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Published: 2013/06/04
by Brad Farberman

Shuggie Otis
Inspiration Information / Wings Of Love

Epic/Legacy

There’s a lot going on in the title track from Shuggie Otis’s masterful 1974 LP Inspiration Information. Underneath Shuggie’s soothing vocals, uplifting organ stabs bounce over swishy wah-wah guitar figures. Below all that, thumping bass lines adorn simple, encouraging drums. And it’s all Shuggie. Save for the horns, harp and strings on Information, Shuggie plays everything. But despite that powerful show of musicianship, he never released a follow-up album. Until now. A new reissue of Information is paired with Wings Of Love, a collection of previously unreleased Shuggie tracks recorded between 1975 and 2000. Though it’s not quite the desert island disc that Information is for many, Wings flies high. With its popping low end and swimming, psychedelic guitar riffs, the dance-inducing “Special” falls somewhere between disco and the juju jams of King Sunny Ade. “Destination You!” is feel-good funk all the way, with Shuggie’s bluesy six-string adding color and juice.

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