Graham Central Station — Mirror

I don’t think I knew hardly a thing about Larry Graham until I tripped on a video a couple of years ago where this key former member of Sly and the Family Stone explained how he had come to invent the technique known as slap bass.

Larry Graham explains it all to you…

I was instantly fascinated because I had never given much thought to the elements that made that Sly sound so distinctive, but there it was. It wasn’t Bootsy Collins, it wasn’t Bernard Edwards — Larry Graham started that entire style of funk. He was with Sly for years before going out on his own with Graham Central Station. They put out an album a year in the ’70s; “Mirror,” from 1976, was the fourth. I ran across this at Deep Groove either last year or in 2018, when I knew who he was, and when I was much more funk-centric than I ever was as a teen. It’s a great r&b, funk album — not nearly as out there as you might expect for a Sly alumnus in the mid-’70s. This album isn’t P Funk. There are some strong Christian/religious overtones, which ordinarily would be a massive turn-off for me (just how I am), but it seems to reflect thoughts he was having on the death of his father, which happened while the album was being recorded.

Graham Central Station Mirror front cover
Given the title, “Mirror,” the foil on the cover is certainly appropriate but makes taking a picture of the cover especially frustrating.

Beyond that, I don’t have a lot to say about this. Just another example of continuing to expand horizons.

Graham Central Station Mirror back cover
The back cover does a different take on the “mirror” concept.

2 thoughts on “Graham Central Station — Mirror

  1. Hey, thanks for the post. I went online to find a photo of the album cover after reading an article written by Larry Graham in the February 22, 1989 issue of Awake magazine, published by Jehovah’s Witnesses, of which Larry had become one in 1975. Here’s just a quote from the article.
    “The things I was learning are apparent from the record covers of some of the albums my group produced. The 1976 album entitled Mirror showed on the cover photographs of me and other band members. On one side we appeared with long hair, sunglasses, and faddish clothing, while on the other a mirror-image depicted us as clean-cut, with shorter hair, and modest styles of dress.
    The songs included one entitled “Forever.” It was dedicated to my hope of seeing my father in the resurrection, when life forever will be in front of us. The words of one song reflected my feelings as a newly baptized Witness.”
    Anyhow, just figured I would share that much, since its the reason I came across your blog post here. Again, thanks for posting, glad to be able to see a real example of the album.

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