I Am (Earth, Wind & Fire album)

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I Am
Studio album by
ReleasedJune 9, 1979[1]
RecordedSeptember 4–16, 1978
StudioHollywood Sound Recorders
Sunset Sound Studio
Davlen Studio
(Los Angeles, California)
GenreR&B, soul, disco, funk
LabelColumbia, ARC
ProducerMaurice White
Earth, Wind & Fire chronology
The Best of Earth, Wind & Fire, Vol. 1
I Am
Singles from I Am
  1. "Boogie Wonderland"
    Released: May 6, 1979
  2. "After the Love Has Gone"
    Released: July 12, 1979
  3. "In The Stone"
    Released: October 14, 1979
  4. "Star"
    Released: December 6, 1979
  5. "Can't Let Go"
    Released: December 30, 1979
Professional ratings
Review scores
AllMusic3/5 stars[2]
New York Times(favorable)[3]
MusicHound4/5 stars[4]
Robert Christgau(B+)[5]
Rolling Stone(mixed)[6]
Los Angeles Times(favourable)[8]

I Am is the ninth studio album by the R&B band Earth, Wind & Fire, released on June 9, 1979 on CBS Records. The LP rose to Nos. 1 & 3 on the Billboard Top Soul Albums and Billboard 200 charts respectively.[9][10] I Am has been certified Double Platinum in the US by the RIAA, Platinum in the UK by the BPI and Platinum in Canada by Music Canada.[11][12][13]


I Am was produced by Maurice White. Artists such as The Emotions and Toto's Steve Lukather also made guest appearances on the album.[2]

Critical reception[edit]

Music critic Robert Christgau noted I Am as "Sexy, dancy pop music of undeniable craft".[5] The New York Times also described the album as "..flashingly theatrical and musically imaginative".[3]

Bandleader Maurice White was Grammy nominated in the category of Producer of the Year Non-Classical.[14]


The song, "After the Love Has Gone", reached No. 2 on both theBillboard Hot 100 and Hot Soul Songs charts.[15][16] After The Love Has Gone also reached No. 3 on both the Billboard Adult Contemporary Songs and UK Singles charts.[17][18] The ballad was Grammy nominated in the category of Record of the Year. After the Love Has Gone also won a Grammy for Best R&B Vocal Performance by a Duo or Group.[19]

Another single, "Boogie Wonderland" featuring The Emotions, reached No. 2 on the Billboard Hot Soul Songs chart and No. 6 on the Hot 100.[20][21] Boogie Wonderland was also Grammy nominated in the categories of Best Disco Recording and Best R&B Instrumental Performance.[19]

Track listing[edit]

Original release[edit]

Side one
1."In the Stone"Maurice White, Allee Willis, David Foster4:48
2."Can't Let Go"Billy Meyers, M. White, A. Willis3:28
3."After the Love Has Gone"D. Foster, Jay Graydon, Bill Champlin4:26
4."Let Your Feelings Show"M. White, A. Willis, D. Foster5:24
Side two
5."Boogie Wonderland" (featuring The Emotions)Jon Lind, A. Willis4:48
6."Star"Eddie Del Barrio, M. White, A. Willis4:23
7."Wait"M. White, A. Willis, D. Foster3:39
8."Rock That!"M. White, D. Foster3:07
9."You and I"M. White, A. Willis, D. Foster3:34


2004 reissue bonus tracks[edit]

10."Diana"M. White, D. Foster4:08
11."Dirty (Interlude)" (featuring Junior Wells)M. White0:52
12."Dirty (Junior's Juke)" (featuring Junior Wells)M. White, Alexander Dutkewych3:44


  • The Emotions are Jeanette Hawes, Sheila Hutchinson-Whitt & Wanda Hutchinson-Vaughn

Uses in other media[edit]

"Let Your Feelings Show" was featured in the Fame episode "Heritage".[24]

"In the Stone" was used in the 2002 movie Drumline.[25]

"In the Stone" was also the opening theme from the Brazilian TV show from SBT, Porta da Esperança, hosted by Silvio Santos.

"In the Stone" was performed by Rickey Minor and The Tonight Show Band on June 7, 2010, during Minor's first night as the show's bandleader.

"In the Stone" was used as the opening theme for the ATN-7 Sydney "Midday At The Movies" program around 1982.

"In the Stone" was used in the opening credits for the Swedish TV-comedy Lorry.

