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Sly & The Family Stone ‘I Get High On You’ Premiere – The Guardian

Sly Stone at Woodstock

The Guardian newspaper has an exclusive stream of “I Get High On You,” one of the rare tracks included on Higher!, the 4-CD Sly & The Family Stone box set to be released August 27. Getting on for twice the length of the original – which appeared on Sly’s 1975 album High on You – it was recorded back in 1967 and begins with multi-layered vocals before embarking on something more woozy and psychedelic than the original.

“I haven’t heard this since the day we cut it,” says drummer Greg Errico. “These sessions were recorded between the first demos and those for the first album, Underdog and so forth. I recall the beginning with the stacked voices … you can tell we are experimenting with different stuff, searching for a sound. I can hear a lot of that in there.”

Read more and listen to “I Get High On You” at The Guardian.

‘You’re What I Wanted’: Assembling The Family Stone – NPR

“I think he was looking for good musicians, and he knew quite a few. He sees the heart of a person.”

That’s how Cynthia Robinson, founding member of Sly & The Family Stone, characterizes the charismatic frontman’s choice of backing players. The band, which pioneered a blend of funk, soul, jazz and pop, began in 1960s San Francisco as a kind of blended family: black and white, men and women.

It was something of a first for a major American rock band, whose legacy remains strong and is celebrated on a new box set titled Higher! Robinson, the band’s trumpet player, says she doesn’t think race or gender entered into decisions surrounding the lineup. Saxophone player Jerry Martini, however, says he believes that Stone’s choice of bandmates was intentional.

“I said, ‘You know, I know a lot of other African-American sax players that can just burn me.’ He goes, ‘But you’re what I wanted,'” Martini says. “I didn’t say, ‘Is it ’cause I’m white?’ or anything like that. But I just saw him as a visionary person who knew the group that he put together represented a lot of society.”

Read more and listen to the report at NPR.

Hear Unreleased Sly & The Family Stone Cut ‘Life of Fortune and Fame’ – SPIN

Sly Stone & Cynthia Robinson

Exclusively at SPIN, you can listen to one of the unreleased tracks from Higher!, the 4-CD Sly & The Family Stone box set in stores August 27. Recorded during the Dance to the Music album sessions in July of 1967, the cut “Life of Fortune and Fame” starts off slowly but soon turns into a fully realized rock/soul fusion that was left, surprisingly, in the vaults up until now. It’s a song that Sly revisited several times early in his career.

Listen to “Life of Fortune and Fame” now at SPIN.

Photo credit: Vernon L. Smith

Exclusive Rare Photos From Sly & The Family Stone’s ‘Higher!’ Box Set –


To celebrate the release of Higher!, the 4-CD career-spanning box set from Sly & The Family Stone, is presenting an exclusive photo gallery featuring several rare photos of Sly with various guitars, including Fenders and Gibsons. There’s even a vintage Ibanez ad for you to check out. View the gallery at

Sly with guitar – (c) Jim Marshall Photography LLC

Listen To Previously Unreleased ‘Undercat’ Track By Sly & The Family Stone – The A.V. Club


In anticipation of the August 27th release of Higher! by Sly & The Family Stone, The A.V. Club has the premiere of a previously unissued track from the 4-CD box set. “Undercat” is an instrumental recorded during the A Whole New Thing period in August 1967 that ended up becoming the song “Plastic Jim.”

Read more and listen to “Undercat” at The A.V. Club.

Sly & The Family Stone ‘Dance To The Music’ (Live From The Isle Of Wight Festival) – VIBE Premiere

130806_vibe presents the world premiere of Sly & The Family Stone “Dance To The Music” (Live From The Isle Of Wright Festival) from the upcoming Higher! box set, in stores August 27th!

“In the summer of 1970, Sly & The Family Stone crossed the Atlantic a second time, for a ten-date jaunt visiting such capitals of Europe as London, Paris and Amsterdam. The most prestigious date of the tour was likely the third Isle of Wight Festival, held on the small island off the southern coast of England, from August 26–31. The documentary film of the previous year’s Woodstock Festival had come out that spring, and it seemed the UK was intent on matching the spectacle. With an estimated 600,000 to 800,000 people in attendance, Isle of Wight would be acknowledged as one of the largest musical events of the era.

