There are two kinds of black music: before Sly Stone, and after Sly Stone. He shook the foundations of soul and turned it into a brand-new sound that influenced and liberated musicians as varied as Miles Davis, Stevie Wonder and Herbie Hancock. His group, consisting of blacks and whites, men and women, symbolized the Woodstock generation and crossed over to dominate pop charts with anthems like "Everyday People," "Dance to the Music," and "I Want to Take You Higher." The music changed pop history, but we''ve never known much about the people who made it. Not until now.
Joel Selvin weaves an epic American tale from the voices of the people around this funk phenomenon: Sly''s parents, his family members and band members (sometimes one and the same), and rock figures including Grace Slick, Sal Valentino, Bobby Womack, Mickey Hart, Clive Davis, Bobby Freeman, and many more. In their own words, they candidly share the triumphs and tragedies of one of the most influential musical groups ever formed-"different strokes" from the immensely talented folks who were there when it all happened.