 points