OHIO PLAYERS

Funk / RnB / Jazz Related Soundtracks • United States
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With their slinky, horn-powered grooves, impeccable musicianship, and eye-popping album covers, the Ohio Players were among the top funk bands of the mid-'70s. Emerging from the musical hotbed of Dayton in 1959, the group was originally dubbed the Ohio Untouchables, and initially comprised singer/guitarist Robert Ward, bassist Marshall "Rock" Jones, saxophonist/guitarist Clarence "Satch" Satchell, drummer Cornelius Johnson, and trumpeter/trombonist Ralph "Pee Wee" Middlebrooks. In late 1961, a relative of Ward's founded the Detroit-based Lupine Records, and the group traveled north to the Motor City to back the Falcons on their hit "I Found a Love"; the Ohio Untouchables soon made their headlining debut with "Love Is Amazing," but when Ward subsequently exited for a solo career, the group essentially disbanded.

At that point, the nucleus of Middlebrooks, Jones, and newly added guitarist Leroy "Sugarfoot" Bonner returned to Dayton; there they recruited saxophonist Andrew Noland and drummer Gary Webster, the latter a
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OHIO PLAYERS Discography

OHIO PLAYERS albums / top albums

OHIO PLAYERS Observations In Time  (aka Ohio Players aka Cold Cold World) album cover 3.00 | 1 ratings
Observations In Time (aka Ohio Players aka Cold Cold World)
RnB 1969
OHIO PLAYERS First Impressions (aka Over The Rainbow) album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
First Impressions (aka Over The Rainbow)
Funk 1972
OHIO PLAYERS Pain album cover 4.00 | 1 ratings
Pain
Funk 1972
OHIO PLAYERS Pleasure album cover 3.51 | 3 ratings
Pleasure
Funk 1972
OHIO PLAYERS Ecstasy album cover 4.00 | 1 ratings
Ecstasy
Funk 1973
OHIO PLAYERS Climax album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Climax
Funk 1974
OHIO PLAYERS Skin Tight album cover 3.55 | 2 ratings
Skin Tight
Funk 1974
OHIO PLAYERS Fire album cover 4.50 | 1 ratings
Fire
Funk 1974
OHIO PLAYERS Honey album cover 3.48 | 2 ratings
Honey
Funk 1975
OHIO PLAYERS Rattlesnake album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Rattlesnake
Funk 1975
OHIO PLAYERS Contradiction album cover 3.48 | 2 ratings
Contradiction
Funk 1976
OHIO PLAYERS Angel album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Angel
Funk 1977
OHIO PLAYERS Mr. Mean album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Mr. Mean
Jazz Related Soundtracks 1977
OHIO PLAYERS Jass-Ay-La-Dee album cover 2.00 | 1 ratings
Jass-Ay-La-Dee
Funk 1978
OHIO PLAYERS Everybody Up album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Everybody Up
Funk 1979
OHIO PLAYERS Ouch! album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Ouch!
Funk 1981
OHIO PLAYERS Tenderness album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Tenderness
Funk 1981
OHIO PLAYERS Graduation album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Graduation
Funk 1984
OHIO PLAYERS Back album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Back
Funk 1988

OHIO PLAYERS EPs & splits

OHIO PLAYERS live albums

OHIO PLAYERS Ol' School (aka On Tour) album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Ol' School (aka On Tour)
Funk 1996
OHIO PLAYERS Live 1977 album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Live 1977
Funk 2013

OHIO PLAYERS demos, promos, fans club and other releases (no bootlegs)

