Earth, Wind & Fire
may be available for your next special event!
Earth, Wind & Fire
Vocal Group Hall of Fame
-- inducted 2003
Rock & Roll Hall of Fame
-- inducted 2000
Wind & Fire was one of the most prominent R&B bands of the
1970's and early 1980's. In the course of many R&B masterpieces,
they also produced dance classics such as "Boogie Wonderland,"
with The Emotions, and "Let's Groove."
led by Maurice White, their music is a complex mix of
soulful ballads, funk grooves, and traditional R&B combined with
uplifting, positive lyrics. Through his use of the Kalimba, an African
thumb organ, onstage and as a symbol of the band, Maurice White reminded
audiences and fans of R&B's African roots.
Maurice White grew up in the rich musical climate of Memphis in the late 1950's
which contributed musicians of national stature such as
B.B. King, Carl
Perkins, and Elvis Presley. By the 1960's, his family had relocated to
Chicago and he entered college at the Chicago Conservatory of Music.
Maurice became an in-demand session musician and recorded with such
luminaries as Etta James, Sonny Boy Williamson, and Ramsey Lewis at
By the end of the decade, Maurice had formed his own
group, the Salty Peppers. After a disappointing recording and failing to
receive a major record label deal, Maurice put together a new group to
be called Earth, Wind and Fire. He included some members from the
old group, his younger brother Verdine and, after flying out to Los
Angeles from Chicago, he held auditions for additional members. By the
end of the summer of 1970, Earth, Wind and Fire was born.
Earth, Wind & Fire's first two albums were modest R&B successes. While touring in support, Maurice White met drummer Philip Bailey. After completion of a tour following the second album, the group fell apart and was reformed with only Maurice and Verdine White remaining from the original lineup. Philip Bailey was brought in as drummer and vocalist and other key musicians were hired, including Larry Dunn and Ronnie Laws. Columbia Records president Clive Davis saw the reformed group in concert, liked what he saw, and the group moved from Warner Brothers to Columbia for their third album. The association with Columbia Records would last for 18 years.
The first two albums with the new lineup sold well, eventually going gold. The third album "Open
Our Eyes" was a
breakthrough and included the R&B smash hit "Mighty
Mighty," featuring a strong dance groove. The group continued a
rigorous touring schedule and became known for exciting, flamboyant
shows. The album "That's
The Way of The World" became a #1 Pop
hit album and featured the band's first #1 single, the relentlessly
funky and uplifting "Shining Star."
The group produced music popular in the clubs in the
late 1970's. "Fantasy" and "September" were hits on
the Disco chart. While not straightforward Disco, the songs have a
powerful groove that makes it difficult to not move. 1979's "I
Am" featured Earth, Wind and Fire's stab at Disco.
Wonderland," recorded with R&B vocal group
The Emotions, became a Disco classic. The album also featured the massive
ballad hit "After the Love Has Gone."
Entering the 1980's "Let's Groove" off the
"Raise!" album was another major dance hit. After 1983's
"Electric Universe" was a massive commercial and critical
failure, the band retreated from the studio for a few years. In the
intervening years, Maurice White worked as a producer and
released solo albums including the hit "Easy Lover" with
1987's "Touch The World" was a success with
the hit "System of Survival." The group performed on a 9-month
world tour in support of the album. "Millennium" and "In
The Name of Love" in the 1990's were also strong albums. The legacy
of the group lives on!
Hit songs include --
- Got To Get You Into My Life
- Happy Feelin'
- Let's Groove
- Serpentine Fire
- Shining Star
- Sing A Song
- System of Survival
- Thinking of You
- After The Love Has Gone
- Boogie Wonderland
- Fall In Love With Me
- Mighty Mighty
- Saturday Nite
- Sun Goddess
- That's The Way of The World
- Kalimba Story
Earth, Wind & Fire may be available for your next special event!
(For more modest budgets, contact us for
information on the Earth, Wind &
Fire Tribute Band.)
.Soul. / xSoul
.Funk. / xFunk
.Disco. / xDisco
.Urban. / xUrban
.Smooth Soul. / SmoothSoul
.Soundtracks. / xSoundtracks
.Quiet Storm. / QuietStorm
.Blaxploitation. / xBlaxploitation
.Psychedelic Soul. / PsychedelicSoul
x70s, x80s, x90s, x00s, x10s
Formed: ..in Illinois / formed nIllinois
Formed: ..in Chicago / formed ChicagoIL
Formed: in 1969
Based: ..in US