- Deluxe Limited Edition Box Set Includes Embroidered Flag Cover, 24K Gold Disc, Previously Unpublished Photos & 48 Page Hard Cover Book by A. Scott Galloway
42 years after its original release Sly & The Family Stone's fifth studio album is still praised as one of the greatest albums ever - including be ranked at number 99 on Rolling Stone's "500 Greatest Albums of All Time." Even noted (and oft-jaded) Robert Christgau upped the album to an "A+" rating in his Village Voice "Consumer Guide" (after his initial 1971 rating of "A-.")
After two years in production, the follow-up to Sly & The Family Stone's 1969 smash Stand! Was unveiled to the world in November 1971. Containing radio hits like "Family Affair," "Runnin' Away," and "(You Caught Me) Smilin'," it also - in true Sly fashion - dove deeper into a trippy sonic and lyrical universe that explored societal tensions ("Brave & Strong"), the motherland ("Thank You For Talkin' To Me Africa"), personal relationships ("Just Like A Baby") and artistic expression itself ("Poet"). The album reached #1 on both the Pop and R&B charts and, years later, was certified platinum, gaining tens of thousands of new fans with each passing year.
Noted journalist A. Scott Galloway recounts the story of the iconic original album cover in the set's extensive liner notes:
"In an interview with Jonathan Dakss... Sly definitively explained his concept for the cover art as it related to the overall theme of the album: 'I wanted the flag to truly represent people of all colors. I wanted the color black because it is the absence of color. I wanted the color white because it is the combination of all colors. And I wanted the color red because it represents the one thing that all people have in common: blood. I wanted suns instead of stars because stars to me imply searching, like you search for your star. And there are already too many stars in this world. But the sun, that's something that is always there, looking right at you. Betsy Ross did the best she could with what she had. I thought I could do better.'"
That flag has been lovingly recreated by Get On Down, presented on the set's CD box cover as an actual embroidered fabric square, to bring texture and feel to an album which is already full to the brim with feeling. It's a perfect way to pay tribute to one of the 20th century's musical geniuses: a man who brought fans together during one of America's most turbulent eras.