memories of the ’70s – The Ohio Players

The sound of the ’70s was punctuated by the collaborations of this R&B band: The Ohio Players.

Formed in 1959, the band broke up and reformed twice before ever charting a hit.

In 1971, the band scored a minor hit with the song “Pain”, which reached the Billboard top 40 on the R&B charts, and propelling the album sales to certify this disc gold.

The band followed up with another hit single/album “Pleasure” and the album/single Ecstasy in 1973, which spawned the hit “Funky Worm”, influenced after a meeting with fellow funk player George Clinton. The song was their first single certified gold and led to the band signing with Mercury Records.

With a new lineup, the band recorded several successful albums with Mercury Records – Skintight, Fire, Honey and Contradiction, which spawned well-known hits such as Fire, I Want to be Free, Sweet Sticky Thing, Love Rollercoaster, Who’d She COO, Feel the Beat and O-H-I-O.

The albums reflected the freewheelin’ ’70s with sultry album covers that were not easily ignored – but also were showing their sexy soul.















The band achieved seven  top 40 hits in the time period, fusing R&B, funk, soul, disco and pop sounds into music that easily went from basement parties to uptown nightclubs and from urban radio stations to stereos across the USA.

The band’s compilation album Gold turned gold selling a million plus records in 1976.

By the end of the decade, the band had transformed again, but the hits weren’t happening. Through the next decade, the band continued to perform, play and record, but its the 1970s were the band’s sounds were easy found on the car radio and when you hit the floor at the dance club.


About Waheeda Harris

A pop culture junkie with a penchant for exploring our planet.
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