It is common for actors to explore their musical talents, as they complement each other like movies and popcorn. Growing up in the eighties, I recall Eddie Murphy, Don Johnson, and Philip Michal Thomas releasing projects. This week’s Second Listen Sunday pick is Gregory Hines, the late thespian and tap-dancing icon who released a self-titled album
Slow Jam Saturday : Janet Jackson, 70s Love Groove
Tonight will be one for the record books, as I finally see Janet “Ms. Jackson if you’re Nasty” live. Before that, though, I must show some love to one of my favorite Janet slow cuts for Slow Jam Saturday.
The year was 1995, and Janet was still basking in the success of her 14 million worldwide-selling fifth album, Janet. As we all know, that album validated Janet as an icon and a sex symbol. That said, the song I chose to go with was “70’s Love Groove”.
The song was recorded during the Janet sessions and was initially released as the B-side to “You Want This.” However, it gained more attention when featured on the soundtrack of the 1994 fashion comedy film, Ready to Wear. In the spring of 1995, I first heard the song on the Quiet Storm on my local radio station.
The DJ mentioned that it was an exclusive from the album Janet Remixed, which unfortunately wouldn’t get a commercial release in the United States. Thankfully I recorded the song and had it on tape for years. I finally got a physical copy of the song when I traveled to Korea five years later and picked it up at a record store overseas.
Collaborating with her longtime producers, Jimmy Jam & Terry Lewis, Janet crafted a seductive bop. A sensual and sultry slow jam, “70’s Love Groove” explores love and passion in a 70s-inspired environment. The song sets the mood by mentioning afros, incense, black lights, and mood rings – all symbols of the 70s counterculture promoting peace, love, and sexual liberation. Janet Jackson sings about exploring each other’s bodies, taking time, and enjoying the moment.
The song’s message is about getting lost in the moment and being in touch with one’s sensual side. The repetition of the “70’s kinda love” lyric shows that this love-making is reminiscent of that era, where free love and sexual exploration were the norms. Overall, the song highlights the sensual nature of the 70s and encourages the listeners to give in to their desires and embrace the moment.
While I doubt Janet even sings a snippet of this song tonight, I still hold it in high regard and keep it rotation.
Final Grade: A
“70’s Love Groove” from Janet, Remixed is available on all streaming platforms.
More reviews to explorer
It’s been six years since audiences experienced the rating-breaking three-part mini-series, The New Edition Story. I still remember my excitement walking into an advance screening of Part 1 on a cold January night. One of my favorite scenes occurs in this part when a young Ricky Bell and Michael Bivins are supporting a pre-teen Bobby Brown in a talent show. The local Boston-based group, The Untouchables, is performing a cover of Philly soul group Blue Magic’s “Spell” before Bobby takes the stage. After hearing another cover version of the song in Michael Bivin’s documentary, The Hustle of 617 Biv, I decided to feature it for Slow Jam Saturday.
R&B fans were elated this past summer when R&B legend Raphael Saadiq announced he had reunited with Tony! Toni! Toné! for a fall tour. The tour kicked off this past Thursday in Birmingham, Alabama, with twenty-five planned stops. I plan on attending the Oxon Hill, MD, stop this coming Monday.