"In the Stone" was used for the opening of its newscasts on KLAS-TV in Las Vegas from 1979 to 1981.

"Rock That" was used for the opening of its telecasts of the Los Angeles Dodgers on flagship KTTV Channel 11 during the early to mid 1980s.


Album – Billboard
Year Chart Position
1979 Pop Albums 3
Black Albums 1
Year Chart Position[18]
1979 United Kingdom 5
Year Single Chart positions[26][18]
US Hot 100 US R&B US Dance UK Singles
1979 "Boogie Wonderland" (featuring The Emotions) 6 2 14 4
"After the Love Has Gone" 2 2 - 4
"In the Stone" 58 23 - 53
"Star" 64 47 - 16
"Can't Let Go" - - - 46


Credits are adapted from Allmusic[2] and the album’s Liner Notes[22][23]


  • Design by Roger Carpenter
  • Illustration by Shusei Nagaoka
  • Mastered by Michael Reese
  • Producer - Maurice White (Original, Reissue), Leo Sacks (Reissue), Paul Klingberg (additional on 10, 12)
  • Engineer - Tom Perry, George Massenburg
  • Assistant Engineers - Craig Widby, Ross Pallone
  • Mixing - Mark Wilder (11), George Massenburg
  • Concertmaster - Janice Gower
  • Horn Arrangements - Jerry Hey (1, 3, 7-8, 10-12), Tom Tom 84 (2, 4, 6-7, 9), Benjamin F. Wright (5)
  • String Arrangements - David Foster (1, 3, 8, 10), Tom Tom 84 (2, 4, 6-7, 9), Benjamin F. Wright (5)



The information regarding accolades attributed to I Am is adapted from Acclaimed Music and NME[27][28]

Publication Country Accolade Year Rank
Mojo 1000, the Ultimate CD Buyers Guide U.K 100 Soul Albums Everyone Should Own 2001 33
Melody Maker U.K Albums of the Year 1979 8
NME U.K Albums of the Year 1979 16

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Earth, Wind & Fire: I Am". 45worlds.com.
  2. ^ a b c d e "Earth, Wind & Fire: I Am". allmusic.com.
  3. ^ a b "The Pop Life". nytimes.com.
  4. ^ [1]
  5. ^ a b "Earth, Wind & Fire: I Am". robertchristgau.com.
  6. ^ [2]
  7. ^ "Album Reviews". Cashbox Magazine. June 9, 1979. p. 16.
  8. ^ "EWF: The Sweetest Muzak". Los Angeles Times. July 1, 1979. p. 367.
  9. ^ "Earth, Wind & Fire: I Am (Top Soul Albums)". billboard.com.
  10. ^ "Earth, Wind & Fire: I Am". billboard.com.
  11. ^ Music Canada certification for I Am Archived 2012-09-05 at Archive.today
  12. ^ "Earth, Wind & Fire: I Am". riaa.com.
  13. ^ British Phonographic Industry Certification for I AM Archived 2011-06-04 at the Wayback Machine
  14. ^ "Maurice White". billboard.com.
  15. ^ "Earth, Wind & Fire: After the Love Has Gone (Hot 100)". billboard.com.
  16. ^ "Earth, Wind & Fire: After the Love Has Gone (Hot Soul Songs)". billboard.com.
  17. ^ "Earth, Wind & Fire: After The Love Has Gone (Adult Contemporary Songs)". billboard.com.
  18. ^ a b c "Earth, Wind & Fire". officialcharts.com.
  19. ^ a b "Earth, Wind & Fire". grammy.com.
  20. ^ "Earth, Wind & Fire: Boogie Wonderland (Hot Soul Songs)". billboard.com.
  21. ^ "Earth, Wind & Fire: Boogie Wonderland (Hot 100)". billboard.com.
  22. ^ a b Earth, Wind & Fire. “I Am” (Album Notes). ARC / Columbia. 1979.
  23. ^ a b c Earth, Wind & Fire. “I Am” (Expanded Edition). ARC / Columbia-Legacy. 2004.
  24. ^ "Maurice White". IMDb.
  25. ^ "Drumline (2002)" – via www.imdb.com.
  26. ^ Allmusic (Earth, Wind & Fire > Charts & Awards > Billboard Singles)
  27. ^ "Earth, Wind & Fire: I Am". acclaimedmusic.net.
  28. ^ "Albums And Tracks Of The Year: (1979)". nme.com.

External links[edit]