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KOOL & THE GANG - Booking Agent and Booking Agency | Book KOOL & THE GANG for Concerts and Private Event

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Kool & The Gang - Music Category 1
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  Kool & the Gang could have been just another in a long line of jazz-funk outfits which emerged in the late '60s and early '70s, now eulogized on rare groove compilations but mere footnotes in the history of music. But the combination of the group's pop smarts, aided by singer James "J.T." Taylor, helped the band create a lasting musical legacy well-known to millions.

That success came from humble beginnings--the group was founded in Jersey City, NJ as a jazz ensemble by bassist Robert "Kool" Bell. The seven-piece, high-school-aged group later absorbed R&B into its sound and signed to De-Lite records in 1969, scoring a minor hit with "Kool & the Gang." They later backed poet Lightnin' Rod on the LP Hustler's Convention, but the group's first real success didn't come until 1974, with the funky top 10 hits "Jungle Boogie" and "Hollywood Swinging" and the platinum album Wild And Peaceful. Although the Gang enjoyed respectable sales with several subsequent albums of jazz and R&B, it wasn't until 1978, when they recruited singer James Taylor and producer-keyboardist Eumir Deodato, that the group turned into a hit machine. During the next six years, the group was rarely off the charts--in part because Taylor's vocals meant ballads were an option--& the Gang's best-known hit, 1980's mega-selling "Celebration," became a global anthem.

As the decade progressed, the group displayed a more rock-oriented edge on tracks like 1985's "Misled," but the hits had dried up by 1987, and Taylor left for a solo music and acting career the following year. Both Taylor and the Gang struggled commercially throughout the 1990s, until deciding to reunite for 1996's State Of Affairs. But the disappointingly out-of-touch album failed commercially and critically, providing a sad coda--at least at present--to a distinguished career. Check out our other R & B Stars

 
 




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