Read more and listen to Sly & The Family Stone “Dance To The Music” (Live From The Isle Of Wight Festival) at

Photo credit: Herb Greene

Cynthia Robinson Interviewed About Sly & The Family Stone – Huffington Post


With the upcoming release of Higher!, the 4-CD Sly & The Family Stone box set available August 27, Cynthia Robinson recently spoke with Mike Ragogna of The Huffington Post. Here is an excerpt:

Q: After all these years, the band means so much to the people …

CR: I know the songs that Sly wrote still have the meaning for those that are living today that weren’t even around when we started playing before, in the beginning. His lyrics, to me, if you listen to them, they can form a lifestyle that will leave you a happier person, a better person on this planet. It’s just lyrics to live by.

Q: The music was funk and also a philosophy. Were you aware at the time when you were having hits that it was bigger than its parts?

CR: No, it was just music that was so exciting and so fulfilling within me as a person. I’m sure other members of the band felt the same things because I could see the looks on their faces, that something inside of them was waking up and joyful about them, so I knew. Being an introvert, maybe it was just me, but I thought they were feeling what I was feeling inside. The way that they conducted their lives, they were all ready and eager to be there for the next gig and excited to be together to play together. That was a big thing. We spent more time together than they spent with their wives and girlfriends. Sly always had us rehearsing and he always had something planned out that he wanted us to do. So it wasn’t ever like, “Well what should we work on?” It was never that. He always had the plan, “This is what we’re going to do today, shoop shoop shoop shoop,” and everybody’s minds were in the same direction.

Q: So that’s the bottom line, you truly were family.

CR: Absolutely.

Read the complete interview with Cynthia Robinson at The Huffington Post.

Hear Unreleased Sly & The Family Stone Track From ‘Higher!’ Box Set – USA Today


In early 1968, Epic Records had the members of Sly & The Family Stone record as the studio band for several other R&B singers on the label. One of those tracks, “Dynamite!” is premiering at USA TODAY. It’s one of 17 unreleased tracks on Higher!, the four-CD box set coming from Epic/Legacy on Aug. 27.

Cut in April 1968, “Dynamite!” features the Family Stone backing an R&B singer named Johnny Robinson at the suggestion of David Kapralik, Epic Records’ vice president of A&R and, for several years, the group’s manager. …The track opens with a wailing guitar riff and another guitar that has the distinctive Family Stone fuzz-tone sound. Near the end, it also incorporates elements of “Dance to the Music,” Sly & The Family Stone’s breakthrough hit, which had been released in January of that year.

Listen to “Dynamite!” and read more at USA TODAY.

Sly & The Family Stone Reveal Recording Of ‘What’s That Got to Do With Me’ – Rolling Stone

Sly and the Family Stone are celebrating their career – and Sly Stone’s 70th birthday – with the new anthology collection Higher!, out August 27th. To mark the release, the influential funk group dug deep into their vaults for mono single masters and old, rare recordings. At Rolling Stone, you can get an exclusive listen to Sly and the Family Stone’s take on the track “What’s That Got to Do With Me,” originally by Jim and Jean.

Listen to “What’s That Got to Do With Me” and read more at Rolling Stone.

Pre-Order Sly & The Family Stone ‘Higher’ At Amazon & Get Bonus CD!

All through the brilliant highs and the murky lows of the late ’60s and early ’70s, Sly & The Family Stone had the globe dancing to the music. The creativity of the mixed-race, mixed-gender, and mixed-genre band shines in this new 77-track, 4CD box set, Higher!. With 17 previously unreleased tracks, it’s a lot more music than you knew was there – all remastered to hit the pinnacle of sound.

Also included in Higher! is a stunningly colorful and evocatively detailed 104-page, 10-inch book of rare photographs, posters, picture sleeves, recording documents, vintage ads, and other memorabilia, along with extensive liner notes by Jeff Kaliss), track-by-track annotations, and a detailed timeline of Sly & The Family Stone’s life and career.

As a special exclusive with purchase of Higher! on, you’ll get a bonus CD including 6 extremely rare and previously unreleased tracks! *** UPDATE: The Amazon edition with bonus CD is now sold out. ***


1. Stand! (long version)
2. TV Medley: Sing A Simple Song/ Hot Fun In The Summertime / I Want To Take You Higher
3. Time For Livin’ (alternate Record Plant mix)
4. Saint James Infirmary (instrumental) (live)
5. Sittin’ On My Fanny
6. Dust To Dust (instrumental)

All tracks previously unissued except track 2, available on Epic/Legacy 10” vinyl I Want To Take You Higher.