OHIO PLAYERS re-issues & compilations

OHIO PLAYERS Pain + Pleasure = Ecstasy album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Pain + Pleasure = Ecstasy
Funk 1973
OHIO PLAYERS Greatest Hits (1975) album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Greatest Hits (1975)
Funk 1975
OHIO PLAYERS The Very Best Of (The World Of) Ohio Players (aka The Ohio Players aka First Fruit) album cover 3.50 | 1 ratings
The Very Best Of (The World Of) Ohio Players (aka The Ohio Players aka First Fruit)
RnB 1975
OHIO PLAYERS The Ohio Players album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
The Ohio Players
Funk 1975
OHIO PLAYERS 16 Greatest Hits album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
16 Greatest Hits
Funk 1976
OHIO PLAYERS Gold album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Gold
Funk 1976
OHIO PLAYERS The Best Of The Early Years Volume One album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
The Best Of The Early Years Volume One
Funk 1977
OHIO PLAYERS Orgasm: The Very Best of the Westbound Years album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Orgasm: The Very Best of the Westbound Years
Funk 1993
OHIO PLAYERS Funk On Fire (The Mercury Anthology) album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Funk On Fire (The Mercury Anthology)
Funk 1995
OHIO PLAYERS Jam album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Jam
Funk 1996
OHIO PLAYERS The Best of the Ohio Players album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
The Best of the Ohio Players
Funk 1997
OHIO PLAYERS Greatest Hits album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Greatest Hits
Funk 1998
OHIO PLAYERS 20th Century Masters: The Millennium Collection: The Best of Ohio Players album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
20th Century Masters: The Millennium Collection: The Best of Ohio Players
Funk 2000
OHIO PLAYERS Trespassin' album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Trespassin'
Funk 2003
OHIO PLAYERS Skin Tight / Fire album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Skin Tight / Fire
Funk 2007

OHIO PLAYERS singles (0)

OHIO PLAYERS movies (DVD, Blu-Ray or VHS)

OHIO PLAYERS Reviews

OHIO PLAYERS The Very Best Of (The World Of) Ohio Players (aka The Ohio Players aka First Fruit)

Boxset / Compilation · 1975 · RnB
Cover art Buy this album from MMA partners
js
“The Very Best of the Ohio Players” is a collection of tunes recorded by the Players early in their career, before they developed their signature funk sound in the 70s. At this early stage in their career they were playing a very energetic and aggressive RnB that leaned heavily on Wilson Pickett and James Brown, as well as newer RnB bands with large vocal ensembles such as the Isley Brothers and the Temptations. Also, the slightly rough recorded sound and loose approach is reminiscent of fellow Ohioans, Funkadelic’s early records. If the Players had never switched to the funk, they probably would have gone down as one of the better RnB bands in history and that’s why this record is such a treat for Player’s fans and fans of late 60s RnB.

There are no duds on this record, every song is smoking hot with excellent vocal leads and ensemble horn work, all trademarks of the Player’s sound which will become well known in the 70s. Some highlights include a couple jazzy instrumentals, “Find Someone to Love” and “Alabama Soupbone”, and an incredible high pitched vocal rendition of the classic ballad “Somewhere Over the Rainbow”. I’m not sure who the un-credited singer on “Rainbow” is (I have the 1977 United Artists version of this record) but towards the end of the song he takes the vocal line up into Phillip Bailey range. This ‘unique’ choice of a cover tune and the Player’s over-the-top rendition works both as ironic kitsch and a damn good performance, the double whammy of great art wherever you find it.

These tunes from the Ohio Players early days tend to get re-packaged under a variety of names. Whatever the name of the collection you run into, if you are an RnB or funk fan, you will definitely want to pick this up. The sound is rough, but that doesn’t hurt the music much at all.

OHIO PLAYERS Pleasure

Album · 1972 · Funk
Cover art Buy this album from MMA partners
js
The Ohio Players are hardly an unknown band, but when it comes to honoring the most innovative and talented funk bands it seems that they always fall beneath the mighty shadows of EW&F and the p-funk mob, which is a shame because the Players deserve to rank up there with the best. “Pleasure” was approximately the third album in the Ohio Player discog, but the first to get widespread attention due to their big RnB hit, “Funky Worm”. Still early in their career, “Pleasure” came out in 1972 before the Players had solidified their signature mid-70s sound and finds them serving up an eclectic mix of styles. Side one is for the jazz rock fans and has the band taking long instrumental rides full of excellent horn arrangements and tricky rhythmic change-ups. Along with the aforementioned EW&F and Parliament, this side may also remind some of Chicago, Tower of Power, Steely Dan, Sly Stone, and Donald Byrd.

After an opening ballad, side two features a couple of old school rave up RnB numbers that sound more like the Four Tops than the slick funk gangstas that the Players would become over the next few years. Next up is “Funky Worm”, the song that broke the modern funk sound to popular RnB radio. Its easy to imagine Bootsie and Geaorge Clinton listening to this song’s silly nonsense lyrics, snakey synth melodies and low down bass driven groove and seeing a whole future of music making. This album is recommended for funk fans who like some jazzy sophistication in their funk, side one in particular will not disappoint.

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