Funky soul singer Betty Davis's provocative debut album features 8 sexually-charged songs, including "He Was A Big Freak" and "They Say I'm Different."
Personnel: Tony Vaughn (vocals, bass voice, piano, electric piano, Clavinet); Ted Sparks (vocals, drums); Trudy Perkins, Mary Jones, Elaine Clark, Debbie Burrell (vocals); Cordell Dudley (tenor, guitar); Jimmy Godwin, Buddy Miles (guitar); Hershall Kennedy (trumpet, electric piano, Clavinet, organ); Merl Saunders (piano, electric piano, organ); Larry Johnson (bass guitar); Mike Clark (drums); Victor Pantoja (congas); Pete Escovedo (timbales).
Audio Mixers: Jack Adams ; Tom Flye.
Audio Remasterer: Dave Cooley.
Liner Note Author: Oliver Wang.
Recording information: Record Plant Studios, Sausalito, CA.
Authors: Four Tet; John Bigham; Kieran Hebden; Miles Davis; Rick James ; Saul Williams; Talib Kweli.
Arranger: Betty Davis.
The remarkable cover photo presents 1970s funk singer Betty Davis as a sort of Glamazon huntress, complete with stacked heels and a majestic afro. The contents of Davis' second album, originally released in 1974, are every bit as provocative: THEY SAY I'M DIFFERENT is the libidinous Davis's most sexually charged album by some distance, with songs like "He Was A Big Freak" and "Don't Call Her No Tramp" detailing sexual fetishes and prostitution in plain-spoken detail. The bottom-heavy synthesizer and clavinet-based arrangements and production sound quite similar to what George Clinton was doing with Parliament and Funkadelic during this period. The 2007 reissue on Light In The Attic Records adds four alternate versions.
Spin (p.91) - 3.5 stars out of 5 -- "[With] heavy psychedelic guitar salvos and feral proto-punk snarling..."
Magnet (p.92) - "[T]he hardest funk this side of prime James Brown....the brashest female voice ever to hit wax."
Down Beat (p.79) - 3 stars out of 5 -- "[The album] shows off her scalpel-sharp ability to slash her nasty repartee through great, massed grooved slammed down by her musicians."
Vibe (p.128) - "[H]er delivery careens between fierce and kittenish, untouchable and vulnerable, aggressive and caustic....Those deadly dichotomies were a source of power for Davis both musically and as a muse."