Street Songs (album)

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Street Songs
Rick James - Street Songs.jpg
Studio album by
ReleasedApril 7, 1981
RecordedDecember 1980 – January 1981
Studiothe Record Plant,
in Sausalito, California
and
Motown / Hitsville U.S.A. Recording Studios,
Hollywood, CA
Genre
Length34:46
LabelGordy
ProducerRick James
Rick James chronology
Garden of Love
(1980)
Street Songs
(1981)
Throwin' Down
(1982)
Singles from Street Songs
  1. "Give It to Me Baby"
    Released: February 20, 1981
  2. "Super Freak"
    Released: July 10, 1981
  3. "Ghetto Life"
    Released: 1981
  4. "Fire and Desire"
    Released: 1981

Street Songs is the fifth album by American musician Rick James, released in April 1981 via Gordy Records. "Give It to Me Baby", the lead song and single from the album, became James' second number one single on the R&B chart. It spent five weeks at the top spot. The fifth song on the album, "Super Freak", was also one of James' biggest hits. A Deluxe Edition was released in 2001 containing an additional 17 mixes and live versions of the album tracks. Although the song "Fire and Desire" (a duet he performed with singer Teena Marie) was not originally released as a single, the song itself received much airplay on R&B radio stations and has since become a classic hit (James and Marie would reunite to perform the song at the 2004 BET Awards a few months before James' death).

Reception[edit]

Professional ratings
Review scores
SourceRating
Allmusic5/5 stars[1]
Robert ChristgauA−[3]

The album became an immediate success upon its release, eventually reaching number three on the US Pop chart and spending twenty weeks at number one on the US R&B chart. The album was certified platinum in the US in July 1981.[4] By 1983, the album had sold nearly 4 million copies worldwide.[5] At the 1982 Grammys, James was nominated for Best Male Rhythm and Blues Vocal Performance for the album while being the first African American male artist to be nominated in the Best Male Rock Vocal Performance category for the song "Super Freak".[6]

Track listing[edit]

All tracks composed and arranged by Rick James, except where noted.

Side A
  1. "Give It to Me Baby" (4:08)
  2. "Ghetto Life" (4:20)
  3. "Make Love to Me" (4:48)
  4. "Mr. Policeman" (4:17)
Side B
  1. "Super Freak" (James, Alonzo Miller) (3:24)
  2. "Fire and Desire" (Duet with Teena Marie) (7:17)
  3. "Call Me Up" (3:53)
  4. "Below the Funk (Pass the J)" (2:36)

2001 Deluxe edition[edit]

Disc One
9. "Give It to Me Baby" (12" Version) (5:42)
10. "Give It to Me Baby" (Instrumental) (6:48)
11. "Super Freak" (12" Version) (7:05)
12. "Super Freak" (Instrumental) (3:33)
Disc Two (Recorded Live at Long Beach, California, July 30, 1981)
  1. "Introduction" (1:46)
  2. "Ghetto Life" (4:21)
  3. "Big Time" (7:08)
  4. "Come Into My Life" (4:14)
  5. "I'm a Sucker for Love" (8:28)
  6. "Square Biz" (7:01)
  7. "Fire It Up" (3:35)
  8. "Love Gun" (5:42)
  9. "Do You Want Some Funk (Interlude)" (2:22)
  10. "Mary Jane" (10:39)
  11. "Super Freak" (4:21)
  12. "You and I" (11:48)
  13. "Give It to Me Baby" (6:05)

2002 Remastered edition[edit]

9. "Give It to Me Baby" (12" Version) (5:42)
10. "Super Freak" (12" Version) (7:05)

Personnel[edit]

Performers

Musicians

  • Gerald Albright - flute ("Make Love to Me", "Fire and Desire")
  • Oscar Alston - bass, handclaps, percussion
  • Reggie Andrews - string arranger
  • Rollice Dale - string contractor
  • Clifford J. Ervin - Flugelhorn, Piccolo, Trumpet
  • John Ervin - Flute, Trombone
  • Fernando Harkless, Roy Poper - trumpet
  • Nathan Hughes, Armando Perzara, Raul Rekow, Bugsy Wilcox - percussion
  • Rick James - arranger, bass, composer, drums, guitar, horns, percussion, producer, timbales, timpani
  • Daniel LeMelle - flute, handclaps, horn arrangements, alto and tenor saxophone, string arrangements
  • Tom McDermott - guitar, percussion
  • Alonzo Miller - producer, composer
  • Naranda Michael Walden - drums
  • Stevie Wonder - harmonica soloist ("Mr. Policeman")
  • Levi Ruffin - Synthesizers

Charts[edit]

Year Album Chart positions[7]
US US
R&B
1981 Street Songs 3 1

Singles[edit]

Year Single Chart positions[8]
US US
R&B
US
Dance
1981 "Give It to Me Baby" 40 1 1
"Super Freak" 16 3 1
1982 "Ghetto Life" 102 38

Certifications[edit]

Region Certification Certified units/sales
United States (RIAA)[9] Platinum 1,000,000^

*sales figures based on certification alone
^shipments figures based on certification alone

Later samples[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b https://www.allmusic.com/album/r10188/review
  2. ^ Discogs - Street Songs - 2002 reMastered CD; Motown / Chronicles (440 064 023-2) US
  3. ^ Robert Christgau Review
  4. ^ RIAA Gold and Platinum Database
  5. ^ Newsweek: Volume 101, Part 2; Volume 101, Part 2, page 81. Newsweek. 1983. Retrieved 2012-02-27.
  6. ^ "Grammy Award Nominees 1982 - Grammy Award Winners 1982". Retrieved October 18, 2016.
  7. ^ "Rick James US albums chart history". allmusic.com. Retrieved 2011-06-15.
  8. ^ "Rick James US singles chart history". allmusic.com. Retrieved 2011-06-15.
  9. ^ "American album certifications – Rick James – Street Songs". Recording Industry Association of America. If necessary, click Advanced, then click Format, then select Album, then click SEARCH. 

External links[edit]